So many of us, when we leave our home countries, want to escape ourselves. We build up enormous webs of people, of bars and coffee shops, of arguments and exes and the same five places over and over again, from which we feel we can’t break free. There are just too many bridges that have been burned, or love that has turned sour and ugly, or restaurants at which you’ve eaten everything on the menu at least ten times — the only way to escape and to wipe your slate clean is to go somewhere where no one knows who you were, and no one is going to ask. And while it’s enormously refreshing and exhilarating to feel like you can be anyone you want to be and come without the baggage of your past, you realize just how much of “you” was based more on geographic location than anything else.
Walking streets alone and eating dinner at tables for one — maybe with a book, maybe not — you’re left alone for hours, days on end with nothing but your own thoughts. You start talking to yourself, asking yourself questions and answering them, and taking in the day’s activities with a slowness and an appreciation that you’ve never before even attempted. Even just going to the grocery store — when in an exciting new place, when all by yourself, when in a new language — is a thrilling activity. And having to start from zero and rebuild everything, having to re-learn how to live and carry out every day activities like a child, fundamentally alters you. Yes, the country and its people will have their own effect on who you are and what you think, but few things are more profound than just starting over with the basics and relying on yourself to build a life again. I have yet to meet a person who I didn’t find calmed by the experience. There is a certain amount of comfort and confidence that you gain with yourself when you go to this new place and start all over again, and a knowledge that — come what may in the rest of your life — you were capable of taking that leap and landing softly at least once.
However eggs are not always handled properly. Often they are treated quite carelessly. They are dropped. Or they are neglected. Or they are forgotten altogether, abandoned in their pots to explode when the water boils off. Eggs are so common, so everyday; perhaps we treat them mindlessly? Perhaps we think there are always more eggs where that one came from, so why treat it as if it were a precious thing?
But then there is the crack-up. Perhaps inevitable. Perhaps you saw it coming. So what? I have great respect for all the king’s men. So if they cannot put Humpty together again, I certainly won’t be able to. And that’s the last lesson of the egg, today. Crack-ups—and I’m talking about scrambled messes—are irreparable. Try as you might, you will never get more than a weak patchily glued-together soggy old thing.
We spend way too much time and energy struggling to salvage messes, struggling to repair them, struggling to make them into something they will never again be. We become attached to them—and to our woes. We spend way too little time learning to detect the fault lines etched across the surface of conversation, evident in the pattern of actions—so we are always caught by surprise when the egg cracks.
The trash bin is an excellent model of compartmentalization. Sulk, sorrow, clean up, and be done with it. There is no going back. But even that can be a beautiful thing, if we let it: learn from it. Luckily with eggs (and I know, I know, another trip to the farm stand, and we’re tired, already, but…) there will always be a chance to try again.
You may have had your heart set on a soft-boiled egg. But then again, you might enjoy an omelette.
Selangor UMNO Information Chief Abdul Shukor Idrus, who is also the state assemblyman for Kuang who argued that “what’s wrong with giving the land to UMNO” as reward for the “contributions by UMNO in fighting for independence and developing this country”.
The kind of goons and idiots we have running our country. UNBELIEVABLE.
The latest tidbit to come from Pakatan Rakyat’s Sabahan tour, coming from Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim, I find it too funny not too share:
Tanya sama Najib apa sebab goyang?
Nanti jawab Najib sebab Sabah nak hilang.
Kalau Sabah hilang UMNO melayang;
Najib jadi ketua pembankang.
Who knew? Opposition leader counts crooning as one of his many talents!
7 MAY Kenapa mesti kita sibuk melaungkan kata keamanan kalau dalam mecari keamanan dan kesejahteraan itu sendiri kita masih mempejuangkan hak kaum persendirian? Ini bukan penulisan perkauman atau…
“Mungkin kite lupa bahawa PAS & PKR memenangi sebanyak 51 kerusi parlimen dan kebanyakan calon mereka adalah orang islam berbangsa Melayu. Dicampur pula dengan bilangan kerusi 103 kerusi parlimen yang dimenangi UMNO, jadi jumlah keseluruhan adalah 154 kerusi. Jadi dari mana datangnya informasi masyarakat cina menguasai politik negara?”
“Sebagai contoh yang jelas dan mudah, kawasan berpenduduk bermajoriti masyarakat Cina iaitu di parlimen Pandan di mana keputusan pilihanraya memihak kepada calon berketurunan Melayu iaitu saudara Rafizi Ramli dengan majoriti yang sangat besar dan tidak kepada calon yang berketurun Cina bernama Gary Lim dari parti MCA. Dari sini jelas menyatankan suara rakyat suara keramat yang kian jelas menolak politik perkauman sekali gus cukup untuk mematikan tuduhan “Cina nak kuasai politik Malaysia”!”
“Kenapa dengan mudah anak Melayu mempercayai yang suatu hari nanti negara ni menjadi negara di mana agama rasminya adalah Kristian dan yang paling popular di kalangan anak Melayu, “nanti Cina nak hapuskan hak keistimewaan melayu”.
Sahabat, kalau kita baca dan kaji kita pasti tahu perkara mudah ini. Perlembagaan Malaysia itu bersifat kebal. Sehinggakan, sebagai contoh yang mudah difahami, jika ada perkara yang al-quran kata salah, tapi dalam perlembagaan mengatakan ia tidak salah, maka perkara itu secara rasminya adalah tidak salah. Begitulah kebalnya perlembagaan Malaysia dan sifat kekebalan itu pun sudah cukup untuk kita faham bukan mudah untuk perlembagaan kita dipinda. Jelas?”
First snap from Barcelona, loving the hotel’s modernist glass decor. #Hesperia
Most of the time it’s fine and I don’t think about it but, when I need someone to blame, I let myself remember you. Then, like a specter from my past, you are suddenly back — in the same sweatshirt you had lent to me two years ago when it was February cold. I let myself remember that morning; so far in the distant past I can’t even see it when I look behind me.
The light was still gray when I’d slipped out from beneath the covers you’d pulled over me. Even then I knew that there was a tremendous amount of love, barely contained under my skin, which was threatening to erupt. I desperately wished I could turn off your gravitational pull, because each time I tried to get up, to get away, you sent me hurtling like a giant, deplorable ball of burning gas back into your atmosphere. I was stuck in your orbit. And so you, who confided in me that your greatest vice was apathy, became “the one I would not forget” even as I wished and wished that it wouldn’t happen this way. Finally, in quiet resignation, I left the bit of me that allowed for loving with wild abandon in your hand and said my goodbye amidst the morning storm.
To accept that you may be a bit socially maladroit, or that you have interests or a personality which generally relegates you to a more passive social role, is not easy. To blame this unhappiness on a woman saying “No” is. And even though the real enemy in all of this is the gender role which insist that a man’s worth is largely determined by his social prowess and traditional masculinity (which associates the feminine with the weak and undesirable), to point the finger at something as nebulous as patriarchy would be absurd. Much, much easier to blame the girl who didn’t call you back.
A Nice Guy, however, never wants to ask himself what he could be possibly doing wrong, or the societal pressures which are forcing him into a role he is not comfortable occupying. His only move is to express his disdain for the woman who turned him down, because no matter how exigent he can be about his possible partners, her using her own discretion is simply out of the question. After all, he’s so Nice, he deserves to have her.