Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Marcel in Oz

In my relationship in Korea we had one child, Marcel, who was both the apple of our eye and the bane of our existence - those who have harboured Siamese in their homes know there is the predelication towards violence.

Marcel would attack with a ferociousness only matched by our affection for him - and surely rooted in our inability to spend more of each day showering that affection on him.

And I am sure that all of his vigour and strength is being called on these days, as he now lives downunder, where wrestling kangaroos must surely make up a significant percentage of his day.

I don't know why, but today I am feeling the need to reach out to people. I am sitting at my desk loathe to work - although I will buckle down once the post button is hit - and wishing I could be in a warm cafe with a friend, a crib board and a hot cup of coffee.

Or that I could go home and have a warm, furry companion greet me at the door and settle on my lap as I read "The Wind-up Bird Chronicle," study my Korean or veg in front of my TV.

We are all essentially alone, I know, but we need to mitigate that condition by building bridges to those we brush up against in everyday life - virtually or in the flesh.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

“The brightest lights in the darkest night” (#2)

What are the brightest lights in this life that so often feels like the darkest night? When you have a partner beside you helping to navigate the treacherous trials and tribulations of this life it is truly like having a rod and a staff to comfort you. When you do not have a soulmate you have to look a little further afield to find this warmth and comfort.

one) My family: This does not imply that my family is all sweetness and light - they come with their own attendant trials and tribulations. Sometimes we really bring out the worst in each other, and that pains me because I want to be a positive part of their lives. I love my family and, more importantly, I respect them as strong and proud individuals.

two) Everything but the Girl, "Amplified Heart": Is this one of the greatest albums of all time? No. Is it even my favorite album of all time? Probably not. But it is what I listen to a lot these days. I think it is in many ways analogous to a blog - "Amplified Heart" and "Walking Wounded" are probably as intimate as reading the artists' diaries.

"To know yourself is to let yourself be loved"

three) Haruki Murakami: I have already given away at least half a dozen copies of "Norwegian Wood," with all but one recipient having subsequently gone out to purchase more and more of his works. I am now reading "The Wind-up Bird Chronicle" and can only recommend it as highly if not higher. These novels are portraits of haunting isolation, yes - but that is a fundamental condition of our modern existence, and to read it so beautifully rendered is both edifying and comforting.

"Is the narrative that you now possess really and truly your own?
Are your dreams really your own dreams?
Might not they be someone else's visions that could sooner or later turn into nightmares?
Huruki Murakami , "Underground"

four) My friends: Sadly none are within driving distance even if I were to go all through the night and the next day. I am difficult to get to know, I am aware of that, and it takes some patience to stay close to me, I am also aware of that. I love those of you who still see the value in knowing me and I hope I return the same value or more to you. I often feel as fundamentally alone as Murakami's protagonists, yet if I make the effort to reach out you are all there for me. I am scared to write names for fear of who I will forget: Scott, Colleen, Julien, Paul, Nicola, Chris and others that I apologize for not calling out.

"You just call out my name, and you know wherever I am,
I'll come see you again"

five) Unjena: You proved I could be so much more than I ever believed. If I had been a stronger man or you had had a little more faith we could have been here together building a universe unto ourselves. My own faith was so strong that it blinded me to the faultlines in our life, and that was one of the main reasons for our downfall. I am truly sorry.

""I believe in you, I believe in your mind
even though I know you've started over
even though you are making memories without me"