How to fix something broken

Random thoughts

Month: December, 2015

Pantomime

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Gotham‘s villain Harvey Dent aka Two-Face in an illustration by Ron Wagner.

Everybody is so aware of living a farce, yet so afraid of confronting it…

And those who don’t want to fit in it are the ones who are pushed away.

A room of one’s own

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Cover from the 1911 edition of Frances Hodgson Burnett‘s The secret garden. The illustration is credited to M. B. Kirk.

My mind is my own prison. But it’s also my sanctuary. 

Haphephobia

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Catherine Deneuve in a still from Roman Polanski‘s Repulsion (1965).

 

The fear of being physically touched is not just a condition, it’s much more widespread than we think.

As far as I can remember, there’s always been a lack of physical contact in the environment I was brought up. I don’t know if it’s just something cultural (us Catalans are not exactly a paragon of effusiveness), if it’s the fact of having lacked affection in childhood, or just the fear of being misinterpreted, but my family are not exactly… warm and loving when it comes to hugging, kissing, and such.

I have one of those bad childhood memories you try to bury somewhere in your subconscious, but which ocasionally come back to haunt you. I was at the beach with my parents. I suddenly felt an imperative need of hugging my mother. She pushed me away. She was probably even more scared than I was, ’cause she was a very sensitive child who was never loved as she deserved. That doesn’t mean I didn’t justly hate her guts because of that.

Somehow, out of the familiar surroundings, I’ve ended up getting surrounded by people who are equally unafectionate. They’re also sensitive, brainy people who . That doesn’t make it much easier.

Either way, you end up getting used to it, which doesn’t mean it is a good thing.

Embracing who we are

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Amy Landecker and Jeffrey Tambor in Jill Soloway‘s TV show Transparent (2014)

 

“- I’m sorry, Dad, I’m sorry. Can you just help me out here? Are you saying that you’re gonna start dressing up like a lady all the time?

-No, honey — all my life, my whole life, I’ve been dressing up like a man. This is me.”

Your inner self

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       Still from Ed Wood in Glen or Glenda (1953), directed by and starring himself.

It takes a lot of courage to be yourself in this fucked up world.

But it’s kinda easy with strangers. Not so much with those who’ve always been by your side and those you love.

Being scared of letting people down is the worst feeling there is.

Emotionally crippled

Why is it so hard and scary to ask for tokens of affection and give them back to our actual beloved ones?

All in the family

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The cast from the first season of Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk‘s American Horror Story aka Murder House (2011) (left to right: Evan Peters, Jessica Lange, Jamie Brewer, Alexandra Breckenridge, Denis O’Hare, Frances Conroy, Taissa Farmiga, Dylan McDermott and Connie Britton).

Leo Tolstoy‘s Anna Karenina starts with this line:

‘All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’

I couldn’t agree less. For me it’s precisely the other way around. Unhappiness feels the same way everywhere, even though it’s difficult to realise about that from an unhappy position (‘Grass is always greener’, you know…).

It’s like Death. If you have a look at a bunch of corpses they all look the same: pale, cold, motionless… But every living thing or person is different: they look different, they walk different, they move different, they sound different…

It’s the same way with happiness. Every happy (reasonably happy, at least) person’s choice, every happy person’s path leads to something different and exciting, and remains open to it. I guess everything new feels like an adventure.

And I guess it all begins with a happy family environment.

No, I’m not my worst enemy

Self-help is bullshit.

Don’t get me wrong: I consider myself to be an espiritual and reflective person. But self-help speeches are so useful to the real enemy out there, since they pour all responsibility for our failures in ourselves. 

That would be true if, in fact, the pain we suffer was self-inflicted. But it usually is a product of our circumstances as much as it is a product of our personal condition. 

Self-help is isolating. The word itself is apparent: you can only find answers within yourself. And yeah, you can… as long as you’ve been answered a few questions previously, and you’ve been given some guidelines, so that in your time of need you may resort to them to help you out.

Self-help disconnects you from the rest of the world and makes you believe you can be special, some sort of superhero… Ah, the American dream! The philosophy of Capitalism and Liberalism has permeated all cultures around the world with by means of globalization.

Most people don’t realise that the classic Judeo-Christian feeling of guilt, and the Protestant work ethics has just transformed itself through New Age philosophies. 

Invoking ego as the absolute Evil in the world… Yeah, that’s right: ego hurts me. Others’s egos. That’s why I try to keep my eyes open and be alert. 

Isn’t it a huge irony that self-help can be so hurtful itself?