Thursday, 23 July 2015

Delight in disorder


Photos of these deformed daisies spotted near Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan, have gone viral, and in turn left the social media in a frenzy. While some condemn the "ugly life-forms" created by yet another miscarriage of Japan's inane nuclear energy projects, I can't help but be caught in wonder at the sight. There is a whole plethora of motivational quotes hidden in that picture. Fukushima has been given the rawest deal possible, and my heart goes out to everyone affected by nuclear power plant meltdown that took place back in 2011. 

But from amidst the chaos, three daisies arise, standing tall, waving boldly in the corrupt sands of commerce, and while they're at it totally owning their little quirks. These daisies are a metaphor for hope, for finding perfection in imperfections and seeing delight in disorder.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

This changes everything

We actually met quite unremarkably in the college food court. I was frantically working on an essay that was due that same day and he sat down next to me. He was a knowledgeable senior, I was a wide-eyed freshman with questions. Conversation ensued. 

I did not succeed in submitting my paper in time that day, but I did make a friend. 

His face was very agreeable, his beard was trimmed in sophisticated Abe Lincoln fashion, his jet black curls juxtaposed with stormy grey eyes. He seemed like one of those artsy types as was evident by the scarf he wore despite the weather and the messenger bag that he took with him everywhere. And sure enough when he found out I happened to have One Direction on my playlist, he shook his head in mock disdain and said, "Well, this changes everything."

He was funny and kind and smart. He loved animals, dogs in particular, and volunteered at the International Animal Rescue. He was highly opinionated when it came to politics and religion, without shoving his beliefs down everyone's throats. He made colours brighter. Lines sharper. And he blurred out everything else. 

He was easily the most interesting person I had ever met, and yet, he wanted to know what the highlight of my day was. 

I waited for those coinciding free lectures, during which we waxed poetic about everything, from the horrors of being an English major to the redundancy of nipples on mannequins to that professor who had a nervous breakdown after he was left at the altar. He joked about me being his future wife. He and I were both fluent in Internet jargon and made vague pop-culture references like they were supplying Oxygen. And if that isn't a great foundation for a fake potential future marriage, I don't know what is. 

It was these stolen moments and hurried conversations between classes, that made me, well, grow accustomed to his face.

We don't talk anymore. But I sure am glad that he stumbled into my life, when he did, with that smile hanging off his lips and the universe in his eyes.

Overthinking it

Recounting tales, especially of boys with The Bestfriend (clearly, I fail the Bechdel test), usually begins and ends with her saying, "Anna, don't read too much into this."

But being an over-zealous Psychology Major, I think I get a hall pass when it comes to overthinking it. And when I say overthink, I mean, being borderline obsessed. Overthinking 99% of the time isn't a bad thing. Trying to read the signs and analyzing every outcome is in our nature. As social beings, we are predisposed, to try to make sense of our surroundings. Out of the information we gather, we're inclined to make positive assessments; assessments that are usually in our favour.

But when your assessment is wrong. When you realize a boy can bring you coffee everyday for two months or beseech you to accompany him to a party, or flirt incessantly, without the ulterior motive that he likes you. When the question you keep asking yourself —so was it all in my head— becomes rhetorical. That is the 1% of the time when overthinking can suck some serious ass.

Segue, I think there's a reason why we like to consider men as elusive xy-chromosome carrying enigmas of the mystical. It's because if we don't, they'd just be simple one-dimensional cardboard characters. There'd be no mystery behind their every action, nothing to rant mindlessly about with The Bestfriend— nothing to overthink.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Friends forever?

You know how at the end of high school most of your yearbook signatures include the phrase “friends forever”? When you’re nearly twenty and going through a bit of an identity crisis like me, you realize that all that means is three years later you’ll be skimming through their passive-aggressive statuses on Facebook. 

I think the scariest sign that you are growing up is becoming aware of the number of friends you lose. Not to death, but to wasted moments, and trivial blunders that could well have been avoided.

Loss. We've all been there. It could be as trivial as when your closest friends start dating and you feel yourselves growing apart; or as stupid as when another friend thinks you've been macking on her boyfriend. Well, you end up losing them all– I would know, I’m going through both situations right now.

Hell, I've always known growing up wouldn't be easy, and that losing friends is inevitable, but Sweet Valley High did not prepare me for this– this throbbing that feels like it could just spiral on and on until all I have left is a carousel of lost faces spinning into a blur.

I know, I know when things get awry it's just life throwing you one of it's classic plot twists, and this is probably one insignificant climax in the dramatic structure of my life. This is where I should claim to find solace in motivational quotes- it gets better, you win some you dimsum, and other deep metaphors about rainbows after rainy days, that probably worked out really well for Honey Boo Boo...

I don't really want reassurance or pity, I just want to send this insignificant cosmic thought into the void: right now, it just sucks.

Not everyone you meet stays in your life. Sometimes they leave, sometimes you do. Not because you love them any less, but because you love them enough to back the f– away. Sometimes that last sentence is used to let people off easy. Whatever it may be, I take this as my cue to leave.

But if I could go back, I would do things differently. And to the one who has always stuck around, I love you forever and a day.