Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Never mind. I'm going to whine anyway. I'm Sri Lankan... I was born with a talent for it.
At the rate I've been experiencing emotional highs and lows in the past 14 days, its no wonder I'm a little more twisted than I started off as. It's been the epitomé of "emotional rollercoaster" - speed, terror, exhilaration and the need to puke.
Shall I begin at the beginning?
1. High - I moved out.
2. Low - And then I moved back in.
3. Lower than low - in five days.
I've been looking around for Ché Dramaqueen for some time now, and two weekends ago I was casually browsing the classifieds (lately a hobby of mine) when I came across an advert for a house on rent. On a whim I called the owner, spoke to him, and decided to drive past it. You know... just to satisfy that 'independant female' fantasy I have in my head.
It was perfect. It had everything I could possibly ask for- budget friendly, secure, quite posh with all the modern amneties, and close enough to home to save my mother from paranoia. And so I followed the initial whim and paid a downpayment on it. The next three days were spent in a over-zealous state of madness, where I planned and plotted the furnishing, formulated my three year budget for single-living expenses, got myself a bank loan to take care of all the immediate costs (lease, furniture, etc) and found myself a maid.
At last. After years of searching, I had found my own pad and I was moving out. I was 'freedom girl', advocate of justice for all domesticated daughters.
In all the madness, however, I had forgotten one thing. My inner feminist's arch-enemy; the Dad Monster. once I'd taken care of all the house details and scheduled the move, I made the call (he works abroad) to announce my new-found lifestyle.
If there was ever a catastrophe to have taken place in ye olde family home, this would be it. My announcement sparked off a frenzied series of phone calls and emails flying at me from His Lordship the Father Figure(less), articulating in various ways his abject displeasure at my actions. He cried, I cried. He screamed, I screamed louder. He begged, I practically grovelled. In the end, he used his final trump card and vehemently promised to blame my poor boyfriend for my moving out, and do his worst to the fellow as punishment. This was topped off with a promise of Daddy Dearest getting a heart-attack (which he's done in the past in response to my actions) and blaming his untimely death on me, should I so much as DREAM of packing my bags. Then, my mother decided to cry too, and question her parenting skills, for having made me want to leave her.
So... I cancelled on the landowner, lost my downpayment, went into throes of depression at the thought of never being able to move out on my own, and now also have the debt of a huge loan sitting in my bank account.
3. High - I suddenly had money to play with.
4. Low - it reduced drastically in seconds.
Having gotten that big loan invoked all the female glee in me, to know that I could take out my depression on shopping or travel, and possibly put that money into some use. If it wasn't gonna be moving out, then I might as well find enjoyment some other way. And so I plotted and planned again on various means of making the loan worth the trouble. (the BF suggested I give it back to the bank, but COME ON. I'm from Venus. We never give money back.)
As I beamed over the healthy sum showing on my online bank statement, I made all sorts of crazy plans for taking a trip to disneyland, the singapore zoo, and starting an animal home. All this while foolishly meddling around with the buttons on my online bank interface. My mind lazily went to an area called 'time deposits'. Out of curiosity, I decided to experiment with the loan money, to check out what this so called time deposit was all about. And so I casually transferred one lakh into opening a new 'time deposit', just to see what it did for me.
Soon after, I realized I couldn't get the money out again. Not until my 'time' was up.... which is 6 months from now.
5. High - I surprised my mother
6. Low - She surprised me back.
So, with 100,000/- less to spread around my emotional spending, I decided to put the rest of the cash towards another lifelong dream of mine- A trip to Egypt. Coincidentally, a tour to the place in April was advertised that very day in the papers, and I decided to pounce on the opportunity. I also decided to treat Mum to a grand birthday gift of a ticket to accompany me, knowing how much I'd put her through in the last week (with the move and all that), and knowing that this could make her forgive me. So I devised a cunning plan with the help of that resident slime called my sibling, and stole her passport to secretly apply for her visa.
That was just hours before she called me at office to say that she'd tested positive for Ovarian Cancer. By April, she'll either be convalescing from chemo... or if things don't go well... be making 'other plans'.
Right now, after this latest revelation (that happened 24 hours ago), life is pretty much still on a low.
And the rollercoaster just stopped in it's track.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
It's very easy for us to sit like the chickens we are and ignore it, because we're not the ones being persectued, so it shouldn't affect us.... but I think that's where the whole problem rests in the first place.
Anyway, I've had my say in my previous post... this is just me outletting my increasing irritation at the powers that be.
Ok dramaqueen... chill, baby...calm down... breeeeeathe... phooo phoooooo... woosah....
Lemme begin from the starting point of my angst.
All my life, I have made a conscious effort to stay out of anything to do with politics, simply because I'm of the firm belief that it is, quite frankly, the root of 95% of this world's problems, and Sri Lanka has ALWAYS been ruled by a group of unmitigated fuckwits, despite which party they belong to. I have neither read nor given a shit about the political whatnot of this country (since half of it is brainwashed or fictitious crap spewed by state media anyway) because I always thought that my life didn't need to be affected by parliamentary antics.
However, my self-inflicted ignorance hasn't stopped me from being perfectly aware of how OTHER people in this country ARE affected by the political mafia, so much so that now, after years of watching this country crumble bit by bit, I have no option BUT to speak my piece on all this nonsense.
I've always been annoyed at the way governance happens, and had my share of bitchfits with the occassional public issue, but my annoyance reached it's peak a couple of evenings ago when a colleague related a shocking story to me at office. Let me share-
She's an Indian lady, who is married to a Sri Lankan Tamil who just happens to have been born in Jaffna, but has lived and worked all his life in Colombo and India. The evening before the CFA was officially abrogated, she and the hubby were stopped at a checkpoint on their way home from work. When the checkpoint officers had seen his ID card that had Jaffna put down as his hometown, the two were asked to get down from their vehicle, and had been harrassed for about 20 minutes. They had called her husband a 'kotiya' (tiger) and called her the 'kotiya's indian whore' (she'd shown them her passport). Then they had told her to wait till 'tomorrow' (end of CFA), that they'd get 'jacked'. She had then been bodysearched in front of her husband, who was being verbally threatened to not move. The sanitary napkin in her handbag had been taken out and displayed to all the male officers there before being torn, to check if she was 'hiding a weapon'. They'd taken down my colleague's home address, her husband's work address, and sent the two off with menacing warnings and threats. The couple had immediately gone to a Police Station and lodged a complaint, to which they received sarcasm, accusations and nothing else. For the last two days, both of them have lived in abject fear of something happening to each other, and she can't come out of her shock. She says she has NEVER been treated this way and never realized that they COULD treat people this way. She is truly disgusted with Sri Lanka, and is now making plans to go back to India with her husband, for the sake of peace and security.
My only reaction to this incident was "WHAT THE FUCK?!?!?", after which, I was totally and utterly speechless. Can our forces who are supposed to protect the innocent be allowed to TREAT people this way? WHO gives them the authority to harrass folk like that? Why is there no mechanism for the intolerance of this putrid behaviour?? There are countless stories of people being violated both emotionally and physically for having done nothing except being born Tamil. I've heard pseudo-sympathetic listeners to these stories say things like "unfortunately you're a Tamil". WHAT'S so unfortunate about being a Tamil? WHY should a person feel that his or her race is UNFORTUNATE? Where the hell do we get off by saying things like that? Imagine for even a second that YOU were treated like that, that YOU were told that it was unfortunate to be born a Sinhalese!
Ever since I heard my colleague's story, I've been raging. Raging at the damn idiotic attitude that this country seems to have adopted... raging that mothers don't seem to be teaching their kids that race is not a determining factor of character... raging that we have rulers with the brains of fleas to actually fuel this horrible culture of thinking... and raging that no matter what anyone with sense does, things will not change. I am truly alarmed and severely pissed off at the lack of intelligence our so-called 'patriots' are displaying... this is NOT a Sinhala-Tamil war... this is an LTTE-GoSL issue, and the faster people recognize that, the better for everyone else in this country.
You 'patriots' on BOTH sides of the fence deserve a slap. You think this war will be over just because the Govt nukes the Peninsula? You think that one party winning will stop the other from being persecuted by attitudes and racist behaviour? You think people will stop hating each other when either we or they win the war, and will accept that they are 'unfortunate' by birth? And do you think that winning a stupid political war is worth the thousands... nay, MILLIONS of innocent lives that have been destroyed by it?
You're such a bunch of dumbasses. A spineless, uneducated bunch of disillusioned dumbasses.
'RACE' is something that society has created. Borders are created by society, and is only psychological. Land is still just land, whether it's split up or whole. It shouldn't matter if we have a seperate state or not, as long as people can live their lives in peace and security. Like you were going to picnic in the North anyway. WHAT are you fighting for? WHAT are you a patriot of?
This is absurd and immature! It shouldn't MATTER what fucking RACE people belong to, because at the end of the day, we all eat, sleep, feel, bleed the same way. And when we die, we are buried in the same fucking ground, and rot the same fucking way. SO get over yourselves, and off that damn pedestal. BOTH of you- Tamil AND Sinhala 'Patriots'!
My stance? I don't have a race. I'm called a Sinhalese but I don't care. I never put it down on the forms I fill, because I don't think it should ever matter to anyone. I am a living, breathing person just like my colleague, and any injustice done to her is an injustice done to me as a human being.
This war was created by political agendas bourne of racial issues, and is fought by political agendas bourne of greed. It will NEVER end if the rest of civil society doesn't STOP with the damn racial charade. Get this into your thick skulls, oh 'patriots'.... you are no better than your Tamil neighbour. You are all just bitching over the years of racial slander and attitudes you have recieved from the other party. Isn't it about time we STOPPED?
If you think I'm talking out of MY arse, then go to this link.... there's facts there that should open your goddamn eyes.
Oh yeah... one more thing... you may have noticed that I've framed the word Patriot in colons... that's because you're not one... you just think you are, but have absolutely no idea what the word even means.
How unfortunate for you.
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Nothing has happened for me to feel this way. Life is as it always was, and I'm surrounded by love, activity, people.... but I feel like I have nothing.
Part of me is dying. The sad thing is, it's the other part that's killing it....
Sigh. Where's that fairytale when you need it?
Sunday, January 6, 2008
She couldn't be further from the truth.
With everything I've done, I have never had one particular thing in my life that I constantly yearn for - control. I know alot of Sri lankan girls will agreed with me. We are bred like cows for slaughter. You are born into expectations that you have no choice but to fullfill, for fear of ostracism from your family and society; to have artistic skills, to win school prizes, to secure admirable jobs more suited for your gender, to marry into the wealthiest possible find, to breed like a rabbit, to sacrifice the rest of your life, independance and individuality for the sake of your children and husband and to die a 'good, socially charitable lady'.
Under the guise of a happy, chirpy little girl, you are brought up in a life of invisible chains
There's a common misconception that when you have a life like mine, you want for nothing. Far from it. My entire life has been about the pressure of achieving. From birth, I've been brought up to believe that nothing is good enough, and every success I have just ups the bar to do more next time around. I've lived in a constant state of satisfying expectations to the point where I myself have come to adopt that attitude and know nothing else. That can be a pretty terrifying place to be in... to have an entire life of wanting more and never being satisfied, or knowing that if you settle, you let down a barrage of people called your family, who want more from you and have more or less sacrificed their lives to let you have the chance.
The older you get, the more depressing it becomes to deal with all of it. Thus far I've managed to accustom myself to the endless nagging and bullying from jobless aunts and suchlike on what they believe is my inevitable marriage and motherhood. But you get sick of it at one point.... and all you want to do is jump off a building in the hope that killing yourself will rid you of the endless 'advice' on social norms and practices.
On invitation, I recently accompanied the BF to a family lunch, where my head nearly snapped in nervous alarm on the two occasions that his uncle called me 'the fiancée' and the 'in-law'. I'm NOT a fiancée... I'm NOT an in-law... Am I supposed to be one? I don't WANT to be one. Does that make me a bad person?
The incident got me thinking.. and wondering where my life is headed, and how all these years I've been under the notion that I am in control of it, whereas I'm really not. Yeah sure... on the outside, I'm a girl who's done alot with herself... and seems pretty lucky and together... but inside, I'm just screaming for help and for a way out of what other people think is the 'great life'. Every decision I take will affect the people I care about in one way or the other, which will in turn affect me and keep me up at night, wondering if I did the right thing.
- Home. I've been wanting to move out and live on my own for YEARS. Partly to escape the clausterphobia of having my every move scrutinized and objected to, and partly because I want my own place. But if I do make that move out of my gate, I'll have to undergo many more years of guilt for leaving my mum, not to mention be stoned for even thinking of doing such a heathen thing when no female of good standing should be seen out of their bathrooms without a protective parent or husband.
- Career. It should have been either Veterinary school or Egyptology. But fate took a different turn and I ended up in advertising. I do enjoy it tremendously to the point of workaholism sometimes... but it's not Egypt or animals... so it doesn't feel like I've 'made it', regardless of how much money I get. Theres always a part of me wondering 'what if', and wanting change. But change comes at the risk of uncertainty and failure. There's a million things I want to do with my life in terms of career... photography, professional theatre, dance... but I'm scared to try any of it in case I lose it all in the process.
- Relationship. On all accounts he's the most wonderful person I've ever met, and he loves me with every fibre of his being. Any woman would kill to have a guy who is as sweet and attentive as he is... especially someone with the patience of Joab. But yours truly, as usual, just cannot feel even remotedly satisfied. It's the shittiest thing in the world to KNOW how much of a bitch you actually are for wanting more than what great things you've already got.
Something's wrong.... I feel completely detatched and dead... like my soul is searching for something and sensing that I should be somewhere else, whilst watching my body go through the motions of life. I'm disconnected from the present... unsatisfied and restless. It just doesn't feel right.
I feel like a bird...wingless and trying to escape. Like an ostrich, where the only thing I CAN do is poke my head in a mound of sand and ignore it, hoping it'll go away.
Do I sound like a spoiled bitch? Of course I do... because I should be grateful for everything I have, because so few have what I do. But that's exactly it... My life feels so fucked up because my mind is the most fucked up one I know. I can never be happy... I will always want 'something else', and 'something more', and that will be the way I will live out the rest of life. Unhappy. Unfulfilled.
I don't know why I feel the need to suddenly share my life story with a million strangers around the world on this blog... maybe I'm trying to find others like me.
AM I the only person to feel this way?
Thursday, January 3, 2008
It wouldn't be right if I didn't join in the bandwagon and say my piece on the dawn of 2008 noh?
But what positive thing can I say without sounding like a real glib idiot living in a disillusioned bubble? Look at us... look at the way our lives have panned out.
Amongst everything else-
- We're ruled by the epitome of corruption and sheer stupidity in the form of an excuse for a government, with little or no hope for change, given that every other political party is equally bad. It's just one whole carton of bad eggs.
- Green is a colour that is fast fading. The gardens and trees galore of yesteryear are nothing but lifeless concrete blocks of apartments that cost your soul to live in.
- People no longer have the option of surviving. The cost of living dictates that either you kill off or sell your newborn children or you just kill yourself before you have them.
- The elephant is on its way out. So are close to 12,000 other species of animals that I didn't need a history book to learn about when I was a kid.
- Children don't even wince at the sight of the violent gore they see on horror shows, given that everyday life exposes them to pretty much the same things anyway.
And all I can do about it is get fatter and older, while blogging my histrionics away.
My thought process has led me, therefore, to what I call my 'strategy of the year'. I am going to take the Sri Lankan politician's route and not give a damn. About the powers that be, that is.
I have realised that we can stand on our heads and scream obscenities at the authorities, and a few of us might even go beyond that to actually TRY activation towards our favourite causes, but nothing will come of it. We can talk all we want, but somewhere out there until the ends of time, women, children, the environment and animals will keep getting abused by the spineless fools that make up three fourths of our country's population. And so, instead of rant at deaf ears, I hae resorted to do what I can in whatever simple way I can, and stop relying on those goddamn idiots running my country.
That will be resolution no.1.
Meanwhile, I also need to spend more time on me, because, you know, I'm selfish and inconsiderate like that. I made myself a list of all the things I want to achieve in 2008, and hopefully shall stick by it somehow or the other. So, since I love sharing, here's my list-
2. Laugh more.
My life has become too stressful lately. It's high time I went back to loving what I do, and finding things funny again.
3. Love more.
The joys of having a witness to one's life is starting to grow on me. I have something good right now... I need to work on it (and myself) to make sure it stays that way.
My must-see list goes as Egypt, Paris, Italy, Greece, Peru, USA and Malaysia in that order. I will aim for the first this year.
5. Move out. (Say it with me. "My own place... my own place... my own place...")
6. Buy a car
7. Buy a new phone
8. Start dancing again. (It's been too long.)
9. Be involved in at least 2 plays this year.
10. Save more dogs, cats, birds, reptiles, rodents and the occasional fish. Insects can wait till 2009.
There you have it.
So? what's yours?
Tuesday, January 1, 2008
At the very least, please do keep the message going, and hopefully it will reach people who have the power or resources to help.
Thanks and happy new year!