Stumbling upon an advertisement for a 20LB blanket for therapeutic reasons, I became intrigued. It’s supposed to mimic the feeling of someone holding you as you sleep, as the weight is just heavy enough to give the comfort of mother swaddling a baby. And for someone who is dying from the lack of an intimate physical contact from their partner, it seems like a possible remedy.At first, it feels shameful. Almost like those individuals who turn to the expensive silicone sex dolls that can cost thousands of dollars. For those folks, it may seem like some perverted fantasy of never being able to be “socially healthy” enough to achieve the necessary steps to gain a real human being as their partner. Or it could a lack of a physical touch that leads to the true nature of how, we humans, require the social interaction that makes us sane.
Lately, I’ve been questioning myself and my decisions and efforts to struggle against two teaching jobs and to wrestle with the impossible task of commuting across the GTA.
How I dealt with the worries and pain of the daily and weekly challenges is to simply embrace it. Taking it all in. The long hours of standing, my fluctuating waistline and poor diet and my overall disappointment in my own lack of self-improvement. Bunny would usually tell me when she’s unhappy with me, “You never change.”
I love teaching when it is valuable and rewarding to the students. I try very hard to make them realize it’s all about the process and not a piece of paper that they truly desire and need.
But, after all that, I return home to my agony and the many stories I have yet to finish and the applications of various sorts to finish and submit. We all have the same issues, money, and challenges of living, mine not as important to your own — because we are moving on different streams.
On the first day of a new English class, there are four symbols drawn on the whiteboard: a square, a triangle, a “Z” and a circle. The students are asked to quietly select one that resonates the most with them. After a few moments, we hear their reasons and I reveal what each symbol means about their personality.
A square would be someone who was ambitious. A triangle would be the natural-born leader. “Z” would be the creative type. And the circle would be the “party animal” — the people person.
There are many who picked the last and each has their reasons: it’s easy on the eyes, it has a sense of harmony, it’s simple, and, my favorite, it has no beginning and no end.
In our lives, we see circles all the time. Like the water cycle or the natural life of plants, trees, and flowers. We have chaos and order. The light and the dark. And even life and death.
The endpoint of this post is focused on the story of a particular night in March 2015 when I was just starting my relationship with Bunny and we were coming home from the cinema. We were heading up the ramp of the underground parking lot when the shit hits the fan (a circular motion) and it almost resulted in the injury or possible death of myself, her, and a pair of security guys pushing a shopping cart down the ramp. All because of Speed Demon, my Honda Dream II motorcycle, and the accidental circus trick of spinning it around in a death spin with one hand while off the bike.
But before we get there, I wanted to think about another circus-like trick that involves circles, motorcycles, and fire — Vietnamese ladyboys doing their “ring of fire” dance in the middle of a busy street with other motorists not knowing what the fuck is happening. So, this one does connect with defying death, in a way.
But, let’s take with the term: ladyboy.
There were bumps and scratches and scrapes during my teaching stint in Ho Chi Minh City. Molasses of traffic. Wipeouts. Jaywalkers. Floods. Machete fights. Purse snatchers. And even a heart-pounding stare-off with a random psycho that almost resulted in a Road Rash-like duel (but minus the safety gear and add in the fake Abercombie shirts).
Real hard shit like that.
This was a country that had random stories of people getting into disputes like saying the price of a sugarcane drink was too expensive by 5000 VND (~25 cents CAD) to killing each other over the gender of the bull on a can of Redbull.
I’m not saying it’s all twisted. Riding around on a motorbike has its own benefits and pleasures. You’re fully immersed and constantly aware of your surroundings without a wall of glass to hide behind. It’s only when you are driving stupid or like an asshole, while living in a city full of assholes that you could easily fuck up and die.
This incident is always a first that comes to mind. A solo stopping act that made my heart leap through my throat and into my mouth.
There comes a time when you simply stop trying and walk away from it all… feeling like, “Maybe that’s it. Maybe I’m not meant to do this.”
And for the past few years, I did that. Whether unintentionally or by circumstance, I walked away from whatever ounce of effort I had when it came to crafting together some semblance of a story.
What I thought was a decision to simply “live” was basically me running away from failure. I am so afraid of the rejection and failure that I somehow convinced myself to leave my country and venture off into the unknown to lose three years of my life, trying to survive the visible racism, my identity as a person, and the purpose of my life. Continue Reading…
Why does someone return to a film… many, many times?
I reflected and googled and reflected some more.
*Note: The following was written four years ago but for some reason I never posted it… most of this is probably said and done already but… after a little polish… here it is now.*
This reflection is on: THE DARK KNIGHT RISES and, by extension, the Dark Knight trilogy.
This post started with one idea and it kept leading to another. Call this post, an unloading of instantaneous thoughts. Obviously there are spoilers so… yeah, you know the drill.
You don’t have to worry about a thing
Just come on up, come on up
Just come on up, baby
And have a good time.
– The Rascals
After seeing the film once, it feels like the perfect way to end the series. It restates the major themes and ends the journey of Bruce Wayne.
My interest of writing this post comes from this overwhelming joy of watching the film and the fact that the character is one I have grown up on since I was a kid. The focus isn’t to review the film but to try to provide some commentary on the deeper ideas that the series presented.
My focus: Batman’s journey, how would one finish this the Batman story, influences, story techniques we’ve seen before, and quasi-philosophical musings. I find the personal journey and struggles more resonating so you will see a void of socio-political musing. Perhaps another day.
Make sure you have some eye-drops handy.