Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the ‘Book’

Finished reading Haruki Marukami’s ‘Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of The World’

How I feel about it?
Let me put it this way. I had to read the last chapter again, to be sure of my feelings.

“Death leaves cans of shaving cream half-used”

That is one line that stuck, along with the many other things that found their way in me. Especially the chubby girl, ‘dig’, and the emptiness that extended its way from yesterday to today relentlessly.

The Chubby Girl:

Its this character in the book. Bold about her feelings, does not waste much time in futile formalities, and comes straight to the point. She is good at many things, something which she and her grandfather attributes to not ever attending school.
But what struck me about her, or made me feel for her, was the way she expressed her feelings for this one guy. She accepts the fact that the guy might be seeing someone else, or might just be in physical relations with someone else, but nevertheless, her feelings for him takes no step back. And she occasionally gives way to her emotions and asks him if she can touch him or have sex with him, or sometimes just move in with him. Most of this would project out as the curiosity of a girl who has never experienced sex, but there was more than that.

I remember having this same feeling for this female character in a TV series – Kyle XY – which ceased to air after their second season. There was this girl completely in love with Kyle and once when Kyle expresses his love to the character but explains why he cannot be with her because he is with someone else, she just hears the part where he expresses his love and she is content by just that.

There is this hint of complete surrender to love that I might be enjoying from such characters but I am not sure if I am game for it. I mean I am not sure if I will ever be like that or is it just a one way street where I simply imagine such emotions directed towards me from a person, while I simply bob away or around, like the guy in Haruki’s novel or like Kyle. Either way that says something about myself, and if it is the latter case then I don’t think whatever it says about myself is anything good.

‘Dig’:

This was something that made me smile and have a micro Eureka moment. There is this part in the novel where a couple of people are digging a hole in the ground and the character asks a colonel about it. He inquires the purpose of the hole, and the colonel says that they did it because that is what they do. There is no reason to it, no purpose, they just do it because they do it. That simple! and hence the hole thus created is a pure hole, not bound to any purpose or reason to make it complete. He said it was similar to how he himself plays chess, with no reason or underlying purpose.

And that made me think; Is this how the word ‘dig’ came to be used to things people liked? You have heard it and probably have used it a lot many times.

“I have a playstation at my place. You dig?”

Even though the first time I tried to use it, it came out weird, when I tried to ask a friend if he liked the works of Dan Brown the author, “You dig Dan Brown?”. That was also about the time when I understood that slang usages should be used only when it is common tongue at the place where you are using it. Otherwise you could just end up looking like a person who fantasizes to dig holes through famous authors.

Emptiness Extended:

I had left Mumbai to come to Kerala and with it I thought I should not feel that feeling of void that I had been feeling since a very long time. I was wrong there. This book is filled with farewells and characters asking each other if they will forget them, or to write letters; I could not help but reflect on my farewells.

As part of leaving my country next month I should have been doing my good byes to people, but to most, I just texted that I would be off to US and that is it. To those who inquired about how it all happened so suddenly and why did not I inform earlier, I just typed back,

“Yes, I do that. I go. I do that sometimes. Just this thing I have.”
Even though I typed and the person could not see me I remember I had done that nonchalant shrug after every time I had sent that reply, and I could now imagine the other person taking an oath to never talk to me again.

Also, there were the people who said they will “Miss me” and then the people who said they will “really miss me” just out of the blue. Both times I did not know how to reply and so usually the words that came out were “Yes”, “Hmm” and “Oh”. One particular time I also remember saying “Is it?”.

I know that it was not apt and possibly the exact opposite of apt, but in my defense, I was caught off guard. For some reason, I was not expecting people inquiring about my plans, of feeling that all this is very sudden, or of people saying that they will miss me. I was just informing people that I wont be here. That was pretty much my motive.

And now that I do know that there are people who did all that, and after I have read this book and the so well executed farewells in it, I feel a bit more pushed down in void. I wish I could go back and add some more words, I wish I could be more human on those text replies. I know I still can. I still can make amends, but as far as I know myself, I don’t think I would be doing that. I am good doing the wishing thing for now.

Anyway, the book, it is amazing. Pure marvel. I dig.

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Will you wait? (A short dialogue between love and logic)

I will be back; though I am very sure that you wont be here waiting for me when I do. But I will come any way, because I would rather be home and alone, than somewhere else and unsure.

What if I will be right here, when you come back; waiting for you, and happy to see you back? What if you will be welcomed with me running towards you, my tears leaving a trail behind me as I run and with heart beats so loud that you can hear it from a distance? What if I come and hug you and with it thank all the Gods above for your return? What then?

Will you?

I don’t know. It’s in the future, far ahead in time. I cannot be certain.

I know that it is far ahead in time, I know it is the future and I do acknowledge the uncertainties that lie on the path of any decision I thereby take. However, it would have been better to know that you were sure of being here, just like after all those unforeseen parameters, I am sure of coming back. I know you hate to talk without rationale. I know I may not be logical right now, but I wish, just for once, you answered a little stupidly.

Will that make you feel better; for me to say things without logic, to hope without reason, and to build castles in thin air? Why would that help?

It would not. But now, when every second brings more pain with it, every moment is slipping right through my fingers, and every step ahead paces me away from you; now when every smile counts. I would not mind a lie, some false hopes and some castles about to be destroyed. Now when I part, allow me  to part not with logic and reason, but with the final memories of a smile we share for dreams we both look forward to.
You could have given me dreams my dear, for reality, it seems, is not working out very well.
See you my love…

Give me a weird creature

Give me a weird creature.
A creature that is not stupid for lack of brains, but because he chooses to be stupid.
A creature which has abundance, but chooses to ignore it for something trivial.
A creature with eyes to see, but a blind intellect.
A creature which, though can hear, cannot receive; though can touch, cannot feel.
Give me a creature that can forget the womb it came from, the land it thrived on.
A creature so bright, yet so dark at heart.
Give me a creature, that can kill its own kind.
But let that creature have a heart to know love, yet make it hard for it to recognize.
Give the creature, the mind to care, yet a memory to forget.
Make the creature the best that ever lived, yet the most deserving to die.
Give me a weird creature.

But Oh my Angel

I have no place, up in the sky.
I have my ways, but not your style.
And I will one day, just die.
But Oh my Angel, I am still in love with you.

I have no wings, with which to fly.
I have no glory, to abide.
I have a lineage, so full of sly.
But Oh my Angel, I am still in love with you.

I have no grace, my skin is dry.
Not always true, sometimes I lie.
I am just human, I don’t deny.
But oh my angel, I am still in love with you.

I am now bonded, please don’t untie,
You may just go, my soul is thine.
But I will never, ever, say good-bye.
’cause oh my angel, I am still in love with you.

And I will always be,
in love,
with you.

Empty drawer

She threw it away; did not even ask me once; she never does it like that. My mom knows how obsessed I am with my room, and each and every thing that it holds. How could she just walk in, open my drawers, take those bangles and throw them away assuming they might not be of any use to me.

I don’t remember if it was the last time we had met, but I am certain that it was at least close to the last time. She had come to my home, my mom and dad were not here; we were no more in any relation with a name, but we still were close. We could not just forget; we were giving each other time to grow away from each other, but I think we both secretly hoped that, that time should never end. She had forgot her bangles at my place. It was one of those ethnic bangles, with a wooden and bronze touch and a matte brown color. I thought I would give it to her the next time she comes. I cannot recollect if she never came after that or she had come few times after that and I forgot to give it back to her; but she never got them back. Those bangles stayed with me. And I liked the fact that they did. It was a small part of her, the only something of her that I might have left, with me, forever.

Whenever I came home and opened those drawers, I smiled when I saw those bangles. We have moved on, but a part of me was clinging onto those bangles, onto her, and I will never let that part walk with me as I move on. I want it to be there; ill advised, but still the way I would like things to be.

Yesterday, when I opened my drawer, it was not there. I asked my mom and to my horror I learnt from her that she threw it away because the last time she asked me about them, I was very evasive about the answer, and so she thought it might not be of any value to me. I could not shout at her because she did not know the value that it held for me; but I could not let myself be shut in either. I shouted, I asked how could she just throw away something that is mine without even asking me. She was sorry, but she was also confused about the reason of my irate behavior. The dubious face she held made me realize that there was no point telling all this to her. I had to let it be.

I have to, now, let it be. It is gone. Not that those bangles would have someday made things back to the way I liked it, neither had I kept those bangles in the hope that she would someday come back to ask for it. That would be stupid, and besides, I, more than anybody wanted her to move on from me.

But without those bangles, I feel torn, I do not know why. It was not as if I used to always carry it with myself, but maybe the part of me holding it, is gone with it. Or maybe now that part, like me, is stranded alone with nothing to hold on to; unable to move on, but solitary at where it stands. I had let a part of me stay in the past, and now that part is still there, unclear, of what it should be with.

I should have kept them somewhere more secure. This is weird, but I don’t even feel like opening the drawer now.  With all the things that it has, it is still going to look painfully empty.

I do not wait for it

I did not lose faith in love.
I believe in love.
I like it.
I love it.
I sometimes even seek to feel it.
I just cant find it anymore.
I am not trying, I agree, but what should I try for,
when the very thing I search for outside in the world,
is the only thing that is nowhere to be found within me.
I am no more waiting for it.
Sometimes I expect it to find me, but I don’t expect for too long.
I don’t want to wait for it,
But I just pray to not miss love when it passes by.

I no more have the heart that pumps love,
But I still have eyes that somewhere searches for those small springs,
those tiny hopes, those dreams that still cease to die.
And it will hurt me, to disappoint them.
If love comes again, it may hurt me again,
But a pain to risk for love, is no great a pain.
I do not wait for it anymore,
but if it comes; open, my arms will be, once more.

Just an entry – I

It has been a tough and lonely walk, all this time, although it has grown to be less tough gradually. Many of the people I spend my time right now with would be confused when I said lonely but there are a few among them who will understand.

I had started to live a mentally solitary walk like this, a life of solitude, not as something that was forced upon me but as a choice I had taken to be away from some of the apparently good things that life provides with companionship of any kind, that later could end up hurting me or putting me in some kind of emotional swamp. There are still people who coax me to take my chances and fall in love, get close to people and believe that it wont always be the same and many other things. I do respect what they say but I am tied with enough reasons, not to couple the respect with action.

Its not about taking risks any more, it is about doing more in all that I have, and here I am referring to time. I had already wasted a lot of my time in emotions and the reason I thought to have a stoic life is to stop wasting time in thinking about anything that is counterproductive. It may sound impossible, and for some it may sound a harsh, unnecessary and an overly-thought decision; and both of the perspectives are not wrong.

Backing up the former perspective, it has not been completely implemented till now. I am still there, with a small part of me seeking out for friends and love, a small part of my brain still reacting to every slow song with sad or happy nostalgia; but I have seen some progress at least and I am happy at  where I am. I should not be stressing on “happy” as of now; I am still not sure of what kind of mixed emotional turbulence I go into sometimes, but yes at least, more productive it is. So yes, weeding out everything that deals with counterproductive emotions has not been a completely possible thing for now, but I have decided not to strain it any more – to keep things as they have become and now to rush or stress any more changes.
As for the second perspective, a harsh, and overly-thought decision it was, but not an unnecessary one; at least it was not how I felt about it, back then when I was framing a new set of rules to live by. And as far as overly-thought goes, then that is expected of me. That is what I do, that is how I am defined, and I absolutely don’t want to change that definition.

Why am I writing this right now? Did I feel nostalgic about something, or sad that I am lonely all of a sudden? Nope. I am alright. It is just that when you change from an introvert loner child to an overly expressive lad and then back to a man with every door of his mind shut close with only the occasional peep holes, speaking to yourself seems to be, sometimes, the best way to re-confirm your path. And that is what I am doing, just a reconfirmation before I resume my walk again on my ways of living.

As of now I don’t know if I will be changing anything or if I will be the same, but I am pretty sure that I wont be stressing towards anything that seems unnatural to my mind. I am going to keep it that simple, although avoiding some things specifically would always be there in the agenda. I cannot help that.

Usually I write such things, as a poem or something indirect. But as is evident, this entry is just direct, something random and I wanted to keep it that way. Hence the title – Just an entry.

Adios.