finding new ways to self-destruct

Posted by anya on January 2nd, 2010 filed in Uncategorized

The ability to choose words carefully, to feel their weight press against the bottom of one’s tongue before they are said, to understand how one element flows from the other, to appreciate how a string of sentences can form ideas. I have always loved this quality in others, and in myself when I am at my best. But lately, a disappointment, as moments come back to me during which I have betrayed and devalued language. Used it as an automatic weapon, as fast food, as a mass-produced Ikea bedside table. I have given it so little and have demanded so much in return. I asked it to convey detachment and cool while it has instead (because language is a much more well-designed tool than my own being) revealed insecurity and loneliness. It feels hollow now.

I remember sitting in a Beijing bar with Marina, and something she said and the way she said it…  stayed. The simplicity of those six words floated up into some tube that connects my brain and my heart. And they haven’t left me since, those words. And then, Dostoyevsky, recently quoted by a friend:

lying to ourselves is more deeply ingrained than lying to others

And those lies – what happens when they mix with elements of the outside world? What happens when they mix with C2H5OH? In my experience, the lies somehow seep into your soul and disguise themselves as truth so that you’re actions become latent with the assumptions of their validity. It’s only when you wake up and find yourself with a headache and smeared make-up that you’re confronted with the ugliness of reality and with the weight of the previous night. The parts you can remember, that is.

the upside of knowing the answer is not having to wonder anymore

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