Monday, March 17, 2003

Some analogies

Earlier I was explaining how rather than self-congratulatory obsession about this insane situation I really realized that it was quite similar to a bad relationship. I couldn't shut up about the war. It was like dating someone who lies to you, who you are fighting with constantly, who you can't quite get away from somehow. You bore everyone, you think of it morning and night. "I can't believe he said...but then I found out...and he lied to me! Rehearsing the reply to the last argument because you know what was said simply wasn't true.The country you live in has turned 'bad' on you just like a lover who cheated. The country you live in is wild, dangerous, out of control. It's an alcoholic on a bender, it quit its job, ran up its credit cards and passed bad checks. The cops are looking for it. The neighbors all know. People are looking at you funny. You have nothing to do with its madness but because you are with it--you must share the stigma.

You are married to it and divorce is not available. Its bankruptcy destroys your credit. Its cruelty destroys your peace of can't see past the mess it got you in to the future beyond the wreckage. All you know is you will clean up the mess you didn't make. All your yammering does nothing to change it. You go on and on because that's all you know to do.

Today was different. Today was like when you are forced to behave normally but something horrible has happened. Like when someone you love is very sick or you found out they died and you can't believe it. You are too sick to eat and you can't cry. There's no point--that isn't the way to relief. It seems as if everything is warped, distorted. Behind every surface of daily life there is something so wrong...How can everything go on as normal?

(Your crazy husband has comandeered a schoolbus. He's taking hostages. Now you know: From now on you are the one married to that lunatic. And it was an arranged marriage, too. You had nothing to do with it. Your only hope was to have run away a long time ago.)

And everything that would matter, a little bit, ordinarily, appears ludicrous, stupidly insignificant. It's seems stupid to care about the daily elements that make up your life. Not that you could anyway. You will go through the motions and maybe your life will be normal again and you can forget but it is so hard to see how.

I'm saying is this is how it is, not how it should be. It's not healthy. It's not laudable. It would be absurd to say you are patting yourself on the back for your incipient nausea--how could you believe anything but: It does nothing. It is pointless to grieve for what's lost forever. It is maybe embarassing emotionality...It is not the American way. The American way is to go back to work a week after your mother dies, to never cry in public, to be productive in the face of any loss. The American way is to eschew tragedy. I suppose...all things considered...that's wise. That's the smart thing, I suppose.

There are so many little and big evils, tragedies, injustices. Is the idea: What's another one? There's no reason. There's really no reason. Simply: It is here and it is now.


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