Behind the scenes …

Diaries.

I still keep them. With crazy ‘what’s in your mind’ entries. Not those summarized ones where you mark on dates to pay bills. I mean these big things that I always want to throw into the face of people with long facebook posts.

Today I rummaged through the small pockets of my back-pack to appear busy and significant on my ‘shuttle’ to town. This girl, looking like my next temptation, had boarded and planted her hardware on the seat just beside mine. I was expecting my foraging hands to bump into anything in the bag that would be my ‘deliver me from all evil’. Those are rarely opened pockets. That’s why I bumped into this old full diary.

Normally before I spew out here, I want to be gentle with myself. I do that by scouting through good ole diaries. Problem is they do sound like a graveyard of broken dreams. All my life I’ve been attracted to thorns. And haunted souls. And deserted alleys. And dark stories. Dark like the burnt side of my small brother’s home-made sandwich.

Those are the entries in my diaries.

It happens when your life revolves around books, the internet, other people and ‘Inner Curiosity’ (the “team of professional writers” alias “voices in my head”). Fun? Yes, some whiles; but most times it’s so boring it hurts.

When I started writing here, I thought it would be a handbook for life. However, things happen. Now it’s a puddle of insanity. Stop judging me, you probably go out at night to pee and then you change you mind and poop instead, don’t you? (It’s okay if you don’t live in a tent. You missed a lot.) This’ what I mean. Brain has become a crowded house of fantasies.

For example; I’ve been around long enough to wonder what I should be doing for a living. Or maybe I’m living. Being a writer anywhere is kind of weird. Especially, when all other writings you do are very academic yet you need a share of the WebSphere to vent it all out. It’s what I do apart from wearing complicated-print pants and still crawling out of the education system rut in them.

Getting an idea for posts has the dark sides. The behind-the-scenes. It’s worse when it’s burning inside you to centre them on real happenings around, while safely hiding enough content from the public. You struggle to trace a path, even though a blurred line. Most times, it’s about learning to make life’s sharp edges a bit blunt. Getting rid of the skeletons. Other times, it’s noting the missing parts of life, so that they can safely hide behind the stories I wish I had lived.

I tripped on a dead bird on my lazy lack-of-story walk yesterday evening. I therefore had to stroll into a deserted park, sit on a stone to make up a story in my head of how I’d killed the bird. Obviously that’s after guilt pangs haunted me all the way. I’d exclaimed “stupid!” when I kicked the bird; yet bible-schooled me started questioning ‘self’ why I’d insulted a dead bird. I did pay my last respects though. I poked it with a stick. Then night, like unexpected pregnancy, found me there legs apart. Seated. On a cold stone. Wondering. What. To. Write. Suddenly. A mongoose. Is. In. Front. Of. Me. That’s how the drafts go by. You get it?

Sometimes ideas are myriads of black spots in my head. Then dear brain goes missing. Then I find him at night at some balcony staring at the stars. Then I join him.

Go ahead brain. Amuse me. Convince me.

Then I connect those dots. Then I realize the idea is an epic fail. Like the cute baby that crawled out of its crib, fell and mashed its brain. Heavy cloud. No rain. Oh, if I was a smoker the number of smokes I would have smoked out of my head right then. Then I see a smoker. At the other balcony. I know he … like me … is not okay… because he is smoking the filter and hasn’t even realized it.

Life, like art, has to be kept simple to still have meaning. That’s what I’ve thought today while on the cold toilet seat. That the older I get, the more I come to realize that I just don’t care what anyone thinks anymore. Not about me. About anything. So, I’ll ask you what you think you’d like to have for dinner. Or, what you think you’d order at the cafe; not because I care. It’s because first borns are meant to pretend they care.

First borns are damned if not doomed by the way. You’re like all the parenting mistakes obviously because there had to be a pilot-phase of the experiments and everything done on … to … you has never been done but that’s not the point. The problem is when you are assumed to know everything by everyone in the house; for example, at late supper, when you’re just nine and you don’t know anything, and something bangs the gate and mum goes like “firstborn, what knocked the gate” and you have to have ready answers like “visitors”. That’s why my sister, even at this age we are in, still sends me ‘please call me’ just to ask whether pigs have bones because first borns are meant to know everything and the best answer is “ does your fat friend have bones? If she does, then they do.” And we laugh and laugh and laugh and suddenly i’m broke and there’s no buying airtime for the rest of the week because i’d budgeted that amount and i’m always broke and the visitors don’t bring anything when they come :(. That’s how the paragraphs start; long and everything bad, before they are edited into prose or flowing mastery.

You still don’t get it? Maybe you’re so old.

Other times I have to google things. For example; ‘the story of the fat rat’. Knowing very well it does not exist. But google always assures me it does. So I end up reading it and putting myself in the rat’s shoes. And, I decide to visit my bachelor’s bedsitter in rat shoes to see whether it’d work and suddenly a blogpost (like this one in these brackets) is born. It was born out of a fat rat. My life is sad.

Sometimes I’m a shadow of my former self. Then I have to follow my former self. I follow myself to that place where I was pretending I was ‘kneading the pizza dough for dinner for a pretty guest’. What? Diary crap I tell you.

That was 4th Feb 2012.

I see here that I brushed the crocodile’s teeth. It was a crazy long time ago. It was when I dared to dream. It was before the world became extremely loud. It was when I wanted to prove he was all bark and no bite. The neighbors bull dog. I smashed his balls with a vuvuzela while he was snoozing on the driveway to the gate. He yelped. He leapt for dear balls. I kept mine at a safe distance. He passed out in the yard in a blacked-out blur. He found space in my diary.

This is how I want the whole world to work.

To create space for anything. Everything.

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