When you hold it in your hand, does it turn into sand?
You were an idiot when you were 18.
Really. You were.
Where were you then? Oh right, college…yeah, I remember those times. Not attending classes (can’t blame you there, it’s not like that shit would help you in the future), skulking round in the library having an illicit love affair with Fyodor and J. Steinbeck simultaneously, your two-timing heart not able to decide between either. Hating yourself, hating your friends for being beautiful, hating yourself, hating school because it was boring, pointless, and too f-ing far away from home and did I mention hating yourself?
Remember that chapter in Sweet Thursday? Fauna telling Suzy how to make someone fall in love with her? How many times did you read it- twelve or thirteen…hundred? How many times did you tell yourself “this is the key”, this is the key to it all. To be honest, I doubt you remember a word of it now. To be even more brutally frank, I doubt you had remembered a word of it then. In any case, it didn’t work on you. You still remained as far from loveable as possible.
And do you remember how you and your best friend used to come up with these lame-ass Indiana Jones meets Mills & Boons rescue stories, starring Arjun Rampal as Indiana Jones (but with fashion sense), a bus-full of screaming children – we even set some on fire to add pizzazz to the tale, a cliff, and random Tarzan-y vines hanging from trees only found in rainforests, even though both of you knew vines don’t hang down from trees, they grow up them, and you can’t find rainforests in Pakistan, and where in heaven’s name would you be able to procure a bus, and fill it with screaming, burning children? Oh, and don’t get me started on the complete dearth of Arjun Rampals (or look-alikes) in this world. But it was a fun game. Luckily for you, you never took it seriously; sadly for her, it was the cornerstone of her existence.
At 18, your world revolved around wanting to be something you were not- different, intellectual, angry… it takes guts to accept your mediocrity and move on. At 18, though, I don’t blame you for trying. I don’t blame you for wishing you were better. Everybody else in your family hoped you’d be, why not add yourself to the list?
Sigh. You ijjut. All that pain, all that anger, all that wonderful wonderful misery. You had such a store of emotion, and yet you didn’t produce a single poem, a single worthwhile story or essay, or (ha!) novella.
And now look at you, five years have passed and it’s all mellowed down into this murky swamp. My volcano has sunk, Atlantis style, into the depths of Dagobah.
Where the F- is my Yoda???