the backstage epiphany

where reality is so subjective it's entirely optional

Monthly Archives: September 2010

Time and punishment

Time is the unkindest cut of all. It sweeps by, impenitent and without a care for whether or not we are willing to go along with it. It hovers about, watching us make mistakes, but never allows us to do penance for them even if we have learned our lessons. It lets — and occasionally even helps — us make decisions and then only shows us the consequences of those decisions when it has become too late to undo them. It turns us against our principles and into people we’ve striven for most of our lives not to be. Worst of all, it will never wait for us.

So when I think of the past two years, it astounds me that I have let all this time pass and allowed myself to be engulfed in the calamities of my job, which in turn are making me do something I swore I would never do in this lifetime: conform. But I tried to fight the system, attempting to block out the seemingly crazed mob mentality that rules the corporate bullpen right down to what color everyone should wear for a particular event, staving off the psychotic stalkers I seem to have for colleagues, and trying to concentrate on what I am paid to do. And throughout all of that, Time sailed right by, reminding me numerous times that all I had to do was summon the courage to reach out for what I truly wanted to do, warning me that the longer I waited, the harder I fought, the faster and further away the opportunities would evade me.

And now, when I think of God and try to dredge up the faith I no longer even have, I tell myself He must either have had a damned good reason for throwing me where I am and forcing me to stay there, or He is punishing me for losing the very faith, that I have replaced with indifference, that has kept me alive all this while. Whatever the reason, I hope I know what it is soon, before I begin to decide that it is not even worth my own life.

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Homestyle Eid

This year is the first time that I’ve ever been such an active participant in Eid, not only because of Afham but because, for some strange reason, I actually genuinely felt like it. The first day was a flurry of activity, running from one friend’s house to another and making sure to eat small amounts at each house so that it wouldn’t snowball to alarming proportions. Fortunately, the first day was the only day that we did this, because I realized I couldn’t justify eating every two hours to raise my metabolism when it involved rendang, laksa or soto.

Despite the mass transit and onslaught of food, I did have a rather good time and didn’t get as cranky as I normally would have if traffic hadn’t been so smooth and if it hadn’t finally rained in the late afternoon. Also, as last year’s Eid was a very quiet one, this year’s made it Afham’s first real effort at celebrating it. It was, as usual, like standing outside a window looking in, and seeing all these boys coming together in this capacity and house-hopping (and actually behaving very well) was an extremely refreshing sight for me.

Happy Eid!

Jeff, Afham, Rus, Angah, Abby, Elfi. Yes, this was, indeed, taken in a 7-Eleven. But it's Jeff's 7-Eleven so all is forgiven!