Rosebud

I am cooking sardines today and thus had to go shopping to the open market in the morning and then had to stand over the sink cutting every single sardine’s head off and simultaneously pulling out her insides. I really enjoyed doing that and took even greater joy in realising that I was becoming better at it with every single sardine. It seemed to me that they had been born to have their heads cut off and their insides pulled out like that, it seemed like they were fulfilling their life purpose and I felt good, even though I secretly wondered how they would feel about seeing themselves disfigured like this.

And while I had my hands submerged in sardine blood, listening to the radio, I started thinking, like women should whilst carrying out the reassuring task of housework… I started thinking about commitment and how the 3rd decade of a person’s life is vastly themed “commitment”. Lately I had noticed in people around me a lighthearted incapacity for fulfilling the promise of commitment and this has been profoundly irritating me, until I stumbled upon a saying going something like this: “those who judge others, usually have a very bad memory”.

Then I started remembering, not so much deeds, rather than thougths leading to life-changing descisions I made for myself and so many people around me. I looked at the fish and the fish looked back idle and dead and I was between laughing and crying, as I knew that even I, who hardly ever could be directly accused of treason in personal affairs had very specific limits to what I could wholeheartedly commit to and that I was as guilty as anyone I had dared judge and possibly even more.

There are things that one really and profoundly shows commitment to, even though they might never tell a soul, knowing that this may mean taking them to the grave and that during their life they might be ruthless sardine disfigurers, just because they cannot say what it is they hold dear. I finally came to the conclusion that commitment only comes a few times in our lives and between that we’re just fooling around.

 

Athens in free fall

Everyone seems so trapped lately, coming to me, telling me their troubles, but they no longer include a nice optimistic promise to fix everything in the end of their testimonies. First everyone had money troubles, then they got confronted with social status readjustment, then they had personal problems with spouses and families and now all they’re looking for is someone to offer them some comfort, maybe even a cup of tea and a bit of understanding. People no longer feel they’re good and worthy, that notion in the people between 25 and 45 has altogether been abandoned.

Everyday so many people wondering around town aimlessly, thinking about how to fix all of this, but unable to take over their lives and re-invent themselves in a way that would make sense in this economic black hole. So many troubles and often insanity just a few more unfortunate events away for people loosing everything they worked hard for. Solid foundations in relationships, knowhow and work are really only a measure of how self-assured one is mentally… but how self-assured can a human being be, when the infrastructure of their world tumbled down within a couple of years?

However, Athens is still such a charming and dirty little city. It reminds me of some mafia 70s film with Robert Deniro and Harvey Keitel at times. Manly, ignorant, lawless men making a living anyway they can… stupid, sweet, tasteless chicks trying to look pretty and spoiled, uncontrollable, overprotected children being chased by grannies with food in plastic containers… And all the stupid tactless things they all say just add to the charm of this rough decadent sunny urban paradise with an almost movie-like humane quality… It still feels like home, it’s still a little wonderland, but it’s becoming harder and harder to justify staying here.