Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Gandalf shakes the Fountain dregs with glee.

I could kill her. Their farewells had been said in the great hall by the fire, and they were only waiting now for Gandalf, who had not yet come out of the house. Does he know you're married already? And who can wonder if it be so, mother? The observed from all the observers, quite, quite down. She boxed the Queen's ears. The dice rattle in his hand as he shakes it. So the knight clanked forth in the last rays of the setting sun, and bathed in the Fountain of Fair Fortune, astonished that he was the chosen one of hundreds and giddy with his incredible luck. Magic-carpet rides, rune magic, Ali Baba and visions of the Holy Mother, astral travel and the future in the dregs of a glass of red wine. The screams from the terrified woman made Robert chortle with glee.

This actually makes a little sense.

Monday, March 21, 2011


Last week we got snow. Today we have got 16 degrees Celsius. Each day starts with mild sun rays breaking into the bedroom through the gaps in the blinds. Those gaps are fairy-like little light spectacle dancing on the ceiling surface. When I pull the blind up the show stops, turning into a new wave of light - bright sunny pure yellowness. And it's just 6 am. That means one thing: the spring has come.

I find it relieving when I can take my winter coat off - the sleeping bag-like chrysalis is not so hermetic anymore, I can leave my buttons unfastened and let the shawl fringes whirl around in the wind. The rain is purifying and warm, the sky is serene in its cloudiness, the air is humid and fragrant. Now the colors. They flourish around as the feet touch the ground - just like this play for art-inclined toddlers, when you spill all kinds of dies on a piece of paper and then tilt it so that the colors spread down the white surface. I see green all around. In the moss, early leaves, grass and minuscule buds. At this time of early spring the green is more timid and withdrawn than this May-exploding green, it's hard to say which one I like better. It's everywhere now. But only if you look down. Try to look up. In the mornings through the noon you'll see the perfectly blue dome with some whipped cream floating in the air. At the dusk there is pink interspersed with violet and yellow. But when the night falls, the sky resembles a big metropolitan city, lights strewn all over the navy, blinking in the distance. 
Sometimes purple clouds flash across the sky and dim the starry lights. Then the moon rolls over above.

I feel the spring with all my senses - its scent and its sound overwhelm all my body on my way back home. The sounds of the city are enhanced - the rustling of leaves, the cars... Now, after three months of lethargic existence indoors I feel alive again!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Why I am vegetarian

Lately I watched a film. Not a long one, it lasted only 12 minutes. But it was one of the kind that takes you back to childhood, one that makes you stop for a while and think why the decisions you’ve taken are the way they are.

As the saying has it, we are what we eat. And even if our venerable Mother Nature had put human beings at the end of almost every food chain, some of us sooner or later started contemplating this facet. I did too. What would have made a carefree nine-year old toddler transfer to a ‘rabbit-food’ diet? I can’t recall the detailed course of this turnabout, I must have watched one of the National Geographic documentary films concerning the lot of a meat-loaf from McDonald’s burger. But eventually, what at first might seem to be the first youthful act of rebellion, turned out to be the first life-lasting decision.

Those memories got back after watching the film ‘Meet Your Meat’. I have been recalled why I was actually mentally set to change my eating habits which -to some extent- established my priorities.
You can live a perfectly happy oblivious life dining in steak houses, treating yourself to my country’s cuisine’s hallmark: fatty, meaty fares; helping yourself with marshmallows and jelly beans for a dessert. At least for as long as it is not brutally brought home to you by - for instance - a film like ‘Meet Your Meat’. The images of what happened to human carnivores’ favorite snacks when they were still alive, are definitely formidable enough to give it an        X-rating. Ever since, horror movies  have never given me more shivers than I get from seeing sausages on someone’s plate. One may say ‘You can’t change the world by refusing ham on your bread slice!’. But by putting someone’s dead body in the tank I feel personally responsible for the suffering of this animal. I couldn’t put up with this kind of remorse. And after my beloved Johnny Durham, digesting animals into your own body ‘is not a very sexy thing to do’.

I share the view that if people had to hunt and slaughter their meat themselves, there would be a lot more vegetarians in the world, for people would open their eyes to the fact that their nice meat department in supermarkets must be have been supplied from somewhere. And regardless of whether one loves animals or not, everybody must acknowledge that they do have a sense of feeling. The situation where we, human beings, theoretically higher on the evolution ladder, have no qualms about keeping these animals in inhuman conditions in slaughter houses, some of them born and spending their whole life there, just to provide us with a nice dinner, makes me feel a little uncomfortable about my human origins.

But no matter how deep the ideologism is and how strong the faith keeps you doing things you believe in, it still hurts. It hurts because I don’t meet with much tolerance nor understanding, while I feel  that what I do is right. And I don’t know if my vegetarianism should be only my personal moral comfort or a mission where I am the crusader-pedlar pestering people to take stands against cruelty to animals.

I am not trying to be aggresive. I would like to convince you to go vegetarian but I don't have any right to. However I do issue you to make a stand of any kind. 

You can go to People for Ethical Treatment of Animals and learn more about how you can help.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A way with words.

I hate awkward introductions. Let's skip this part.

I have always been fascinated by words. I pick my favorite word every other week, I have flashcards with words, I think about words a lot. In my imagination words look like a patchwork bedspread - the colors look nice together and stitches are strong and secure. Patchwork was an ideal pastime for women in 19th century, such a rational thing to do, they provided warm nights during winter and were a worthy trousseau for a bride. However my words, though so cautiously taken care of and so amicably fostered are loosing their firm form when being transmitted through my mouth and are turning into a big ball of wibbly wobbly time-y wimey stuff. When I speak I can imagine a thick hank of rope, full of little knots, a kind of rope that cannot be unknotted. That way I lose my point after a few seconds (and I sound insane. Not that I'm still bothered by little things like that).

What I'm trying to get at is that words are such a powerful weapon and such a wild animal. It requires so much mastery to learn to control them and how to approach them so that they can convey what is thriving in our heads. Remember Inkheart?  Is it the outcome of human imperfection that we cannot use the tool given to us? Because this was the purpose of language - communication, wasn't it? I wish I could communicate through words, but lately I've come to a conclusion that communication through words is paradoxically the most uncommon means of it for me. Even if I'm talking to someone I doubt he can take a lot out of my words, if not for voice, gesticulation and face, he probably wouldn't get the eff of what I'm talking about.

And even if we use words intelligibly, I feel like we use them inadequately. We want to be stronger and stronger as people and that requires a lot stronger words. I'm not talking about cursing although this is a good indicator as well, but I often shiver at the easiness with which people use the phrase "I love you". Because it looses so much in its meaning. There was this scene in season one of Gossip Girl (yeah, high culture reference) where Dan wanted to tell Serena that he loved her when at the same moment she told a random passer-by who picked up her papers that she loved him for doing that. How to mean it really when we repeat these words on a daily basis?

That's why for me words became moribund, sick, obscure. Somewhat injured. I want to write them to daunt them and wake them up.

I hope this is where the words recover.

PS. Don't expect any noble artsy intentions in this blog. I only do this because everybody else does this. Seriously, I'm conformist like that.