22.7.05

Arriving Home

The lesson I constantly learn growing older is that I am not invincible. Hmm, that sentence somehow didn't come out right. But you know what I mean. When you were 18 or so, the whole world lay before you for the taking. Just off to university (whether in Clementi or the ex-colonial master's hometown), anything you wanted was possible and also highly probable. You were invincible, invulnerable, needing no exercise routine, never having a hangover or fearing no healthcheck. When you sensed injustice, you got angry - fast, furious - because, well, since you were invincible, you must also be justified and no villain could deflect your righteous blows. You get the drift...

And the day you realise that you are not invulnerable is also the day you accept that you are no different from anyone else. No one and nothing is invulnerable. I suppose anger can still be your response to injustice or suffering. But more often than not, anger is overtaken or even replaced by fear, anxiety, despair, empathy, distrust and objectivity, or at least the privileging of "complexity" ("let us consider this issue from another angle instead", "they are not entirely to be blamed", "who do you mean by they?", "finger-pointing doesn't help", etc).

Arriving home from Arts Fission's Scarlet's Room (what a disappointing performance, but more of that some other time), I opened the door to see BBC on the TV. The tone of the newscaster's voice, that background crackle when a live video telecast is on...and I knew. Of course, more bombs had gone off in London. What else could it be?

Of course, navigating defeat and invulnerability are 2 different things, though the line existing between them is as fine as baby's hair. And where that leads you (ok, some of us anyway) is surely the question of "who is in charge of the Hope Department?".

drawing coming soon...

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

hey - check out http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/07/319067.html for an interesting london take on the bombs

fortycalibernap said...

beautiful work, amp.

copyright ampulets 2005-2016