Empty Days

Thursday, July 29, 2004



Strange day.

I can't explain it - everybody I met was nice to me today. Scores of total strangers went out of their way to act nice. Why? On other days it's exactly the opposite - and I don't feel I was especially upbeat or beaming this time.

It's just one of those things - no reason.

***

The illegal carwash in the driveway is in full operation. I sort of hoped I was being paranoid about it - unfortunately it's real. I much prefer being paranoid about things, because then there is a chance they won't turn out true. I suppose I should have bought a brush to paint the slogan on their garage door. Well, I'll buy it tomorrow. It's gonna be another guerrila operation - in the silence of the night and all that shit.

The alternative is simple and that's the one everybody usually chooses: just live with it, whatever it is, just live with it. Sometimes it makes sense, because there's absolutely nothing you could do, but other times... something can and should be done. Even if it's slightly crazy. But at least it can be done.

It's been my experience that if you don't do it, you'll regret it.

***

Couldn't find affordable shoes. Spotted some good sneakers but they didn't have my size. The usual story. I am taking it easy because in any case it's largely a matter of chance rather than effort - I could spend days looking for stuff and not finding any, and then one fine day I just walk in somewhere and I see exactly what I need. I can't explain it.

Of course, the alternative is just to find suitable shoes and pay whatever price. It doesn't work for people like myself, since I don't have illimited cash supply and all that. And never will, what's more.

***

I've been lazily reading through Erich Fromm's "Escape from Freedom". It's a strange read - he applies some sort of marxist analysis to history and then spices it up with psychology. He loves theorizing - I can understand why he likes Marx so much, the man was a great theory-maker. But after all the analyzing and theorizing the world comes out flat and somewhat idiotic - all great theorists are probably idiots at heart, otherwise they'd quit trying to explain everything as if it were nothing but a math equation.

I once participated in some psychology forum and some recent psychology graduates were saying that human beings are so similar and predictable that it's practically boring. That's what psychology achieves: it paints a picture of humanity that is indeed as flat and obvious as a blue-print - there are no mysteries there, everything is conditioned and drawn out in advance. Seen through theory life appears as a sort of obsessive idiocy - it is boring, I absolutely agree with that assesment. It's also boring to try to "straighten out" people into being as flat and comforming to the blue-print as possible. People themselves pursue boring goals - getting totally neurotic over not being able to reach them - yet not stopping once to think that maybe those goals are not even real.

Yes indeed, life can be made into the most boring thing on earth, requiring extremely boring and repetitive solutions. Messing with psychology doesn't solve the boredom - it makes it worse.

***

Ok, strange happening: I went out to check on my cat and what do I see in the carwashing driveway? I see an imposing white guy with a notepad discussing vigorously with a bunch of philippinoes who look as if they've been caught doing something bad and being nonplussed about it (guilty smiles and shrugging shoulders). Hmm. I hope this is what I think it is: a municipal inspector talking some sense into them.
I observe some more: the guys are chattering among themselves and pointing to an upper floor window above the garage... Perhaps it's that tenant who called the inspector - if it's really an inspector.
The driveway is full of shining new cars that I know don't belong to the tenants and the garage is open and full of washing equipment...

Well. The next few days will either prove or disprove my theory: if I indeed witnessed a visit by the inspector then this business should cease starting today. Should I be so lucky...

***

Another likewise happening that's been going on since yesterday: I think the gook is moving out... I'll cross my fingers because I may still be wrong but it looks as if there's been a sort of appartment swap - his nefews or sons will live here while he moves somewhere else. I don't know if they're all related but at least this guy has a lot of young people around him, gotta be extended family.

Haven't seen the gook since yesterday and the moving van has definitely disappeared.

Ladida. We'll see. I can't believe my luck these days - the meaner and more desperate I get, the more the skies seem to clear out. If the world were a moral place, things should be happening in the opposite direction - in punishment for my bad behavior. Haha.





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