What’s more fun than a burlesque show? That exuberant extravaganza of extra flashy outfits that cover all of 2% of eccentric performers’ bodies? Fire jugglers, acrobats, pole dancers mixed with good measure of electric swing and bass-rich club music – now THAT’S an adventure! Unlike Don Quixote, still fighting against the windmills of exotic dancer’s swirling nipple-tassels, one sips the sweet “rum-and-coke” and realizes that this is not where they’d like to be at the moment. Besides, this drink has too much coke and not nearly enough rum in it.
Despite the craziness of roaring 20’s Gatsby-style party, the feeling of being alone washes over, hugging like an old friend. It whispers in one’s ear: “You’re alone here. Everyone you hold dear, all the people you would like to share this moment with, are a world away. Your phone is dying and you cannot send videos of twerking performers to your friends any more. Not only that, but your dear ones will also never ever be gathered in one place, as they are scattered across the wide world. Oh, and your nachos are soggy.”
As this whisper roars in your ears, the face smiles – being alone is like a best friend whose sole life ambition is to insult you. When all is said and done, they are the only one who never leaves – the reflection of oneself. Facing the self may very well be the most difficult task mankind has to endure- there is no lying to yourself, not TRULY. This being truly knows your thoughts, there is no way to charm it, no way to make friends, or maintain an appearance. The one of you face each other bare naked – studying what’s in front in silence. One would be lucky not to wear those infamous pink eyeglasses. Or would they?
The phrase often attributed to late Robin Williams is “I used to think that the worst thing in life was to end up alone. It’s not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel alone”. Well, what if one HAS found people who make them feel elated? Or maybe furious? Annoyed, delighted, frustrated, light-hearted, puzzled, comfortable, challenged, outraged and loved – some or any from the fantastic palette of emotions the human mind is capable of. _NOT ALONE_ . Some who cares and to be cared for. People that were found and now are lost – left behind in the grand marathon of life.
There was a meme circulating a couple of years ago on the web – “You will never be completely at home again. Because part of your heart will always be elsewhere. That is the price you pay for the richness of loving and knowing people in more than one place”. A very poetic insight into human nature. It is almost horcrux-like, how one bonds with individuals – almost like sharing a piece of themselves. Having to move on tears the soul, leaving behind scar tissue of bittersweet memories.
Gingerly run your fingers along the scar, feel the bumpy smoothness – it reminds of bygone times and minutes spent together. Even after years have whirled by, the scarring still moans occasionally – especially during cold winter nights.
San Francisco, Munich, Donetsk, Tbilisi, Sunnyvale, Odessa, Kutaisi, Tulsa, Oakland, Istanbul, Rolla, Stavropol, Los Angeles, Hamburg, Gori, Portland, Esparto, Palo Alto, Batumi. All of these are inhabited by people that are dear, sweet and sorely missed. All of them, any of them, would be fantastic to share the experience of greeting the oncoming year, knocking on the door of the Central Time Zone (GMT-6). And yet, only the dearest frenemy Alcohol gets a kiss at the stroke of midnight. Only an awkward stranger gets an uncomfortable side hug: “Happy New Year?”. This “rum-and-coke” has way too much ice in it.
“Blessed Are the forgetful for they get the better even of their blunders”. This curse of a blessing heals the wounds and masks the scars. Forgetfulness, or rather not knowing at all is a blessing, sure enough. It gives peace of mind, no doubt. Saves one from oceans of pain and mountains of madness, indubitably! But it makes a better person not. The scars tell our story. What story will last, if the only thing it says is “THE END”? Nobody will tell this tale, nobody will mourn the burning of this book.
I say, let us celebrate our experiences! Celebrate your victories and failures, call dear friends, send cards to enemies. Forgive but do not forget. To steal another quote “We are freaks , we are fragile , and we all survived”. I would add one more: “we all make mistakes”. Our mistakes and mistakes of others, intertwined throughout each other’s stories, are part of what makes life interesting and worth living. Let us help each other weave the tapestry of this world! Let us grow – together and alone!