Becoming a Less Better Person
requisite weekly ennui; now, with more free-association

Pursuant to a phone call with Indi, I realize that my slow blograte is not entirely due to dial-up issues (as I’d like to believe) but rather because I write too carefully and thus too slowly. I have to have a fascinating idea (ha) first and given my confusion about audience this is hard to judge… things that yall family care about are probably not things that the Sri Lanka blogworld cares about. Some of them are reading me now (ta!) but that makes content selection harder.

In any case, volume is good, in some media—am going to try to do something every day and reduce the novella-length introspection a bit. It’s pretty dumb to write about writing, but these days I am always making myself promises (more meditation, more jogging, more studying, more interviewing…) which I generally don’t keep so perhaps a public forum will provide the necessary shame-quotient inducements.

Dad, I am starting to really understand your practice of not making personal resolutions. It’s just too depressing when over time the unmade plans and unmet goals pile up like recalcitrant dustbunnies or unwashable laundry, sort of emotional kipple cast-off from the twined streams of good intentions and self-disappointment. I am glad not to be a smoker.

Now that I know I have (some) co-time-zonal readers it’s not really possible to post gripes about my close friends. Not that I was, before, but hey. Nor do I have any in particular at the moment, though I’m experiencing one of those emotional hallucinations where I’m back in middle school or even before, and hanging out with people who really don’t seem to like me, and I have to constantly remind myself not to be paranoid. Am I just exquisitely sensitive to (probably nonexistent) signals?

Was talking about this with Jill today and feeling sort of situated on the subject—as in, I could observe the behaviour and sort of absent myself from it—but then we got to the movies to find Lisa and not the movie I wanted to see. I was mad at myself for not going earlier, as that film has been playing for like three weeks, and ashamed for disappointing them, and just straight out guilty for not having gotten much done in the morning. Had a Sinhala lesson at which I functioned incredibly poorly. Stupid day, I guess. In any case the film debacle just wound the ol’ springs that much tighter. So much for my cool, calm appraisal of little psychic screens.

We decided to see the new film, a rather incomprehensible one (in Sinhala, no subtitles) called “Guerrilla Marketing.” After seeing it, I thought it was about national politics, Lisa thought it was about spirit-possession, and Jill thought it was a fatalistic romance. It was all those things, and more… nice musical sequence with tuxedo’ed guys doing Kandyan dance in Anuradhapura. I look forward to discussing it with someone who, um, understood.

Yesterday I fell asleep on the floor at ICES (luckily with my book on my chest and not on the floor—that’s a cultural no-no) in the midst of a hot hot afternoon and after a giant rice packet lunch. Had failed to eat brekkies properly, most notably not consuming any tea at all. Don’t try this at home, kids: major caffeine withdrawal equals abject floor-sleeping squalor.

Also: Tonight I made slightly unorthodox, very delicious borscht. Two batches of adorable puppies in the neighborhood make me coo goofily when walking-past, and sad that I can't have one (or five). My neck is rather badly injured from something (sleeping?) and will be Ayurveda-fied on Monday. The only piece of mail I got was from a research contact in Ampara with whom I’ll be doing some fieldwork. New haircut behaving a bit better than in its first few days.

Funny story, actually. I went to a small cheap salon, recommended by a friend, and for Rs 200 bought myself a slightly harrowing experience. I came at 6:27 or something like that, was told that (despite the reasonable sized crowd in the place) they close at 6:30. Turned to leave and one of the ‘stylists’ (girls in smocks with scissors) was like, oh, you just want a haircut, whatever, we’ll do a dry cut. I flinched visibly as they dragged me into a chair and wrapped me in a sheet. The girl, energetically spritzing away with a bottle of water, asked me to slouch—the salon chairs here are all not-low-enough for the combo of Tall Me + Short Stylist. I blurted out some directions—tapered short to the nape, fix worst shaggies all over, leave as much as possible—which she promptly ignored and proceeded to give me the haircut sported by, like, three-year-olds. As in, I should have a bow pinned to my hair to denote “girl.” Alternately I can style it in mini-backswept-bouffant as do the middle-aged women who have given up on having an elegant bun. The whole haircut from walking in to walking out took maybe twelve minutes. After it I went outside, did some deep breathing, messed with the style in a car window, and went clothes-shopping at Romafour, home of cute clubby clothes, to calm myself.

Right. Enough. Big day tomorrow—Mina’s ballet show and Billy’s kids’ play! Beauty sleep, here I come.

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