Wednesday, October 11, 2006

A Reply

I moved to London in July. I didn't know anyone in the city. I had recently come out of a long term relationship. I did work my butt of but once that was fine, I just went home. I always took the long route, I passed by all kinds of things I never thought I would see.

There's this street near Old Compton that has a few 'cabarets'. You see all these women in skimpy clothes that not only leave nothing to the imagination but pretty much give you an idea of what to expect inside the club (which somehow always looks the same on the inside, not that I have been but pretty much any hour of any day, its always dark and smoky in there…guess the windows are painted black (image of the nail polish those girls use).But I turned the corner to see cops handing out leaflets. I presumed they would say prostitution is illegal. Instead it was from the City of Westminster warning patrons to check prices before they go in because there were complaints of being overcharged. Well, interesting to see cops warning of that rather than anything else!

I know I tried to walk around the city along. It doesn't feel the same. Or at least the cafes with happy smiling people, couples, friends and lovers seem a bit cold. The only thing to do was to make them part of the woodwork, part of the picture, like a postcard I stepped into Marry Poppins style.

I remember going to the museum alone and I hate that. There are so many things to see and so many thought but no one to hear them but me.

Of course, the only time I would fine peace being alone was taking pictures. This city is beautiful for doing just that. I like pictures that take scenes from the ordinary and put a frame around them and leave them out of context. Somehow the intriguing bits come out when its taken in isolation.

I can't decide…wait, at 16 I couldn't decide if I was a loner (naturally books influenced me and in this case it was the Steppenwolf by Hess) or gregarious (PG Wodehouse in a weird kinf of way) and well, have accepted am a sociable loner. Yeah, I made peace with dichotomy of existence a long time ago. I love being around people. I love watching them and how they talk and how they say certain things that only they can and in a way that makes them them. But sometimes I like being the guy behind the camera, the one they all respond to but the one you never see. When I get a bit drunk and take pictures of people in groups, I love taking them laughing (ironic and unintentional but that’s when they are in the City of Laughter and Forgetting…and are just happy). It's the most honest happiness I see. Or I try and be a goofball so that even if they are looking at me, it isn't contrived, its isn't that stupid cheesy grin (mind the pun). I love candid shots. I would rather have a collage of those than a 'group picture' is a silver frame.

I have to smile at the times I have taken pictures of women friends who always grab the camera and say they don't look perfect in it. But babe, I don't want you to look perfect, I want you to be you. Yeah, you look drunk in it but aren't you should I remember you that way that night? Don't show me the perfect side because its fake. Everyone is flawed and I love you for them, in spite of them.

I don’t like my own picture being taken. (another ironic smile at dichotomy, I blog to remember but I don't like pictures because they remind me).

Anyway, sorry I don't know how I ended up saying all this, I tend to just write…

But I hear you when you say friends are like family. In retrospect I have spent more time growing up with friends than I have family, at least over the past 5 or 6 years.

I read the part about not being able to sleep. I remember and Enid Blyton I had as a kid. I bought it at a second hand book sellers in Priya when I was just this high…and it was from library in London, yellowed pages though and I loved the book…anyway, had this story about twins who decide to stay up all night but finally realize its not the best idea…I don’t know why I suddenly remembered that…but inevitably, if it’s the weekend, and my friends are off their own thing or there is no one around, I inevitably can’t sleep, just toss and turn until I flip through the channels or finish a book…

Sorry if it seems harsh but glad you realize how important it is to talk…I am curious about people as to how they are true loners…just as I am about people who always have someone around them…I can’t stand both extremes to a great degree…

And you may want to rephrase what you said, its not that you need to talk, its perhaps that you want someone to listen? Of course, I could be speaking a load of croc…

But the last line of your post did make me smile and freak me out a bit…you wrote about wanting someone to come down and visit you…
“Come on over, won't you?” is something I said/felt a week or so ago…

3 comments:

fivefeetzero said...

you've got mail :)

basho said...

I'm a sociable loner too. In the sense, I usually find myself around people, but I don't need people around. In fact, I can hang out with just about anybody..because it doesn't matter either way.

hedonistic hobo said...

i love people. but not all of them.
i hate having my pic taken and that's coz you won't see it normally but in pictures my one eye comes out way bigger than the other. then there's this other thing. right till the moment u click i look fine, i look like in the moment. the moment u click it just happens, i come out in the pic looking like mr. hyde. my friends and i have marvelled at this ability of mine to transform in a split second.

anywhoo zaphod have funnnnnnnnn in new yawk. i shall feast on your friend tonight.