An Anti-nursery Rhyme

An Anti-nursery Rhyme

Sleep is when

You’re awake, but unaware

Or comatose, and oblivious

Or dead, not a care

Sleep takes 

The pains

Out of all things

Who’d want to be up

Not me

Let us sleep

No flowers

By request

Wot I Shot Wednesday: Emulating My Cat

Wot I Shot Wednesday: Emulating My Cat

It’s probably late for Michael’s Wot I Shot challenge. Or maybe not. To my utmost confusion, I always see Michael’s Wednesday posts on Tuesday. So why not join the Wednesday challenge on Thursday? Time zones clearly elude me.

I took and ruined Michael’s challenge by deciding to participate with the worst of my bad Instagram snaps. I mean to go on like this until Michael bans me. This time, however, I’ve noticed something curious on my Instagram.

I posted two photos after each other, one a portrait of my cat and another a portrait of myself, and we happen to be posing in the same way! The cat has her paw over her face after an exhausting day. I have my own paw over my face because I prefer not to show my face. Literally.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BasHQ2DhvR7/?taken-by=maraeastern

https://www.instagram.com/p/BasPlFTBX7V/?taken-by=maraeastern

Came Home from a Looong Trip and Am Orgiastic

Came Home from a Looong Trip and Am Orgiastic

I just arrived home after being the whole day on the go. That’s standard practice for most people, but for me, it’s an emergency situation. I fucking hate to go anywhere, the more so that it typically involves getting up at my usual bed time. I live in the middle of nowhere, so it takes a lot of manoeuvring to use the public transport to get somewhere.

Today I got up at the usual 4 AM and travelled to the other end of the country on a business trip. It was traumatising on so many levels. There was travel. There were people. There was social interaction. There was a very limited number of smoking breaks. I had to be constantly on the guard to appear competent and interested, or at least not asleep.

My mouth still hurts from my prolonged pretence of a forthcoming smile. I don’t usually smile. When I’m genuinely amused, I lift one corner of the mouth (it’s too much effort to lift both) and chuckle spasmodically. Also, my bum hurts because I’ve been sitting on my sitting bones the whole day. I guess that would be less of a problem if I had body fat, but I don’t have such a thing.

My hand isn’t jaundiced or spotted. Wrong choice of filter.

Based on the overwhelming impressions of today, I have come to several conclusions (which I suspected before, so it only confirms my darkest preconceptions):

  • People are so fucking exhausting.
  • Business meetings are perfectly useless.
  • People don’t respect me.

As to the last point, it may have several explanations. I’m nervous, unassertive, quiet and always have a guilty face like I just stole your kitten. Also, people seem to think I’m much younger than I am. This isn’t as flattering as rather frustrating because they tend to treat me condescendingly. Finally, when in more formal environments, people apparently have issues with my appearance, which is only very mildly extravagant. (I mean, sure, I have half my head shaved, but I was wearing a fucking blouse & blazer, all business like and shit.)

I was dealing with one middle-aged and one elderly lady today. The middle-aged lady kept on addressing the other woman politely as doctor. Both women addressed me in unison with my first name. I think I took offence. The doctor lady has a lesser degree than I do, she only has a PhDr (means she just reworked her MA thesis), while I have a greater degree, PhD (means I studied extra three years plus wrote a dissertation and took an exam). But I didn’t get to be addressed as doctor. What’s wrong with you people? Either let’s call everyone their first names or let’s address everyone with their titles. Makes sense, no?

Finally, fuck. I’m orgiastically happy to be back home.

Wot I Saw Wednesday: Be Careful What You Wish For

Wot I Saw Wednesday: Be Careful What You Wish For

Michael has tentatively started a new regular feature. I decided to interpret his Wot I Saw Wednesday as a forum for the worst of bad pictures. Unlike other photography forums, this is one where I can contribute a lot of quality material. Continuing in the mode of my first response to this challenge, here is another shitty snap of myself when I was feeling shitty.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BaU0EcABRL4/?taken-by=maraeastern

Yesterday I had an identity crisis, which is my euphemism for a bout of depression. I wished I rather had a bout of anxiety. Well, now I know I should be more careful with what I wish for because I indeed woke up in an anxious fit today. Nothing half a Lexaurin wouldn’t fix, but nothing too enjoyable either. To make it fair, since I wasn’t enjoying myself, here is another crappy picture for you not to enjoy.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BaWmt4BhMSR/?taken-by=maraeastern

Socially Awkward Is Just a Nice Word for Incompetent

Socially Awkward Is Just a Nice Word for Incompetent

I’m socially anxious and therefore socially awkward by default. But when I’m feeling low, awkward doesn’t come anywhere close to adequately describing my social interactions. Totally incompetent is a much more fitting expression here.

Today it’s been one of these days. I thought a trip to the supermarket would cheer me up—because of Oreos. I always reward myself with Oreos when venturing out to get groceries. I thought wrong though. If anything, my outing made me even more depressed.

I attempted to reply to random people who tried to communicate with me, but it was pathetic. A Tesco employee nearly ran me over with her manipulation trolley because I wasn’t looking. She said, Sorry. Guess what I said. I said, Thank you. Thank you for what exactly?

In the supermarket

The cashier checked in my Oreos and asked the usual, Cash or card? No-brainer, right? Well, not really because I said, Yes. Yes to which? Duh. Wordlessly, I waved my card. The cashier got it. She even bagged my shopping, which is not a standard practice here.

I was so moved by her kind act that I was on the verge of tears. Why? Dunno. Probably tears of gratitude. Or tears of frustration. I wanted to say something—here my previous thank you would have been apparently appropriate—but I could think of nothing, so I grabbed my groceries and ran.

I’ve Been Panicking over a Cat Toy (Seriously)

I’ve Been Panicking over a Cat Toy (Seriously)

I’m overworked. No, really, I’m always overworked but now I’m acutely overworked. That’s why I thought that before resuming work, I could grab a blogging break. Not a break from blogging but a break to blog. You know, so I could feel guilty afterwards for not having been working.

Overwork is an awesome way to boost your existing mental issues and get yourself new issues you didn’t know you had. At this state of overwork, I don’t have normal response to stimuli because all my brain capacity is taken up by working and thinking of working. My reaction to ordinary situations is either of the following:

  1. none (blank stare and complete paralysis)
  2. inadequate (like responding with a poem to a question of what day it is; also, I have honestly no idea what day it is because all days are workdays)
  3. panicky (I just lose my shit and expect to die at the spot because the circumstances are too overwhelming to survive)
My favourite cat toy

I’ve been successfully excessively panicking today on multiple occasions. To an uninvolved observer, it would probably look extremely hilarious. Even I, a very involved actor in the fits of panic, could appreciate some of the humour in it.

I had the best meltdown when I couldn’t find my favourite cat toy. Not my cat’s favourite toy, she is indifferent to all toys, but my preferred toy out of the collection of cat toys I use as home decorations. I was looking for it everywhere. Repeatedly. I blamed the cat for losing it.

I have no idea how the cat does that but she sometimes does lose a toy. She must be eating them. When I was on the verge of hanging myself on a cat string toy, it occurred to me that I must have collected the missing toy accidentally from the floor with the bed sheets I was changing and must have put it in the laundry basket.

Yup. There it was. I thought I lost it forever. I’m unreasonably attached to cat toys and I probably only have a cat because of the toys. To immortalise said cat toy, I just snapped and Snapseeded it and it goes with this post. So much panic for such a little thing. Seriously.

A Quiet Day: An Apocalypse Is Impending

A Quiet Day: An Apocalypse Is Impending

It’s been such a wonderfully quiet day. No one called me, no one mailed me, no one came banging at my door in the misled belief that when I’m the concierge, I can set their problems and the world to rights.

Only the cat has been disturbing me. She’s excited I didn’t leave her forever after all, as she was home alone the whole day yesterday. So tonight she’s been climbing on my desk when I was working or sitting sullen and awake on top of the radiator, further from me than usual because the human put her big reference book at the cat’s usual spot.

Humans suck. I agree with the cat. This quietness means one thing. An apocalypse is impending. I’m scared to go to sleep. Which is why I’m typing this, in bed, in the dark, with the cat nowhere to be seen, which means she’s up to no good either. Catocalypse is coming. 

Some Random Reasons to Stay Alive

Some Random Reasons to Stay Alive

To take a break from contemplating suicide, I thought I’d brainstorm some ideas to stay alive instead. That’s my notion of testing the power of positive psychology. I believe I’m doing it right, theoretically, but really, I’m not feeling it. Let’s go through the exercise though. Here’s a bunch of random reasons why avoid suicide.

  • People around me would be upset. (They say so, but they might only say so because it’s the right thing to say. They can’t very well tell me to go ahead and risk that I’ll take the advice.)
  • The tenants after me would have trouble cleaning. (I have no previous experience but I suspect that no matter how you do it, it’s bound to be messy. I certainly wouldn’t leave the flat for the occasion, I mean, one step at a time.)
  • The life you save might (not) be your own. (I was told I might live to make someone’s life less miserable. That’s doubtful. I can’t envision how I would help anyone else when I can’t help myself. But let’s keep the option open.)
Time’s ticking
  • I might live to accomplish something useful. (I don’t think so. I’m accomplishing things all the time but I have the unique skill of accomplishing shit that is ultimately perfectly useless.)
  • Other people have it worse, so I should be grateful. (Yeah, sure, but what if I’m not? How do you do grateful? Are there some exercises or something? Besides a gratitude journal, which I’m already keeping, and which clearly isn’t doing the trick.)
  • The cat would be sad. (This is actually legit. The cat would be pissed off and upset in equal proportions. This is probably it. I’d better stay alive because I have responsibility for the cat.)

Well, that didn’t go as expected. Apparently, I have one solid reason to live: the cat. That’s slightly disappointing, but I guess there are worse things and the cat and I should have about half a dozen of good years ahead. Provided that things go well (that is, not worse than the usual bad). What a cheerful post, isn’t it? With a happy ending though! (*Rainbows atop which unicorns are copulating to populate the earth manifest themselves in the sky.*)

A Miniature Portrait in Pink

A Miniature Portrait in Pink

Peeling pink polish
On a girl who’s been biting her nails
Again
Because the pain is easier to bear
Then


Disclaimers:

  • I don’t bite my nails
  • I don’t use pink polish
  • I don’t write poems
What I Was Doing When I Couldn’t Sleep

What I Was Doing When I Couldn’t Sleep

I have bouts of insomnia alternated by bouts of sleepomania. I don’t sleep when I’m too stressed out and I sleep all the time when I’m too stressed out. Yes, I’m aware it’s the same thing, it depends on what kind of stressed out exactly I am at the moment. Right now, I’m the kind of stressed out when I never sleep because my brain never shuts down (and never shuts up).

When I was attempting to sleep last night, I found myself engaging in various kinds of bizarre activities not only not related to but even outright counterproductive to sleeping. They say that if you don’t fall asleep within half an hour, you should get up. Alright, so I got up and did the following:

  • In lieu of a hot bath, I went to shave my legs because I don’t have a bathtub and it doesn’t really matter what kind of ritual involving hot water and foam you do.
  • In lieu of hot milk, I opened the fridge and watched it for a while like a TV. There was soy milk but I didn’t dare to heat it up lest it should explode. You never know what they put in these things.
  • In lieu of a relaxing meditation, I put a coat over my nightie and sat at the balcony to smoke. Smoking before bed is even worse than smoking at other times because it apparently pumps you up.
A reverse Live Long and Prosper sign

Then I crawled back in bed and was freezing, either because it was cold outside or due to the loss of my fur by shaving. I lay flat on my back and was waiting, impatiently. Nothing happened. So I rolled on to my side and called the cat. Three times. She was too busy licking her butt on my yoga mat to come to me. I’ll remember that the next time she meows for wet food.

I remembered to close my eyes to facilitate sleep. Then I remembered what I haven’t done today, what I should’ve done the day before and what I should do the next day, provided I fall asleep and wake up. Then I remembered what I have done throughout my life and what I shouldn’t have done. I grew increasingly terrified. Then I managed to cry myself to sleep.