It´s helpless to return to the journal at nights when I´m delivered from the imminent pressure of having to face other people, I´m free from the abjection of the familiar picture, as if I were obliged to watch myself all day long through the stuttering eyes of other people, as if the simple biological chains of being bound peri passu to the desires of my father to rule and of his wife to subject, were universal principles to which my life is compelled to adjust to. I can´t go anymore writing this endless letters coated in both self-pity and self-praise in order to find myself an even newer destination in life but I must insist and not give up. I will continue writing letters, knocking on all the doors even at the sight of their permanent closure, even after facing their damnation and their lock-up before me. I felt today for some brief moments the nauseating feeling that I was obliging other people to surrender to my intellectual charm in terms of pity; but the abhorrence itself of my present situation, of the fact that I can´t by any means lead the life I want or be intimate with the kind of people I would want to find; is exerting too much pressure over me and I have to admit to the fact that personally I´m already too desperate and on the verge of a newfound madness that goes under the rubric of indifference to my own condition. Yet I refuse to let the symptoms settle in and I fight against the ease with which they come with all my physical and mental strength, as if someone were battling against the prejudice involved in socializing through the image of a mortal disease. I will write more and more letters, so many of them, until I will be completely assured that I´ve knocked all the doors – open, half-open and closed, in the vastness of this world. I won´t give up until I´m one hundred percent assured that there´s absolutely no possibility for me to rise through the mud of this biological existence and enter the world of a more certain destination in life; I don´t care if I die while trying a hand at this, I shall die merrily then in the plain sight of not having allowed myself to be choked by the circumstances until the very last breath. I´ll follow less inspiration and drives than I´ll seize upon opportunities; I´ll jump at the first train and will let myself be driven iffily. The reminders of my adamant refusal to symptomatize the present and digest it are clear: I never make my bed and hardly ever wash my clothes or try to procure myself new ones and I am in constant awareness of the rags they´ve been turned into, I´m in constant awareness of the filth and the unkemptness they stand for. I have only two pairs of shoes both of which I dislike and quality as preposterously ugly and uncomfortable and certainly unfit for my personality; they signal something of the attitude that I have when I wear them, “these are not my shoes but I am patient, I will walk through life until I am able to find shoes that suit me”. I seldom ever wear clean socks and if any, I wear always disjointed pairs that not even closely resemble one another; I shower at nights, sleep in the mornings and complain. I behave as if this weren´t a life on its own right but a circumstantially temporal cluster of situations that must be synchronized and overcome and nullified in order to enter my real life. I am also fully aware that this is my real life and no other, everything else has been a lie: I´m not a social activist, I´m not a spoiled rich boy under Patricia´s command, I´m not a reckless drug addict, I´m not a publicist, I´m not a synagogue boy, I´m not a Franciscan spirit. I´m not speaking of course from a position of freedom but I´m certainly speaking from a position in the world into which I am built and from which I´ve sprung. Sleeping under stairways, masturbating in toilets, stealing in order to buy cigarettes, writing at nights, feeling screeching bouts of physical and emotional pain, traumatic silences encoded into empty conversations, tasteless repetitive meals, constant diremption and even more constant change of plans… This is the life I have, I can´t turn a blind eye to this, and either I step out into the big world in order to accomplish my demoniac plans to stand out from most human beings and become what I´ve envisioned for so long or I just surrender and die. There´re no middle terms, there´s no broken middle as every middle shall be broken and thus, inefficient, presumptuous, ignorantly learnt and useless. The only part of this “life I have” I´m still unwilling to determine as of itself is the whole idea of illness; I refuse to tackle with illness and sometimes I try to whisper in my own ear that it could really happen, that it could really be that my body is just keeping together in order to survive the endless storm of my struggle to rise from this life only in order to break down and fail and punish me for my arrogance right at the twilight or rising. This frightens me and I can´t deny it but I´m even going as far as being willing to accept it and expect the punishment rather than simply resign to the gesticulations of thislifeness. Everything is valid in order to accomplish it, except writing in Spanish, that´s not allowed. That language is dead, it is the language of beatings and poverty and cocaine and nothing else. Every possible effort must be summoned in order to bury that language deep down and murder it, indict it, bury it. Writing in Spanish would mean to un-learn the world acquired far away and to humbly accept the tragic decrees of the present tense and that´s something I´m not willing to do. I´ll write in a language which isn´t my mother tongue even if I don´t write well, even if I fail, even if I can´t write anything worth looking at, even if I stumble. The sole movement of keeping the writing on and on and not resort to Spanish is a tremendous and humongous victory. Perhaps my only
But why would I write in English after all? One could even say that writing in English is the moral equivalent of accepting that the world is based on universal principles and that all particularities and individualities are mere speculations based on an interpretation of oneself. It would be to accept the facts of the world as it is, and that´s why I need another language and that language can´t be allowed to be Spanish. The problem is that I´m 26 years old and I still don´t know that language and if at this point I haven´t managed at all to learn English after all the garbage I´ve written in this language, it is but uncertain at best and moronic at worst to think that I might ever learn another language to the level appropriate for writing. No one has… But even with this quite certain prospect of defeat I´m anything but willing to abandon the enterprise. Anything that will allow me to fight against Spanish and thus against my father and my aunt and my motherlessness, every bit of it will be worth each second of strife. As of today I somewhat harbor the childish idea that I´ve already bought for myself the proper intellectual insurance required for life; that I´ve even done something that will remain in the world after my death, that my “works” have found their way into the outer world. To be sure, I´m just being plain stupid, but yet I´ve done something, it is not precisely what I wanted to do, but I´ve thrown some pegs into the wind and am not expecting ever to retrieve them. At the same time I´m so convinced that they´re so much not enough that I need to make sure that I stay alive and lucid alive for as long as it takes to gather the courage to leave something in the world that is worthy of a name. I´m not good for many things, certainly I´m but dubiously fit for life but I can write and I can think; thinking is a priceless and timeless enterprise that can´t be bequeathed to anyone and that fortunately can´t be left unto the world, it is the mark of existence that itself that one is ought to bear alone, just like one´s death must be borne alone. Writing is the key… More than writing, I want to understand things while I write, I want to understand where are we in life and world when there´s unbearable personal and historical suffering, where are we when we love and hate, where are we when we face the constrictions of trauma, what are we doing when we experience all that bad stuff. Why is it that normally the writer of trauma almost never can write from the first person and the present tense without finding for himself an air of pretension and unauthenticity? I would really like to know the answer to that. How can people ever feel at home, how can people ever be in peace with themselves, how do they console themselves? I want to understand.
There´s definitely no academic path to pursue this and that´s why I´m so much against the pretentious knowledge of academic literature, of the “secondary literature” that might be as well called “second-hand writing”; I want to see secondary literature turned into literature at all, to read the reflections of other people in a way such as that it will stand for any kind of experience and not just for theft and plundering of corpses. I´m lazy enough to read primary works, then I really can´t bother about the writing about the writing about the writing about the writing about. How can that be called writing at all? Do people just sit peacefully at home and write books? Is that even possible? Isn´t diremption a prerogative for creation of works? I mean, this isn´t accounting books. Don´t people think about their deaths? Isn´t writing at the same time the illness, the cure and the death? I just don´t seem to get it right. But who knows, I might live long enough to become a writer and then I´ll find out how people do it, how do you get to write and live with yourself in the plain sight of so much mediocrity and passivity. That´s something I really would like to learn, then I would have no trouble in writing in plain day time, in waking up early to occupy my position at the institutionalized desk of “life writing” and fulfill my eight hours of ranting without determent whatsoever, about the follies of human life. I would take lunch breaks with other life writers and subscribe to a trade union. Then if I get lucky enough, I could open an academic department in life writing that grants undergraduate and graduate degrees with a board and everything before which candidates defend their doctorates. Maybe it´s only because I´m young that I don´t understand how people can write like that; or maybe it is because I´m afraid of death or because I´m psychotic and paradoxically sober and lucid about “the life I have”. I have to fight the battle for the minority language and wear off the crutches of this fucking English. Sure this is the language I´ve been the most free at, but I can only hold this freedom in contempt not only because it´s not original but because I´ve abandoned those claims to the universal. The minority language is a cane, with it you can walk and you can also make bruises in the legs and heads of the ignorant youth that hinders your way along. You can scorn them and then also beat them and bleed them. It´s not like the crutches of Spanish or the full-fledged and heavily armed troops of obstacles and cultural barriers of the English language in contrast to the whole world. Even if I have to stick to English as a by-product of my linguistic incompetence, I want to write the most un-English writing in the whole world. That kind of writing that will force publishers to laugh in my face. That could only hasten the way toward the grave. I need to master a small language so perfectly that people who speak that language will be sorry that they were born to read me. And no, I don´t want to degree myself in philosophy… To obtain a degree in philosophy is not the benchmark of a life but rather the plain acceptance of defeat. And for God´s sake, what is a degree in philosophy? Do you get a degree in philosophy? That´s just like a degree in life writing: You take some courses in logic, learn to master the mediocrity of second hand writing (see above) and then copycat them in order to receive their praises. From when does philosophy need to be praised by the mobs? Philosophy must stand for heterodoxy for as long as they bear philosophy upon themselves. I guess it did have to be praised by the mobs since that cunning modern momentum when its value for life dropped to below zero, below freezing. I must accept at this point that this might be just jealous writing, the kind of rants written by the Hitlers of philosophy: you don´t get into an architecture school? So you move on and proceed to build on your own an empire to destroy not only architectural schools but all schools and the entire world. Perhaps I´m only writing this because I´ve never been to any university, to one of those temples of knowledge. For sure I´d write differently then, wouldn´t I? My deference to academic study is only a consequence of my lack of scholastic abilities and proof thereof, necessary to join the ranks of the religion of knowledge. Enough
Again, another long list of personal miseries: The guy who was supposed to make love to me, well, he wouldn´t call, and that was more than expected. Worse yet: Tomorrow I am most likely going on a date with this fine gentleman 63-years old, which is really a lot older than me, that is like 37 years older and about 17 years older than my father. I can´t avoid the feeling of disgust as I write these lines. But I´m trying to see the positive aspect of this all, at this point in life I´m starting to allow myself to be disgusted about myself rather than just deny the whole affair and put a smiley face. What an honor and what maturity it is to be disgusted about oneself! Disgust that can´t be washed. He seems to be a charming character, businessman, intelligent, former professor of comparative literature at the University of Syracuse, promised champagne and jazz in the background and that can´t be any bad at all even at age 63, especially bearing in mind my current intellectual, emotional, sexual and financial stagnation. I am sure that he will be attracted to me (but I might be just as self-deceived as I was about this Sergio who never called) and I guess bearing in mind the fact that I won´t be any attracted to him, I will certainly allow him to worship my body. I would worship my own body if I were attracted to it, or well, sometimes I am, but I´m not the kind of person I would go on a date with: Too poor, too hypocritical, too intellectual. And anyway that would be a fair return payment for champagne, no? Some moments before I wrote this I fantasized about how he would offer me a job in Italy inclusive of flight-tickets that would give me a stamp out of this country in a passport and then I would save enough money to feel to Iceland; and the worst part is that I have all kinds of stupidities like that one in my head all the time, everyday. The funny part is that none of my stupidities is Romantic: They mostly consist of genius professors becoming aware of my unlimited talent for thought and for life and for survival; then being offered right on the spot a scholarship to a far away rich country with everything included, even a never-coming-back-to-Colombia agreement. And you might laugh, but I am expecting it to happen every single day; that I will open my mail and then my whole life will be resolved, and guess what, it never does. A much more likely scenario will be that we will meet at some fancy restaurant where I will be so out of place because of the rags that my irresponsibility and financial situation have led me to wear but he will not mind. We will have this amazing sumptuous meal with the champagne and the jazz as he promised; then he will take me to his hotel room and worship my body until both of us will ejaculate and as I leave, thinking that this senior prince of Egypt will take me on his first-class seat to Italy, he will clean my image from his memory as with a toothpick, get a different me each night, treat each one of them to champagne and then board his plane to the happy life of eternity. That´s at least what I would do! Then if there´s a case scenario in which I would be in any way compelled to worship his 63-years-old body, I must say I would feel really humiliated but I am really hoping that this man has enough common sense to follow the rules of nature. I only remember one time being intimate with someone his age, and I really don´t want to recall anything of it. But hell, that time I wasn´t treated to champagne so I couldn´t know how I would have reacted. I think my pessimism is really redeeming, it helps me navigate safely through both surprise and disappointment; it is more humorous than it is sad. I´m running out of spiritual resources though, so unless I´m evicted by life from this house and this country, I might be entering the sad phase of pessimism for the first time in years. Thinking about it, I could intimate with this nice gentleman if that would mean going to Rome, if that would mean leaving this life, if that would mean seeing Katherina again, but then I can´t be so delusional as to think that opening one´s legs opens also the gateways of salvation – we are living in scary times, I am convinced that it is not sex anymore but money what calls upon more money and since I don´t have it I have to grow used to the idea of living without sex and without money, in compliance with the most logical syllogism and truism that American street wisdom has coined to date: “no money, no honey”. This is such a preposterous thought for someone who has studied philosophy and who has decried the follies of academic life. This is the ultimately proof that philosophy amounts to nothing, it is of no use for life, even, it is detrimental for the whole enterprise of being alive. Now I understand that I have to stop thinking about opening my legs and should rather stick to dozens more of weepy letters to another dozen of foreign countries in whose language and literature I have to promise to become an expert and I am such a good guy that I´m willing to do it even not at the expense of a passport: A flight ticket, a residence permit and a small stipend shall suffice. But thinking about it twice, if I am so completely and frenzy mad attracted to this 45-years-old German gentleman whose name I still don´t know, why wouldn´t I be ever to someone who is only 18 years older (Ariel´s age)? I have to suppose that this statement is but a philosophical statement meant for invisible and inexistent readers to spot. Lying in love is very easy really, too easy… The problem is when you can´t do it, when you fall in, that´s when the real mess begins. But again, lying in love will not save me this time, only a miracle will. I still believe in those, I´m a closeted theist. Odds are that this 63-years-old gentleman will live longer than me and then I shouldn´t be too worried about who worships what. I´m not even sure that he´s a real person that I´ll meet. I should be so forward with conclusions.
If I would ever have to find a man to make me happy, I think he should be someone like Gísli Gardarsson, the actor. A mature person, beautiful and tall, white European, friendly and amicable, soft but strong, talented, human but drunk… Although I don´t think he´s all that talented, at least spiritually, so it would have to be a blend between Gísli and Vikingur, the other Icelandic actor. Does this mean that I can really live with a non Jew? Has tolerance in the world advanced so much that even I have to join the spurious cause? I doubt it, but since I don´t have the money to afford a love relationship at the moment, leave alone in a foreign country, I shouldn´t even think about it. Somehow I think it goes beyond that: I am a little disgusted about sexual intercourse, or a lot disgusted… So often I feel I wanted it and chances have not really been all that lacking, but it seems to go ever so awry, to be some kind of mischief, to add coals to the bonfire of disappointments. The other day I thought that one day I would like to adopt children and I would name them Hlýnur and Kjártan. I would raise them on my own in a little house somewhere outside Reykjavik, on the basement of which I would print my own books and on the attic of which I would have a large studio filled with ashtrays, paintings from Katherina, thousands a books and an exotic assortment of alcoholic beverages from all over the world; I would teach them everything about Judaism without obliging them to choose the religion but this somehow seems difficult, Judaism is all about obligations and sacrifices which I am not expecting the rest of the world to understand or even myself to enforce. They would be very bright and partially home-school, from a young age they would learn the Classics, the Bible in the original classical Hebrew and a lot of alive and dead philosophers and writers (more dead than alive in all possible senses of the expression). We would speak Icelandic and English and perhaps Hebrew too but never Spanish! I would raise them in a sort of post-communist regime that would ban at the punishment of imprisonment any references to my own past or my home country or my mother tongue or my family. At that I would make a great Jewish immigrant father: Making every possible effort to bury the past and the tortured moments and the bitterness of life from the safe and peaceful newfound lives of my offspring. But they would learn to detect it when I´m up there in the attic or when Katherina comes around; they would see this immense pit hole of historical and homeless loneliness craving for an earthly Jerusalem with every fiber of my body. Eventually they would come to Jerusalem and stand before this abysmal godlessness and understand both my fear and my love, and hate me for precluding them from historical truths older than the Sagas… I would have to writhe in pain from my grave in the discomfort of that public toilet on the way to heaven which is the city of Jerusalem.
The dinner table will be very quiet and melancholic and also very noise and lively with meals that will last for many hours with many guests and much irony and laughter… I will hang in a shelf little souvenirs from Arab shops in the old city and perhaps a little carpet with Mt. Olive´s knit on it.