05/09/2013 by Siddiqui Fayesal
Erich Segal. That was the subject of my previous post and he figures, most prominently, in this one too. I was just talking to a friend of mine and I was telling her that I sat through an hour long live band playing jazz music and that how it made me sad.
The performance was good, not that I’d go again, but at least it wasn’t astonishingly pathetic where they have fake accents and they play bad guitar. I was just thinking all the time that if I was listening to this 6, maybe 7, years back i’d have enjoyed it a hell of a lot more than I did last night. It was a new experience, mind you. A friend dragged me there and even paid for me. He wanted me to be there because he knows I usually shun such crowded places. It was a good experience.
What was eating me from the inside was that I could see people shaking their legs and smiling and enjoying, and I wasn’t. I wasn’t for one second regretting the fact that I didn’t party and club when I was in college. I don’t. Just like how I didn’t regret being there last night. Was the new experience responsible for the melancholy? It wasn’t sadness exactly; it was a moroseness that led to the one question. Has life come a full circle already? Am I old now and the fun and exciting part of life over? What made it worse was that while talking even she said almost the same thing. Doubts come to her mind as well regarding how different “fun” is described these days.
Lethargy, boredom, work and responsibility. That was all that was to life these days. When I was completely pepped up with only 4 hours sleep a day for a week it doesn’t happen now. If I sleep for 4 hours tonight I have to sleep for 6 the next day or else my entire day is spent in a stupor. It’s not even about the age. I’m 26 for crying out loud. Not 50. It’s something basic about the day to day life that I lead. It’s no secret that I don’t enjoy my profession a lot. But there are days when I’m so glad to be doing what I’m doing that I’m all smiles and on such days, honestly, the Sun is not as bright as my cheery self. On such days I’m pepped up, ready to go and win battles that lie ahead.
It happens almost 2-3 days per week and that is not a bad ratio!
I’ll come to Segal now. I read (twice) Doctors with the last read being around 2010. Barney Livingston and Laura Castellano’s life is laid out in the open for us. I saw them from the age of 6 and all the way to their 40’s. The writer has done such an immensely superb job in detailing their lives that the reader feels the strength the characters feel; he feels their hopes, their wishes; and then he also feels their strands of muscle loosening. He feels their strength sap, he feels them age, sees them go through their youth of 19-23’s to their adulthood of 29-35’s. He feels every strand becoming weak with every leap in their age.
They’re not hating their lives though. Not one bit. They are simply old, Their parameters change, their society changes and goes through a leap too. You see them becoming grounded and mature. It’s lifecycle. It has to happen.
When reading books of writers like him, it is not finishing a story. It is starting one. One learns, one accepts and one realises the basics of what it is to see a person from a zoomed out view, to wear some one else’s shoes and look at ones own life. They’re fictional people, maybe, but they’re real to you. You know how much you can learn from the book. I remember reading a scene between Barney and Laura and I could feel the tears in my eyes. That is powerful prose. That is why I would like to write. That is why it is worth it.
But can I just ignore the responsibilities of my present life. Can I trace my life on a canvas that has already been painted upon? Readers must be wondering what is the point of this post. Is it about Erich Segal, or Barney and Laura? Is it abut the ambitions of my writing skill reaching unprecedented heights?
I don’t know. It is just meant to be something that I am feeling very strongly now. About the way my life is in a mess now. But, like I said earlier, it changes. My opinion cascades over and I get all happy and fuzzy about it. The changes in my personality sometimes scares me. It happens so often that I can’t point out who the real me is. Do I like to be social and meet friends or do I love solitude? Do I believe that I can write and continue with my current profession or not?
This feeling will die down. I know. So if you ask me what was the point of this post. I’d say it was about me.
for the eye sees not itselfBut by reflection, by some other things.