Well Ladies and Gentlemen, we’ve reached 100 posts on Amateur Diplomat. We had the highest readership yesterday nearing 50 page views. It’s great. It makes me feel good. So if you’re reading this, or if you have read here previously and reached a conclusion that it wasn’t waste of time, then you have my sincere gratitude.
I really have no idea what I’m doing here anymore, honestly. This blog was initially created to track political developments relating to U.S. foreign policy, but as you can see we’ve taken a rather abrupt turn to focus on some other topics of interest. Love. Anger. Hate. Craziness.
I had an interesting conversation with a friend last night and we were talking about what it means to say one is ‘crazy’. He raised the point that the word ‘crazy’ is associated with being abnormal. Being in a state of mind or existence that is at odds with how the rest of society functions. Perhaps this is true. And to say thus that everyone is crazy is simply a contradiction. If everyone was crazy or abnormal, well, then that would become the state of normality. Debating semantics bores me. But nonetheless, I think it is true that people present one face in public and one face in private. You never can quite see what is happening behind someone’s eyes. The thoughts passing through someone’s head. You just don’t know. I am more interested in the notion that people act in ways that could technically be defined as ‘crazy’, or perhaps as acting in an irrational manner. But to hell with reason and rationality, which is precisely a contradiction of what I was writing yesterday – saying that our society has a fundamental need of both of these things in discourse. But people act in crazy ways all the time. I witness it on a daily basis driving. Hell, I’m probably a crazy driver, at least when I have the road to myself. Wouldn’t you think I was crazy if I told you I drove on the opposite side of the street at 2am simply because I could? It’s fun to rebel. Though I would never engage in a sort of behavior that would put anyone else at risk or endanger their safety. But I’m damn tired of people telling me what to do and handing out judgements and opinions without asking certain fundamental questions, you know.
Still, I came across an excellent quote this morning from a good friend.
Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must live.
I agree. I think a healthy dose of craziness can really keep one sane. I’d rather not live in a stagnant condition of mind and body until I’m 50 and have a midlife crisis at which point I go out and buy a bright red Corvette, not that I would mind owning that car. Still, as I wrote yesterday. It’s this fear of stagnation. This fear of complacency. This fear of watching the world pass me by without giving a damn. Without caring.
I find myself growing angry even at my best friends, for no apparent reason. Attempting to force labels upon me and tell me what I should and should not do. Man, I certainly sound like an angry teenager now. You tell me I’m crazy. Yes, I’m fucking crazy. And I’m damn proud of it. If I wasn’t crazy I would not have navigated my way through a Palestinian refugee camp in South Beirut to eventually meet an absolutely precious young girl named Asra who ended up teaching me more Arabic than I could ever teach her basic math skills or English. I love that little girl. And it nearly brings me to tears to think that perhaps she’ll spend the rest of her life there, while the issue of granting basic human rights to Palestinian refugees in Lebanon continues to fester politically, and the elite of Beirut live their lives without giving a damn about what’s happening in their backyard. I’d be crazy if I told you that part of the reason I’m going to go back to Lebanon is because I love a man there, who changed my life. I can only explain these things to myself. I can’t explain them to you. I can only attempt to some how internalize them and rationalize them to myself. But get back to me after you’ve wandered down the dark streets of a refugee camp and been pointed at by the gnarled finger of an old lady and shouted that you are an Israeli spy simply because you are white.
You can accuse me of not living in reality, but you know, honestly, America is not reality. This place is not the real world. Sure its real enough for most of us. But it is a cave, as sure as Plato’s. Though the rocks are starting to fall in from the ceiling. But still. It is a cave. We’ve built up the cave over many years with our media, with our education. The very things that were supposed to keep us engaged, supposed to check any sort of rampant corruption of our society have now entrapped us. Our media is now self-serving. This is precisely why I’m considering shutting down my Facebook for a while. Gasp! Yes. I know. I have strong desire to completely deactivate my account and shut it off for a while. I’ll still blog and read as avidly as I do online. But I’m tired of these social tools. I probably have little idea of how much I would miss in the grand scheme of things. Even that quote above about living crazily was taken from a close friend’s Facebook status. I would never have seen it this morning had it not appeared in my news feed.
Anyway, I’m just tired. I had a friend tell me yesterday I spend way to much time thinking. Well, yes, maybe. But isn’t that core to human functionality? Thinking. It’s not like I can just switch off my mind. Unfortunately. That would have been so helpful over these last three months since I came home from Beirut. It’s a pity whatever force created us ‘in the image of God’ didn’t include that feature. Ah… well. Bring’s Aldous Huxley’s Doors of Perception to mind.
Well, I suppose that’s enough for now. Must study Arabic. I wish to extend my sincerest gratitude and thanks to all those that have read my writing here. Even if I do not know you, it means a great deal.