Let me know if you're reading by joining the Sleepless in Beirut page




I'm sleepless in Dictateur.

On a 24 degree evening like this one, when lovers are sick in bed, shopping for a plastic gun to complete their 007 costume or chewing on Europe, when friends are having dinners with their ex-boyfriends or celebrating their fourth year anniversary in Paris, there is nothing more precious than to spend it with yourself and listen closely to your own wandering eyes and spirit.

After a week of moving within the limits of the car's turning radius or the office obstacle course, I found my secret parking spot and let my legs travel. 

J j  mm <= the words of a fallen avocado on the touch screen.

Red sends me an image. He is dressed as Ceasar.

"Wein James Bond, ya Ceasar inta?"

"Who is Bond to Ceasar?!", he replies.

On an evening like this, when time opens up to accommodate whims and folly, I'm glad that my plans for the night can do the same. My mind has space to run with it, to roll around like a roll-over command, to bark, to mark street corners, and to fetch an idea that it had thrown sometime on Monday. I pet myself because I am still okay. I've done well on the resistance front, because years into my war of identity, I haven't betrayed either side.

This dichotomy of mind used to worry me - mustn't I make a choice? Is it not important to know on which side of the front you're standing on? Is it not important to assume a style and stick with it?

A month ago, my mother's childhood friend said to me, "His power laid within his unpredictability." And it hit me: this is where freedom may reign and this was the only thing I had going for me, this ability to walk the line, this balance under a growing mountain of weight.

I've yet to feel inevitability, the inevitability of a cul-de-sac and no way out. There always is. Hope can sometimes feel like a disease, like a cloudy film wrapped around your senses, or maybe, like a sixth sense with its feeler tentacles stretched in front, groping, carressing, testing how ripe an occasion is. You determine the twist.

Of course, doubt turns up every now and then, knocking, knocking, like a preacher, barking, barking, like a dog sent in from Cartesia. My only concrete fear is that of "Revolutionary Road" - to discover that you were moving in the wrong direction and think it too late to change course. It's strenuous to constantly question yourself, "Was this a good decision? Did I do the right thing?". Fuck that. Adapt. Outrun your hounds and leave them panting with regret for ever having run after you in the first place. Outsmart yourself. Be brave. You're on your own and you are your own, do whatever it takes.

I gave normality a chance. I said "No" when it was expected of me, I took it slow, I thought it through and I can safely look back on it as the dullest year ever. I tried your way of reason and it didn't thrill me. It didn't leave me broken hearted, true - but it broke my spirit. I had even saved a psychoanalyst's number and dialed it once to schedule an appointment, but hung up before I let self-pity do the talking. I wasn't in that deep, not yet.

I like to let my thrills spill over me as much as I like to spill them over everything I see. I like to count them, list them, draw them, think, write and talk about them. They make me as much as I make them and I'd be naked without their company. I'd walk past all their houses without smiling, I'd move through Beirut without turning corners and I'd leave in a second the moment it would blow up. I like to let my thrills add a bit of weight to my story, a bit of complaint from the baggage handlers and a bit of a bitter aftertaste to my initial sweetness. I like to be alone on an evening like this, with my glass of wine and busy fingers.

1 comment: