Underneath my yellow skin

Tag Archives: silence

I vant to be alone

Day Five

go. away.
I’m ready for the apocalypse.

It’s day five with no end in sight. Life as we know it is over, and I may not make it out of this alive. If I don’t, tell Shadow I love him.

I’ve been up for almost three hours, and I’ve had to answer four tech questions for my father already. Now, I know this isn’t a big deal because many of us have older parents who are uncomfortable with technology. Let’s throw some additional wrenches into this shitshow. One: I don’t read Chinese; my father’s phone is in Chinese. Two: I don’t use cell phones for any serious work because it makes me angry, scared, and confused. I like a full-functioning keyboard and all my keyboard shortcuts. Three: One of the problems has to do with PowerPoint, which I don’t use at all.

So. We have the comedy of me pointing at something on the screen and asking my father what it says. He doesn’t speak English on the regular any longer and hasn’t for at least two decades, so he struggles to translate the Chinese into English. Then, I try to figure out the equivalent in English before poking his phone, mostly in random.

This is fairly funny, but it’s also irritating because both my parents expect me to drop whatever I’m doing and help them RIGHT NOW. Yes, I know their emergency is not my emergency, but Asian parenting training is real, yo. You don’t say ‘no’ to your Asian parent. You just don’t. I’ve gotten much better at it, but it’s hard not to slip. Plus, my mother has a singular mind when it comes to, well, anything. And she has no ability to rate how urgent something is. If she wants it done, then it’s urgent. It’s hard because my ‘office’ is my couch, which is in the living room. So they feel free just to wander in and ask for whatever it is they need or just to chat.

Small annoyance: My mother is like a caster of her own thoughts. You know that inner voice that is constantly narrating what you do and think? That’s my mom. “I’m going to cut the vegetables now. First I have to soak them, though. I soak them for twenty minutes to get the–what do you call it?” That’s an actual question which she waits for me to answer. I know what she wants, but I’m not going to give it to her. I am not. No, no, no. I am not going to say toxins. “I leave it for twenty minutes, and–” I cannot tell you what follows because by this time, my eyes have glazed over, and my pulse is nonexistent.

I know that I’m making all this sound amusing (and it is in retrospect, it kinda is), but it’s mostly irritating at the time. The last few times they’ve been here, I’ve been able to let this shit roll off my back, but for whatever reason, it’s been harder this time. It started when my mom called me a few days before the visit. We were just talking about whatever, and then she said something that was patently a statement of denial. I was telling my brain, “Don’t say it, don’t say it, don’t say it,” as my brain formulated a statement that I knew wouldn’t make things better and might actually make things worse. My brain wouldn’t let me not say it, and, yes, it didn’t make things any better.

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The Monumental Silence

shhhhhhhhhhh!
Don’t say a word.

I like to discuss ideas and learn new things. I may not always be receptive right away, but I will think about what someone says to me and change my mind accordingly. I have pretty firm ideas, but I’m willing to have my mind changed. If I feel that there’s no exchange to be had, however, I shut down.  It’s one reason I rarely talk about abortion. I have no give there, so it’s pointless for me to have a discussion on it.

Let me give you a relatively minor example. I hate summer because I hate heat. You would think in Minnesota that liking cold and snow would not put me in the minority, but in the recent years, it has. All I hear is bitching and moaning about the winters and how glad they are when it’s finally spring. During spring, I’d hear some version of, “Aren’t you glad we finally have good weather again?” all over the damn place. I used to reply, “No. I like cold and snow.” Then, I’d get the bemused and/or flustered looks in response, and I’d feel like an idiot. In the past year or two, I’ve simply started nodding and smiling because it’s not worth my time to protest. I’ve bowed down to the overall culture because I’m tired of feeling like a freak. It doesn’t change my mind, tough. Today, it’s already 81 ‘feels like’ 84, and I’m grumpy as hell. I can actually feel the energy drain from my body when the sun’s rays mercilessly beat down upon me, and my limbs actually start to sake.

I know that’s minor, but it’s alienating on a microscopic level. Small talk is meant to be a way to instantly connect, but you need a common ground on which to relate. If I’m at Cub buying my groceries on a blazing hot day, and the cashier smiles and says, “Enjoy the weather!”, it’s not going to warm the cockles of my heart, no pun intended. It just reminds me how much I hate hot weather and how I wish it would die in a fire, and, yes, I know that makes no sense.

Moving on to more serious issues, let’s talk abortion. I said above that I don’t discuss it because my mind will not be changed on it. I’m 100% for allowing women to make that decision, no ifs and or buts. However, I used to write about it a lot because I was so passionate about it. After writing several posts about it, I lost faith that anything would change for the better, and it was killing me to spend so much time writing about it. It wasn’t a conscious decision to quit writing about it, but I just didn’t have the heart to do it any longer.  It’s still important to me, but I just don’t see how my ranting about it will change anything.

It’s how I feel about politics in general and one major reason I’m not going to write about it any longer–I just don’t see the point. Nothing is going to change. We’re still going to have a buffoon as a president, one who is systematically destroying our country and possible the world, and there’s not a damn thing I can do about it. I can’t write from a place of hopelessness because it’ll permeate my words.

On a similar tangent, one of my strengths is using humor to highlight the absurdity/atrocity of wat is happening, and I feel as if I’ve lost my sense of humor for politics in the past few years. I can rant with the best of them, and it feels cathartic to do so. However, rants don’t really do anything to change a situation, and they can feel stale when done too often. As I mentioned in a previous post, one reason I love writing my POOG posts is because I can be as sarcastic and funny as I want to be, no holds barred. All the restraints that plague me when I write about other topics are gone when I write my POOG posts.

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