On nevermores

I feel like I’ve talked about this before, repeatedly, in fact, but it keeps coming back in different ways, and it never ceases to fascinate me. This January I tattooed my left wrist with the word ‘nevermore’. It carries several meanings, all equally important, but the one I wish to emphasize is its obvious, literal definition of never again. It is a reminder for me, a warning, and a bittersweet memory. 

I would be a liar and a hypocrite if I told you that I’ve never once faltered since, but I am proud to say that I falter less and less, weighing my choices with much greater care. I’ve become stricter and more methodical, my incisions have become sharper and cleaner (Dr Lecter would be proud). But if my bullshit-aversion threshold was low before, it has now, finally, reached bottom. 

I’ve realised that being at peace with your own choices allows you to actually see others’ for what they are. I’ve always been enthralled by and wondered about the forces that drive us to make a wrong choice, especially when we’re certain we’re making one, thereby signing off on all its glorious consequences. Most of the time it’s a matter of instant gratification vs long-term punishment. The known now always beats an uncertain future predicament; as if future us isn’t present us. For example, it is now 4:10 am and I am all too aware of the fact that morning me will hate me, but right now that’s her problem, not mine. Present me is enjoying this moment and this Telekinesis song way too much.

But as with most things in life, all choices are not created equal, and therefore should not be treated as such. Choices are a matter of priority: is what you want now more important than what you really want but will have to wait for until tomorrow? Is what you want to say now a lie in the hopes of avoiding a confrontation which will undoubtedly escalate exponentially should the lie be uncovered? Kudos, you’re officially human, but sometimes you must learn to accept that you’re also an asshole. 

Moving on to Round 2. 

Still a human but just barely. You’ve made your wrong choice, you’re all too aware of it (first, because you’re not stupid, and second because you’ve begun to reap the fruits of your lousy labor) and now what? What are you going to do about it when thought police comes knocking at your door?

-Good evening, miss. Are you concealing any weapons of bad judgment?
-Why, yes officer, indeed I am. Is there a problem? I thought this was a free country.
-Free it is m’am; to act, not react. 

So you’ve made your choice, you’ve enjoyed your fast food soul meal, but days later you realize…damn that filet mignon looks juicy. That’s usually the time when the bullshit begins. First come the self-delusions: I was really hungry, I couldn’t possibly wait. Then comes my favorite part: inability, unwillingness, and refusal to assume responsibility, apologize and accept the fucking consequences. 

Decent-human-being card: REVOKED. 

The question is, why do we do that? Because we want it all, and God forbid we don’t have…let me reiterate that, we don’t TAKE everything we want. And I haven’t even come to the best part: the one where the other person confronts us, and we, inebriated by a false sense of self-entitlement, attempt to turn the tables and exclaim FOR SHAME, SIR! For making me out to be the liar. We have convinced ourselves of self-righteousness to the point where we blame others for our own misgivings. If they are strong we will be alone. If they are weak they will give in. But what will we have gained? Are we not alone anyway?

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