Friday, November 19, 2004

four-postered dull torpor pulling downward

Everyone around me seems extremely unmotivated today. It is not the usual Friday afternoon "I'm so out of here" haze, but rather the "I don't think I'm going to make it all the way through this week" defeated fog. It's particularly unfortunate to feel this way when the sun is shining, and everything outside is vibrant in color and ambiance. You feel like you clash with your surroundings, a foreigner.

I don't have a good reaction to the pressure of putting on a happy face. This must in some way relate to my upbringing, because, in the Indian friend circle of my parents, everyone would have to behave syrupy sweet, while subversively stabbing daggers into each other. And no one could ever say something was going badly. That is how, eventually, my parents' friends all embraced the idea of interracial or interfaith marriages. If their children did that, they couldn't bemoan it to their friends as something embarassing, because how would that look? So, instead, even if they didn't really believe it, they would put on the show, and would suddenly become advocates for love and tolerance. It cracked me up that, eventually, my aunties could be heard saying things like "Well, my Peter, you know, he is more Indian than my own daughter even. He asked me to teach him how to make samosas yesterday." The need to one-up each other eventually won out over the need to conform to society, as it turns out.

I realize that doesn't really illustrate my original point though, which is just that I can't understand why it's not allowed to be down some times. Especially if you have a legitimate reason to be upset. Must you snap out of it immediately and put on the grin? Isn't it okay to wallow a little? Is this what happens when so many people in the country are medicated? Or is all this ranting really just reflective of a need for me to be medicated?

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