Subjective eons, ages, forever and a day, whatever great unit of time your mind can encompass. I seem to remember that the Mayas (Mayans?) had a time-unit that spans approximately twelve millennia, though, unfortunately and ultimately, they didn’t get to use it. Not in any way that matters. There might be a lesson in that, oblivion and evanescence. And also a specific flavour of temporal hubris particular to empire. I have no such imperial ambitions but it’s been, again subjectively, a tragically, unacceptably long time that I haven’t written some sort of biographical, highly individual blog entry on what-the-devils is going on in my cranny of the world.
This is particularly curious given that it seems, or at least contemporary observers make it out to seem, that some historical events have been going down. Negative history I must unhappily report: a pandemic (an intermediate one), Trump (a one-politician global wrecking ball), the world-wide climate protests (numerous, huge, yes, historical is probably not too-far-off-the-mark) and on a kind-of positive note, the resurgence of the black civil rights movement in the US (negative because it still is necessary). Also, a famous basketballer passed away, which out of all this mess for some reason is what emotionally-speaking did me in the most; I still find myself shedding tears for Kobe sometimes (not that it’s that long ago), reeling at what seems to me a staggering injustice of fate: This man had so much more to give citizens starved for decent role models. I don’t mean US people either, anywhich person walking the planet. There must be many people who can still hear the chant in their mind: Ko-Be! Ko-Be! Ko-Be! Ko-Be! Goddamnit, it happened in this line of time-space, which to me seems like a curse, cumulatively considered. The same bloody line in which Steve Biko, Chris Hani, my cousin’s father and JFK got killed.
Watching Black Mamba’s highlights is painful; except for these lines here and some earlier aborted essays I’m aiming for avoidance. Amen (incidentally: What does this word mean? Replies Apple from the lower right-hand corner: from Hebrew ‘āmēn ‘truth, certainty’, used adverbially as an expression of agreement, and adopted in the Septuagint as a solemn expression of belief or affirmation…)
And then, amid all this mess, MJ suddenly came back. I swear for those ten episodes I could hear the world sigh with relief. Even the bombastic moniker Black Jesus didn’t seem entirely out of place. An athlete, a modern demi-god, who uplifted the masses by virtue of the entertainment value of his physical feats and his captivating off-court persona. Of course, he is a member of a vast entertainment eco-system but what a glorious resplendent nod he was….and once again has become.
Events were unable to sit still for a minute: Climate change protests, KB’s death, COOOOOOROOOOONA, MJ’s televisual resurrection, Black Lives Matter (and ongoing CORONA). Even when only trying to write about the death of a star, I failed but with this perfect storm of events, even the top-hole writers are probably overtaxed.
My excuse remains the same it has been for a while now: the necessity of long-form writing, an excuse I am sure I will return to soon enough if I give a damn of making good on my ambitions.
More generally speaking if one is to tackle the above diversity of themes one is best advised to follow the old hoary logic of one step at a time. Personally speaking, having read tons about the global bug online and in paper, it’s impossible to see what I could possibly profitably add to the debate. I can only point out that for a few weeks, in the name of being a good, responsible citizen [which is valuable and advisable in my line of work, the right thing] I was conscientiously wearing a mask in shops, on public transport and at the gym. Why the hell not? It earned me uncounted reproachful glances and openly hostile stares: How dare you, chump, remind us of our own responsibility?
I’m hard-pressed to understand why my efforts have been flagging lately, that is, I’ve been wearing the mask less often. Plainly put, the sense that everything was pro form increased and maybe some part of me finally wants to follow the dumb logic of the masses: I won’t be the one to get it anyway. People who wear masks have been put down as “virtue signallers”, a new-fangled nullity of a word meaning that these people [who one doesn’t know one bit] put pride over actual virtue. Wrong. People wearing masks, regularly cleaning their hands, staying indoors as much as possible and wearing rubber gloves are, roughly speaking, virtuous. They consider other people’s well-being as well as their own and do the best within their realistic domain of competence to reasonably diminish future suffering. To denigrate that is insane in both senses of the word. The mask-wearers are doing the right thing. Let us imagine that for a moment. It doesn’t take undue effort to follow their commendable example. Same goes for vegetarians, truth be told. Peterson puts it succinctly: Why be virtuous? So you can bear the suffering of life without becoming corrupt.
None of this is all too subjective. What happened in our narrative is: We moved from Lucerna to Turicum in the midst of the pandemic. Meaning, sadly, we tossed out a metric ton of our stuff instead of bringing it to the local Brocky [second-hand] because it was closed. Only later were we apprised that we should’ve just sold it online. The good luck and celerity with which we, this came before the throwing-out-orgy, found an apartment seems improbable in retrospect. Tiziana wrote a grand-total of 1 application, to which the response was immediately positive. Plus the apartment is central and super modern and in a lively neighbourhood and affordable. The first few weeks we didn’t get to enjoy Zurich per se but, on the other hand, it gave us some time to let the apartment sink into us, let its shape and furniture [some of it lovely nouveau, especially the couch, finally comfy] slowly transmogrify into something a home. The English tiles are still as cold as on the first day but now it’s my cold, our cold, the cold comrade of the warm wood parquet in our living room and study. The engulfing couch.
As predicted, I’ve gone on to visit my parents more often now, it having become a ritual return to the parental nest and hometown.
….and I haven’t yet even gotten around to Black Lives Matter. There too, so many insightful texts have been written that I had better rest my case and keyboard. Which anyway is the biggest vice, deficiency, short-coming about not-blogging for such a long time: the wish to recompress one’s life-time of six, seven, eight months into a few, undeserving pages.