Mechanics of denial: Identity

On a good day, I am a nihilist.
On a bad day, I am a mess.
The rest of the time, I am a monk.

I have often asked myself what it is about identity that had and still has me avoiding the subject, or just altogether disregarding it.  Less than two years ago I embraced on my next project. It did not embrace me. While the novel written in 2004 remains mostly unedited, I tackled the next one. I have several story projects that I revisit on occasions and that are awaiting the right kick to be written, these are the stories that I want to write for some reason that can only be called obsession. The 2005 story project is however about identity and I have gone through a lot of drafts that I quickly  discard, am unhappy with, or just turn my guts inside out. When my neighbour the other day asked if it is flowing, I answered that the lake was frozen.

The last few weeks have been a bit rougher than I had expected them to be, and I feel that I am walking on rather thin ice. I need to walk on thin ice every once in a while. I need a jerk, a push, a nudge. I can be just as content sitting out at the beach listening to the waves break at night or sitting in the garden smoking a cigar, doing nothing or watching the coming and going of the birds living their life.

Yesterday was a day of miracles, and today was a day of crashing. I had a few simple goals set for yesterday: to vote, to make a call to Copenhagen and to cook for my guests in the evening.

I voted and then found myself talking about italian politics on the phone while walking in the rain from a swiss polling place. Besides politics we discussed my cooking plans and I got excellent pointers on how to bake tandoori chicken. I got to read a bit, enjoy the daylight, and then bumped into a neighbour in the cellar. We ended up having some green tea and discussing literature and a few infamous books. After two hours of indian cookery and serious multitasking, my friends arrived and we had a few hours of animated discussion that included sacrificing three bottles in a more or less ritualistic fashion.

On a good day, I am a nihilist.

On those days of being a nihilist, I am very sure of my identity.

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