A new year, a new decade….and, probably, the same old me.


Well, if, as Williamx said, we will spend the rest of the year doing what we did on New Year’s Eve, I will presumably spend the whole of 2010 watching insufferably boring French surrealist films. God help me.

I did fleetingly consider going out on New Year’s Eve but, hey, why break out of my crazy cat lady mould just for one night? Recently, it has occurred to me that I am spending far too much time on my own – since “MM” left on December 24th (!!!), I have not had any contact with other human beings except for clients! – and I thought to myself that perhaps I should live each day as if it were my last. However, then I thought that, God, I would rather die surrounded by my five cats and two dogs than a bunch of people I don’t really care for who are incapable of making anything other than mind-numbingly boring casual chit-chat.

And so it was that I found myself at home watching Luis Buñuel’s “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie”. “MM” finally added me to his Netflix account a couple of weeks ago (which was actually harder than getting him to marry me! I’m not kidding!), so I’ve been playing this little game with myself. I’ve added so many fucking films to my queue (enough to keep me going until 2012!) that I’ve completely forgotten what’s about to be sent to me. Of course, I could just log into Netflix to check but it seems so much more exciting to be surprised. Last night’s film was absolutely fucking dire, though. God, I fucking hate surrealism. It’s my least favourite art form. I’m a social realist kinda gal. The annoying thing was that I soon realized that I’d seen the film before, or at least parts of it (or maybe I’d blocked out the memory because it was so goddamn awful).

How fitting that I should find myself, on New Year’s Eve, doing something I’d done before, and yet completely forgotten about. Is this how 2010 is going to be?

“MM” left the Midwest today to head back home (should arrive late on Saturday night) and he told me that he misses me so much that his heart hurts a little. Wow! I should be so delighted to hear him say that, but it makes little difference to me whether he returns or stays away forever. I feel quite numb. I should probably be depressed that I’ve had no worthwhile human contact for around ten days, but I’m not. I’m post-depressed. Nothing really seems to matter any more.

I feel bad because I’ve been blogging for around three years now, and I don’t seem to change. It’s like I’m stuck. I’m almost scared to post anything because I imagine people must be thinking how dull and boring I am. The one good thing about “MM” coming back is that he will be driving our (yes, our!) new car. I’ve never owned a car before (fuck, I can’t even remember the last time I even drove one…I passed my test in Scotland over fourteen years ago, and have barely driven a day since…I’ll need lessons again), and I’m hoping that having one here will open my life up a little. Living in an extremely car-centric city, and owning only a bike, my life takes place within, maybe, a three-mile radius. I feel stifled and completely oppressed.

Maybe having a car will make 2010 a good year?

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13 thoughts on “A new year, a new decade….and, probably, the same old me.

  1. Fantastic Forrest January 2, 2010 at 4:16 am Reply

    I, for one, don’t think you’re dull and boring. I do think that you are often sad and frustrated. A car may not be a magic cure all, but it can serve as a little magic carpet and allow you freedom to explore. There’ve been many times I’ve been down, hopped in ours for a little adventure and felt much better after.

    Perhaps you could find a library that has book discussion groups. Then people would have an event that would prompt them to generate something interesting to say. Or you could get involved with a political cause that you care about and go to a place where volunteers congregate. You have the means to get to some stimulating activities now. 🙂

    • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:02 pm Reply

      Hello, Fantastic Forrest. Yes, you’re right that a car won’t be the panacea for all my problems, but I am looking forward to it opening my life up a little. Ever since I moved to this city, I’ve barely worn a dress and heels to go out at night because I have to cycle everywhere. I’m not really a “dress and heels” kinda gal, but I do like to wear nice clothes once in a while, but that has never been possible here. Also, it’s hard to go anywhere new if you have to cycle six miles there and back. Not really a relaxing night out.

      As for book groups and volunteering, I do both of those already! 😉

      • Fantastic Forrest January 2, 2010 at 2:50 pm Reply

        I was in a book group a few years ago, but the level of discourse was pretty simple and none of the people really sparked with me. I’ve since found a gang that is much more thoughtful. Same with volunteering; it took a few tries to connect with people who really made me feel mentally exercised. I just worry about you when you comment that you feel numb. I hope you’ll keep looking for situations and friends to make your life more fun. You have a lot to share with others. What are you reading these days?

        • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:54 pm Reply

          I’m in an African-American literature book group, which is generally quite good. I’m the only white person, and I think people were a bit suspicious of me at first, but it helps, I think, that I’m not a white American. Most of the time the level of discussion is interesting although we have read a couple of very fluffy novels recently, which I did not enjoy very much at all really. However, it was interesting in a way to realize that some people find overly “realist” novels too “depressing”. I’m the exact opposite of that. No matter how shit or stressed I’m feeling, I’d rather read something challenging because at least the intellectual engagement keeps my mind off my problems.

          As for volunteering, I do that three times per week in three different schools, with three different age groups, but I interact mainly with the kids. All the adults disappear once the class is over. I could definitely try harder at making friends here, but I honestly haven’t really met any people I want to try harder for. I’ve definitely found that people don’t go in for meaningful friendships in this town. They’d prefer just to keep things on a surface level. If that’s the case, then I really prefer just hanging out with my pets!

          • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:55 pm Reply

            PS/ I haven’t been reading much at all recently. I’ve been more into watching films (and, embarrassingly, “Lost” on DVD). Shit, I need to get my blog book group idea up and running. I’ll post about that tomorrow maybe.

  2. Hafsa January 2, 2010 at 4:29 am Reply

    Hi,

    Just to say you’re not alone with that ‘rut’ feeling, hopefully 2010 will be an improvement on the last year [ :

    & watching The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie couldn’t be as bad as sleeping and not realising a new year has started.

    Your blog is very entertaining.

    • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:15 pm Reply

      Hello, Hafsa! Thank you for popping by my blog! I found your blog on the NaBloPoMo site, and left a comment for you, too. I must say that I’m very impressed by your writing skills. At one point I was training to be an English teacher (and I will hopefully start that up again soon) and I have read the writing of many people your age, and the vast majority of it is not very good. You, on the other hand, write at a level far beyond your years. I hope my encouragement doesn’t come off as patronizing, by the way! Just want to give some kudos when I feel it is due!

  3. Arekino January 2, 2010 at 6:49 am Reply

    First of all let me wish you a ***Happy New Year***!

    I recently saw “Little Fish” by Rowan Woods and I think that movie qualifies as being of the social realism type. Some very good acting also. Stars well known actors and actresses including Cate Blanchet. Definitely not boring.

    “The Savages” by Tamara Jenkins, idem. (although no Cate)

    Keep posting!

    • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:25 pm Reply

      Happy New Year to you, too, Mijnheer Arekino! (I hope that’s correct. I googled “Mr” in Dutch, and that’s what it came up with). I hope you’ve turned the bloody heating on in your house! Please tell me you have! Well, I’ve added both the films you mentioned to my Netflix queue, but they are at #’s 124 and 125 respectively, so I imagine I’ll be getting around to watching them in 2012! I’m not convinced “Little Fish” would be considered “Social Realism”, though, as it seems there’s too much of a crime/adventure element in it, which doesn’t seem to have anything to do with reflecting social injustive (which, in my opinion, would be what social realism tries to do).

  4. phd in yogurtry January 2, 2010 at 12:17 pm Reply

    Dull and boring? Never. Congrats on the car ownership. A few day trips might be just what the doctor ordered!

    As for Netflix, I’m a new member too. I’ve been having a field day watching the instant-view free movies. I watched one the other night, Smart People (Dennis Quaid, S-J Parker). I thought it would be a sucky romantic comedy, but was happily surprised by the story, the other cast members and the witty, sarcastic dialog. Especially Quaid’s brother. I just loved his character. Played by the brilliant Thomas Haden Church (Jack in Sideways).

    Oh and last night on the tube I happened to catch Management starring Jennifer Anniston and Steven Zahn. Thought that would suck too (passed it up as a freebie on Netflix) but it was surprisingly original. Kinda cute and sappy, if you’re into that. I don’t like surrealist films or books either.

    • petrichoric January 2, 2010 at 3:31 pm Reply

      Hello, PhD in Yogurtry! Yes, I do think having a car will make my life a wee bit better. I will have to learn to drive the damn thing first, though! It’s an automatic, and I’ve only ever driven manual before. I know automatics are supposed to be easier to drive but, well, it’s weird for me not to change the gears.

      As for Netflix, none of those instant-view movies for me, I’m afraid! My computer is too old to handle them and, besides, I kinda like the romance of receiving my DVD in the mail nad then wondering what will turn up next. I also don’t generally like romantic comedies either. I’m such a miserabilist that I’m generally happier watching films in which everybody kills themselves at the end.

  5. justme January 3, 2010 at 5:16 am Reply

    Never dull, and never boring! However I DO understand what you mean about writing the same things and not moving on, because that is exactly how I feel about my blog, and indeed my life.
    I don’t know what the solution is, indeed maybe there isn’t one. I enjoy your blog though.
    Maybe having a car will help. I HAVE driven an automatic….it feels a bit like driving a toy car at a fairground to me, but you do get used to it pretty quickly.
    Wishing you a happy 2010.

    • petrichoric January 4, 2010 at 11:01 am Reply

      In my case, it’s probably a good thing that I won’t have gears to change, as I was such a terrible driver in Scotland that I was always crunching the gears!

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