Shooting and cynicism

I know that this was a horrible event and that it will take a few days for the whole story to come out, so I’m not going to make light. However, the cynic in me is going to ask two questions:

1) Who are they going to try and blame for this one? A random heavy metal band or a computer game?

2) How quickly before the parents involved try to sue someone?

As I’ve said on other pages, and other blogs, I’ve liked pretty much every American I’ve met. But their society is a festering heap of shit. They refuse to recognise that their gun culture is to blame for so many incidents like this, and their kneejerk reaction to the loss of a loved one is to wonder how much money they can make from it, and how to shift the responsibility to a major corporation than admit they were fucking awful parents or that – simply – “shit happens, some people are born mentalists”.

Bush can sit there and issue press statements about being “shocked and saddened” but he’s the twunt who kept semi-automatic weapons on the streets by refusing to carry forward an edict left behind by the Clinton administration so he’s partly to blame.

I could rant on more, but I’d likely be repeating myself from other blog posts. Want me to shut up? Then make sure this shit doesn’t happen again. 33 innocents dead is surely enough of a price to pay for someone to start thinking about changing things?

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times

Now, where’s that from again?

2006 was a strange year. I’ve taken the biggest leap of faith of my life and seen eight new countries; I got to see one of my best friends become a dad for the first time – in New Zealand; I learned to dive; I worked with tigers in a Buddhist temple; I jumped out of a plane; I met a gazillion new people and made friends with a lot of them; I taught Vietnamese kids how to make web pages; I rode two elephants; I held a koala, a snake and a lizard for the first time.

And I had my heart broken into so many pieces that I don’t know if it will be the same again.

I guess I learned two things:

1) that people you meet can turn out to be astoundingly kind and generous even to virtual strangers. Stand up and take a bow (in no order) – Mari & Jess, the Luxfords, Mala and Gilbert, the couple who loaned me my rent in Hanoi when my cashcard got “swallowed”, the others who bought me food, Ben in Melbourne, Elaine, Belinda & Albert, my parents, the staff at Hanoi Backpackers’, staff and locals from Inn Crowd, Kim, Chris & Lydia, Anni… My apologies to anyone I’ve forgotten.

2) that the people you think you can trust the most are the ones who can let you down and hurt you more than anyone else. Even when they come with a good reputation, glowing history in being nice to people and friends that you trust to give you an honest opinion of them, don’t expect them not to be capable of lying, cheating and screwing your life up as well – if not better – than some random malicious bastard. It’s even worse when they say they care about you – or even love you – while they’re doing it.

So in the grand scheme of things, this year past has been one of balance. All of the amazing things were pretty much written off and spoiled by one single shitty event which to date still cuts deep – and for which I still haven’t had the slightest hint of an explanation.

Bitter? Fucking right I’m bitter. I have every right to be. Had it not been for this one person I’d not be in Sri Lanka right now. I’d not have SCUBA’d, skydived, cuddled tigers, visited the Taj Mahal, fired an AK-47 or held my best friend’s baby daughter in my arms. I really should owe them a huge debt of gratitude.

Instead I find myself unable to speak to them and sick to the stomach when I think of them. I’ve been depressed for months, confused, lost. This xmas, birthday and new year have been the worst of my life, while I know she’s been partying and living it up without a care in the world, deluding herself that I’m fine. I can’t look at another woman without comparing them – unfavourably in every case – with my ex. This makes it nigh-on impossible to find someone else. Anyone I picked would only be a substitute – second best and discardable should the ex change her mind about being with me. Utterly unfair on any new partner and therefore leaving me in relationship limbo.

Now does everyone understand why I’m such a miserable bastard at the moment?

Sincerly, though, a happy new year to you all. I hope it is for me as well as for you. I do have to get out of this hole and this is as good a point to start as any. No, I don’t have any resolutions. I’ll take every day as it comes, every opportunity as they fly toward me and I recommend you do the same. Keep coming back and enjoying both blogs, and leave me comments and emails.

And don’t get jealous of my travels… get off your arse and do it for yourself! You can always earn more money – but you can never get the wasted time back again.