Saturday, October 22, 2005

Thoughts from a Flushing Starbucks

A week from now I will be in New Mexico for my vacation. I am so looking forward to being around my friend, being in a beautiful state and for getting to sleep in and not have to go to work. It truly will be the perfect vacation.

As my trip gets closer I realize even more how lonely I am in NY. I accept my solitude, but also acknowledge that there is a balance missing in my life. There are days I wish I had someone to go shopping with, or to the movies. I miss sitting in cafes with someone and having the kind of conversations that only seem to take place over coffee. I eat out alone. Go to movies alone. Shop alone. Even coffee is a solitary act for me.

To be honest, I'm not a huge fan of humanity and people in general. It's unpredictable and in my mind, unpredictability=pain. I like things I can understand, things that have reason. People don't generally fall in that category. That's why love is so hard for me to grasp. It has no explaination or formula. The "Why?" never gets answered even in the deepest of feelings. There is a security in the why that I never get from love and in turn I don't trust it.

I suppose in time I will learn to reason less and feel more. Observe less and do more. Think less and love more.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Stagnant Alienation

I’m 26 years old and I’m stagnant. I was speaking with an old friend recently. We hadn’t spoken in a year or so and he asked me “What’s new?”. I sat thinking about the answer and I realized “nothing” was the only answer I could give. The players in my life may have changed, but the situation is the same, I am the same. My faults are the same. My demons are the same. I am so afraid of change that I don’t even change for the better. I’m more afraid of speaking to him a year from now and giving the same answer.

I battle so much of myself it seems. My internal struggle never has an end, it never has a winner. I’m so aware of my faults I don’t need critique or criticism from the world. I already acknowledge the faulty parts of myself. So much so that I glaze over compliments, for the faults speak so loudly that they cover any beauty that might be there. Practicality wins in the end. If I can’t see it, then it doesn’t exist. Every break-up, negative comment or hurtful exchange just reinforces what I already believe about myself. There is no escaping who you are.

I think once of the reasons I’ve always been drawn to photography is that I like the position of “observer”. For me there is more impact in viewing than in feeling. Seeing a couple on the train holding hands cuts me deeper than actually being part of the couple myself. I can only process what I see, not what I feel. I’ve stuck myself on the outside of life purposely and there’s no way in. I don’t feel love unless I can view it. Seeing people kiss on tv makes me cry. Being kissed doesn’t shed any tears. I’ll never be in the inner circle of lovers. I’ll only be there to capture the moments of others.

Alienation. The feeling of being on the outside. I’ve had that feeling long before I picked up my first camera. My inception into this world was a difficult one, one that didn’t come with a lot of answers. I don’t have early baby pictures, a knowledge of where my brown eyes come from, what my ethnicity is, even where I was born. Living a life in a family who loves you, but always feeling like you were a piece of furniture in the house they purchased to fill an empty room. Never being invited to the “cool kids” table in junior high. Moving around and never being able to make friends who know your history, who have seen you through your best and worst phases. That’s where my “snapshot” life comes from. Needing to have something to hold on to when it was gone. Early in life alienation was a product of circumstance. Now it’s self induced. Not much in my life isn’t self induced. I will always be the one behind the camera. Sometimes it’s film, sometimes it’s digital, but if you look in the distance, behind the lens, that’s where you can find me.