What the fuck am I doing?
I may appear Kafka-style neurotic

It appears that my nodes are doing all too well. It gives me three choices: Punch thyself, noding for numbers and daylogs! It appears I have chosen the third.

Yesterday, I came home from school and slept for five hours. After this I had to wake up and do some things. Now, for whatever reason, I was up for the whole night. I slept for around 90 minutes before going to school. This was certainly a mistake, but the power of coffee kept me going for the day. And that's enough of a background.

The main point of my day was the English lesson. It's worth mentioning that English is my second language, and that I natively speak Finnish.

Do I have glossophobia or stage fright? I'm not quite sure. I am not afraid of speaking in public and I wouldn't run away from such a duty, but I don't know if I'm comfortable with it, either. Presenting my own texts, however, makes it different. Is the text adequate? May I seem to be bragging with my knowledge just due to a bad selection of words? I often ruin my whole day by making one bad comment and then somehow worrying over it all day, even if it really wasn't anything bad. Presenting my own text, then, creates a whole new thing to worry about.

For the English class today, we had had to make a poem. You could've had a partner or a small group, but I decided to do it myself - this also left my friend to do it by himself. There was a third one, who most likely decided to do it herself as well. I think we all had nice enough poems - well, mine might've been a bit spiked and a bit of a bleak one(with a mention of guillotines and whatnot).

Oh, the poem itself: we started to write one the last lesson, and I wrote one that was more of a stream of consciousness rant. I scrapped that one and wrote one at about 5 o'clock in the morning. When the lesson, I also scrapped that one and wrote one in the ten minutes we were given to "finish" our poems, most likely assuming we hadn't worked on them on our free time. Sadly I had to leave the poem there*.

And then the first group of three walked up front. Unluckily, I can't quite remember but three other poems than my own: the topic was With You, respectively. I remember both of the single ones: the girl had one that had at least dark undertones, but I'm not quite sure if it was negative or positive in total. My friend had a partly self-referential poem. A pair of my friends had a poem about each other on English lessons. Most of the class found those two funny, including me.

But then came my turn. My hands were already sweating as I stood up, having the piece of paper on one. It was not until I was up front that I noticed how violently I was shaking: although I remembered the beginning of the poem, if not all of it(fresh in my mind), I didn't want to just shake there. Slowly getting it under control, I began to read the lines in a certain voice that implied seriousness, but I wasn't proclaiming it, either. At least I don't think I was.

You spoke
I quote

I got the inspiration for that part from a Les Savy Fav song. Was my voice shaking? I can't remember, but I was nervous, that's for sure. I'm not sure how "serious" the other poems were - that's not to say that they would have been worth less than mine. Even reverse, actually: I don't know if my poem stood up to others.

With you, I think of guillotines
The rest of the stanza is a shadow in my mind.
To be updated if I remember it or see it on the wall.

At the end of it, my mind would've already been feeding on my thoughts about what I sounded like, if I could've thought about anything but continuing reading. I was, accidentally, bragging with vocabulary, even though I wrote the poem in ten minutes without checking the dictionary(I spelled civilized civilisized. But it fits the poem, kind of).

She spoke
I quote

You must think you appear civilisized
I will never understand
How some think of you as a conversationalist

As I walked back to my seat with the complimentary applause, I couldn't help but hear how a half-friend(I don't know - a buddy, or is that too 80s?) uttered the words "high culture" in Finnish. I couldn't help but smile to myself because I knew my poem was pretty fucking far from that. What he was looking for was "sounds cool, means nothing". Okay, it does mean something, but my word choices in the first stanza were a bit bad. Poetry's better when it's not forced. It may even have a rhythm. Is it just me or is that poem becoming worse and worse the more times I read it?

* I wrote what I remembered. The poem itself will probably go up on the class wall without censorship.
Now let's see those downvotes! I'm having very much second thoughts about posting this. I guess I'm just going to do it for now and get it nuked later.

I am surprised by the tangibility of Manchester’s city-feel, a palpable shift in the texture of existence as we step through the train station. It feels like I’d expect it to, sort of hard-edged and slouchingly alert.

Its looks come as more of a surprise, and I realise how little notion I had of what this city would look like: Full of pretty red-brick buildings like Victorian fire stations, as it turns out, with sweeping curves of glass and concrete radiating from the train station. There is an incongruity to everything, a glaring ‘That’ll Do’ attitude to the fitting together of architectures.

It strikes me that perhaps much of the difference between the feelings of different cities can be accounted for by which bits of which decades have got lodged, and continued to resonate there long after they’ve slipped from view in the rest of the world. I’m surprised by how much of the Eighties still seems to linger here; not the plasticky pop-and-leg-warmers Eighties people seem most nostalgic about, but the slightly grimy making-do-in-spite-of-the-Tories Eighties that I mostly remember living in. We gaze into a bookshop with a train-set running in the window, advertising the mini-shop upstairs which still sells Hornby model kits and parts. The set is decorated with cows in all sorts of unlikely locations, which makes me think of Kolkata, but the fact that many of the cows are parachuting makes it seem rather less like an Indian city scene.

Very pleasingly, free buses shuttle around the city centre, and we take one two stops down the road to get to the coach station. Next to us a very small South Asian boy with enormous eyes practises his smile on us enthusiastically. He hasn’t quite got the hang of it yet, but the message gets through.

As we locate our coach stop so we know where we’re going, the heavens open and by the time we jog to a nearby café it is torrential. It only gets harder as we munch on some deli-ish food and refuel on fresh juice, so that by the time we leave there is nothing we can do to keep our selves and our bags from being soaked through on the short run back to the overcrowded bus shelter.

-Arriving in Kolkata

Today, I found myself trying to verbalize and share my plans for the next year. This is an interesting question for me to consider. You see, I plan others lives' for them on a daily basis. I keep them on schedule. I do their banking. Hell, I even buy Christmas presents for and send flowers to their wives. But planning for me, oh no, hell no. I go about my life all willy-nilly, like a pinball, bouncing this way and that. I have followed the flow of events and let them shape my life.

But recently, I've been evaluating my direction in life. I have big plans. These plans require forethought, planning and preparation. I've even started to take some steps to put my plans into action. I've filled out forms, made phone calls and talked with various advisers.

This work; this personal planning of my life, even just the next year is hard. There's so much to consider its overwhelming, both logistically and emotionally. Sometimes, it is hard to not just throw up my hands and let my life take its course.

My ship has a rudder. I finally found it and I'm learning how to use it.

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