You’re the worst : Season 5 Episode 12.

“Don’t marry her. Don’t do it” he said swinging unexpectedly in the opposite direction of the flow of the evening. I heard the words, i saw his lips moving. Nothing in the world could have prepared me for those words but here they were.

“Just because you love each other doesn’t mean your good for each other. Don’t do it.” I stared with my eyes wide open in utter disbelief.

“You’re wrong. Gretchen and I are good together. we are in a good place. we are finally honest with each other. Everything is fine.”

“I already spoke to the caterer and the venue. They have agreed to return 50% of your deposit. Take the money and we can leave tonight. Anywhere really. Go wherever you want to go but don’t do this. I cannot watch you two do this to each other again” he continued showing no intent on stopping.

“Get out.” i said, completed red-faced, shaking in anger and outrage. “I never want to see you again. You’re done.”

“You’ll destroy each other Jimmy..”

“There is no other way i’d rather go..”

He stared at me, tears rolling down his face. He finished his vodka martini in one giant swig and that’s the last time i ever saw him.

Happy high

My life these days is straight from the pages of a Murakami novel. Things just happen for some unexplained reason and I’m an innocent bystander watching it all unfold as things go from bad to worse.

Be like water they say. Submit to your surroundings. I’ve lost that fire inside me. That drive. That passion. I am now a soulless existence watching each day go by. I seek nothing. Not happiness, not love, not joy. Nothing. My life is a flatline right now. I want nothing and I crave nothing. I continue to live. I do my work. I talk to people. But there is no life inside me.

A few days ago I was hoisted up a crane by a system of ropes and pulleys. Four men pulled my weight up some 30 feet in the air where I dangled for half an hour trying to get something done. I remember looking down. I remember looking at those men. I remember looking at that rope holding me. I remember realising that this rope meant the difference between life and death. Should it give way, I would be splattered all over the main deck. I remember thinking it’s not a good way to go but if it happened, it wouldn’t be the worst thing. I remember thinking I had lived a full life. I had seen what life had to offer and if this was my way to go then so be it. Painful if it may be. I remember looking at the setting sun over the Nigerian coastline and thinking if this was the last thing I’ll ever see. I was okay if I had to go. For no particular reason.

That’s not because I am sad or depressed about anything. I have everything I want in life. I have everyone I want in life. But it’s all fake. Happiness is fake. A purpose is fake. We are a fake pointless existence. I don’t know who designed us and why we are here but everything about us is fake. Everything we feel is a chemical reaction inside our body. Everything that gives us happiness is triggered by our brains. Happiness is within but only a few things trigger these hormones. And it’s like having a drink. Eventually the effect fades away and you crave another one. Everything from holding hands to running. Everything that makes you happy is fake. The same way everything that makes you sad is fake. Your own body feels sad when it can’t trigger these hormones. That’s why you take up drinking and promiscuity. A temporary fix. A shot. I used to run for two years and then I had to stop because of an injury. I went through a withdrawal. They call it a runners high. And they compare it to a cocaine addiction. The withdrawal was brutal. I was irritated. I was angry. I fought with everyone. I threw things. Two weeks this lasted. And then I was fine. Like nothing had happened. My own mind turning my body into a wreck because I stopped feeding it the feel good hormones.

So what is real? How are we any different from a machine that has been programmed? You might say we have consciousness. But what is that? Even our thoughts are driven by hormones. It’s all a big chase for getting high. The number of celebrities who end up as drug abusers and finally end up in a rehab is astonishing. Why is that? They have everything. Money, fame, fortune and fans who throw love at them from around the world. But that isn’t the answer to happiness. Jim Carey once said “May you all be as successful as your heart desires so that you realise that it isn’t the answer to finding happiness”. Happiness is dynamic. One that that makes you happy now may not make you happy later. One person who makes you happy now may drive you crazy later. Nothing is constant. Yes the regular ones preprogrammed are always there. Like being in a relationship, having a sense of belonging, physical contact with people etc.

So what’s real? If none of our feelings are real and are a mere bio-chemical reaction then true happiness doesn’t exist. Nothing exists. Nothing is real. And if nothing is real then if I have to fall from 30 feet today or die an old man aged 90, what bloody difference does it make?

Only a matter of time.

He had turned soft. He felt it. He could feel it inside him. He preferred being relaxed now. After all he was getting older. Not that old to feel physically old but old enough to realise that emotions need to be kept in check and anger doesn’t always solve everything. The people around him however, weren’t making things easier.

There was a time when people had nicknamed him “ghost rider” because his head was always on fire. He fought with every one and didn’t give a damn. Even while being a junior, people knew not to mess with him. He was relaxed now. More diplomatic. The job demanded such actions from him. But those around him felt no such compulsion. They tested him every day. Every single day. He returned home feeling rather upset at the turn of events and how they were easily avoidable. He could see a path where it was just easier and simpler to do things but others around him always deviated from said path. They chose to make things worse each time.

He knew he could fight back. He knew all it would take is one trigger to erupt completely. He knew there was a point where he couldn’t take it anymore and had to give it back in return. He knew he could take everyone down in one stroke. But soon after such actions came regret. And he was wise enough to realise that. But such things are unpredictable. He knew it was only a matter of time before he erupted. White hot rage and blinding anger. All he had to do was wait and see. It was only a matter of time.

Another day, another dollar.

He returned home late. Again. Another one of those nights. One of those never ending nights. Lately that’s all he was living. Days that fuse into nights and nights that refuse to end. The hands of the clock might as well have not been there at all. What difference does it make? Life goes by and all you do is wonder where it all went. He did exactly that. Sat at the edge of the bed, tie loosened around his neck. Shoes off but it would take another burst of energy to take the socks off. Head hung low, he wondered how he ended up here. How this was his life now. How this was his new normal. He thought about the last time he had fun. The last time he laughed. The last time he knew what time it was.

He lay back, lost in his thoughts. They swept over him gently like a river meandering through plains. He didn’t drown in them. Instead they took him places. And he let them. He surrendered to his thoughts. This was the only time he could call his own. All the other hours of the day belonged to someone else. Someone else owned a portion of his life. Every day. Every damn day. Relentless thankless work for faceless people getting richer with every bead of sweat pouring out of your skin

He drifted off and never bothered to come back to the real world. He went wherever his mind took him. His eyes stayed open, staring at the ceiling, looking but not really seeing anything. The tie still dangled from his neck. The socks stayed on. The shirt and trousers got crushed under his weight but he didn’t care anymore.

Next thing he knew it was his alarm going off. It was morning again. Another day. “Another day, another dollar”, he thought to himself. Got back on his feet to endure another insufferable day.

Thumping heart.

Every second I feel the thumping heart of my ship. A shudder that runs through nail the next one. A beating heart inside a body. She protects us and comforts us. She keeps us safe. And in return we keep her healthy. But my ship isn’t well. Every few hours that thumping stops. We bring her back to life each time but she just doesn’t get better. We don’t know what’s wrong with her. Theories and speculations, emails being sent and received. The thumping heart provides a sense of relief. That’s everything is okay. Everything is how it should be. And then briefly it stops. There’s an alarm and a lot of noise. A flatline. We jolt it back to life as soon as we can and get going again.

It’s sad. It breaks my heart. We can’t fix her. We don’t know what’s wrong with her. She was fine when I left her a few months ago. I went home and came back to a sick ship. She clearly isn’t doing well. All signs suggest that something is wrong. And we just don’t know what it is. We have her under constant surveillance. Lot of pressure, lot of sleepless nights and a lot of sadness. I hope we can fix her. I hope she’s able to run free again. We will be in port in a week. Hopefully we will know more by then. Right now we just resuscitate her and get her running again.

I just want her to be okay again. I’m doing the best I can. I’ve even started praying. The worst is not knowing what’s wrong with her. Because then we could form a plan and do something about it. But this makes no sense at all. It shouldn’t be happening but it is. It’s happening every few hours. I just want her to get better. Please, get better.

A cold winter night.

It was like being a part of something. Something was going on and I was standing right in the middle of it. There was an air of purpose. So many people had gathered for some reason. But no one spoke. No one looked at each other. Hoods up, drinks in their hands, everyone turned to one direction swaying gently with the beats. Nodding in silence, taking it all in. Some more extravagant than others. But everyone stood in silence watching the man on stage do his thing. One hand gets empty and the other gets filled with another ice cold beverage on a cold night. Knocking back sorrows, numbing thoughts and just letting go, surrendering to the surroundings.

The set gets done, cheers all around. The lights come on, so do the phones. The artist says his goodbye, the crowd disperses. On to the next..

Rants : 23rd January 2019

To think that I’ve been doing this for so long is weird. To realise that I haven’t quite mastered my emotions yet is even weirder. It’s the same story every time. This time around, it wasn’t any different.

We are powerless in front of our emotions. If there is something you don’t want to do, there’s not a damn thing you can do to make you want to do it. If you don’t like where you are then you won’t like being there at any point. Or maybe you will later. When your emotions have swayed back again. I get it from my mom. She gets really emotional. And that’s the thing, I see it. I see that I got this trait from her. But I can’t do anything to change that at all. My brother on the other hand, or let’s say most people are rock solid when it comes to this stuff.

For me it’s not a particular thing or a person or a place that I will miss. It’s never that. It’s just feeling the way I felt earlier at home. Without a care in the world. And overnight that changes and you’re thrown into this whirlwind of diesel and machines and fire. You’re supposed to come over and take charge. This time I dragged my feet to my ship. I wasn’t done being at home. I had not done enough. I wanted more time. Just for doing some more of what I usually do. I get yanked out of my life with one pull and I’m in another world. A world where it is noisy, hot, where bosses make you miserable and you’re supposed to take all this on the chin. I climbed the ladder quite high but I still need to go higher.

Question is why? Why do I do this? It is always hard at first but it gets better. But if today is a reminder of anything, it is that bad shit can happen at any time. Without even realising what’s going on. It’s the same story everywhere though. Every job, every boss, every company, every day. Same old story.

The journey has started. But a lot more unknown obstacles lay ahead. Also, falling sick one day before leaving was a bad deal. One week is almost done here. A lot more to go. Oh and the food here is crap this time. So there’s that also. Anyway, see you in the next rant. Later.