La 'Positive Attitude' des Paresseuses

This week a lot of stuff happened but nothing happened at the same time.In many ways, it felt like a scene I've already lived, already wtinessed, already watched from outside myself and felt alongside of me, burdened by every awful and beautiful emotion known to man in the process. It's all a bit much to digest. And I find I keep thinking about THE END.

For those of you who don't know, I've been writing a book about a man who fails to kills himself. No, he doesn't throw himself out of a window. He'd never be that brave. And while some events/places may ressemble my past, they say to write what you know and this isn't me here at all and it's entirely fictional and hey, I'm much more used to telling the truth than being able to make up whatever ending I'd like to.

As a teenager, the boy takes a pile of pills with some vodka and feels like an idiot the next day when he wakes up and realizes, he can't even get suicide right. He leaves for University the following autumn and after a humbling experience, decides to try love instead. He really loves. But all that love, it gets mixed up in a pile of firsts and fears and he jilts his bride at the altar, gets in his car and just drives until he can't anymore. He eventually finds himself pulling over in the middle of nowhere when his car breaks down, closes his eyes and goes to sleep.

He recalls a dream he had as a child several times before. A house. A strange ceremony of death and spirituality that he still cannot understand in his adulthood. He remembers cloaked men tearing off their faces one by one in a hall of mirrors. He sees claws in the place of hands and the head of an owl where the head of man should be. When he looks in the mirror, he sees that he too is exactly the same.

He awakes the following morning to a tap on the window, a farmer up early to check his cows, asking if he needs a hand with the car. The nice family takes him in, gives him work and the quiet he needs to figure out his life, they make him one of the family. But the man can't help himself. His needs and desires grow larger than he and the man gets caught jerking off to a picture of the farmer's daughter in her room while she's at college. He is asked to leave and isn't particularly troubled about his moral capacities.

He moves to Toronto where he tries to reconstruct his life but makes a bigger mess of things than he means to. Works in a crapy old pub on King St. East and befriends all sorts of people he never imagined himself knowing. There are a lot of drunken nights and a lot of free-flowing drugs and girls and when he is asked for help by two people in the same situation, one on the 'good' side, one on the 'bad' side, he is torn. His hesitation leads him to quit and makes him ponder where his sense has gone to. He hasn't a clue what to do now. His ex-wife wants nothing to do with him. The only girl that he's had even slight feelings for since has already left him for the bus boy at the bar. He knows it's time to move on but to what?

He travels to Paris, rents a small apartment in the 11th and tries to figure out his next move. He meets another woman. She is terrified of love. She is worried that it will swallow her up again, like it did the last time when she let someone in and he cheated and lied and broke her heart in two. Walking around the Bastille Market on a Sunday afternoon – when she stands him up for their date - he notices that she is indeed there and following him, watching his every move but saying nothing. He confronts her and for the first time in a long time, he really feels as though he's getting to know somebody. He wants to love her. She is beautiful and interesting and makes him laugh. They marry in Paris the following Februrary and start a life there and a family soon after. Life couldn't be better and he is finally able to shed his guilt and confusion over his last relationship. They have a son. For the first time, he is happy. He sees the world for everything he had always hoped he would see it for. There is magic again and light until one morning, on the 27th day of his 27th month, his son suffers from a heart complication and dies in his arms.

The couple try to recover from the tragedy but cannot. They are devestated. Each one spending sobering night after night facing the bleakness of it all. One night, they finally have a powerful connection and agree to make it work but by dawn, she has packed her bags and left him. Alone again.

He has nothing left. No reason to live.

The man, who cannot face another moment of so-called living goes for a final walk. An all-day stroll through Paris to see its beauty and filth walk alongside one another and to remember. When the Pont des Arts finally empties, he will hang himself from it. It will be done. Parisians would like the statement. It would be a good death.

He visits one last person before he ready to go. A guard he used to smoke hash with in front of the Mazzarine Library who asks him to come insisde and read while he does his rounds, then he will join him for a cigarette.  While he's in the library, the man discovers a story that is almost identical to his. The similarities are too strange: the women's names are almost the same, the events scarily akin . He flips through the pages and can't help but see something beautiful in the fact that his tale makes for such an interesting one. A tragedy but a great read.  He wonders whether he lives or dies. Even his strange dream is in there.  How bizarre. Was it a strange coincidence or a sign? That depends on the ending...

He flips to the last page and sees the end of his tale. He smiles. It was a good ending. A really good ending.

He leaves the library and stands on the empty pont des arts. Paris is so beautiful before the break of day. After the drunks have fallen over and the shops are closed and the last kebabs and after hours are locked up. The Eiffel Tower is but a shadow in the distance and only the occasional taxi disturbs the perfect silence. The cobblestone roads, in all their quiet glory act as a sounding board as the river licks its banks. The air feels fresher. He understands now. He gets it. He wants to jump into the Seine and celebrate. He wants to live! He can't remember ever feeling this alive.

Just then, an owl perches on the bridge beside him. The owl speaks but of course he cannot understand him, they are not real words. The owl's eyes pierce through him and then the animal bends over and pecks at the man's toes until he falls from the bridge to his death; hanging himself unconscious with his own rope before drowning face down in the filthy Seine.

WHAT? You just told us the end? Yeah, so?  It's such a small part of the story.

So, this week, my neighbour jumped out of the window and survived. The last guy I was in love with had a baby with someone else. My boyfriend's psychotic ex girlfriend called AGAIN, fucking up my work week AGAIN. I confronted her, she acted like a spoiled maniac and said really hurtful things and told me I won, as though it were a competition. Thanks to her, my boyfriend and I have spent the weekend on constant replays of 'the big talk' because that's what happens when someone interferes too much in your life. I'm on stress overload. How much suffering can a person handle before they melt down? When does the good part start? Please God, tell me when the good part starts! 

I have a plane ticket leaving for the 28th of December that I don't know what to do with. I could stay here and ruin my chances of ever becoming legal in this country and let go on the love of my life forever aka, play it out til it's good & done. I could go back to Toronto but I feel like like that ship has sailed. I could go to the countryside but I'm not sure retreating to the middle of nowhere at this point is a very productive move either or I could go somewhere else and just pretend like there is no beginning and no end. Anybody know how to get to Never Never Land by any chance? I've been watching an awful lot of LOST re-runs to get myself in the mood but as usual, I keep having nightmares about monsters and the black smoke.

The point of this story is - there are no happy endings in life. No story's a good one anyway until it's done and the main characters aren't supposed to know what happens before the author tells them. Snooping is dangerous.

Eventually you've got to stop trying to write pages and focus on letting the story write itself. When I can't find anymore words for feelings, it's because there aren't words left to describe how I'm going to miss this if it's gone. Still, with everything going on, I'm trying my best to keep a positive attitude.

I bought this ridiculous book at the FNAC about things to do to STAY positive. It's really silly and reminds me of a really long Cosmo article. Perfect bathroom reading. It's called La positive attitude des parasseuses and reccommends all the things I'm already doing to deal: magnesium in high doses, less coffee, more sports and ample meditation. I have the warm baths and the comfort food and I'm trying not to drink either (it's not easy when I remember how all-too easy it is to drown your troubles away in a couple of gin and tonics and some basement bar with loud music). The rest of the book basically breaks down the important tenets: Self-confidence (check...fine), Personal Development (c'mon, I actually caved and bought a self help book, I'd say I'm participating here too), Worring about ME (I think I've had my dose of this), Tears are good for you (good thing because I've had an abundancy), Moral or WILL in English (I've still got a bit, not to worry), Orgasm (check) Heaven (this one, i seriously don't get. It suggests I imagine the wonders of Heaven...seriously, France? To give you an idea of the grand sophistication of this book, it refers to Heaven as a magic country where allt he shops are open on Sundays where hairstylists never mess up their haircuts and where silver grows on trees – they MAY simply be referring to Canada but I cannot be certain...) Then they warn you of the two greatest enemies of man:


A good friend this week told me to keep my head up. I think I'm going to keep it up. Already, I'm going to buy some Christmas lights today for my mini tree, do a couple good deeds and throw a clothing swap dinner party. That ought to keep me busy and bubbly for a couple of days.

Maybe it's because of the defenestratror, maybe it's because Ive had so many beatiful messages from good friends lately, maybe it's the simple fact of being in a place where you have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA WHAT TO DO but, I'm writing again. After a big long break of paralysis, I'm writing again and I'm glad. And I am going to boil it all down to the lobotomy that occurred when my neighbour jumped ou the window for me to find her, changing the order of the universe and putting things back into perspective. After all, we can't obsess over the end. It may make things a Hell of a lot more clear but there's a whole lot more to the story than just the end.  And right now, I'm going to concentrate on why I came to Paris in the first place - to write.

I'm going to take a little bit of everybody's advice this week.  I'm going to forgive.  I'm going to ignore.  I'm going to write more and worry less.  I'm going to keep busy and positive.  I am going to try to stop worrying about the END and start succumbing to the fact that just like everyone else, I'll just have to wait and see.  Oh, and I'm going to assume that the end really only is a very small part of the story and that all the tragedy makes a lot more sense after you've skipped ahead and read the last pages.  It'll be a good ending.  It'll be a very good ending.

What's going to happen next?

****Eventually she dies too. But that is only a small part of the story. ****

No comments:

Post a Comment