Saturday, 25 January 2014

English Fiction

Well, have you ever had to try and find the funny in a non-funny situation? Like a break-up or a divorce or a death of a pet? No? That’s only human. If someone close to you dies I’ll wholeheartedly admit nothing is funny about that. But what if somebody told you, let’s say the teacher of your fictional English class inside your head, that you now have to write a 250 word descriptive story seeing the funny side of things. I know you may want to punch them in them nose, but this teacher is fictional and for some subconscious reason you have to complete their assignment. 

Dreams are always a lucid way to tap into negative emotions. Like the dream of being shot and seeing yourself slowly dying from a loss of blood on the floor. Or, falling without impact hones in on an acute terror. Or, dreams of extreme violence committed by oneself. How about dreams of helplessness, such as seeing something odd like a demon or an ex or Lady Gaga and having no power to do anything about the situation. In some ways dreams offer your psyche an outlet because for once you’re at a loss of control - of what to think or even do. In dreams you’re in moral free-fall. 

You get to see life play itself out and take all sorts of odd directions, like to lead a dinosaur on a leash out of the London Underground system via escalator, or to see Paganism flourish as the main religion of choice in school children. Dreams are funny. Also, if something awful happens in a dream like you have shot a few people, you don’t seem to be racked with the same emotional guilt you get when your conscious. If the brain believes that this is real (because often it can’t distinguish that you’re in a dream state) then why does your moral sensors not go off and make you incapacitated from your actions. Somehow in dreams, your actions, your feelings and your judgments are dissociated from one another - making weird things possible. Fucking a cat for one, you could fuck a cat in a dream and not feel like you’ve done something wrong but something strange. That’s the sort of disassociation that dreams offer. On one hand they free you, on the other hand they scare you.

What’s funny about a break-up is that you have this empty time. Time you used to spend on the other person now has to be reallocated to other tasks, and things you were putting off can finally take precedent like cleaning your room or going to the bank. You feel less hungry because when people suffer emotional loss or grief they have less energy in them requiring them to feel satiated, I guess you’d call it emptiness, and when you feel empty you don’t really want to get full-up either. That would appear contradictory. You fill up silence by putting on Radio 4 and listening to the dramas of the outside world rather than of your inner soul, and creepily you look forward to the shoddy recordings of the Archers on Sunday. You always want to take a cigarette break which turns your insides yellow, yet benefacting you with that sparse amount of time living in the outdoors, even if it’s raining. Everything sucks a bit but is also tinged with a melancholic beauty that only people close to death, or those rejected by some institution or dismissed by a lover can pitiably reflect upon. Life is a hoot, especially when life is being a bit pathetic.