‘…well, this side of Paradise! / there’s little comfort in the wise’ – Rupert Brooke
i’m frantically trying to read my books (1 down, 2 to go. Am waiting for The Bell Jar to arrive from thebookdepository so I can annotate it haha) and do up the first visages of my H3 now before I forget I’m actually taking the paper. So This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald is one of the three books I’m analysing and I find that Amory Blaine — the protagonist of said semi-autobiographical novel — is kind of an ‘egotist’, a self-centred asshole. And on that note, I was rather dismayed to find that the character of Amory Blaine is in many ways an embodiment of many of us right here, right now, most poignantly me, haha. It’s quite amazing how he is utterly transcendental. Born to the era of the flappers as popularised by Fitzgerald’s later book The Great Gatsby, the very fundamental values remain in a Herculean flux more than 90 years later. And I’m really dismayed how much I can relate to Amory Blaine — from the need to define yourself from the ordinary & the conventional, the constancy for failure under the guise of wanting to ‘find yourself’ and explore the limitations of the human condition. In summation, we are all twats, really. Man.
this led me to think though, what is the point of being so ruthlessly self-reflective and trapped in your personal world of literature and never-to-be-realised ideals? I am told constantly that I always, always seem to have my head in the clouds as I go about life. this explains why I zone out so easily.. I always feel as though my thoughts are in a different place altogether — a more faded, subtle universe better put together and categorised by mellow pastels and good retro/indie music. But no. I miss out on a lot here. It takes quite a lot for me to ‘live in the moment’, so to say, and this feeling of being truly centred & alive only emerges on a few occasions: when i see the sunset all fleeting but burning in its light, doing economics (where i feel the pain and frustration of being a student hah), running long distances in order to achieve that void (but ironically the void makes me feel very.. poignant), and getting waaay too emotionally attached to things. on the last point, perhaps it is the desire to breakthrough in the form of feeling vivid that lends itself to the miscalculation of expectations… i’m really just choosing my downfall, i realise in retrospect. it is really time to pick myself up again haha.
anyway, a very relatable quote from the book: ‘The very qualities I love you for are the ones that will always make you a failure.‘ Sigh. Poor Amory. my heart ached for him.
On another note, it is finally the end of midyears (yay!) which I hesitate to think about. as per usual, after a bout of exams my room would always get a bit haphazard, so I decided to clean it a little and I’m reallllly happy now!
I realised, after looking at these pictures… my room looks the same as before HAHAHA but I decided to be a bit fancy and bought glass mason jars and cheap $2 vanilla candles from Daiso that are so sickly sweet that it cloaked my bedroom in a mellow scent before I actually lit it. Also colour-coordinated my books according to the colour of their spines so that always makes me happy. I realised a few things though
1. a clothesline of the most arbitrary photos will always look okay; 2. tape is very damaging to a delicately wallpapered surface; 3. don’t buy your glass jars from Typo, get it from Daiso for a price 2.5 times less; 4. my room is basically an unhealthy amalgamation of Ikea and Typo and Daiso; 5. i’m insanely lucky.
Sigh, in half an hour I wrote more for this post then I did for the H3.
also, a very very happy birthday to my love Mavis <3 I think one of the factors that led to such an enduring friendship was that we blogged since pretty long ago and hence the basis of this friendship is to laugh at each other’s blog posts.