7:52 am - Wednesday, May. 11, 2005
Watched Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon again last night (I've lost track of how many times I've seen it. I think this might have been the fourth, but I'm not sure).
Afterwards, I felt pretty "stirred up" emotionally–By the love story, by the beautiful scenery, by the action, by the two leading ladies (Michelle Yeoh and Ziyi Zhang are both tremendously appealing, each in their own way). By the dignity, and quiet mastery, of Chow Yun Fat's character (I don't know what it would feel like to have genuine dignity, and thus far haven't managed to "master" anything).
And then it struck me: Real life never leaves me feeling "stirred up" in that way...and I want it to. Obviously, life is not a movie (Particularly not a Chinese martial arts version of Sense and Sensibility), but damn, couldn't it be just a little more like one, instead of such a depressing, boring, pointless slog through the mud?
(Then again, in the movie in question, as beautiful and romantic and exciting as it is, our lovers never get together, and our young heroine throws herself off a mountain; If you were going through this kind of stuff in real life, you'd probably be thinking, "Wow...this really sucks. I sure wish life were more boring".)
At work some time back, I realized that two words describe, in a nutshell, my feelings about both my own life, and the world outside my immediate "sphere": Anxious and overwhelmed.
When I thought that, I was initially thinking about current events, on a scale from "scary" (The freeway shootings in L.A.) to "scarier still" (Nuclear testing in North Korea).
I live in a world where I have to chill myself out by thinking, "All right, I'm probably not going to get picked off on my way to this audition...", or "Okay, Jong Kim What's-His-Face (Or is it Kim Jong What's-His-Face?) probably isn't going to nuke California...", and sometimes I don't know how to deal with that, short of just putting it out of my mind, pretending it doesn't exist (And yes, I know being shot on the freeway or getting nuked by North Korea are relatively remote possibilities, but I think you know what I'm saying here–If you tend towards feeling anxious and overwhelmed, there's a lot in life to feel anxious and overwhelmed about).
Sometimes, it's all...just...too...much.
And it's unfortunate that I feel so anxious and overwhelmed with what's going on in the world since, after all, this is the world I have to live in. I think if I could somehow get past those feelings, I could do a little bit of good in my life, instead of being such a useless load.
But it goes from "unfortunate" to "tragic" when I realize those feelings of being "anxious and overwhelmed" go all the way down the line, top to bottom, from the "global" (Terrorism, the environment, censorship, the war in Iraq, the rise of the religious right, etc) to the "local" (My acting "career", my waning energies, my shaky finances, my "love life", that crazy desire I have to not die alone in the gutter, etc).
I can stick my head in the sand about the world around me and pretend it doesn't exist, because by and large, the world doesn't particularly need me (That was pretty clearly established some time ago).
But sometimes, I feel like I'm doing that in my own life
And I do need me.
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