I used to be obsessed about obsessed people. People with obsessions, who went any lengths to do whatever it was they were obsessed about, or to be near their object of obsession. I had a special predilection for insomniacs and drunks, but not so much drug addicts and self-harmers. The first ones seemed romantic and idealists in their pain, suffering for a purpose, whereas the latter ones always looked pathetic and self-indulgent, lost and unaware of their own reasons, and I could not relate to that. In fact, my obsession with obsessed people comes from the fact that I myself was never obsessed about anything. I have certain interests and passions, but I’ve always seemed to accommodate them around my life, not the opposite. For instance, I LOVE reading and will avoid running any errands or complete any project to finish a good book, and will walk in a busy street holding an open book risking eventually running into a lamppost, and will pretend I’m sick so I can sidestep meaningless conversations and hide in my bedroom with a novel. Likewise, but in a much smaller amount, I LOVE fashion and sometimes will run a massive credit card bill that will take me months to pay in order to have that ridiculously sexy pair of shoes and that stupendously gorgeous dress (not so much these days, as I work with clothes and have them around me all the time as part of the job). And I LOVE my man, and although we shut ourselves off inside a bubble with no friends in the beginning so we could live off nothing but love, these days we're comfy and cosy and confident in our solid eight-year history, choosing instead to meet as many people as a 7-day-week allows. That’s about it really. I love certain musicians, but will go days without any music. Love films and watch repeatedly some of them until I absorb some of the lines by osmosis, but now the chances are that I’d fall asleep in the middle of, say, True Love. In fact, I sleep like a baby. Always have. I’m one of those people that sleep standing up if needed, that needs a solid eight-hour to avoid headaches and tired eyes, that feels lethargic in the middle of the morning, after lunch, at the end of the afternoon, and after dinner. I could never stay awake for anything, and there was a time that even my sex life was suffering because I would fall asleep 30 seconds after I got in bed. Passionate, I mean, obsessed people don’t sleep. They pull all-nighters in front of a computer, smoking cigarettes and drinking cheap alcohol. Which is another thing I can’t do. I do smoke and drink, a glass here and there almost on a daily basis when I’m in London, but I will never become a hard smoker and drinker because I am asthmatic and hate being hangover. Truly hate. I feel like killing myself when I have one, and I always regret and curse and stay away from any sort of alcohol for several days. That rule, in fact, applies to almost anything in my life. I’ll be bad, but just a little. Just a little bad. Just enough so I can maintain the edge, the sense of danger, to spice things up – but I’d never completely fuck up. I think I did sometimes when I was still growing up, but the guilt and the shame and the pain were too intense for my petite frame. I couldn’t bear to repeat major fuck-ups, to keep hitting my head in the wall like an amnesiac retard. I’ve always cared too much about what other people think to let them see me was a thickheaded fool (isn’t it all the people who repeatedly fuck up?). All that a result of that inner complex of inferiority, a characteristic deeply infused in my still-to-be-formed personality as a small child (but that’s material for another long post.) I could never allow myself to be obsessed because I could never allow myself to be a nuisance to others. Isn’t it all obsessed fuck-ups, insomniacs, drunks, drug addicts and self-harmers a burden to others? They are, which I discovered only after living in London. My heroes, all artists, all looked good on paper. I craved their passion. I wanted to give my blood and flesh and soul and hours of sleep to express myself too, I wanted to understand what it was to go hungry and desperate and physically sick because those were simply consequences of being passionate about something or someone. I wanted NOT to be afraid for once of those consequences, of losing everything, of being hurt. How divinely artistic and exquisitely appealing that pain seemed to me. Could I please be one of them? I couldn’t. Something, a barrier, a fence, a wall, never allowed me to go the extra mile for self-expression. Instead, the only length I ever managed to go leaded to a stupid dump called Depression (in fact, I have TONS to say about depressed people, material for another long post too).
Then, gradually, I met some of my heroes. And all I can say now is that I felt a mixture of surprise, disappointment and relief, both intertwined and tangled but absolutely comprehensible to my confused mind. My objects of obsessions, the obsessed, were flawed. Not in the romantic sense I imagined them to be; they were flawed in all the wrong ways. Egocentric, repetitive, selfish, self-indulgent, exhaustingly self-obsessed, and not so obsessed about their own art. They were marvellously human. Imagine the dimensions of the disappointment in my over-imaginative, insecure little head. Now multiply this by 100 and you have a glimpse of the dimensions of my relief. My heroes, the people that emulated my ideals, stepped down from the pedestals I’ve put them in and joined the world of humans. My world.
So, today, gradually and then suddenly, I stopped becoming obsessed about the obsessed. I was right, all along. While I remain intrigued by those who are not afraid to make a fool of themselves or loose everything, my new obsessions are the hard-workers. Those who, instead of just burdening everyone around them with their immense egos, simply shut themselves up and work hard, so hard they are nearly consumed by their own idea of perfection. Again, something I’d probably never be.