Nastiness Diagnosis. Anthropology. Religion. Gender. Justice. A Personal Notepad For the General Public.
For being a foreigner is a sort of lifelong pregnancy — a perpetual wait, a constant burden, a continuous feeling out of sorts. It is an ongoing responsibility, a parenthesis in what had once been ordinary life, only to discover that that previous life has vanished, replaced by something more complicated and demanding. Like pregnancy, being a foreigner is something that elicits the same curiosity from strangers, the same combination of pity and respect. — Jhumpa Lahiri p49-50
But perhaps it only happens to those who are the stragglers in the West. True it could also happen the other way around, when it is cleverly discovered that even, or certainly, that the natives must hold something deft to pity any ignorant newcomers, for whom now the world is turned into an entirely alien settings full of unfamiliar rules and bizarre sorts of logic.
Nevertheless, they are not the same. More people go there because they pity others or they can pity and try not to pity too much on what they are about to see. By contrast, more people leave their land only to find a legitimate place to self-pity while regaining some dignity, who might join the cohort of others-pity maker in the future future.
And perhaps most important of all, we non-Westerners in the West, always think it is OUR fault whenever difficulties and frustrations find us. Conversely, what do a bunch of Westerners say when they have problems in India, China, Burma, Sudan, and Argentina?
What the hell is this country? What’s wrong with the people? What’s wrong with the government?
Right. It is always THEIR fault. And we try so hard to be here, only to have plenty of opportunities to ask ourselves: What’s wrong with ME?
In a little while from now If I’m not feeling any less sour I promise myself to treat myself And visit a nearby tower And climbing to the top will throw myself off In an effort to make it clear to who Ever what it’s like when you’re shattered Left standing in the lurch at a church Where people saying: “My God, that’s tough She’s stood him up” No point in us remaining We may as well go home As I did on my own Alone again, naturally To think that only yesterday I was cheerful, bright and gay Looking forward to well wouldn’t do The role I was about to play But as if to knock me down Reality came around And without so much, as a mere touch Cut me into little pieces Leaving me to doubt Talk about God and His mercy Or if He really does exist Why did He desert me in my hour of need I truly am indeed Alone again, naturally It seems to me that there are more hearts broken in the world that can’t be mended Left unattended What do we do? What do we do? Alone again, naturally Now looking back over the years And whatever else that appears I remember I cried when my father died Never wishing to hide the tears And at sixty-five years old My mother, God rest her soul, Couldn’t understand why the only man She had ever loved had been taken Leaving her to start with a heart so badly broken Despite encouragement from me No words were ever spoken And when she passed away I cried and cried all day Alone again, naturally Alone again, naturally Gilbert O’Sullivan – Alone Again, Naturally