Sunday, March 30, 2008
I've always had a feeling I wouldn't grow old. However, my being Norwegian, and everything that entails, I'll probably live to be a bit older than 'most people'. That's what being Norwegian means. But I don't intend on sitting here, waiting for my 92nd birthday.
The most common question I'm asked these days is "What will you become when you grow up?" I usually reply "Smart", hoping that after one year of Psychology, then Development studies, interrupted by one year of Economics "how to make more money....errr.... not my thing), hoping that in one year, I'll at least have a Bachelor Degree in Development Studies, maybe that will make me smart.
In August I'm off to Uganda. I could try to explain to you how I felt when I heard I'd got through to that programme but, well, I'm not a screamer. Although I sometimes wish I was.. Or at least could be.. I need to practice on that.
How am i expected to have all the answers?I have no idea. The one thing I hate the most (...or one of them...) is when people say "oh, you're too young to understand." I'll be the first to admit I'm too young to have all the answers, I'm too young to know why the world is the way it is. It takes experience, and a lot of it, to know anything about anything.
I don't know the answer to every question. I don't know whether there is a god or not. I dont' know what to do in every situation. I don't know everything. Or anything at all.
The only thing I know is I'm willing to learn. The older I get, the more inclined I'll be to tell people who are younger than me "you're too young to know". I'll try my best not to do that, but the older you get, the more aware you are... Of the facts of life. You know it's a hell of a lot more complicated than you ever thought. To tell you the truth, people who are younger than me scare me.
But... What I've learnt is that "you're too young" is not the right answer. When I was 12 I first got online. By 13 I was discussing the facts of life with people around the world - which was the reason I wanted to get online in the first place. I realize I'm too young in some aspects, simply because I haven't lived long enough. But simply telling someone they're too young only means you're not bothered to explain.
The older I get, the more I learn and, perhaps, the more I understand. About the world and the people in it. I'll never know everything. I'll never be old enough.
And I'm sort of OK with that. I know I'll never know everything. Only the idea of "KNOWING EVERYTHING" is ridiculous. But I never want to stop wondering, stop investigating. I want to spend my life digging around (which is what I do best) - I'll forever be a student. A student of life.
Friday, March 28, 2008
A US jury has sentenced a young father to 25 years in prison for burning his infant daughter by stuffing her in a microwave and turning it on for up to 20 seconds.
Just before putting her in the Galveston hotel-room microwave, Mauldin had punched the then two-month-old child and placed her in the room's safe and refrigerator.
Prosecutors said Mauldin hurt his daughter because he was angry that he was in a loveless marriage.
They also said Mauldin had a history of violence and of lying about being mentally ill to get out of trouble.
But defence lawyer Sam Cammack III said Mauldin has been wracked by mental illness since he was 10.
Mauldin claimed he started hallucinating when he was left alone in the hotel room with his daughter, feeling like mud was running up his body and consuming him.
When Ana [the child] was injured, Mauldin and his family had just moved to Galveston, Texas from Warren, Arkansas so he could become a preacher.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
«So, where's the Cannes Film Festival being held this year? »
«I get to go to lots of overseas places... like Canada. »
«I owe a lot to my parents, especially my mother and father. »
Golf pro Greg Norman
«Whenever I watch TV and see those poor starving kids all over the world, I can't help but cry. I mean I'd love to be skinny like that but not with all those flies and death and stuff. »
«The only happy artist is a dead artist, because only then you can't change. After I die, I'll probably come back as a paintbrush. »
«I don't diet. I just don't eat as much as I'd like to. »
«I'm not anorexic. I'm from Texas. Are there people from Texas that are anorexic? I've never heard of one. And that includes me. »
«Smoking kills. If you're killed, you've lost a very important part of your life. »
«What’s Wal-Mart? Do they sell, like wall stuff? »
«I’ve never really wanted to go to Japan. Simply because I don’t like eating fish. And I know that’s very popular out there in Africa.»
«Is this chicken or is this fish? I know it's tuna but it says chicken by the sea. »
«I'm not sure if there was a key event that changed me, but I first had sex when I was 14. »
«I've got taste. It's inbred in me. »
«I think that the film Clueless was very deep. I think it was deep in the way that it was very light. I think lightness has to come from a very deep place if it's true lightness. »
« I think God is a giant vibrator in the sky ... a pulsating force of incredible energy. »
«I think gay marriage is something that should be between a man and a woman. »
«He speaks English, Spanish, and he’s bilingual too. »
Boxing promoter Don King
«I feel my best when I'm happy. »
«All of a sudden you're like the Bin Laden of America. Osama Bin Laden is the only one who knows what I'm going through. »
«Where is East Angular, is it abroad? »
Big Brother contestant Jade Goody
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Today, this guy is the reason
It's five meters tall and was made by Ingeborg (6), Silje (4) and their father Olav Helge Svår. He says they made the balls first, then hoisted them up on top of each other with a tractor.
The eyes are two logs of wood, the mouth a part of an old warning triangle, and the nose is, naturally, a carrot - put in place by the father who was lifted up by his wife and the tractor.
We can see it from our living room window and it does seem to have shrunk a bit the last days - even though we did have -13 degrees Celsius last night.
It has to be said this one is quite a contrast from the little snowmen in Bergen last year.
"At this time, the cause of the fire is unknown. There is little left of the caravan" says a spokesperson for the police. Police will spend the day investigating the scene.
Sunday morning, The National Criminal Investigation Service (KRIPOS) were called in to assist in finding the cause of the fire.
I'm home for Easter, home in this small town in the middle of nowhere, where nothing ever happens. Then at 4:22am Saturday morning, the fire alarm went off. My father being a volunteer fire fighter, got up and got dressed. When the message came through it was at the camping site not far from our house my mother looked out through the kitchen window and saw the flames rising hight into the air.
A caravan was on fire, along with the wooden 'cabin' attached to it. A man was outside when the fire truck pulled up, the fire station being right next door to the caravan park, it didn't take many minutes. There wasn't much to do, it burned fast and furiously while they tried to protect all the caravans close by.
Then they realized there was a woman inside. She'd been right behind her husband as he exited, but she never made it out. Neighbours had to hold him back as he wanted to go back inside, while two of them tried to crawl along the ground, getting away from the smoke. Trying to get inside the caravan, they realized they'd never make it - the flames were too hot. The woman hopefully (and most likely) passed out before the flames got to her.
There was nothing they could do. The neighbours watched while the fire fighters tried to get the fire under control. My dad told me they did what the could, but there wasn't much to do. When they managed to put out the fire and were putting their hoses away, it was so cold the water froze a foot inside the hose in just a couple minutes.
When the smoke cleared and extinguishing work was over, there wasn't much left. They could see the woman among the debris, although being quite unable to see it was a person.
I don't know what the husband saw, how long he was there before they sent him off to the hospital, but imagine having gotten out of a burning construction, realizing there's someone you love left inside. Then watching it burn and know they're dying. Death itself can at times be an ambiguous construct - I don't think of my grandparents of dead, simply because I never saw them that often when they were alive. I haven't seen them, or anyone else, dead - just the coffins being decorated with flowers, then lowered into the ground.
But seeing someone you love as a charred lump, lying in the spot you last saw them, knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that this was a living, breathing person only an hour ago. Seeing a friend reduced to charred bones and burnt flesh. Unrecognizable as themselves, even as a human being. I can only speak for myself, and my usual way of dealing with grief is making rather morbid jokes, but something like that would probably be enough to push me right over the edge, if only for a while, no matter how far from it I usually think I am.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
I've never been particularly fond of poetry. A few lines randomly or thoughtfully put together - then suddenly they're supposed to mean so much more than the words they're composed of. I've never understood it. Then again, maybe I just haven't found the one poem that means more to me than I can explain.
I do like words though. I've always liked words. They just don't have to be poems. Poems are pompous. Words are humble.