31 December 2004

Exactly one year ago, I thought it a bright idea in another corner of this apartment to write a last piece of the year rather than to go out and get drunk with other foreign residents. I wrote (and would have written more if I had not decided after all to join the other foreigners for a couple of beers) of plans that had come and gone, and plans yet to come, of literary projects, ideas to make money with … and of the toilet that dripped water into the bucket under the pipe.

It is Friday, 31 December 2004, three minutes after one on a wintery afternoon. The reason why I am starting so early to produce this piece of text is because I am making an appearance tonight at a New Year’s party hosted by my friend N.S. at her residence, and therefore would not be able to sit at my computer around midnight with my fingers solemnly dangling above the keyboard, as I sometimes think it behoves a possessed, or obsessive writer.

This is thus in addition to the list that I have started putting together in my notebook about the things that define who you are or want to be the last text I will produce this year. (Of course there are still a few hours left before I have to go teach my two classes, but I had this crazy idea to drag a broom over the floor here and there, and to brighten up the surfaces where I display ornaments and books. Since this type of activity can be drawn out unnecessarily long with smoke breaks and more notes on definitions and labels of human existence, I reckon my time behind the computer during this particular calendar year … has been counted.)

The year 2004 has been good; and if not always good, mostly conducive for good things.

Next year? Who knows what nobody can know? Earthquakes, tsunamis, disease and war; income generating endeavours and then endeavours that will help you accomplish good results of a different kind; leaking pipes in the bathroom, new computers and unforgettable movies; the best pizza I’ve ever had in my entire life, new theories and more poetry that doesn’t always rhyme; lots of money, little money, laundry, dirty dishes, broken TVs and washing machines on the verge of breaking; CDs that will be listened to over and over, birds chattering outside and bats that are going to wonder how they can break into my kitchen again; bicycle tyres that will go flat at the most inopportune moments, new technological discoveries, medicine that will make people better who thought they were going to die, and long postponed visits to the dentist; coffee with friends, twelve kilograms of fat that are going to disappear almost overnight and expensive American cigarettes that will wait for days or weeks on the counter at the Seven-Eleven for someone else to buy them; days and nights that will be spent in deep contemplation, questions, answers, community, togetherness, love …

May readers and writers, and dentists and engineers and servants and business people, and sisters and brothers and parents and children, and all other family members and friends enjoy a next year that is conducive to a good consciousness, and for mostly good end result of their lives.

May 2005 be a good year. And so also 2006, and 2007, and 2008, and … if you have established a pattern, why mess up a good thing?