[PERSONAL] Specks Of Time

5 June 2022

First blog post, hurrah! I’ve written blog posts on things like Tumblr before, but this feels like a step into a new world. Very grateful to have discovered zonelets and roccie which helped me figure out how to set up this little subsection of my website.

I’m writing this first blog post in Microsoft Word. This is mostly because I am rather lazy and don’t want to have to deal with HTML tags while writing out my thoughts. I’d like it to be as stream of consciousness as possible! That’s my favorite style of narration. And even if I have experience with HTML tags, I’d rather write my writings in a word processor and then plug them into wordhtml.com to make my life a bit easier.

I’m honestly writing this to procrastinate on studying for a logic final. I don’t particularly like logical philosophy. It’s not like I hate it per se, but it’s difficult to feel motivated to learn it when I have (very probable) undiagnosed ADHD that makes keeping track of numbers a nightmare and my grades are less than stellar. I’d like to focus more on the semantics and meanings of things rather than the statistics, but it’s a mystery how (some) programming like R code comes relatively easy to me and things like coin flips are just Greek to me. I know that complaining about this is pretty silly though. I got used to the way exams and projects were structured in my last classes, where exams were open-note and relatively open-ended with a lot of essay questions and the projects were about things that I genuinely enjoyed… this is probably one of the few classes I’ve taken this academic year that really did not feel catered to the way I learned, but I know that a big part of life is just doing things that we don’t want to do. Ad infinitum. Until we die. But there’s a lot of good things about life too!

Like the movie I watched with my dormmates last night. Everything Everywhere All at Once. We pirated the movie with my HDMI adapter and my dormmate’s laptop… though actually I should stop calling them my dormmates. I guess just calling people “friend” is a pretty strong word since I never know if it’s mutual. Anyway, it was my second viewing of the film. Thankfully, I did not cry as much the first time as when I viewed it in theaters with my brother and his girlfriend, but god, I still cried. I still cried when I heard that one Waymond line in part 2…

We have to be kind to each other. Especially when we don’t know what’s going on.

That always breaks me. Something about that just underpins my philosophy to people, to relationships, even if honestly it gets pretty fucking hard to be kind sometimes when I’m also a cynical person. But it was funny how much of a mess I was when I heard that again while my friends were pretty much stone-faced the entire scene. Understandably so, the film has many tonal clashes! There are only… a few specks of time where anything in that movie makes sense.

But I think that’s the beauty of it?

A gif of Evelyn Wang from the film Everything Everywhere All at Once where she says, Then I will cherish these few specks of time.

This quote, and "be kind, especially when we don't know what's going on" underscore this entire film for me.

Yeah, it’s maximalist and overwhelming and overstimulating, but the way the pieces fell into place for me the first time I watched the film made me feel like I was watching art unfold on screen.

The way the multiverse represented the many possible realities for Evelyn if she didn’t make the wrong choices, the way the multiverse represented the expectations and ideals that Joy couldn’t live up to, the way the multiverse is tied back to the choice to go with a dorky, naïve-seeming man to America into an unknown future. And how that man, in other universes, would have chosen to do laundry and taxes in an apartment above a failing laundromat. And how the multiverse is tied together through love of others and the small joys we find in life.

The way Jobu chased Evelyn through the multiverses and killed her mother over and over again in different universes. Searching for catharsis, but also searching for a mother that would want her, and not just want the “ideal Joy”, but accept the pain and hurt and mess that are integral to Joy as a person. The way Alpha Waymond chased Evelyn through the multiverses to find the one that could counter their daughter, and Evelyn’s refusal to do what Gong Gong did to her all those years ago when he disowned her. She chose to “be like Joy” and see the nihilism and the depression and the pain of having a mother that doesn’t “want the real you”. The way that we’re all useless alone, but it’s a good thing we aren’t alone.

I stayed up til like, 3 AM talking to my friends about this. They appreciated my breakdown of the film and my feelings on it, though as much as I praise it there’s obviously things I’d do without. (That buttplug fight scene is something I definitely would’ve made shorter, that was cringier the second watch through >_> Same for the sausage finger bits, as much as I appreciated the queer love between two older women).
Ultimately, I don’t think it struck an emotional cord with them as much as it did for me, but I think at least they could appreciate the cinematography and the visual effects of the film as a whole. I guess just being able to see myself in all 3 of the Wang family members really…stuck with me. Seeing it with my brother for the first time probably underscored the experience even more since we’re both still in contact with our mother.

It’s not easy having a mother that doesn’t respect you, and it’s hard when you know that she sees one of you as a favorite (unfortunately I’m the favorite, I hate living with that burden). Having a mother that still sees me as a perfect, innocent child that won’t fail her like my brother and sister did when I’m actually queer as hell…it’s just hard. There’s not really a good way to put that, is there? Haha.

Not sure where I was going with this, it started as a bit of a first blog post and my thoughts on Everything Everywhere All at Once. Then it spiraled into what it feels like to have connections in college and the inevitability that these things will end but I like to think that our time last night meant something, as insignificant as it was in the grand scheme of things.

I hope to stay in touch with my friends in the future. And maybe this meant something to you too as we pass each other along this Internet highway.

See you soon.

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