Coded gray.

Monday 30 April 2001

Screenshot, The Sims

Love may be blind, but desire is just dumb.
Pic of the day: Screenshot from The Sims, now with House Party expansion pack (notice the jungle style floor and windows) and the guy to the right is a guest. I'll tell you what he's really thinking, since it didn't make it in the picture. He is thinking "backrub!"

Self-betrayal day

Today is the last day for common people to hand in their tax return forms. These forms have been much simplified of late, thanks to information technology; and I for one sent mine over the Internet. But they still retain their old name, which literally translated means "self report". That is the principle of this thing: People are to report their own income and assets. These data are then checked against various other sources, largely by computer these days.

But it so happens that the Norwegian book language word used for report in this connection has a more sinister meaning. The verb "angi" is particularly used about betrayal, the way for instance Judas Iscariot did about Jesus. In New Norwegian, the more neutral word "melding" is used to describe the tax return form. (And no, it does not mean melding, it means report or message, plain and simple.) But to the large majority of Norwegians who use the Danish inspired book language, the tax report is perversely named "self betrayal", or to be generous, turning yourself in. No wonder people growl, despite the fairly moderate taxes here by European standards.

It should not surprise anyone by now that it set me thinking.


In Bhagavad-gita, Arjuna asked his friend Krishna: "What is it that forces a human to sin, as if bewitched?" "It is desire alone, Arjuna. It covers the human soul like dust covers the surface of a mirror." (Translated from memory, sorry, but this was definitely the content of it. I've noticed the similarity to a statement by the christian apostle James, several hundred years later.)

This evening, my digestion is upset. It growls and moves in unexpected ways and times. Almost without doubt, I can thank the dozen of chocolate covered orange jelly filled spongy biscuit-shaped cakes. They tasted quite delicious throughout the day when I ate them, and did not hurt one bit. But now is another matter. And it's not like I did not know that a dozen of those in 3-4 hours was a bit on the up side. (While I'm not a dog, I am more sensitive to chocolate than the average human.) But they tasted sooo good, and perhaps it wouldn't hurt, or at least not much. Yeah, right.

And I'm getting away cheap. Others are risking their very lives just by eating, bingeing on fat until they can hardly move from obesity. I guess it is good that I have a vague feeling of sympathy with them, knowing how hard it is to resist temptation. Of course, my temptations are probably rather moderate in comparison. Not that I would know, having never been anyone except myself.

And let us not get started on alcohol and other pleasure drugs. Because once you get started, self-betrayal easily becomes a way of life. Destroying our own body, mind and soul. It is not a pretty sight, what a human is able to do to himself or herself - without really meaning to.


And if we can cheerfully betray ourselves all alone, we are certainly no safer if we fall in love or lust with the opposite sex. Or even the same sex, for the few so inclined. The lucky guys just miss the bus for following after a woman all the way down the street. But when the romance is in the air, and involves not just the body but soul and spirit too, it is the stuff of thick novels. Or all-night movies. I guess I was just so lucky to read Falkberget's novel on this topic during my most formative teenage years.

I guess the lucky ones are the teen girls who write online journals in small white print on dark background with much bad poetry, and fall in love every few months and then suffer unspeakable teen angst as the relationship crashes, if it ever even becomes a relationship. They may be caught in the carousel of love for a few years, but eventually they have a child and move on with their lives.

Unfortunate indeed are those in whose life there is room for only one true love, and who for some reason by fate are destined to love someone who will never love them back, or who even mock their romantic endeavor. And I don't mean love the way you love yourself. I mean True Love, the one and only all consuming flame that renders your strength of will in ashes to be scattered by the wind. The one for which you betray yourself, against your better judgement. While knowing the futility of it all, you still have to give it all up because your life is nothing without your True Love. Man, that must suck royally.

Not that I have a point here. I just thought y'all wanted to know. :)

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