Friday, 4 July 2014

the blog turned 7 and I didn't realize it

I still remember the first time I consciously and slightly panicked told my first white lie.

Nothing too big, just like all the other small white lies of my life, I told them to not disappoint the people in front of me.
More than lies, there are sarcastic statements chopped in the middle.
"Yeah, that '80s retro style make up suits you perfectly" (are you applying for a position in the circus?)
"No, don't worry, if you need to leave early the office, just go, no problem" (yeah, just go: we've got tons of work, but your presence and intellect are not going to do anything to scale it down anyway).

So, sitting there with my blue smock, feet not really touching the ground, first-grade primary school little me froze in shock and fear when the teacher asked the question "What do you want to do when you've grown up?"
She started from the front of class, I was sitting towards the end: I had an head start to think about something, anything really. What do I want to do?!? What the hell, teacher? I thought that we were here to learn how to spell "elephant" and "apple" and count beans and peas.
You're asking me to go from coloring within the lines (task I'm still not able to perform correctly nowadays) to a long-term plan commitment. Isn't there anything in between you could have asked me instead?
It looked there was no way out: kids were answering, getting closer and closer to my turn.
Ballerina, pilot, doctor, journalist, football player...
Nowadays I believe most of them were lying. Probably the only one with some notion about his future was Domenico: his father was a plumber and he was raised up knowing he was going to do the same job and work with his father. "I'm going to be a plumber", he stated. And so he did.

"Teacher, I'm going to become a teacher", I blurted out and before I even realized what I said, the  teacher had moved on.
I felt a little bit bad. And cheated. I wish I could tell the truth, but even back then I was scared of the reaction of the others.
If I could turn back time and be my young self again I would be honest: "Look, honestly, I got no clue what I want to do. Right now the thing I like the best is playing with my Smurfs collection and building Lego houses where my fiammiferini and exogini can live together happily ever after."
I was 6 and thinking beyond the coming Sunday was as an impossible task, yet I was asked to go beyond my limits.

Future looked like a black hole: what I was going to do, how I was going to turn out, what was going to be my life were questions that looked so complicated I could barely comprehend, let alone answer them.

If I could turn back time, I wonder what the reaction of my teacher would have been when I told her: "Oh, I think I'm not going to stick around any specific course my life will take and after a jump from accountancy to Chinese literature, I will find out that what I'm really good at is software testing, especially in the telco industry".
My ability to read in the future hasn't improved much since: every time I did, it didn't work; every time I planned it, I fucked it up big time. But I've learnt to enjoy this little exercise in mindful time-wasting. 
In few days I will be 36. When I was 6 I couldn't imagine life at 36, partially because I could only count up to 30, but also because of what I wrote some lines ago.
Some days ago I realized this blog had a birthday I didn't celebrate, as it turned 7 years old last month: I've been writing on and off, bad and less bad on this blog for 7 years! That's the longest commitment I ever maintained in my life because I wanted to and not because I had to (as with my mortgage).

In few days I will also celebrate my birthday, as I'm turning 36 on Sunday. When I was 6 ,I couldn't imagine life at 36, partially because I could only count up to 30, but also because of what I wrote some lines ago.
If I look ahead, I don't know what the future has in store for me, I don't really care either, I prefer the surprise. 
And when I question myself about the future of this blog, I feel like I'm back in primary school, trying to make up  something to tell to my teacher. But that's a lie. I don't know what the future has in store for my blog either: it was born as a small diary from abroad. It has become a weird collection of posts in 2 languages plus a dialect, about different topics with no apparent relation other than the fact I typed them.
In the past months I've been thinking a lot about what to do with it: I've been toying with the idea of stopping writing, but then again I also had moments where I wrote too much.
I deleted more posts than what I posted, I tried to understand what to do with it. 

The blog, just like me, have been shuffling up and down: I'm growing restless again, frustrated at the lack of changes, irritated at the city I live in, at people, at life in general.
I realized to my horror that, as much as I hate being taken for granted, I did just the same for my blog. But the blog is part of me and so it feels as if I took myself for granted too.
I was doing to the blog and by reflex to myself too the thing I loathe the most, the one I've found myself victim of over and over in the past few years.

If I look ahead of me, I don't know whether this blog will still be active or not, I'm not sure I'll still be in Milan or that impulse of grabbing the suitcase will have won again. 
I don't want to know where I will be in 3 years and this blog deserves the same right to the thrill of uncertainty to my cyber writing self.
But at the same time I'm going to take more care of the blog: I'll be more careful, I'll polish it a little, try to reorganize the content and then leave the rest to the chances. And keep having fun. That's what matter; the future, as Joe used to say, is unwritten.
I'm going to write this blog's future, but maybe not tonight.


  1. It sounds so familiar, I never knew what I was going to be when I was little either. Then I had several ideas but none came true. I think I still don't know today what I want to be when I grow up!
    A blog is a great thing for self expression and maybe connecting with others. It is a wonderful thing to do when you want to, and not having to update when you don't feel like it. I appreciate you posting some posts in English and very much enjoy checking in once in a while. I hope you will keep enjoying writing, in whatever form!

  2. I'm enjoying this freedom more and more and I'm appreciating it a lot. I can see all the possibility a blog offers you in term of broadening your world and connect with other people, but I don't want it to become a job.
    Let's see what we'll eventually become when we grow up! :-)