This is not a blog about the sadness of loneliness, or a series of links to unlonely groups. It is also not a space for my suicidal poetry about being a lonely, underwhelmed, underpaid, overly cranky lesbian. Promise. Instead, this is a blog that satirically talks about the everydayness of loneliness as I see it. And I do not, and never have seen it as something to be ashamed about, something that is abnormal, or something that is paralyzingly bad. In fact, I think loneliness is what can help us finally find our way to ethical democracies (yep, unlike the unethical ones we privileged Westerners hold onto today like blankets).
This lonely blog is also enabling me to laugh at my life because I’m forced to engage with the outsides of my narrow lens. “Read Jacques Derrida with your eyes squinted,” a professor told me once, “and his words will seem more clearly important.” That was a lie. I just read him with my eyes closed and dreamed of hot dogs and firefighting school instead. But it was a nice lie told to me by a prof who had to slog through the pretention to get to the end of his thesis too. And here, with eyes wide open, I now get to play with the hilarious roadblocks and conversations I’m having with myself, with colleagues, and with the cultural mecca that surrounds us all as I continue walking on through.
Talking about tough issues like bullying, suicide, homophobia, rape, loneliness, hatred….they certainly seem like horrific topics to swim around in. Yet, the everyday life of our dueling spaces require we keep talking, smiling, and caring for one another. And so, please join me in tense debate, funny sarcasm, and dizzying laughter and let’s speak out rather than staying silent.
And what I’ve learned after too many years in graduate school is to lighten the fuck up. My thesis, “The Lonely Gay” helped me crawl along with everyone else. And now I work on the rest.
So here it is friends my thoughts on what it means to want to imagine a politics of loneliness while also striving for bare minimalism, working to not become a total alcoholic, struggling to find money enough to eat something other than bad 7-11 ham, while ensuring I always intermingle my delusions of philosophical grandeur with dashes of salted mediocrity.
Hope anyone who reads this enjoys, and please comment, fight, post, debate, whatever you wish. This is what writing should be all about, I think, creating ongoing dialogues that no one has the right to claim to have started or to have finished.
Mel Carroll, (The Lonely Gay)