The Doll House

They where in the kitchen looking at each other yet their glassy eyes not really seeing. A family of five, the mother, the father, 2 boys and a little baby girl. They also had a dog and a cat. They lived in a lovely house and had everything they needed. The children had their toys, the mother had her wardrobe filled with clothes and the father had his couch in front of the TV. Even the animals had their bowls for food and water. Everything was good, everything was perfect. Not even the eye staring at them from the window disturbed them. Even when their front wall was opened and a large hand approached the father all was good. They all kept their Cheshire cat smile. The large hands manoeuvred them to a room on their own, the children in the bathroom to get washed, the baby in the cot for it was bed time for her, the woman in front of her mirror giving her perfect blonde hair hundred strokes to keep its shininess and the man in their personal bathroom shaving off his beard.

Then they are all placed at the table where they were offered a shiny plastic turkey with even shinier vegetables as a side-plate. And they ate in silence as the eye watched them like a god.  When finished the mother was placed by the dishwasher, the children in bed and their father on the couch. Everyone was where they should be and soon the mother joined the father on the sofa at the other end of the room and finally they where sent to bed, and the large hands closed their wall and left them to join her own game of happy families.

And inside the house the dolls start shifting slowly. The woman and man looking opposite directions. The smile, ever perfect, stamped on their faces. While outside the shouting began followed by crying and silent sobbing until the house was silent as the habitants of both houses got lost in their own dreams. For both acts where played by strangers connected only by their puppeteer.


what if god was one of us..

Living in a place where the first words you learn after mum and dad, are the bedtime prayer, its impossible not to talk about god. Growing up we're thought to believe in this powerful invisible guy who is everywhere. Being a little girl it makes you feel self-conscious each time you remember that he is watching. And of course to be powerful you need your soldiers, the guardian angels. When I was younger I even used to sleep at the very edge of the bed so that my dear angel had somewhere to sleep. I believed wholeheartedly that someone was actually watching over me.

Growing up you start facing certain harsh truths like the fact that the men and women of god are not perfect. Yes I am talking about nuns and priests. While we're taught that they're the messengers of god, hearing of their sins make you start doubting if all that you've been fed through your years was just bullshit. When things go wrong and you cannot see a ray of light you doubt if there's anyone really who gives a fuck. Because face it if you were god would you allow all these deaths and wars? The answer we're given is that he leaves us with the liberty of deciding for ourselves. But really that's just plain irresponsible. A mother doesn't let her child do anything she wants or else they'd probably end up dead!

Then again sometimes, I feel quite sorry for god. He has the whole world to take care of, so many millions of people talking to him, requesting favours, trying to make bargains, swearing at him, crying for his help. We humans are quiet the handful. And maybe he hadn't planned  to be god. Maybe he didn't want to live forever always on his own. What if he had very little say to his destiny. What if god woke up one day with a post-it note attached to his forehead saying "You are god. You're responsible for everything and everyone."

And then again my god is different from your god and her god and his god. We all have different versions of the same guy, because we all need different things. Because that is what god is first and foremost. He's our backup guy. We depend on him to give us what we need, comfort. The lonesome need to believe that there's someone who gives a shit, those who fuck up need to know that they can be forgiven when they're ready, those who are scared of death need to believe in the afterlife.

And what if, we believe in the wrong god, what if Buddha is the right one, what if the Hindus are actually hitting the nail on the head with their religion... What if we are all wrong?

Sometimes I think that this god might not be so special, so kind-hearted. Maybe he is just bored, all alone. After all eternity is such a long time and being invisible makes it a bit of a challenge to communicate. Maybe he's very ironic and sarcastic. Or maybe he's melancholic and pessimistic. Maybe after all this time watching us screw up he's given up on us and has decided to stop taking things seriously and fuck around with us.

Maybe he's just like us, he has good days and bad days. Maybe he also has preferences. Sometimes I like to believe that those very pious people who like to dictate other people's lives annoy him as much as they annoy me, maybe that's why he sends them with us, because he can't live with them around him. Maybe we all were angels that annoyed him so much he sent us as far away as he possibly could. Maybe he's one cool dude, with dreadlocks, reggae in his heart and smoke in his lungs.

Or maybe, just maybe, he's as much a story as Cinderella is, maybe he'll disappear once our life ends just like Cinderella runs away at midnight. Maybe he's just a plain frog, and no amount of kissing will make him a prince. Maybe he's just a dream, a belief, a myth...


The "Pretend" Game

The "pretend" game, is a very complex game. It involves lots of brain work and power of suggestion. Its a game we're thought to play from the moment we start talking. It's a fundamental survival skill in our society, really its as important as breathing.

From the very start of our life our parents force us to pretend. Pretend our family is a happy one, pretend your Nanna loves you, pretend we're god fearing citizens. We also learn that pretending involves lying. White lies at first. Like no I'm not hungry though actually you're starving. No you take the last piece, really I'm sure even though you would love that last piece. The next stage is weaving in the underlying messages. These would go something like no you take it I'm getting so fat. Yeah you eat it you fat pig.

Its just a game to convince each other of our perfect lives. Yes of course I care, yes I love you dear, no I'm not jealous, It's ok mum it doesn't matter that you forgot me and I had to walk it home in the rain, no sister I won't tell mum of your cuts on your arm, I promise I'll help you hide your eating disorder big brother . The fiancé who pretends she still loves him because its too complicated to leave him, the husband who says he's too tired from work for sex while he's been banging the secretary. The girl who pretends she loves her boyfriend because she doesn't want to be alone. The guy who pretends he cares but is in fact just too comfortable in the situation to try something new. The jealous bitch who tries to sabotage her friend with a big Cheshire smile on her face. They're all a game, a defence mechanism to keep people at a distance. To stop those eyes from looking at you with pity when they hear that your parents have separated, your aunt has died, your cousin's in prison. We'd do anything to pretend that we're normal, that we're ok. She'd go out of her way to show that she's forgotten him, his smile, his goofy laugh, the way he made her heart flutter with just a glance. He would even pretend he's somewhere else, not to listen to the same words again, to forget that annoying thing she does when she's nervous, the same thing he fell for her in the first place.

The "pretend" game is also a very dangerous one. Sometimes we try so hard to make other believe our lie, that we start doubting if it was a lie in the first place. When the stories have been twisted in such a way that it forms one big knot, its easier to believe your pretend story then try unwind the knot. She would rather play happy families than live on her own, he would rather be quiet and suffer then tell about his uncle's abuse. We would all rather keep playing the game then come out clean. Because in the end who needs the truth when the game is much more fun?