Friday, March 04, 2005

German lesbians and white giant grasshoppers

Ok, I think I need to title my blogs. I was scrolling down glancing through my entries and I realised they were a bit tiresome without any breaks to refresh the eye. And now here's the part where I explain the title.

So today, I duly got up at 6:45 a.m. (yay me!) to meet my advisor at 9:45 a.m. to visit the port. He had told me earlier that we would have a visitor from Germany and her friend accompanying us. When I reached his office and peeked in, I saw two very gentle looking women waiting outside his door. They introduced themselves to me and I realised that one was the visitor (she teaches planning in Germany) and the other was her friend, a physician. Now this seems awfully nosy, but believe me when I say that I was not being the slightest bit homophobic when I immediately started speculating if they were a couple. I would have done the same had they been of opposite sex. It seemed plausible. They both looked fairly masculinely dressed (not that I'm assuming that all masculinely dressed women are lesbians), were taking a vacation together, and had that attentive tenderness for each other that couples have. They were very refined and restrained in that classic Germanic way.

Then my advisor and our co-partner in the project M came and we headed to the port. Now it was an interesting coincidence that only a couple of months ago, I had been interviewed for an internship by the very same duo of port planners we were supposed to be meeting now. I had not been selected for that internship, and for some inexplicable reason it was a bit awkward for me to meet them again. And then, the two of them made it even more awkward, by not greeting me initially, and then greeting me only half-heartedly later. I got a sudden rush of wounded pride, and wanted to dazzle these fellows by asking them some brilliant complicated questions. All I managed were some half-ass idiotic comments, and now I feel terrible.

I have often felt that I'm a bit too sensitive to what I assume are others' perceptions of me, and it is mortifying for me to think that others see me as a fool. At these moments I have to tell myself repeatedly that it's not important that everyone likes me, that it is not even desirable that everyone likes me (which would mean that I have no personality to speak of), and that what matters is that those who matter to me like and appreciate me. But I also have to acknowledge that this hypercritical superego is the only thing that spurs me to read on, do research, learn a new skill, better myself in some way. That's just so silly and so human.

Oh, the giant white grasshoppers? Those were just the large fixed gantry cranes at the port.


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