I consider myself quite knowledgeable for my years, and over the past decade or so—it is probably even longer than that—there is a question which has puzzled me immensely, and no matter how much I ponder it, or in which way I attempt to see it, I simply cannot seem to figure it out: Why is being female the greatest of shames?

For my own part I have never wished to be anything else than female, and fact is that even if I were given one million dollars for being genetically altered to become male, I would pass the opportunity up, for I have never desired to be anything else than what I am. The reason for this is that I have always been female, I was made one; ever since the moment of conception, when I came into being for the first time, my twenty-third chromosomes have been homologous. Why this is a fate worth regretting a lifetime, I shall never understand.

Once upon a time—and in some places still—women were sacred creatures because they were the ones who gave birth to new life; they were the ones who illustrated the purpose of all human existence, both biologically as well as symbolically: the smiling sun upon the heavens is a goddess in many religions and Westerners still refer to their world as “Mother Earth”. For millennia the fertile female form has been celebrated, and its essence has been captured by skilled artists of ages past, some of their creations spared from the teeth of time for us to see.

Venus de Milo

Venus de Milo

But those figurines—whose beauty is easily appreciated—stem from ages now long lost. As man left his hunter-gatherer days to cultivate the land his life changed forever, the greatest change of them all however yet to come. But eventually, it did arrive, and the man of today is now the resident of an increasingly post-industrial world, a world in which being female is the greatest of shames.

All ages have their Venuses. The hunter-gatherers had their figurines, such as the Venus of Willendorf, whose true purpose still is disputed—was she a depiction of a goddess, a charm of fertility, or was she simply a piece of art celebrating the beauty of the feminine? The agriculturalists had the true Venuses—the ones who gave their name to the morning star—and the Venus de Milo is still admired by millions every year. The industrialists too have ideal female beauties, but they are no longer celebrated in the same way.

No, the Venuses of industrialisation are raised to feel ashamed over having been cursed already at conception, they are taught that having homologous twenty-third chromosomes is being of lesser worth; the woman of today knows that she is inferior to any man. At least, this is the sole explanation I have come up with in regards to the question I mentioned before: Why is being female the greatest of shames?

In the industrial world the ideal woman is the one who pursues a career; for some reason she has ceased to value herself and instead elevated men to the skies. A modern woman shall not be content until she is identical to a man, and I am terribly sorry for being the one who brings her the news; but this, her ultimate goal, shall never be. She will never grow a beard and speak with a low tone of voice by natural means, for she is a woman—she should take pride in that!

Why Should They Do It?

Why Should They Do It?

Were women an obsolete a part of humanity they would all have been male, but considering how I am no man, there must be a reason for why there are women and why there are men. Fact is that they have different roles to fill, both equally important, despite not being the same. To say such a thing, as I just said, is however forbidden—and very strangely so. Again, I say, this can stem from no reason other than women refusing to acknowledge that they are equal to men.

The world is not fair, if it was, there would be neither males nor females, they would all be the same; both would be equipped with ovaries as well as testes—but such an egalitarian society I highly doubt I will ever see! To make up for this unfair a truth, nature is however most compassionate and makes sure that a foetus during gestation is exposed to hormones that eventually shall make it content with its lot. At least, this has worked in the case of me—I am a delighted female, I desire nothing more, but as far as the rest of humanity is concerned, I simply do not know.

Somewhere, deep inside, even the most female-despising of women must realise that she is seeking revenge for her fate in the wrong way, however so convinced of her own inferiority that she disregards from this and presses on in the pursuit of a goal she believes herself desiring to attain. And, when confronted with something that makes her uncomfortable, she charges and goes to attack instead of pondering its contents. To all such women I have one thing to say: An empty cart makes much noise, a full cart less so.

However, even broken clocks are right twice a day, and the situation of women has indeed improved. No longer need any woman die from complications in childbirth, and she is allowed to vote and to make her voice heard. No longer is a woman kept from making a career, she is allowed to seek the intellectual challenges which all human beings crave. This, I cannot critique—I have no reason to. What I do critique is that women believe themselves being of lesser worth. They are not, why do they even believe so?

There is no need for me to state facts—no-one will listen—but I tell you this—and you may consider it and draw your own conclusions—but ever since women started to doubt their value the world has started to shake. When the people who mattered most to the future of man have abandoned the most glorious of tasks, the consequences can be nothing but severe. All it takes is an open mind and a pair of eyes—look around!—is this world of ours a society that thrives? Something has gone wrong in this most modern age of man, and it is only because some people doubt themselves. I hate to point the finger—so I shall not do so—for those who are responsible know deep within who they are.

The celebrated modern woman is no longer a feminine beauty, she is an aspiring male. How has this come to be? What is it that makes women believe that they are worthless do they not live the life of a man? Shall the world ever come to acknowledge the simple fact that life is not fair, but that one’s lot still is better than none? It is with the greatest of regrets that I say that this I do not know; I know many things but the answer to these questions are still shrouded in mystery to me. One day, however, I intend to change this; one day, I shall know and make sure to tell you, for I believe that being female is just as fine a fate as being male.

Be proud of who you are, do not attempt to change! Take pride in being yourself, for people who know their worth and value have nothing to prove.

Finally, I shall say that man is a creature who learns from his own mistakes; a fact which delights me as the more educated man becomes the more ignorant shall he realise himself to be. And when his ignorance has been realised, there will no longer be any need for the goddesses to be ashamed.

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When Sweet Turns Bitter

January 10, 2009

Too commonly it has been said that time is what heals even the most vicious of wounds and this truth has by now become a comforting cliché; the reassurance that all miseries eventually shall come to pass the hope which inspires people to look forward and not remain static in a painful present. The validity of this notion I can verify in regards to both the experiences of myself and others, though I find it important to stress that all pains worth the mention are bound to in some way have left scars.

“The course of life never turns out as expected,” my mother has told me ever since the youngest years of my infancy in an attempt to make certain that her daughter, Miss Josephine, never is to travel farther than she can see down the road. Though I have despised those words since the fist time I heard them, I am certain that my mother’s mention of them served a purpose; reminding me of never submitting to the extravagancies conjured by a youthful mind yet untamed by the wisdom brought on by experience.

The wisest of men are those who have realised that there are no certainties in life; that nothing may ever be taken for granted. To do so is to disregard from doubt and to submit to the convincing allures of folly; to become one of the fools who doth think that they are wise. It is a fallacy which most fear, but which most commit never the less. To my own disappointment, I have realised that neither I am excused for having carried out such an act as my most recent experiences have cemented this new knowledge in my mind.

For the past year there is a certain word which has brought much felicity to my days, a word which I have carefully introduced into every conversation where it rightfully could be mentioned. The word carried great importance to me and I would not lie to you if I say that I indeed were very much in love with speaking the word. To me it was a word of great symbolism and importance; it brought substance into a life so devoid of meaning and possibility for improvement that indolence took the place of motivation in a character once praised for its ambition.

For the past week this word of verbal sweetness—this word of my affections—has grown sour and it now leaves a bitter stain upon my tongue as I attempt to recover from the pains caused by a unforeseen blow to my view of self. To doubt doubt and to be convinced of convictions has proved poison to what was once so very dear to me. The word itself has not been altered—so it can in no way be blamed—but my perception of its sound—once so clear and bright!—has changed and it will never again be spoken by me with the smile of delight.

“How can such deep affections so suddenly be replaced with contempt and disregard?” I hear you ask, and indeed your curiosity shall be satisfied, for I have not authored this incoherent collection of words with the intent to keep you, my dear reader, in the dark. You shall see that the answer to your question—so rightfully asked—is to be found during study of the person affectionate; the object of love seldom to be blamed for a lover’s change of heart.

Cambridge has a noble ring to its name; it speaks of ambition and tradition to my ears; two sentiments which I value and celebrate, and I would have considered it an honour to be chosen to be part of its long history, but such a future was never to be mine. I no longer mention Cambridge when I speak, it has been confined to become a subject of my own reproach; the sweet word has turned bitter and harsh for it is no longer a symbol of opportunity, but one of personal failure and futures to never be known.

Soon I have for two decades been alive and am I fortunate a fifth of my life has already passed me by. One would consider the prime of my youth long gone, but its folly seems reluctant to bide me adieu; we have accompanied each other for too many years to ever be completely apart; were I not foolish in my convictions I would not be who I am; the question being whether a wiser me would be to prefer? Is doubt in conviction what I need to revive?

In retrospect even the most ambiguous of enigmas wear their answers on their sleeves; readily seen as well as read—why did I not consider to look while they were in my view? Alas! That is the way in which folly is defined; as blindness affecting one’s perception of the most obvious; folly being the symptom of complication, of shrouding and concealing what was left out in the open for everyone to see! This realisation is soon to be followed by revitalised reproach: Why was consideration never considered? Why did conviction appear so compelling, so very convincing? Why—oh, why?—was the unclouded clarity of certainty concealed to me?

Had I doubted more—and not been so very convinced—success might very well have been mine. Had I been less convinced—and had I been a person in doubt—my future might have been another! Had I not been as overly confident in myself as I were I would have doubted my abilities, knowledge and talents more. Had I doubted myself I would have questioned what I knew and been motivated to heal the flaws which most apparently were present in my person. Had I doubted and healed myself of conviction’s ignorance my premature honour and pride would perhaps then have been rightfully mine?

Indeed, I committed the fallacy which humanity seems unable to abandon; the inability to realise its own limits. Man is not an omnipotent creature; he does not have the ability to predict the future; all his attempts to do so will eventually be proven wrong. My mistake—I beg you to learn from mine and man’s mistakes—was that I reaped my harvest before my fields had been ploughed. I were so certain of my success that I celebrated it before celebrations were due and failure was all that I left for myself to find.

Perhaps my mother was right when she mused to me that life never takes the course which one expects or wishes it to follow, no matter how much I despised those her words. Had I been more attentive perhaps my fate would have been another; had I convinced my mind to contain a fair amount of doubt I might not have attempted to fly on wings premature. Though I am a fifth of a century old I have barely lived at all and experience cannot easily be considered mine. It is through my folly that I grow to become more than the sum of my parts, it is through the blows of disappointment that I learn the lessons of life.

For, indeed, my dear mother was right: life is fickle and its course is never set in stone. The faintest whisper is enough to steer it off course as life is nothing but a ship sailing in the dark. Wisdom of the past is the only light which serves as a guide, but in a world of unlimited possibilities one is at times all too easily lured to follow the sparkle of fool’s gold.

No longer may Cambridge be the intellectual port where I head, but however knowing that my folly and I are alone to blame I have been given an opportunity to learn from my mistakes—I have been given yet another valuable lesson by life—and I may be more of a person now than I were before sweet turned bitter in my mouth. This pain will no doubt leave a scar, but the initial sting has now faded and it will soon only throb during the darkest hours of my days.

I may never fully forgive myself for having allowed the opportunity of a lifetime to pass me by, but I have learnt that the wisest course of action is to be a fool and doubt one’s wisdom; as even the wisest also are fools.

Indeed, UFOs do exist, though they never are of extraterrestial origin. No matter how much one wishes for them to be proof of that life is not an exlusive trait featured by only one of countless planets in this universe, such sightings are often easily identifieable as naturally occurring phenomenon.

Though I lack the training to with ease classify such sightings for what they really are, I do not doubt the truth of the claim. If life on other planets have attained such an impressive level of technology as is required for inter-stellar space travel, most surely, life on Earth can not ineterest them much. Their sense of reason must long ago had alienated such ideas as visiting Sol’s third planet. The inhabitants of that rocky body are all too ignorant and primitive to ever appeal to them.

Further, I doubt that technologically advanced beings are ill-natured, for if they were, would they then not have focused their efforts on terminating their own species, instead of co-operating to attain the elusive goal of speeds near that of light?

No matter the nature of alien beings, they are of no importance to the point of this posts’ publication, as my words are typed down and shown to you with the simple aim of bringing an unidentified object to your attention.

The object in question is truly unidentified, as I do not know what has caused this intriguing phenomenon. What I do know, however, is that the picture which features such an enigma, is one of the most peculiar photos any member of my family has ever taken.

Unidentified Flying Object Over Drammen, Norway © Henrietta

Unidentified Flying Object Over Drammen, Norway © Henrietta

All credit for its creation is to be given my younger sister [Miss] Henrietta, though the honorary has been assigned to her by me. I beg you, do not tell her of such an act of mine, as she will condemn it.

Tongue-in-cheek, it is my favourite extraterrestial being, for though I know it is nothing but a mere UFO, and not a vessel of alien origin, it appeals to my imagination, and the “what if”-part of my meditations.

To me, the picture serves as a reminder to us all of that all human beliefs and convictions that she truly is the one sole intelligence to ever have arisen in the universe are as false as they are naïve and vain–a manifestation of the juvenile nature of mankind which is the main reason I theorise we never will encounter beings more intelligent than our own.

Life Is Vainly Spent

June 16, 2008

Learning how to take small steps and not get ahead of oneself is hard, and also emotionally draining. It is so easy to imagine the way one wish things were, only to be disappointed by seeing the world as it is, all simply because of the act of removing the pink-glassed glasses.

The metamorphosis one has to undergo from dreamer to cynic is hard, but I hope that I in the end still will have the pink-glassed glasses stuffed away in my pocket for times of need.

And again, I ask the question: Why is life the time one spends on other things? All the time that I spend dreaming about the life I would like to lead I could very well use for actually realizing said dreams. Though, I have tried to use my time and actually accomplish something, only to realize that most processes take more time than I have the patience to go through.

Still, I wonder, why does it seem like my life lies in the future when I am here, right now?

Today was all spent reading (I finished volume I of Pride and Prejudice and I am now half-way through volume II) and basking in the sunshine. I went for a swim in the pool whilst one of my sisters went shopping for a ball gown. (She returned home with an iridescent copper gown that looked just gorgeous on her and made me really big-sister-ly proud.)

The hours after dinner were spent running around the patio, trying to avoid the water-war that had broken out for the third time in two days. It all ended after some 2 hours with my father being puched into the pool, quickly followed by all my sisters, two in swimsuits (the youngest ones) and one in her sleeping gown (my eldest yougest sister) and one in her clothes (my middle sister who had started the fight to begin with). I can not recall the last time I laughed as hard as I did during those hours.

Blog-wise I have updated one page – the About-page – and I have added one – Contact (me). I guess the latter will undergo some heavy reconstruction some day, but it will do for now.

I have been thinking of importing all of my posts from Blogger, in order to make this blog a little more worth everyone’s while. I will consider it. You will notice when I have come up with a decision (if it is in favour of importing).

I Am Insomnia

June 7, 2008

People who know me more intimately (such as knowing that I am not a person of few words) are bound to know that I suffer from insomnia.

The summer nights are not assisting me in catching the elusive feature some like to call sleep. The nights never darken and as soon as the obscurity of a normal evening has been reached the light starts to grown stronger again. This is of course amaxing and a feature which I adore and greatly will miss the day that I move abroad, but for the time being it makes sleeping harder for me.

My main problem is that I do not know how to sleep. This may seem like an odd problem, even I think that it indeed is odd, but what to do about it? I can lay down, tired after a long day and not catching enough sleep the night before, and nothing happens. I can lie down, exhausted, for hours without falling asleep. I like to describe it as if my body simply does not know how to sleep.

Most usually I try to come around this problem by drinking hot milk – it is an old method, but as of late it has not aided me much when falling asleep. The first few times I had it it worked like a charm. Now, weeks later, it does not help at all. I had finally found something which worked and now it does not work any more. Could anyone have guessed that one can grow immune to the tiring effects of hot milk?

These last few days I have been having a cup of evening tea, in which lavender is one of the ingredients. It was better than ordinary tea, no doubt, but still it did not aid me much in falling asleep.

That the last 2 weeks have been hot, hotter than usual summer days, has also meant that the temperature of my poorly-insulated post-attic room is well above 30 degrees Celsius. This has not made falling asleep any easier, especially not as I am required to have a steaming cup of hot milk or tea before having any chance of falling asleep.

Of course I could open a window to make the temperatures drop, but I am not living in a city, I am next to a meadow. Idyllic as it is, it also means that there is a wide biological world outside, separated from me by the thin sheet of glass which I occasionally removed. I slept with it open twice – both times last year.

The first time I slept with my window open I was awoken in the middle of the night by something moving across my face. Frightened, as anyone would have been, I wiped the something up in my sleep. I woke up when I realised that the item between my fingers was a beetle, and not even a small one. It resembled a flour beetle and smelled like one too – only worse. Scared, annoyed, irritated, I sat up in bed to go to the bathroom to wash the smell off my fingers, but as I lifted my covers, I found more beetles in my bed.

The second time I opened my window before going asleep I woke up to find a gigantonormously large spider perched on the wall right next to my bed. For someone who is terrified of spiders – like myself – this event almost lead to cardiac arytmia.

Because of the danger of waking up with creepy crawlies I do not open my window anymore.

People say that one should try and go to bed at the same time every day and sleep better that way. The problem is that I do. I go to bed every day at 2AM – which I realise is not the best time of day to go to sleep, but my inner clock works in mysterious ways. Still, this does not help me. Instead, as I cannot fall asleep, my inner clock has grown increasingly more late. Nowadays I try to sleep around 2AM (as usual) but not falling asleep until around 4AM.

Last night was like all other nights, with the exception of I me being dead tired having been through so many exciting events in one day. I sat down in bed, with a cup of steaming hot tea, the room steaming around me – just as usual. In order to rewind I read (another good thing to do if one is having trouble sleeping). I passed some 5 chapters in my newly-purchased Pride and Prejudice, but without feeling any tired whatsoever. So, I read some additional 5 chapters – no more as I do not wish for it to end too soon.

I guess I drifted off to sleep around 4:30AM, only to wake up around 6AM, fall asleep soon afterwards, only to wake up at 8:30AM. Since then I have been awake. Without you judging me, I can say that I most usually wake up around 1PM, so for the time being I am so tired.

The worst thing of all is…? I hear you saying. I will tell you. The worst thing of all this is that when I go to bed tonight, having been awake for too long in order to be not-tired, I am not going to be able to fall asleep.

I guess some simply are cursed by life, doomed to watch the hands of time rotate around themselves. At least the early hours of every newborn day offers time for contemplation – but having spent weeks in total over the past year contemplating as dawn breaks, I am running out of ideas to contemplate upon.

The National Day

June 6, 2008

After my family and I were done shopping for my middle-sister’s birthday we returned home in order to pick her up as she had not accompanied us to the mall. We then left for Djurgården as my elset younger sister wished to go to Skansen, the zoological garden and outdoor museum which lies on Djursgården in Stockholm. Because of the date, the Swedish national day, entrance was free – an offer we could not pass up on.

As we arrived in Stockholm my sisters and I had to be dropped off at the bridge that leads to Djurgården from Strandvägen because the police had taken command over the traffic leading over the bridge. The reason for this was that the Swedish Royal Family was passing by just as we arrived, thus making us walk over named bridge. We arrived just seconds after the Royal Family had passed and because of that, we ran behind them, together with the masses of people who also wished to see the king and his family.

It took some 10 minutes for us to reach one of the entrances of Skansen and we got in free of charge – of course! From there we went to the Soliden stage where the Royal Family was to make its appearance, together with a few artists. The whole spectacle was broadcasted live by one of the Swedish TV channels, so if any of the cameras filmed the massive audience, my sisters and I could probably have been made out among the thousands of people among whom we tried to navigate.

We never got any close to the stage, but I managed to catch a glimpse of the Swedish Eurovision Song Contest final’s winner of this year’s, Charlotte Perelli as she performed the song “Hero.” This was, of course, only thanks to my tip-toe skills. I am sure my youngest sister saw more than the rest of my sisters, as she was seated on my shoulders, making her one of the tallest people in the audience.

As we could not see much from where we were, surrounded my thousands of people waving Swedish flags, my sisters and I decided to leave. Instead, we browsed the zoological features of Skansen, among them free-roaming peacocks, grey seals, European bobcats, wolverines, otters, goats, the unexplained budgerigars and my eldest younger sister’s favourites – the moose.

My moose-adoring sister has a dream of owning a moose and taming it, making her able to ride it, an idea which makes me laugh out lout every time it is voiced. She is rather unique, just as her ideas. No matter what, the moose actually proved to be some of the more exciting animals of the day (except for the prodding peacock males that tried to intimidate us). The reason for this being that only minutes before pur arrival to the moose-pen one of the moose-cows had given birth to adorable baby-moose-twins.

An hour, and many animals, later we went back to the Soliden stage and positioned ourselves on the outskirts of the massive crowds. The Royal Family and the artists were about to leave, and with us standing some 50 centimeters from the middle of the road where the cars belonging to those well-known people were supposed to pass by, I dare say that we had some first-hand views of them leaving.

Following some motor-cycle-carried police officers came the King and Queen’s car, passing us by within a foot. If I had reached out for the car, I would have touched the glass. Following the King and Queen’s car was one carrying their two daughters – Crown Princess Victoria and Princess Madeleine. I assume the Prince had been there too, but I did not see him.

As all the people who mattered had left, among them some Swedish politicians, my sisters and I decided to leave too. The hour had grown older and the sun was preparing to set. With the temperatures still high, nevertheless, we purchased some ice-cream and enjoyed it while waiting for our parents to pick us up. Of course, the had gotten stuck in traffic, and of course, my ice-cream leaked and left me insanely sticky in the evening warmth of 25 degrees Celsius.

Still, despite the poor-quality ice-cream, the day was truly enjoyable. To sum it up – the day was as perfect as the sky was blue and unclouded. (Which it actually was and has been for the past 2 weeks.)