Monday, March 28, 2016

The World Has A Real Problem... And It's Not Terrorism

Last week Brussels, today it's Lahore. The Taliban, ISIS, you name them, are at it... most days have some kind of horrendous news story that makes one shake their heads and think that this world is no longer worth living in. There is so much violence and destruction that especially the West is freaking out because, let's face it, these guys don't really remember violence and destruction. It's been over 70 years since Western Europe has seen proper attacks that cost human lives and people just started getting comfortable. Mind I say that the attacks the West now faces are pathetic in number compared to the destruction World Wars brought and which is still happening in the rest of the world. Despite all these bad news every day the problem I'm perceiving on a daily basis is not the terrorist; it's the people that fall for their tactics.

What brought more destruction to the European continent in the middle of the last century, Jews or those who wanted to get rid of them? Easy answer, of course, although we could argue that many of the bombs dropped on Germany were not put there to save the Jews. No sane person would argue that 31 dead people in Brussels are not 31 too many, but through the retrospective lens the actual casualties of terrorism are still not very high. A fear of being killed by a terrorist still rationally shouldn't outweigh the fear of dying in a car accident and still we have thousands of people refusing to wear their seat belts or driving under the influence. The common-sensical conclusion should therefore be that we hate terrorists as much as we hate every murderer, and we will try to catch and put them to justice like all of them. The fact they seem to be acting out of a religious belief is as banal as a robber killing a grandma for her earrings. And let's face it, Christians weren't too great not too long ago either.

The danger the world should fear, on the other hand, is the result of these ridiculous attacks: xenophobia, fear-mongering and straight out discrimination. If the world continues to punish a religion of over a billion people for the acts of a few we sure as hell will have a huge problem soon, and it will cost more than 31 people. What's truly tragic about it is that the only thing this does is not make sense, The human race has done this many times, and I can convincingly argue it was a disaster every single time. The Jews were persecuted for centuries for killing Christ. Who really did kill Christ? We don't even know. It's not like his murderer ever stood trial. All we know is he was a Jew and the Jews loved it, so let's kill them all. If this is an acceptable rhetoric for people today then I've got news for you: the terrorists are not our problem.

I quite personally know some people whose attitude make me think that I no longer want to live in this world. Of course I despise terrorism, but I despise a person concluding that refugees I have met during my work in the Balkans only come to kill Christians and the freedom of the West more. Unfortunately it is exactly that freedom that allows racists to achieve incredible successes politically by projecting fear on a demographic for personal gain because there is nothing in it for one Gerd Wilders, Frauke Petry or Gabor Vona other than influence. Being of true conviction that refugees entering the EU being the end to our lives because the majority of them are terrorists or will become them can have only one origin, and that's not the truth, but ignorance and misinformation, because that's not an opinion but an incorrect fact. I'm scared too, but I'm scared of these bigots that refuse to adapt to facts and as a result antagonize the world.

On social media these poorly educated people are vocal about their fear of the unknown, and their poor education does not justify why they have hateful stances but explains it since their lack of making correct conclusions is evidently non-existent. With nothing but pity for their fear I actually fear them more than the threats of terrorism: their votes will make my country's radicalized politicians rise again, their hate will poison societies and their nationalism will prevent thousands of stranded refugees in Idomeni from securing survival. I genuinely fail to see how some douchbags on a suicide west are bigger threats than that, and how the United States of America continue to be scared of some immigrants when all of them walk around with guns. A mere look at the odds would do some people some good. And I will continue to prove these people wrong on social media because that's all I can do against it right now...

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Am I A Dragon Or Are People Wusses?

I'm the last person that doesn't admit that I sometimes overreact. It's not nice to know that but it's all part of my freakish desire to know myself inside out. And for that, one has to accept strengths and weaknesses. Yes, I am on the short temper side, when I get mad I freak out for two minutes rather than steadily arguing and I make irrational decisions that have seldom benefited anyone, including myself. But this week I found out that I'm "scary". My lover asked me if he could leave some stuff at my house, then reconsidered because he was scared I would set it on fire if we had a fight. I know, what? Bringing this chat to a group of friends they admitted that all of them, and some more people, are indeed "scared of" me. I cannot believe it. Am I that much of a bitch?

The answer is simple: NO! In an effort that comes far too late to make people realize I'm a kitten inside I can only defend myself by explaining how it comes to those "scary" moments. I'm reasonably patient and can discuss soberly for a long time. In fact, I love discussions and I tend to not be scary in them. When confronted with an intense amount of bullshit, however, I cannot guarantee I can keep that face. These examples of incredible bullshit include finding out about my ex-boyfriend's villainous coping mechanisms after our break up or my ridiculous roommate trying to evict me. The point is: I don't start setting clothes on fire when someone says I look fat. But when presented with arguments such as "Donald Trump needs to win the election so he can detain all Muslims" I lose myself, no guarantees.

As a result, I do admit I understand that some people might find me a bit frightening. At the same time, the only ones that really should be are my partners. Said "I'm scared you'll set my pants on fire (not in a good way)"-man isn't too wrong about anticipating a chain reaction in my head that could, in rare occasions, lead to a blackout. If I had a dime for every time I said "That's it, I'm done!", then started to purr again no two minutes later, my lovers wouldn't have to take me to dinner anymore. These impulses, however, tend to only really come out with people I have feelings for. I really can't pretend I don't have a scary quality for my ex-lovers. Three of them were apparently too scared to even confront me for a break up. This kind of stuff happens once maybe, but three out of my four "ex-boyfriends" opted to just stop calling. That's right, either I'm a dragon people are too scared to even face after a fight to end a relationship or I tend to surround myself with pussies.

This brings up a new angle because I might be too much of a bitch to admit I'm that dragon but I also have a hard time believing I am. My latest "victims" really weren't blessed with  normal portion of balls. I was told my roommate who evicted me was scared of me so much so that he didn't even tell me when to move out. And when someone is too scared to have a break up conversation and instead just decides to say nothing I can't help but to question whether I'm the dragon or they're just a little bit pathetic. Asked after why my exes didn't just call and said "yo, I think we should not see each other anymore" they told me they didn't want to break up but didn't know what to say. Even better was the excuse claiming they had "thought [I] broke up with [them]!" This is ridiculous in every sense of the word and might have potential to bring the dragon out. But bottom line is I'm not always the dragon, some wusses just can't take no heat.

So yes, I do admit I fight pretty fiercely but I would dare say whoever's actually scared of me needs to grow a pair. On top of that, I am also capable of being overly nice, and you may also ask my ex-lovers about that. So I guess dealing with someone a little bit short-tempered and prone to impulsive freak outs comes with the territory of dating me or involving me in a political discussion. As long as people stay away from doing that, I am pretty sure, they will never encounter that dragon. And even then, a chick yelling can't be so intimidating people get scared of her, right? I don't think so. I will continue to improve my temper, trying to breathe in and out deeply when I encounter right-wing politicians and people who are clearly trying to do me wrong. And if the result of being scary is that people are too scared to talk to me I'm okay with that. That just doesn't sound like a loss...

Friday, March 25, 2016

Charlotte The Kitty: Notes On My New Best Friend

Although I grew up with a cat, I am a total dog person. My theory of how owning a dog is the answer to all of my prayers is ominous: I'd have a house, a partner and money, otherwise I wouldn't have a dog! Since I am currently fighting another race/gender-related eviction in Cairo, a place I will no doubt stay, with very little money, I have decided to make a partner regardless. And as the human I want to be around is currently "out of town" my choices had to be limited to a partner with paws. I might not be ready for a dog, but I now own a cat. Charlotte has become my best friend in my dire existence next to coffee and french fries and I love her more that anything. A catch? I don't actually like cats.

Maybe it's the complete state of being "over" Egypt and the fun that is available there (which is not a lot of fun at all) but I have seldom found myself wanting to leave my house now that I have a feline friend I can hang out with. It may be a coincidence but at about the same time I had a cat sharing my bed with me my desire to see humans pretty much vanished. Now this has a lot of reasons not related to making pals with Charlotte but that cat gives me the perfect excuse. Instead of heading to yet another underwhelming event in Cairo I now more often than not opt to stay in, watch people text me how I'm not missing out, and watch some movies with Charlotte.

When you watch movies, cuddle and share a bed with an individual, you usually do end up falling in love, and so of course I fell in love with her as if she was one of my boyfriends who did all these things when they weren't busy being outside of the city/country. We have now come to a point where she chills in the living room, and comes "knocking" on my door when she wants to hang out. Usually, she then stays with me all day, particularly taking an interest in kneading my boobies and purring when I caress her ears.  That's almost exactly the same behavior one can expect from a lover and Charlotte doesn't fight or accuse me of being a drama queen. Score!

In the process of this new relationship I have therefore started to like cats, or more accurately, one of them quite intensely. Her adorable face and fluffy white hair do the rest: I'm hers! Her hobbies of sitting in my closet, watching me type for hours at a time or sleep on her back inspire the regular "awww!" in my head to the extent that I smile although nobody is around. This, again, makes for a wonderful addition to happiness. When I wake up in the morning because Charlotte is snoring right next to my face, I wake up with a smile, and when she purrs from my rug as I fall asleep it's like a sedative and I go to bed happy. In a way, Charlotte therefore has become the biggest source of happiness for me.

And then I remember why people seem to be spending quite a lot of money to have a pet: you're just never alone! They're cute, they're fun and they're company. Cats may not give you as much love as dogs do, but her sheer willingness to hang with me and make me be happy that I have the cutest cat in the world to drool on my lap was worth the completely raided bank account I now have because I refuse to leave her behind once I return to the Fatherland or -continent. I never even got her on purpose, and now she's the best thing I have. I'm so happy my flatmate decided to take her in and then effectively abandoned her so she is now my little pussy...

Monday, March 14, 2016

Germany Officially Joined The European Populist Cult... Again!

Last week, I got into one of the Facebook discussions I seem to get into a lot because I cannot shut up. This time, unlike most of the other times when the topic is a certain orange maniac in the US, I ended up being called a Nazi for praising my home country of Germany. Saying good things about Germany is really unpopular, especially when Germans say it. And last week I was that person. I was the one that praised Germany on its refugee policies and how proud I am of Germans for handling it largely well which caused my peers to call me a Nazi as they thought I was closing my eyes to racists committing arson and discriminating against foreigners. I tried to defend myself. As of this week, I no longer can…

The “Alternative für Deutschland”, a right-wing populist party, was nothing but a collection of assholes yesterday, today they are the second strongest party in one of the states in Germany. That’s right, last week I was arguing Germany has a relatively small problem with nationalism, this week I’m a nationalist for saying Germany has not fallen for the stupid, moronic attractions of populism if I continue to voice this stance. My inkling of pride about Germany having resisted the Europe-wide opposition to a crisis that may affect all of us but cannot be solved by fearmongering and hate speech is now officially in recline and I have to admit that my country, just like all of them, has not learned from its past.

All the other countries are not Germany, a country that has previously been torn apart by ideologies along that end of the spectrum. Now I don’t expect another holocaust soon, but considering we all grow up being educated to the max about how the Third Reich could lose control like it did, it is inconceivable that Germany would want to be anywhere near these ideologies. Does anybody truly believe that the answer to the problem of Syrians knocking on our doors can be solved by being hardline racists who cannot differentiate between egoistic gains and concessions to those we are morally and politically obliged to? The answer is no, they don’t.

The numbers coming out of Germany today are truly frightening, the most horrible one of them being the number of people who admitted to voting for AfD only as a protest vote. That number lies at 49%. Now we are back at the point I made in that Facebook thread last week, and that was that we don’t have a nationalist problem, we have a problem with morons. I can now officially stand by that with a number like that. Whoever considers voting for an unpredictable, quite publicly xenophobic and verging on disgusting party just to piss the established parties off because they did something that displeased the voter is not a nationalist, or racist, or even a political fallacy. Only a total idiot would do that. The kind that doesn’t understand what that fancy idea called "democracy" means.

Ignorance and misinformation on nationalist ideas, however, is a problem Germany, out of all countries, shouldn’t have though. I am in shock that citizens that no way in hell never heard of the word nationalism, and the subsequent drastic problems it could cause, would be willing to forget that knowledge. Being born German comes with many rights and advantages but one right we don’t have is the one that allows us to be neglecting what misery our bad judgement about far-right sentiments unleashed on Europe. And here we are, doing it again! Now we might not end up in another war this time, at least I’d like to think that the amount of lunacy present in Germany today is infinitely smaller than the one we found in the 30s, but any development towards a community that makes hate reign over love should clearly not be the aim, and shouldn’t end up a consequence either. Just make it stop!

Nobody really has an excuse for these numbers. Even the media is shocked. However, evidently up to every fourth voter was not shocked by these results. I cherish democracy and I’m happy people had the right to express their opinion; its their opinion I criticize. In a society in which a party of dickheads can accumulate support is a society that is on a bad path. I don’t blame politics: there are and always will be bad politicians. In fact, even Nazis, like the actual national socialists, are still around and in disguise offering themselves up for election. It’s our job to say no, thanks! We can’t blame Hindenburg on the failures of judgement this time. We can’t blame the bad education system and redneck American idiots for the election of a seemingly insane populist. We have a society that 100% should know better and the fact that we don’t is frightening and disappointing… 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

International Woman's Day: Women Are Better Than Men!

It's British Mother's Day, and Tuesday will see International Women's Day. It's time to talk about chicks, yo! I have never proclaimed myself a feminist because that goes without saying. Why would I, as a woman who believes that everyone should be equal, think women should be worth any less than a man, or a tree, or you name it? Living in Egypt, however, has made me one of those people who can actually imagine fighting for that equality because oh boy, women rock! The sheer ridiculousness of this country makes me want to slap people in the face and tell them "You don't mess with women", definitely not with me! And everyday, I become more and more of a fan of my gender...

Egyptian women are bitches, and I'm so glad I'm not a man who marries them and has to concede to the fact that his position as a de facto patriarch are a sham. True, women, especially in Egypt, are inferior to a man in most countries of the world, have far less rights and are looked at as the weaker sex. Egypt has taught me, however, that this perception is the result of a fundamental flaw that disregards the existence of coercion, sexual supremacy and wit. True, in most countries even a woman fully in charge of her husband, father or son is subject to rape and violence, and even the coolest woman can't really do anything about that, but when we look at the most generalized woman, whether she is American or Zimbabwean, women truly aren't weaker at all because strength is not in a muscle.

Independent women who take no shit from men, or anyone really, are a scarcity in Europe. If I had a dime for every time someone told me he loved independent women, then ended up dating the most ridiculous yay-sayer that would never oppose any of his idiotic pursuits I'd be a rich girl. These badass chicks just aren't that popular, even though men with balls as big as peanuts like to say so. For some reason, the girls that truly make my jaw drop are the ones single, or with really awesome guys who have matured enough to see the value of a woman who can acknowledge her power. And unfortunately for real men, that power is quite immense. A woman can give a man everything money can't buy; a real woman can challenge him, make him the best version of himself and completely save his life.

To see all these "bitches" here in Egypt made me see that this power these girls are aware of is absolutely beneficial for both: a woman gets what she wants because her rights won't provide it, and a man is not lost in this country full of challenges that require him to measure his manhood on a regular basis. Without a woman, every man in this godforsaken country would fall apart. And because life here is so much harder, everyone needs a thicker skin. Maybe that's why almost every man I know here wants nothing more than a woman to love. These women here yell at, fight with and beat their opponents because only the strong survive. In the society I come from, this behavior is simply not necessary, therefore women haven't developed it. But the fact remains that the bitchiness we see is not necessary a character flaw but a strength, and real men see the benefit in that because they, too, just want to survive.

As a result, these women kicking and screaming did more for my female image than the 1000 German chicks I know that look, behave and think exactly the same. Instead of calling them boring though I have now learned that they simply do not need that thick skin because their survival is not dependent on being rough and tough. Women do what makes them most successful, and in Europe that means smiling, in Egypt it means fighting. What they all have in common is a thoroughly better understanding on what survival means. A woman knows when to smile and when to fight to get what she wants because sometimes she needs a men's help for that. And because men have penises and a weaker mind they truly are lost. Anywhere...

Women are completely fascinating: their ability to assess, actually perceive how unfair the world is and change that in a way they see fit and try to control men when men are legally or socially in charge is amazing. It's a skill that no man possesses, and even when they realize it's there, they talk it down. There is no way a woman can really still be talked down, even the weak ones. Physically we can't do what men can and laws around the world show us some disadvantage, but emotionally they can't do what we do and we're at a clear advantage. Empirically it's really hard to understand how religion came up with this picture of women being weaker since they make babies and all but all I know is that I am happy I'm a woman because as a straight person I don't have to marry one. Damn, bitches!

Friday, March 4, 2016

Dreams Do Come True... Or Do They?

Two weeks ago, my dream did not come true. I had had one for a few years, and now I know it will never happen. Even for someone as expressive as me it is not the norm to share what I really feel in a time of failure. Yes, I write every day about the smaller things in life, like how much I hate cigarettes and how great beards are, but when I truly feel love, pain, happiness or sadness, I tend to not share it too much. Why? The inside of my soul is something I have a hard time speaking about truthfully. I tell friends or share blogs, but in both these scenarios there is an audience, and sometimes the depth of my soul is not the right place for that audience. Employers, superficial friends or exes are not necessarily the people I would like to know about how I've been feeling lately. Unfortunately, this is my therapy! And how do I feel now? If I just got to use one word, I'd use "disillusioned", but since I'm a drama queen who spends 90% of her time typing I get a few more...

In the last few months I got over a lot of things. The last 365 days were so challenging that I sometimes forgot to be stressed, or sad, or completely lost because I accepted that with the kind of life I'm living that will be a permanent thing to happen if I let it. My life is unstable, unpredictable and chaotic. More than other's life. At the same time, it is surprising, full of potential and exciting. More than other's. I look back to earlier years when I was still chasing dreams that I have now had to give up on, and how rejection, loss and confusion had me sitting in a corner, shaking, because I didn't know how to handle it anymore. This all seems so laughable now that I am at the opposite end of my dreams, having to figure out what I will get, not what I want anymore. It really seems like there is only one challenge: Getting over the disillusions!

I've had few dreams in my life and none of them came true so far. Not getting what I want has never turned out to be a bad thing for me, so getting over the mere disappointment is not the real issue now. What I found to be harder was saying goodbye to the plans and hopes attached to these dreams, and knowing that a further progress down these paths I had made in my brain are not going to happen. Most recently, I have said goodbye to a route in my dreams that I was completely confident was feasible. I thought that this path was what I wanted and that, as a result, there would be one way or another to make it happen. We can reach anything we want if we work hard enough, right? It turns out that these dreams we have that require work from someone other than ourselves can exhaust you without getting a grain of recognition. And certainly, these dreams might simply just not come true, even if we gave it everything.

In January, I was tossing a penny off of a bridge in Moscow, making a wish, and what I wished for was not money or success. I wished for something else completely out of my hand. All the work in the world couldn't give it to me. For completely inexplicable reasons the time around that coin toss I felt I was on the right path, both personally and professionally, and had enough hope in my life to know that "everything's gonna be alright". Just a month later, I had lost that feeling about both parts of my life. And in both instances the loss in faith in these feelings was not attributed to my failure. Sometimes the fulfillment of our dreams, or in this case hopes, expectations or plans, do not depend on our own input. I made no mistake in my pursuit to keep these spirits up, but the consequent events just proved these dreams would shatter or would need to be shattered by me.

Saying goodbye to my PhD dream I worked for for a couple of years, mainly because it seemed to be the most convenient option to achieve what I ultimately want for the next decade or so, was tough. I have everything a PhD student needs, and more, and still I'm not one. For better or for worse, dreams like that crushing shook me to the core. My coping mechanisms are ok, until there's too much to handle, and that was indeed the case then. I felt the need to talk to two people. One of them was, and had been in the days or weeks leading up to it, one of the biggest let downs of my life, further making me feel like I had been chasing the wrong dreams. I realized that now more than ever I needed help, emotional help, and that who I thought would provide that was not going to be who I thought it would be. I realized that I had in fact been thinking I had support that I did not have. And I realized that doing anything you can does not guarantee success.

To my big surprise I did not fall apart. I was upset about having to restructure, again! The disappointment of having had faith in something and someone that was misplaced crept up, again! And once again I was in the place I have been so many times, unable to pinpoint what I'm doing, where I'm going and what all of this ever means. Now, I have been there many times. Whether the disappointment hits after having entertained a dream for a week or ten years, disappointment, I have come to learn, is worse than all of these feelings people keep complaining about because I get the feeling that I could have prevented it if I had just stopped entertaining them. In those moments, I feel like I made wrong choices. Had I realized my efforts to pursue plan A were wrong I had gone for Plan B right away...

What is important to me is that I feel like I did everything I could have, and I did. I do appreciate the inspirational quotes of telling us that all of our dreams can come true if we work hard enough for them; they tell us we should take leaps of faith and not hold back when we truly want something. I am well willing to fight for my dreams, and I am doing that every single day. And I am now in debt, living in the worst country in the world, with little to no prospects to be able to change anything about that. And all this will tell people is that I am lazy because we can always change, but not if we are never given a chance. All that's left is to keep looking at failure as a new opportunity: As Thomas Edison said about failure, we just learn about how NOT to achieve the things we want. I can very easily voice what I truly desire in life, and now I can eradicate getting my PhD and certain people from the list of things that will bring me that happiness. With each time, heartbreak gets less painful.

Dreams shattering, and having to go through it by yourself because nobody cares about your disappointment, is not a bad thing because there are people who would, you just haven't found them yet. I don't expect anyone to care, that's totally normal, but I thought they would. Being wrong clearly saves me pain in the future, so bring it on! I do look weaker because I showed bad judgement, followed a dream or plan I wasn't able to see through, and most crushing to the ego, truly invested in friendships, love and relationships that had the purpose of making me wake up rather than making me happy, but I could not have known that before so I decided to not blame myself as much as I can. But in the end, it's all part of the failure to assess what you want in life and getting on a better path.

Rightfully so, although I don't feel good at all this post has a positive conclusion, at least I think so. Of course I am trying to stay positive. In an effort not to lie to myself, I am pretty upset though, I just have different views on the subjects whether I look at it with my heart or my head. Of course my PhD would have been great, my heart really wanted that, but my head knows there's better options. The same goes for my personal losses: of course being left in the time of your most desperate need hurts, but knowing in your head that no love is better than pretend love is so overwhelmingly true. So in the end it is hard to still believe in your dreams when they sometimes simply aren't in your hands. The real dream is to be in charge of everything. Since that can't happen, not having actual dreams seems to be the way forward...

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

An Oscar? No, Thanks

At age 12, unable to really speak any English, wondering what that word "actually" meant Whoopi Goldberg used so much, I stayed up all night to watch the Oscars. I loved movies, in fact, I wanted to be in them or make them myself. At 16, I wrote myself a letter in which I miraculously explained why I wanted to be an actress. If you think about it, the fact I WROTE about why I wanted to be an actress and director should have told me there and then that if I was ever going to be an Oscar recipient it would have been for Best Original Screenplay. Watching the Oscars this year, I realize I was never going to be an actress. But I do kind of still want to win an Oscar...

Why do people want to become famous movie stars? I personally can't think of anything worse. I could live with the money, that would certainly not suck. And the clothes and food would be cool , too, I guess. However, being famous sounds terrible. When I was watching the carpet this year I could not believe some of these people actually enjoyed talking about who made that dress. In all the topics of this planet I would be interested in, none of them made it. I was waiting during the entire telecast for somebody to say anything of value, and it took until Leo finally rocked up to claim the stage and urge us all to "not take our planet for granted" for something other than boredom to be conveyed. If I think about sitting through that entire ceremony without Candy Crush Saga, I cringe. I was not tailored to sit in a pool of out-of-touch celebrities that use a one minute opportunity to speak to one billion people to thank their stylists or God. What a waste...

And why do people like to act? I get how it would be fun if I had any talent, and I am in no position to judge as my form of expression is even more obnoxious than pretending to be someone else. I actually realized that I could never be an actor because I am incapable of not being myself. I'm the most expressive, impulsive and annoying person I know, and for me to play a princess or a calm and collected politician is not very credible at all. If I was trying to win an Oscar by acting I suppose the only shot I would have is if it was in a movie about myself in which I would be playing the lead role. Other than that my talent for acting, I'm afraid, would never get me there. Also, I'm not cute enough to be rich and famous and certainly don't know enough sucking up techniques to make friends in Hollywood.

Also, why don't people just write? I get that I'm a bit biased here, but it seems to be so much cooler to be winning an Oscar for writing or creating than being someone else. Costume design or art direction, that to me is the true art. The cream of all the Oscars to me, of course, is the one for writers. I would love to write a movie. I would love to see real people act out what I made with my fingers and mind. And I wouldn't even have to worry about that pesky fame, still get a big fat check and the opportunity to thank a bunch of people in front of the whole world who nobody has ever met and could get wasted at the after party without worrying about paparazzi,

I still have many dreams, but my childhood one still kind of exists: I would love to win an Oscar! Other people dream of retiring in Barbados, others want to open a restaurant, and I want to have enough time in my career to write a book or two, maybe make one of them a play or a movie, and one day win an Oscar for it. Then again, as awesome as that would be, I have at least 50 dreams I would rather come true before that one, one of them being the movie I write being a commercial success because I'd rather have lots of money than recognition from an academy I don't give a crap about, and not in the Leo DiCaprio way. So look out for me, my friends, on my way to the Oscar stage. But if you want to pray for me, pray that I will become a famous writer first, and I swear I'll mention you in my acceptance speech... and God, of course...