The idea that nothing is in fact pure seamlessness from beginning to end fascinates me a lot these days. It has taken up most of my thinking space as I begun to contemplate on the working gears of the mundane everyday things. The fact that behind everything seemingly polished is some sort of a working system engineered to run it puts me at ease knowing that to achieve a kind of smoothness and ease, there must be something hard at work backstage. That in order for something to look that seamless, some dirty and difficult job had to be done to ensure its smooth-running. It tells me groundwork is important. It is the foundation that will determine something’s greatness.
Just like what you would observe on a construction site: the engineers, architects and construction workers are the main people that truly understand the importance of strong foundations. In fact I was just observing a construction site today. A crane was installing a beam 20 metres underground. The project is for a mall. Oh but of course. Anyway, once completed, the commercial building will look so polished, one would not have guessed about 200 days ago it was only just a muddy swamp.
I’ve been watching two things on Netflix- World’s Most Extraordinary Homes and Amazing Interiors. Do you sense a theme here or is it too early to guess it? If you asked 12-year old Yasmin what she wanted to be when she became older, she only had one answer and that was to be an architect. She was always so fascinated with the model buildings that were displayed at property showrooms and exhibited in malls. Of course at that time she didn’t know that this appreciation reflected some deeper meaning, all she thought was how amazing is this elaborate dollhouse! I could totally come up with something like this! Just some cut out cardboard for the building, cling wrap for the glass windows, aluminium foil for the shiny streetlights… a good year-end project.
I guess along the way I thought of just how beautiful intricate things are. I like the elaborate (not gaudy), the details (not the clutter) the signs of life (not of negligence or wear and tear). I find grey hair and smile lines beautiful, for God’s sake! I LOVE throws (those blankets you throw on couches, you know) and mismatched rugs of all shapes and sizes in homes. I like some clutter, some disorder in orderly things. This made me think, if I were to actually like polished, seamless and minimalist designs, it is only because somewhere in my mind I’ve already reconciled the two ideas of hating the masking of details, and appreciating processes. Because I like to see where work has been done. Ask my friends who have gotten new pairs of sneakers in their time with me, I was always asking them if I could be the first to ruin them! (Who else hates the look of new sneakers?! I can’t be the only one who likes seeing some wear in them, haha).
Anywho, back to the topic at hand. I’m surprised at how much introspection I’ve done on the processes of things lately because of the work I’m doing at work (out of the two, this one’s with a capital ‘W’- does that make sense?). I’m writing stories for children at the moment, and at one point I realized that although I thought I’ve always been good at it, it also takes some back-breaking effort to appear naturally good at something without showing some sort of hiccup somewhere along the journey. It hit me as I’m doing the usual edits and proofreading to my stories. They’re nowhere near perfect, but I mean I always expect too much of myself anyway.
Sometimes I’m not sure where my reflection(s) lead to, and I realize this is my problem: I’m not good at writing or coming to Resolutions for that matter. I always end my blogposts and poems abruptly, I’m not good at goodbyes and farewells. I’m that awkward turtle when it comes to concluding something because for me, it’s like “ok we’re done, kthanksbye, keep in touch. *awkward silence* Bye again.” Well if you look at the greater plot of Life, we’ve yet to reach the end- we’re always in some sort of conflict or rising action. Sometimes a number of them at a time! Is that perhaps why I’m bad at that component of the narrative flow? But that would mean that everyone else too has that same issue! Maybe that’s why we often disagree on movie or novel endings! Everyone has different preferences. But I’m sure there was something I was trying to get at, but for now I can say that realizing that I appreciate processes now makes me more merciful and sympathetic towards hiccups in our everyday encounters with systems. I am less upset, more understanding and *ooh I hate this word that I’m about to type, here goes nothing..* …positive. I also know for a fact that to achieve success, one has to get their hands in the dirt. And that is what keeps me going. My hands are still in the dirt, so I’m not about done yet.