Guess who?

It’s me. Back in less than three months yay. This time with a poem, too. (Scroll down.)

I forgot to tag the last post with anything because the new editor is weird and dumb.

I’m still recovering from June but I’m doing better. I’ve started applying for jobs and got the nicest rejection for the first one I applied to. It’s really hard to find anything in the area so I have to look for stuff further north.

I’ve also been working hard on my fantasy story but I’m a little tiny bit stuck now that I’ve hit 13K but it’s okay. I’m sure I’ll figure it out.

I don’t have much more to say. Next week I’ll be going to see the Lion King movie with some classmates, which should be fun, but that’s that. Life post-graduation is weird. I don’t know what to do with myself.

Also, my holiday got canceled so I’m sad.

Anyway, poem. My first one this year.


하루 하루

매일 매일

words sdrow

we puzzle

cut and glue

this place

that place

are you right


not wrong

where do you go

what order


choices choices

each deliberate

let inspiration flow



suddenly a sentence forms

meaning or gibberish

who decides

do you understand

what’s there to understand

one true meaning

or a thousand interpretations



what’s the point

who cares

why bother

they say music’s

the vaguest

text but who

decided words

were clearer




it’s all the


source of


show me yours





who am I



Finally free

Hello, it’s been over three months since I posted anything or even interacted with anyone on here and everything’s changed, including the editor and it’s confusing but I’m also still living in this fever dream that is thesis/post-thesis haze filled with stress and deadlines so my brain is not functioning as it should but today was the deadline at 4pm Dutch time and I handed it in on time (yesterday, can you believe it?) so I’ve actually had time to get the worst behind me and rest a little so now my brain is overactive and telling me to type and just talk to you all because why the fuck not, right? So here we are and I can’t promise good punctuation or even grammar and I hope I don’t sound like I’m writing an academic paper but I think writing my fantasy novel today has helped me write with contractions again so you all have this insane productivity to thank that you’re reading this at all. Or to blame, if you’re in pain reading this. I’m not really sorry though.

So I was supposed to work hard and get shit done on time but I’m me and I never learn so of course I wasted all of April and all of May and only started doing what needed doing in June. I researched and wrote an entire master thesis in three weeks (23.3K words). Am I human? Is this possible? Is this reality? I don’t know. Nothing makes sense anyway; just look at the world, the news, and think to yourself Can this be reality? I think the answer is no. But rather than wallow in sadness at the state of the earth and people’s selfishness (and crying a lot), I intend to ride this wave of euphoria until it vanishes and I crash but hopefully I’ll be on my way to France by then to enjoy my holiday and get away from everyone and everything. And maybe write a little. Or maybe not.

Also, also, also who is excited for Mario Maker 2? The first person to stream it and give me a notification was Simpleflips and he was doing a 24h stream that started at a decent hour (6pm-ish Dutch time) so I was v pleased and excited and I watched around dinner and until bed and then when I woke up he was still going at it. I will never know how streamers do it. I haven’t pulled an all-nighter since I think my first year at university (or my second year?) and love sleep and not having headaches too much to do that to myself. What streamers are you watching? I don’t own a Switch so I won’t be playing it myself (that shit’s hella expensive, I don’t have that kind of money) but that’s okay because I get insanely into games to the point where my heart skips a beat when I almost make the wrong move and that’s waaaaay too stressful to be a good hobby for me so I’ll stick to watching all my faves (RTGame, thabeast721, CallMeKevin, Harddrop, CarlSagan42, etc.), maybe branching out a little (I’ve been trying to watch nokduro and other Korean streamers but they talk so fast all I learnt was ddeoreopke, and even that with help from my language exchange partner. also I’m typing this on a laptop and doing Korean letters takes effort that I don’t wanna put in so just guess what I tried to say, please, just this once). The only console we ever owned is a Wii, not a Wii U, just a Wii, because my sister begged for it for her birthday but I’m glad we got it and it still works even though it’s been like a decade? I love playing Samba di Amigo but the thing is so bad I can’t get past a certain level because the thing doesn’t pick up on the yellow ones, even though I execute them p-e-r-f-e-c-t-l-y, or as perfectly as I could dream of executing it with my lack of talent in that area, so that’s sad 😦

Maybe, hopefully, I’ll actually write another poem or short piece to share with all of you but it’s just not been happening lately. Idk if that’s because I didn’t let it because I was so busy or because stress prevented it or because my focus and energy were all going to my novel or what but I hope to be able to start updating more regularly again. I had a nice three week thing going last year, completely unscheduled and accidental but still there, which I prefer to my current three month schedule which is also pretty random and uncontrolled but here we are. Idk, do you just want excerpts of longer pieces I’ve written? Some random thoughts I had that might be good or interesting, that might make it into a story someday? Or just for me to get my act together and do the thing I said I would? Wouldn’t that be nice?

Oh, the holiday I mentioned. I’ll be going to Bordeaux for the first time in my life (by train bc the environment) so if you know the place well (or have been once but made some great memories) and know some cool places that do not involve wine – I don’t like wine – or other alcohol I guess, feel free to let me know. I have no rigid schedule so I might be spontaneous and take a suggestion. Arcachon is definitely top of my list too so I’ll probably head there on the second day or so haha.

Also, reading. Know any good, inexpensive book boxes that ship to the Netherlands, don’t charge the impossible for shipping, and have an alternative method of payment that does not require a credit card because who the fuck has a credit card in this country when they don’t have a car please let me know. I ordered a few and they were not cheap but not over the top but I’m still waiting for two of them to arrive before I judge so yeah idk. I have been reading a lot these days. Obviously school stuff but also novels from my ever-growing tbr pile. I think I’ve almost read as many books this year as I’ve bought. I have like 12 more to go I think. I’ve also started reading ebooks on my phone. Free ones from Amazon because I don’t have a credit card (please, please make your books available on a different platform too, preferably Kobo, so I can actually spend my money and buy your books (if they appeal to me) without having to wait for you to decide to make them free for 24 or 72hrs) and a mix of free and paid-for from Kobo and free ones on an app called Vakantiebieb, which is free for Dutch people and includes a decent selection of kids books so download it for your babies so I’m pretty pleased with myself. Next on my list, however, is Cixin Liu’s Death’s End, which has 700+ pages of difficult, science-heavy scifi, brilliantly written. I am on page 28.

Finally, give a listen to Map of the Soul: Persona, Spinning Top: Between Security and Insecurity, Sleepless in __________, and Want (by Taemin) because they’re all SO GOOD. Also, Mamamoo. Their old stuff is wow jazz and their new stuff is just really good and fun so idk even if you hate all things pop give them a listen? they might surprise you.

I will be back in October at the latest… less than three months this time, with original fiction content so stick around, engage, and have a lovely summer. See you all next time.

I’m back

Look, I know it’s been three months and two days but I have returned. The format of these little blog posts remains the same so if you wish to skip the chatter, head over to the end for a little creativity.

So where have I been? In 2018 I’ve impressed myself by keeping somewhat of a schedule and a new post was due right when I hurt my ankle and couldn’t walk or do anything fun, right before Christmas holidays. I’ve sprained my ankle before and even broken it once or twice but recovery has never lasted quite this long. I’m still not fully functioning. The pain’s been enough of a distraction to keep me busy but I’ve also been stressed over school and work. I couldn’t really work (much) so my income was lower than usual but I’ve also still not received my January paycheck so my bosses are being dicks too. At least I’ve recovered enough to be able to work full shifts. A relief. As for school, I’m doing a one-year Master’s so I have to pass EVERYTHING this year or risk another delay, which I cannot afford so I’d have to drop out. Moreover, I’m back to thesis writing, only this time the length has doubled/tripled (from 8-10k to 20-24k).

I do feel better prepared this time. I really enjoy my topic and I feel like I’ve finally mastered all the skills they expected me to master, except time management perhaps – if I had the funds I’d go see a psychologist and ask about ADHD.

Initially, I was going to post something else yesterday but only one person read it and their feedback was bad so I’m holding onto it for now. Perhaps it’ll see the light of day but I think I need to look at it myself a few weeks from now to truly judge it properly. I’m also posting later than expected because my work canceled due to the heavy rain and wind, which has woken me at 6.30 this morning. I’m not a morning person so my brain’s been foggy all day and if anything in this post seems weird, I blame my lack of sleep. Also it’s carnaval here in the Netherlands so we’re on holiday for the week, which is why I’m extra salty about being woken so early. On the upside, I’m going to Prague with some classmates tomorrow and we’re staying until Sunday. Yassssssss.

If anyone has any recommendations about places to visit or foods to try in Prague, let me know!

Now, without further ado, “the story”:

Untitled (is anyone even surprised anymore?)

In the next train he found what he was looking for. Stuck between the seat and the small radiator was wedged a note, scrawled writing on a torn envelope that anyone could’ve mistaken for trash. Why they thought this was a good idea was beyond him. It was 2019; surely they had more efficient methods.

2215 clock tower 558489094 was written on it, or so he hoped because one mistake and he was done for.

The kids on the seats surrounding him gave him strange looks as he scuffled past them, note clutched in his hand, nervously looking around. Was this really a good idea? What did he have to lose if he chose to quit right here and now, if he just sat down next to these kids and continued the journey towards the train’s final destination, pretend he’d never seen the envelope? It wasn’t like they knew what he looked like anyway. He could just disappear into the crowd, go back to the wallflower he was used to being.

Except obviously he couldn’t or he wouldn’t be here in the first place. He’d been on the verge of killing himself when the stranger approached, handing him a cellphone and a bag of cash. He’d stepped down from the railing, leaving the Han river to flow uninterrupted. He’d been curious, eager to know what chance he’d been given. He still wasn’t sure what was about to go down but he was to deliver the package to that address if he wanted to make a change. If he didn’t they would probably kill him but he didn’t much mind. That had been his own plan all along.

He shoved the note in his pocket and walked decidedly to the exit. As the train came to a halt, he felt a hand on each shoulder. “Don’t make a sound,” he heard from his left. “Move along but keep your eyes on the ground,” was added on his right.

His heart skipped a beat as he did as he was told. He was dying to turn his head and identify the person beside him but something kept his gaze focused on the floor. He was led through the maze that was the station until they stepped into the cold autumn air. A tourist was singing along to Psy’s hit, a regular occurrence in Gangnam ever since the song gained worldwide popularity. He still didn’t dare look.

He awaited further instructions but it remained quiet. When a stranger bumped into him he noticed he was all alone. The note had disappeared from his pocket and the package he’d been carrying was gone too. This was not the clock tower, nor was it the allotted time for the exchange. He wondered what had happened and wanted to report the situation, explain himself, but he had no way of contacting anyone; the phone was gone too.

He thought about what he could do next but nothing came to mind. When he heard a screech from his left he looked up and saw a couple goofing around. All around him were people talking, laughing, enjoying the scenery. A girl was putting on some lip balm while a guy was holding her phone for her. A group of teenage boys was admiring a group of teenage girls from afar. The bright moon was surrounded by twinkling stars in a dark sky.

He took a deep breath and smelled the air. It was clean and fresh and he could feel his cheeks getting cold. He smiled to himself. Life still had its surprises. Perhaps it was worth sticking around a bit longer.

existential dread and optimism

December is going to be filled to the brim with activities so I figured I’d get this out there before I’m so swamped with work I won’t have time (and, knowing me, before I forget). I’m not sure where all this came from but any thoughts are appreciated. I hope you’ll all survive this winter. They are mighty dreadful.

Dialogue with Robin (forgive me for not having a real title for this)

“I hate days like this. The sun shining brightly, the scent of freshly mown grass, ice cream dripping down children’s hands, but most of all the laughter, all the fake smiles people put on to pretend they’re happy, they’re having fun in this miserable existence.”

“They’re not fake. You just can’t comprehend that people could be so happy, so carefree because it’s so foreign to you. You think because you have to fake it, others do too. But guess what. Your experiences aren’t universal. None are.”

“They are unlike my own experiences, I’ll give you that. But as Tolstoy said: all unhappy families are unhappy in their own way. I’m not saying they have the same reasons for hating existence; just that they’re faking it because society conditioned us to put up this front, to never show sadness or anxiety. To be honest about our feelings, about our intentions and thoughts and motivations, that requires unlearning what we’ve been taught, what has been drilled into us from day one. People hate to see sadness, true sadness. We all hate the sound of a baby crying and do everything to get it to laugh. Why? Because we can’t handle facing the pain of existence. And so these babies are taught to smile because smiling and laughing means the weird grownups will stop making odd faces and scaring them.”

“You’re universalising your own experiences. How can you claim to be empathising when your understanding of people is based on the conception that everyone has the same motivations in life, that everyone thinks the same way? You’ll never understand human beings if you continue to push them all into the same mould. Some people don’t fit, and never will. The world’s bigger than you and me, you know.”

“You’re not hearing what I’m saying. While our experiences differ to an extent, there is such a thing as human nature. There is an inherent part in all of us that responds to these things, that we’ve trained to respond a certain way, to appear normal, whatever that means. We’ve repressed it for so long, focused on trying to be positive, optimistic, to see beauty in this world, but now that everything’s crumbling we can’t escape its return. We will all have to face it eventually. Days like this will become exceedingly rare until they’ll have disappeared altogether. Only then will we stand a chance against life, against society, against all the lies we’ve told ourselves all these years.”

“You’re crazy. What kind of weird conspiracy theory did you read up on to be spewing all this nonsense? What happened to the Robin I once knew? It’s fine if you think this way – I’m not going to police your thoughts – but why ruin everyone else’s day with your pessimistic bullshit? Aren’t we allowed to be happy, to enjoy life? Do we all have to be miserable just because you are? I love you but you’re a right dick, you know that?”

Robin laughed. “I know.”

But was it a real laugh?

fun times at university

When I get frustrated, it’s often because I don’t understand something or am misunderstood myself. Yesterday was a culmination of both. For class I had to read Eric Hobsbawm’s text on Invented Traditions (forgive me for not looking up what it’s called), then discuss it with my classmates and the professor in class next day. The text itself isn’t horrible per se but it is quite vague when the main point he seems to be making is “there’s this phenomenon taking place in the 19th century that hasn’t been studied enough; get on it” yet for some reason he needs 60 pages to say this, inventing his own terminology in the process.

The main question we asked was what invented traditions are and how they differ from ordinary traditions. Yet no matter what everyone answered, there was no clear difference. So I kept asking because I was dissatisfied with the answer because it didn’t answer the question. However, the more we discussed the further we strayed and the more questions I asked the fewer were answered. My classmates, and even my professor, might have thought they were answering my questions but really they were rehashing things I already understood and agreed with. I don’t think they purposely misunderstood but it is frustrating that I still don’t get what the hell invented traditions are and why he didn’t just focus on the important things instead.

That’s how I ended up crying in class. Fun times. Then as icing on the cake, one of my classmates “reassured” me by telling me the text was “very intellectually challenging” so it only made sense I wouldn’t understand. Thanks, girl. Truly helpful. Instant raise in confidence. What’s worse is how nice and cool she seemed before yet the moment I opened up to her she was like “uhhhhh bye”. It’s sad. How are we ever to learn to open up and speak up about who we are and what we value when the moment we do there’s some person who will tear us down? Does she realise how hard it was to open up at all? How hard it was to trust her? And the way she said it, so sickly sweet and “understanding” or “empathetic” as if she was some kind of saint for acknowledging and finding a reason for my struggles.

Needless to say I am done with her and anyone else who thinks it’s okay to say these kinds of things. Silence would have been a much better choice. Why don’t people know when to shut up?

But the worst thing is that a few hours later I found out I failed my first class with a shockingly low 4,5 (which is lower than any grade I’ve ever received at university before) so I’m starting to think she might’ve been right. My confidence was finally up after graduating from my bachelor’s degree after all that time but then it only took this one day to push me back down.

I keep coming back to this one factor, to this same story, whenever I think about academia and that is my way of thinking. It doesn’t match other people’s. We read the same texts and while they do get some different things from them, because they’re a diverse group of individuals with unique backgrounds and life experiences, somehow they still end up thinking in the same direction, or at least following the same trail of thought, whereas I am left with conclusions an ocean away, seemingly drawn out of the blue when I mention them.

And when I ask questions I get these looks, as if I’m asking something crazy or ridiculous or obvious. Either I’m the village lunatic who doesn’t comprehend the world and anything in it or I am the ignorant child who doesn’t understand the basics you learn in elementary school. So tell me: how am I supposed to improve if asking questions is ridiculed? And why are only my questions ridiculed when other people ask far stranger and more obvious ones? Why me? What’s wrong with me that I can’t think the way they do? Am I really that different? Or is it them? Are they simply unable to burst out of their safe little bubble and see what’s out there, all the possibilities? I don’t know and I don’t get it.

I am so tempted to call my GP again and ask her to refer me to a psychologist to check what the hell is wrong with me but then I’m reminded of last time I tried and how she basically ignored my request and suicidal me was left with no one and a complete lack of trust in any doctor out there. I reached out to her last January, had a breakdown in her office, and asked her to refer me to a mental health professional, and she said “sure, I’ll call you” except she never did. I’ve seen her a few times since and she never even brought it up again. You would expect a doctor to understand that reaching out and seeking help is hard so she should be on top of things. There is no way in hell I could bring it up again myself, not after the first time. It was hard enough doing it, but getting ignored or forgotten like that really doesn’t do your image of self-worth any good. If even doctors don’t give a fuck whether you live or die, where can you turn?

And now winter’s coming again, the time when it gets dark at 5pm or earlier and everything dies. The time it’s nigh impossible to get warm, the time we celebrate stupid things just to feel less alone. And my birthday is coming up next week, which I am not looking forward to, not because I hate getting older because I actually appreciate having survived another year but because it’s always been the loneliest time, because friends always cancelled in favour of something else, because only my closest family cared to spend time with me.

So yeah, this is a bit of a pity party but it’s also all these buried feelings resurfacing, old wounds being scratched open, getting salt poured into them once more, because nothing got better with time. Everything still sucks. Nothing that needed to change has. I have tried so hard to become a better person but apparently I’m just not likeable, not someone who should be heard, not someone that can be noticed. And I don’t know what to do because I just can’t seem to make any meaningful connections. Is it me? Am I the problem here?

You know, I just finished reading Arthur Japin’s Vaslav the other day and while I could strongly relate to Peter, what worries me is how much of myself I see in his portrayals of Nietzsche and Nijinski, both of whom went crazy in the end. So I don’t know whether to take their path and just love people regardless of who they are or how they see me or if I should do the opposite, start living life for me and me alone, attempt to stop caring about people who are “unworthy”, whatever that means. I just don’t know. But I am done crying over this. People can suck all they want, they don’t deserve my tears. I’ll try to do my thing, write some books and some more poetry and just surround myself with good people, even if I have to resort to old videos online because they died or are far away.

Oh and if I fail the resit of this class I failed, I will have to drop out and redo the whole year next year. Not gonna do that. I decide this is going to be my last year at this university. If I fail, I’m dropping out for good. I will either find something else to study elsewhere or I’ll start looking for a better job but I am not restarting this programme next year if I fail. I said so last night and my mum agreed so it’s decided.

I did remember the advice my mum’s weird friend gave me last week at a party we threw. She told me I should write down everything I like and then see what jobs might come out. I did. It made me feel a bit better. I ended up with 10 potential jobs, and only a few of those are ridiculous but they had to be written down. I got author, translator, embassy (worker), travel guide, English teacher (abroad, though I hate teaching but being elsewhere would help a lot), poet, content creator (intentionally vague), world leader, monarch (I’m sure this is the most realistic option here but it might be too easy so I’ll leave it on the backburner for now and focus on something that would take a little more effort on my end).

I’m sure after this shitfest of feelings you’re all super stoked to read more stuff I wrote. Here goes.

Another time, another era

When he painted he was free. This was something he’d known from the moment he dipped his fat finger in the little jar of paint as a toddler in pre-school. Nowadays he used brushes and sponges and other tools but every once in a while a painting called for some finger action that he was always happy to provide.

He took a step back and observed his creation. He’d started on a portrait but somewhere halfway through he abandoned the idea. The result was an abstract work with many bright colours, yet it had something sinister, as if the paint was about to melt and something dark would appear from behind it, something that remained hidden, that should remain hidden.

It was his heartbreak. Ever since that summer his paintings had a haunting quality, seeming cheerful but feeling rather sinister the more you observed them. He wasn’t sure how others experienced them – he refused to read the reviews – but every time he looked at his work he got scared all over again.

She was there beside him, always, to comfort him if he needed it. She saw through his happy façade and pushed him forward when all he wanted was to look back and remember those blissful days.

She understood. Her own girlfriend had abandoned her in favour of a loveless but conventional marriage to a man of decent standing, some banker who would spoil her and satisfy her family. What could she have expected? Women were not allowed to be together like that, she knew that, yet she couldn’t help her rapidly beating heart, the warmth that gathered in her chest at the sight of those crimson lips, that soft jaw, that sharp nose. Johanna. She was in love.

He could sense her sadness, her longing, as it mirrored his own. It was kind of pathetic, how much they had given only to have it all thrown back in their faces, to see the resentment in their lovers’ eyes.

“You seduced me,” Markus had spit at him as if their moments together had meant nothing. “I never would’ve strayed without you.” His usually warm eyes now seemed icy, all tenderness long gone.

“I wish we’d never met.”

It was too much to bear. He dropped down on his knees and let his tears flow freely. Why had he left? Were they not in this together? The new legislation had even decriminalised sodomy; things were finally looking up. Why now?

It was getting hard to breathe. He curled forward and slammed the floor with his fists. Why wasn’t he good enough? Wasn’t love enough?

He started to shiver. If only he’d been born a woman. If only…

He couldn’t finish his thought. Would things be better in the future? If he’d been born a hundred years from now, would they have been able to lead a quiet life? Why was it so wrong for him to love a man?

She found him like that an hour later. She looked at the envelope in her hand once more, then at him, then back at the envelope. It was pretty, his name written in ornate golden writing. She put it away. There was no reason to hurt him more. He would read about it in the newspaper tomorrow anyway.

She kneeled down and hugged his limp form. If only she hadn’t introduced Johanna and Markus.

Happy Halloween?

Halloween wasn’t really a thing here until a few years ago. The standard candy-getting holiday here was Sint Maarten (Nov 11th) and the standard dress-up holiday was Carnaval (5 days, ending on Ash Wednesday, I think) but I guess US culture is seeping in. I wasn’t initially going to do anything but then I realised I hadn’t posted in a while and I do have a short piece ready that’s a little too creepy to post any other day so here we are.

October was alright, not as hectic as September so I actually had time to recover. Unfortunately November is going to be September-like, though December should be October-like, schedule-wise. Hopefully my planned trip to Milan with my sister will be enough to keep me going through all the stress.

When skies cry

When the rain stopped, he went inside. His hair was dripping wet, leaving drops on the floor. His body shook, the cold having made its way to his bones. No fire could heat up the kind of cold he felt in his heart though.

None of it mattered anymore. The only reason he kept himself alive was so he could prolong the torment. He couldn’t end his own suffering, nor did he want to. He deserved so much worse.

It didn’t matter what society decided either. He was a vile specimen that never should’ve seen the light of day.

He lit the fire anyway and slowly undressed. By the time he was naked the fire was ablaze. Without a moment of hesitation he stepped into the flames. How long would he be able to last this time?

All the wetness evaporated, leaving him to endure the heat. Even the pain didn’t pierce his stone-cold heart. He wanted to scream but he couldn’t allow himself to. When the heat became too much to handle, he endured some more.

Finally he stepped out from the flames and fell to the floor. Everything hurt like hell, literally.

No one would come to his rescue. They didn’t last time and they wouldn’t now. He was all alone here.

His burnt skin stuck to the floor as if glued. He’d lasted so much longer this time. Would he recover from these wounds? He didn’t doubt it for a second. Still, the sight of him must be even more gruesome than before. They deserved it though, just as much as he did.

He’d vowed never to hurt another person again so he couldn’t make them pay the way his heart desired but he could torture them with his visage. Soon they’d all be dead anyway. It was only a matter of time.


Am I the only one who thinks Korean and Arabic have a similar sound? They’re both really pleasing to my ears but it goes further than that. Back when I was even worse at Korean than I am now, I would occasionally mistake the two. Nowadays that no longer happens but I still see similarities. Perhaps one day I’ll attempt learning Arabic too.

Lately I’ve been struggling to write anything at all but I couldn’t really pinpoint why. I’m still not sure but my best guess would be stress. My life is currently filled with so many activities I feel like I’m heading into an abyss. I don’t want to relapse from stress. I’m not sure how I’m going to approach this problem yet but at least I managed to write a little snippet today.


In this reason to believe me I have found myself.

In this darkness that surrounds me I am just myself.

In solitude, without you here, I can hardly breathe.

In this ocean of forgiveness I learn to live with that.

Let my faults be faults

Let my dreams be dreams

I reconcile with myself.

And perhaps some day

In a year or so

I’ll accept your apology.