It’s Personal, This Pet Grief

It’s Personal, This Pet Grief

Dear Stranger,


We used to be lovers and friends. You left very suddenly and didn’t even give a proper goodbye. No face to face. A text and radio silence. My silence wasn’t pure anger too; I was just stunned. Your words seemed to drip with disdain that I couldn’t hear or witness. And from that moment on, I kept on feeling everything of the past but most of all perplexed. I thought you were above responding to me with clichés everyone used to end things with someone else. You know what I mean, “I’ll always be there for you as a friend,” “it’s not you, it’s me.” Those sayings bother me because it downplays a moment I’m supposed to carry for the rest of my life. A lot of nights I grew furious, like my sadness was calling for help, to rip itself open and then uncontrollably spill guts out everywhere. I wanted to call and scream at you, especially for the week I was losing hair in the shower due to this. Your absence was like me getting stabbed in the shower in one of the most defining cinematic replays in history.

There was an idea that crossed me many times, from Eternal Sunshine on a Spotless Mind, in which one can erase all of his or her memories of someone else. I wanted my memory to be like fresh white paint, covering over the color and details of what used to be. I’m sure there will be no more surprises coming from you though, so all this really is, is just me trying to find resonation with music and films in accordance to my own mood and life. For instance, I found out that Karen O was actually crying in her music video “Maps” because her ex-boyfriend (lead singer of Liars) showed up 3 hours late to her shoot and she had to leave for tour the next day. I fell into listening to the Radio Dept.’s album, Pet Grief, which was full of soft synths and had short simple lyrics that were like my own flesh. I broke everything down to its most simple point because I valued simplicity and how we used to lie together so vulnerable and affectionate once. I can’t forget it. Even the songs and artists we listened to or talked about. Pet Shop Boys—you smoking a joint and dancing on your bed, Beach Fossils—you finally clicking with “Clash the Truth,” Aphex Twin—when you’d tell me how much he inspired your own music making. Every part sang the memories back, where we’d indirectly meet at a friend’s show in Brooklyn, to how I’d perceive what was coming next in my future.


Anyway, a lot of our own perception is bullshit. I learned this in my Consumer Behavior class this past spring. We’re all on something called a Hedonic Treadmill, always seeking more and perceiving things that don’t give us cognitive dissonance. We don’t like conflicting ideas and having no closure. Perception isn’t simply a passive system or a conduit to the brain. We are actively creating what we see. This made me think of how it’s like I’m writing my own script, yet I can’t forsee or know what’s going on completely. I have to go along with however life presents itself, record, and narrate. I can flip the monologue at anytime but not the plot. This love and pain is all coming from my perspective, as a creator. These perceptions might only be my version of the truth, but I know they will be a masterpiece someday. I will get there all because you helped.





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