there is so much i just don't understand.

america, you make me ill.

i feel defeated, i feel like the world has been defeated. i feel like so much is going to be a waste, to go backwards from here. my dad says that bush can't afford to run the country for the next four years like he has for the past four, but i say it's just the opposite, that now he has nothing left to lose. four years is a looooong time. too long. too damned long.

thanks to helenjane for leading me to american coastopia. i'll be moving there shortly.

not long ago, my roommate got frustrated with me because i told her that americans just take everything, every single moment of their days, for granted. she said i was being hyperbolic, making ridiculous generalizations that had no serious reasoning behind them. but that's not true--she discounted me. i may be young, and i may not be the most intelligent person out there, but i'd like to think that i am relatively observant, and i've been lucky to have quite a range of experiences up until now.

we had this argument one morning when, for some reason, i was telling her about how awful it was to ride the crowded buses in florence. first, i'd end up waiting forty or fifty minutes for a bus that was supposed to come every fifteen minutes. then, i'd get onto the most crowded bus i'd ever seen, because, as it turned out, i wasn't the only one waiting all of that time for the bus. so, in an effort to protect myself from pickpocketers, i'd hold my bag in front of me, clutching it to my body. that only cleared the way for some disgusting old man to come stand AS CLOSE AS POSSIBLE to my behind. add some grumbing old ladies and permanently shut windows to the equation, and you've pretty much summed up italian buses. so, the choice becomes: do i want to continue being molested (and i really mean molested, even though i am not spelling it out here) by this gross dude, or do i want to put my purse between us and risk getting robbed? i can't scream out, because who would do anything about it? certainly not the completely apathetic driver or the senile ladies standing next to me. i can't tell him to stop, because he will deny it. plus, i am afraid that my accent will give me away. i can only sigh loudly, and glare glare glare. but i'll be damned if that has a chance of doing anything.

my roommate was confused. i'm not exactly un-assertive. she wondered why i didn't DO anything. but really, there was nothing to do.

here, it's another story. it's normal to yell at people who are in your personal space. there is no concept of personal space there. there's not much of a concept of personal rights, either. americans have this incredible sense of entitlement that people everywhere else in the world--where the majority of people seem to simply feel the extraordinary weight of futility--find incredibly arrogant and even confusing.

the awful thing is that i'm talking about italy. not iran, where things can be just as bad and even a hundred times worse. not pakistan. not mexico. not a third world country. i'm talking about western europe here.

now, i've just veered off in a direction i am unsure of. but i am sick of being surrounded people who just expect everything from the world. when are people going to learn that it's hard? that you have to earn what you want, what you need, even? when are people going to stop voting to hoard their own money? when are people going to realize that we have to work together to make things work? that sometimes you have to sacrifice a little of your own comfort to make a lot of other people a lot more comfortable?

apparently, not now. probably, not ever. when all of these people have clearly decided, saying "i am more important than anyone else, and who cares if what i want is going to turn this world to shit as long as it helps me and my bank account? and hey, i can relate to that guy, the one who speaks like a dumbass, like me, who wears cowboy boots, like me, who is poor-mannered and selfish, like me, so i'm going to go with him," well, then, there's not much left for me to say in the way of hope, is there?

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