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Photo by Jeffery Erhunse on Unsplash

A Moment In Time

Brief, Quiet Thoughts on the Lonely Weight of Choice, Culture, and Time.

Writing often pulls from places we’d rather not deal with. In the quiet morning, left with the hum of an overzealous G.P.U, editing allows room to wipe off temptations on the screen. Things we’d rather not say. Angry mutterings. Shameful desires and acceptances.

But before the editing. Before the distractions of duty and other humans, there is the moment when the haze isn’t very clear — just enough for fear to scratch the surface.

It’s not a full-blown wreckage with regret and debilitating freeze. This fear is background music, it accomplies the day, the life. The fear, early in the morning, has form to it. It doesn’t want to be ignored, nor does it prefer to be called out. The overzealous hum punctuates it enough to keep dragging us back to the reality of our current state — alone, with a screen.

Alone without words.

Without ever leaving your birth country, you cannot accept the differences in cultures. That, of course, is obvious to see. Snow. Melanin. Technology. Culture is the sum of all, and the visual manifestation of cultures travels without a plane.

Travel with a plane though, shoots you deep into a virtual world, the type that weighs on a VR set strapped tightly across your forehead.

You’re still you. You’re still your history. Often, you’re still. You watch the world pass you by, the new roles, like an RPG you have to rack it up: bills, taxes, car, job, relationship status.

The most important sign that you’re not where or who you thought you were happens in those quiet mornings. It happens in the journal entries, the one no one should ever read.

The tear droplets, the insidious thoughts. The wishes and temptations.

The culture clash is reinforced with the news, the reads, the books.

But of all these, of all the stark reminders that you are no longer who and where you were, it’s the moment in time when fear drags in regret in just enough doses for you to feel relief.

How is that even possible? How can wanting to go back relieve clouds from a foggy reality?

It’s the humanity of it. The base human acceptance that the dreams of the culture, and the virtual reality whence painted is finally losing its lustre.

It’s the embrace of quiet, cold reality that everywhere is the same and all that changes is us.

No two people move for the same reason. At a universal level, no choice is made, for similar reasons. Sadly, we almost have to blanket all reason just so that we can move forward — we rush to reasons that seem practical. We are in a hurry to live. A hurry to die.

So we hurry through time, never pausing for those mornings.

Instead, it’s the weight of a heartbreak, a job loss, a health scare, a racist event that thrusts us into reflection. A quiet, lonely desperate call from our soul to simply be present.

It’s the mornings we realize how misunderstood we all are. How afraid. How fear and regret have now spawned thought patterns that would not allow the necessary loneliness to shine.

Must watch TV. Must make money. Cannot fail family. Must be a good husband.

Must…

The quiet desperation no one sees because our VR sets are all on and thriving — the culture must win.

But we are the culture.

Or are we?

What we’re building for posterity, for ourselves, for the IRS, for our family back home, aren’t we building the culture? Ourselves?

Are we the culture?

“We the people”

If we can all make decisions that can push us forward in time, in achievement — this means we can do the reverse. We can start the drip that drowns the senses. The spark that spawns the war. Our duality is inevitable — our lonely community and our large individual dreams.

The G.P.U hum is a call to reality. To a morning well-spent. One in thought. One in uncertainty. One away from advertising and influence. It’s a moment in time to consider things — to allow confusion and appreciate the humanity of not knowing.

We need this moment. Time is all we have. Choices are just moments in time, quiet picks of destiny, ripples to be felt in centuries — or never.

It’s the fear that what we do today will last forever.

And also that it might never matter.

What to do with these moments in time? Freeze them? Ignore? Drown with consumption? Face the dark depths and the culture clash?

No one can decide for the other. The same way death is personal, life can be.

Will it matter in 100 years?

Or yet another moment in time. A history page for the culture.

Written by

Cameroonian writer and video creator. Featured in LEVEL and P.S. I Love You. I write about building relationships and personal transformation.

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