my tildelog

a blog about tildes

The fasting diaries

December 27, 2021 — ~tempate


Jorge left this morning. I got up a bit later and, after my usual procrastination, I went for a run. It was about zero degrees but the sun was out. If the sun is out – I run. It’s that simple. I then went on with my routine: I read, played the piano (second time), payed what I owed to the bike guy… the usual. I felt hungry at times but it was bearable.


This morning was hard. I had to grade presentations so I went to uni. The bike ride was dreadful: I was out of breath when I got there. I could feel the fatigue at the core of my being.


I have dreamt that I was with my father and brother at a bakery. There were sweets to taste and I took a few forgetting that I was fasting. I was oblivious to what I had done until we left the shop.

Yesternight I went to a pub with some friends. I was exhausted. My legs hurt and I could barely listen to them; my mind kept drifting away. I felt as if someone had soaked up all my energy, as if it had just vanished. The feeling is close to being sleep deprived – but not quite. I also remember freezing inside the pub: my friends were in their t-shirts while I had two sweaters on.

But today I’m much better. I have an empty stomach but it’s painless. My capacity has returned. I’m considering going for a run, but the road is packed with snow.


This morning I woke up at 5.30 because of the cold (it’s become impossible to sleep in my underpants). I had decided that I would eat today, so I prepared some miso soup. Cristian was also there breaking the fast. Two hours later I had a salad (lettuce, cheese, salmon, olive oil, and lemon). Bliss. Just fucking bliss. I started to sing and dance for no reason; the world made sense again. I had a final meal before I left: baked potatos with herring and bread. And yet I was still hungry.

Since I’m a fucking idiot I tried biking to uni. After two close calls I ended up sliding down the bridge like a curling stone. I was tempted to continue since I had already done the hardest part – but I didn’t (thank god).

The greasy hippo

December 27, 2021 — ~tempate

As a child my best friend was a hippo. There were two in my house, a mother and her son, who always stayed by the living-room’s door and held it open for us. They pretended to be statues to please my mother, but, as soon as she left the house to buy groceries or run errands, I would let them free. More precisely I would only release the son, since I was terrified the mother – huge and clumpsy – would break something.

I loved watching her son play, however. He would transform instantly after I untangled him from his steel dock. His metallic body, which I could hold in one hand, grew to the size of a dog; and his skin went from a shiny silver to a greasy and viscous purple. And then he would run; all around the house, like a madman, smelling everything on his way. He smelled carpets and chairs, coats, shoes, the whole lot.

I would let him go berserk for a bit, but after a while, afraid of my mother’s return, I would use a dirty sock – a stinky one preferably – to guide him back to his prison. And he would just go back to being a statue. A statue and nothing more.

My weakest week

June 24, 2021 — ~tempate

O never give the heart outright,
For they, for all smooth lips can say,
Have given their hearts up to the play.
And who could play it well enough
If deaf and dumb and blind with love?

Looking back, the worst week of my life was the week after my end-of-school trip. At first I was hesitant to go, I was convinced it was more expensive than it should and I didn’t want to either pay for it or ask my parents for the money. But after seeing all my friends were going, peer-pressure took over and I joined them at the last minute. My expectations turned out to be correct; all I remember now are the endless hours on the bus reading The God Delusion and Le tour du monde en 80 jours, and sneaking – with my friends – out of our teachers’ sight to get beer. The worst and best part about the trip – isn’t it funny how often in life the worst and best parts are the same? – was that I fell in love with my best – female – friend. We seated next to each other in class (we shared our last name) and we talked non-stop for the full trip.

When we got back home, not being able to withhold it any longer, I called her up and told her we needed to talk. I had been sleepless for the past 40 hours (one never sleeps the last night of a trip), so my memories are rusty. I do remember, however, the look on my mother’s face when I told her I was going out at 11:30pm. “You’re going to go see about a girl, aren’t you?” she asked; to which I chuckled and left.

After a tedious subway ride with three transfers, she met me at her door and we went for a walk. This was a long time ago, but I still remember almost everything. How she laughed as she checked out the book I was carrying (back then I never went outside without a book), how we chatted about the meaningless, mandatory topics, and how she finally asked me what I wanted to say to her. Embarrassed, I gave her the introvert’s default reply to a feeling-related question: “you already know.” We argued for a bit: you know vs I don’t know, but, after a while, I got tired of the game and heads up told her that I had a crush on her.

Next follows a dreadful cab ride. A trip with my parents to our beach house. Never-ending nights of waking up soaked in sweat after dreaming of her. A couple of hours of running every day to forget. And, worst of all, scrutinizing my watch every waking minute to check if enough time had passed since my last message to text her back. “Has anyone suffered as much as I’m suffering now?” I remember thinking.

God. If only I knew.

Growing up

June 24, 2021 — ~tempate

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same.

When I was 18 years old I thought I was special. I remember reading books about famous mathematicians and scientists and thinking to myself: “one day there will be a book about me!” I used to think that past loves would one day regret losing me, not because of what I gave to them, which, frankly, never was much, but because they would read an article on a newspaper talking about my accomplishments. How childish.

Growing up is tough; it implies coming to terms with the idea that you are by no means the chosen one, that you are just another human trying to get by. I know, I know, it sounds like I am a pessimist. I am not. Being anonymous is a relief; you succeed by being happy and enjoying life. There’s not much more to it. Life is a lot calmer when you don’t have to code 4 hours a day (because that’s what Bill Gates did) or stay awake another hour (because Leonardo da Vinci only slept 2 hours a night).

It’s an overall improvement. I can now cry, laugh and love. I can go to parties and sleep for 10 hours straight without any remorse. I can do what I enjoy and forget about being the best. I know that this mentality never got anyone far, but that’s not my point. If you truly go far, if you live your life to the fullest and become the best version of yourself, it will be invisible to others. True heroes despise recognition.

At the end of the day, what matters most is who you see when you look in the mirror.