I lost my wallet and passport somewhere between home and the complete opposite end of the city last night. My wallet contained all of my credit cards, my driving license, my Norwegian and Swedish and Danish IDs, my university student card, about 800 kroner, and a picture of my deceased brother at age seven. The whole affair has made me more than a little bit stroppy, as I'm sure you can imagine, but I won't bother recounting it all because a) there's no real way to convey blind panic, and b) who wants to read about my situational frustration? Nobody, I would think. I know that you all came here to read my pseudo-philosophical waxings, so that's what I'll deliver. Please, dear reader, be patient.
I find it a little disconcerting that without a few pieces of paper or plastic with my photo on them and stamped with numbers and filed away in an office somewhere, I am nobody. When did the world at large become such an unweidly bureaucracy that a picture of a person is more legitiamate than the person himself? What's worse is that I've now finally confirmed my status as some sort of a parasite.
I've been around for twenty-three years. I never asked to exist, it just kind of happened (quite rudely, as it were), and the world and I are still trying to sort things out with each other. It's let me live in sound physical health, which I suppose is the extent of its generosity, but in return I do nothing for it. I consume just as much of its precious resources as someone of far greater value than me, or perhaps even more, considering the exorbitant costs of living on this part of the continent and my own rather expensive personal upkeep.
This was marginally excusable back when I was Søren Trygve Kjetland Rask of Grünerløkka, Oslo, Norway, current resident of Amager, 2300 Copenhagen S, age 23, son of Anna Nordqvist and Magnus Rådevik, hair colour: blond, eye colour: blue, account holder with Nordea since 1999, undergraduate in the faculty of humanities at Copenhagen University, frequent flyer with SAS and Air Canada, owner of a green 2001 VW Lupo, and everything else on those precious little documents in my wallet, declaring that I am a real boy.
But now that the quintessence of this Søren Rask person has vanished into oblivion, I- a weird sort of isotope version of the guy who existed in these missing papers and cards -am not in the least bit justified in depriving others- real people -of food and water and money other luxuries like air to breathe and living space.
One would think that to disappear completely as far as the rest of the world is concerned would at least, as a silver lining, mean a comparative decrease in obligations. But no. I've still got to wake up in the mornings and go to class and pay taxes and register for a national ID number and pretend I'm an upstanding member of the society I was just erased from.
Life as a simulacrum really, really hurts. Where are you, God? Where the bloody hell are you?
I decided that the quickest and healthiest way to annul these feelings of anonymity and alienation is to go outside and get some fresh air, a process which entails snorting a few lines of pulverised Zoloft and chain-smoking like a French chimney. For a moment it worked. For a split second, the buzzing in my nerves was calmed to a dull hum.
Then my mobile rang. It was a friend of mine who moved to Tokyo recently, calling from a phone box to greet me from the Land of the Rising Sun. I hadn't seen him since May and was relieved that he made it to the Japans in one piece and had even thought to call me, of all possible people to call. I'd been on the line for about five minutes or so when my mobile- which I had disengaged from the charger right before I'd gone outside -decided to die without warning. Just like that, in the middle of conversation. It died. On a fresh battery. My only link to the outside world, and it's gone.
I'm wondering now what the next few days have in store as far as shit luck goes. Maybe cancer. Maybe hepatitis. Maybe some cringeworthy embarrassment in front of a large group of people I sort of know, but not very well. Maybe I will be mauled by angry shoppers.
Whatever can go wrong does, and it usually happens to me. I am officially Circumstance's favourite rape victim.