I know it’s a harsh term, “Euro-trash,” but I use it moreso to illustrate than to condemn. Goa’s tourist base, best generalized, is probably 90 or so percent European hippy/trance types of all ages. These are the people who’ve acquired success in life by learning how to enjoy it, as oppossed to people like me, who tend to A) perceive success as an end to itself, quite secondary to happiness, and B) measure success through hard work and accomplishment. Though I’m hoping I’ll take much of the former “Euro-Trash” sensibilities back home with me, I’ve come to realize that the latter philosophies will always dictate my fundamental personality. I contemplate what I’d look like as a person focused mostly on pleasure, lying out on the beach or frequenting trance-parties, smoking cigarettes, drinking and using drugs for no other purpose but to “feel good,” an expert at “relaxing” and “letting things come when they come.” My ability to visualize myself this way is peculiarly limited. It’s exterior only— though I can visualize myself there on the beach, basic dimensions of real life have been abstracted wholesale, amputated. When I try to contemplate this person’s thoughts and character, I see, at first, nothing. When I attempt to pry my way inside the image-as a viewer might investigate the interior life of some “great” painting hanging in a prized gallery-I can only withstand faint, foreboding senses for the painting’s raison d’etre, fleeting as the tolerance of one who holds his hand over a flame tip. Walk away. You don’t want to see this, the painting seems to whisper. Ignorning the warning, I keep looking, searching it for life, goading it on unwisely until… I glimpse it, just for a second, and God is it fucking awful. Behind the image, a soul frozen in life-threatening panic, screaming like an unrepentant sinner who’s found himself in blasphemous devotion to that which is other than the production and suffering of art. It’s a vision of unsustainable terror and hence, nonsense, for the subject could never exist beyond the art that confines him.