Monday, October 21, 2013

Yes You Can, part 3

In a way, I've grown old before my time. When this statement comes up in my mind or out through my lips or keystrokes, I then need to remind myself that I am, in fact, still a young man.

Before I go any further, let me preface this piece with this statement: I am a young man.

Some recent goings-on in my life have led me to these thoughts. Yes, the conversation a few weeks ago with Chris and Roxxi and Mark. And I have not forgotten Chris's story or how and why it should be written down. Overlay this with my current living situation and work situation and the added bonus that yes, this is what I'm doing, but not who I am.

The current situation: we live in a small municipality in south-east central Denver called Glendale. The only real upshot to it is the Cherry Creek bicycle trail that I use to commute to work. Although there are many downsides to where we live, the biggest one has to be the neighbors.

I've learned a thing or two about people. I've learned over the years that most people understand consideration and decorum, and that most tend to ignore it. I've also learned that despite all outward appearances and shared human traits, not everyone is created equal. I've also learned that those who chose to shout or talk in loud voices seldom have anything of value to say.

Please do not brand me a misanthrope. Do not consider me a sociopath. These things are not me. Let's just say that I'm an introvert and I'm forced, day-in and day-out to mix with people and that I find very-very tiring.

The work situation: I'm working several shifts a week in a restaurant downtown. The upshot of this is the 5 mile bike commute to work and the 5 mile ride back. The long and short of it is this—if you have a business open to the general public, well, that's what you get. And if you really want to see exactly how fucking stupid first world problems can be, go get a job in a restaurant. This is the place where petty grievances and vacuous entitlement become matters of life and death. Again, this could be me, probably is, after all I am an introvert and I'm corralled up with others day and night.

And it comes to this, as of late I'm become very underwhelmed with the people I meet. I find myself challenging the general mood of the entire society. What the fuck are we doing? Why is everyone glued to a smartphone, a TV or some sort of glowing box? Why does everyone seem sedated, tuned out or turned off? Why are these petty grievances so many and the serious complaints so few? And furthermore, why aren't more people simply saying “Fuck you” to the man (whoever he or she is) and dropping out. Why aren't we collectively fucking they system?

Three things here: 1) I am gen-x. 2) I am still apathetic to 99.99% of the bullshit out three. AND 3) Above all, I'm still idealistic.

I feel like the idealism is here because deep down, I still believe that all of us can and should do something beautiful and fruitful. I am still idealistic because I believe all of us can settle the score, settle our affairs and kindly ask to get off the ride called the daily grind. I am idealistic because the world is and has and will continue to go straight to hell. I'm still idealistic (and a bit apathetic) enough to realize we can do nothing about it. And lastly, I'm still idealistic enough to see the best way to fuck the system is to stop participating in it. This is how it's done:

  1. Pay off all your debts.
  2. Eliminate all your expenses.
  3. Anything that sucks your time should be cut out like cancer.
  4. Don't listen to anyone who contradicts the inner voice.
  5. Avoid highly organized things—they will probably lead to groupthink.
  6. Reclaim your time.
  7. Read, make art and think.
  8. Make more art.
  9. Make more art.
  10. Make more art. Soon you will see no other what than this. Make your art edgy. Make it shocking. Make it real. Make it uncomfortable to the normal people who cannot leave the petty grievances or the system behind.
    Imagine a world—or a country—or a city where everyone paid off their debts, eliminated all expenses and dedicated their time to art. This would bring about the collapse of the world we know. Makes you wonder what would spring up in it's place?    

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