||anatomy of a ghost
I don't think I know anyone my age who doesn't want to be somebody. It's almost implied these days. We are told time and time again that if we only want something bad enough, we will get it, and all we have to do is chase our dreams in order to catch up with them. Now I'm not so sure. I can't help thinking that maybe, just maybe, my generation has expectations beyond it's capabilities. Don't get me wrong - I'm still way too young to be disillusioned, but perhaps we are looking for the wrong things.
I was always told that if I didn't like something, I shouldn't be doing it at all. I should quit and do what I like.
"So ya like writing, eh? Then why are you sitting behind a fucking desk? Get out! Go write something! Get famous!"
I think of this every day wherever I am, while I'm staring at a wall, wanting to leave. But I can't leave.. I can't run away like the whiny idealist I've been raised to be. This is what I chose because I had to, not because I wanted to. The job I never plan to end up in. Or the school I never plan to stay in. No, no, I am destined for better things, or so I have been told.
This sense of fate, of better things, has been hanging over our heads since birth. No one questions it anymore. We are all, every last one of us, doctors, lawyers, writers of bestsellers, passionate well-paid artists, "somebody" by the age of 23, and if we don't turn out that way, well, we just didn't want it enough, did we?
I think it is time for us to realize that if we really want to get as far as we plan to, we are all going to have to get dirty. If we think that we can walk fresh out of school and dazzle the world with our talent in the blink of an eye, we have all been sadly misinformed. Personally, I see a future of waitering, of cleaning toilets, of "would you like fries with that" before I get to the good stuff. And the good stuff may be small potatoes compared to what I expected when I was younger. I am prepared for this. I will do what I have to and I will not pretend to like it, because I have come to believe that if you love something with all of your heart, if you dream about it with a fire that will never go out, this is no guarantee that you will ever be "somebody." But, if you really do love it, it is a guarantee that when the small things come your way, even if they won't change the fact that you're broke or tired or eating leftover Kraft Dinner for breakfast every day, they will be enough to make you truly happy.
There. I said it. Please don't hit me, this is a good thing.
Who the fuck am I kidding.
I get lost on a regular basis.
I have no sense of direction, but I'm still going somewhere.
It would be easy to just point myself towards the west. To get on a bus or a boat, and just go. To say, There. Look. See, I have direction. But, that's not my style. I'd rather sit. And think. And, decide that maybe no direction is the best direction right now, because even if I don't have a goal, I'm working towards something. I might be blindly pursuing vague interests, but at least I'm not standing still.
What do you want to be by the Age of 23? Happy.
What do you want to be by the Age of 30? Still Learning.
What do you want to be by the age of 50? Without Regret.
Life is big, scary, unknown and unrelently. I am small, mostly insignificant, and finite. What of this this will have meaning? I don't know. Will I ever find direction? This really isn't a concern of mine.But, I'm on a path somewhere, and somewhere looks more interesting than nowhere. There's something very intriguing about the unknown.
So, let's get on with it.