Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Doing What You're Supposed To...

"You", are supposed to...

1.  Behave in school.
2.  Have good grades, if you don't, you won't get into the college of your choice, or a good college, whatever that means.
3.  Go to college...(your mom goes to college).
4.  Have some fun in college, but get good grades or you won't get a good job...or alternatively you could live your life like a celibate monk and study all time and if the word "fun" comes up, you have to start with looking it up in wikipedia.
5.  Graduate from college and get a kickin job, with a kickin company.
6.  Marry the love of your life, on schedule.
7. Get better job, on schedule.
8. Have kids, on schedule.
9. Move to the best schools.
10.  Build house in "best school" place.
11.  Drive the car "you" want (which happens to be the same car that everyone wants...today, its a Lexus, silver SUV/Sedan thingie).

I didn't really follow any of the above...and I'm probably not starting anytime soon...I took 10 years to graduate from college, 4 months to find a job, and THAT was with a Trucking Software Company.

Oh, I forgot that I got married a couple of years before I graduated college, to a wonderful woman.  I got into the .com boom and bust, right about the 'and' part, which blew up shortly thereafter.  I've now had a job with the same company for almost 9 years.  9 years of dodging layoffs, acquisitions, and takeovers can be exhilarating, let me tell you. The first house we bought was 80 years old, and it rocked, it fell apart, but it rocked when the train went by and we loved it!  Our kids rock (you can even ask people that don't like us), and my wife started medical school in her mid-thirties.

What's my point?  Good question, everyone should have a point...

I have lived my life, since a certain moment, asking myself what I'm supposed to be doing?  Losing my parents at an early age had me fairly neurotic most of the time.  I spent most of high school not knowing what I was supposed to be doing, but instead, wanting people to like me, or wanting girls to have sex with me.  I spent college screwing around, literally and figuratively, but also wanting people to like me.  I graduated college and wanted people to hire me, and like me...  But, somewhere along the way, I asked myself why I gave a shit about what the hell I'm 'supposed' to be doing?

Best question I ever asked myself, and definitely the best question for my life's progress.  It allowed me to admit that I cared what people thought of me, without also being pushed anymore by the mainstream current of society.

My life can still be described as a whirling dervish, but at least I'm enjoying it.  I get a kick out of paying attention to the Mainstream Current, and I'm sort of addicted it to it.  Its like Social Porn...watching what people do with their money...which happens to be buying the same care that everyone seems to have.  Or, starting a new development in "We used to be our own country" Texas, but calling it "Versailles", what the hell?  Versailles!  Really!?  That sounds like it came straight out of a John Irving novel.  How do you think they say it...?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Since all the cool kids are doin it...

I tend to follow several blogs, since I find them interesting, or funny, but mostly I follow them because they are relevant to my life.  I'd really rather not say which blogs I follow, because you should find your own, and mine aren't your own...hell, I have a hard enough time finding them anyway.  You might think that I'm cheaply going to plagiarize from my favorite blogs, since I'm not sharing them...and mostly, you'd be correct.  Not plagiarism, per se, but I'm definitely following the theme.  Mostly therapeutic, somewhat interesting, and sometimes funny...the topics have centered upon the act of writing itself.  I've read about how hard it gets, and loathsome, and just do it, and just bitch about it while you do it. This is what I hate about writing:

Penmanship.  First of all, in our time, it ought to be penpersonship, but beyond the name, mine sucks.  So, I hate it.  I dislike penmanship for several reasons.  Primarily, I don't have perfect handwriting, so I hate it.  It is inconsistent and sloppy most of the time.  I envy people with excellent handwriting.  Then, there sits the Penmanship / Grammar relationship.  Misspellings and wrong words that are penned must be scribble out, as they stand alone like a red checker on a board with fancy chess pieces...nothing sexy about a misspelled word.  I loath the blotches of imperfection on my wonderful page of attempted perfection.  I swear I think I'm going to be given the Pulitzer Prize for everything I put on the damned page...it's ridiculous.

Awkward spaces at the end of a line.  There's not a sniglet for it, and I can't really cut down the description, perhaps I could, were I a better writer.  As you approach the end of the line, you have really hit a groove, drawing the silvery thought from your brain, through your eyelids and into the instrument of recordation, and then....what the fuck, "hilarious" isn't going to fit into a 3 character space at the end of the line.  CRASH, Buzz-kill, back to the unsexy brain banter of how they'll never give the Nobel Prize for Literature to a freak that can't break out the word "hilarious" at the natural syllabic connections and hyphenate the damned thing.  Awkward spaces at the end of the line...I'm telling you, these things have prevented me from truly great things in this life.  I could have been somebody, I had a future.  I feel intimidated and taunted by the space at the end of the line.  It stares at me like the Geico Cash thingie.  Silently screaming at me with evil laughter hanging in the air..."That's right my king of the literatic hemorrhage, I've got all day...go ahead, get into that groove, in the zone, bro...I'll just be over here at the end of the line...waiting".  I get my ass kicked by negative space...damn. I navigate the space at the end of the line the way a pubescent choirboy navigates Ave Maria...every crackles inching his choir director towards another seizure.  Sometimes, I'll stop halfway in the middle of the line, just to feel like I got away with something.

It takes too long.  Clearly my biggest problem with writing.  As a card carrying member of generation X, writing takes way too damned long.  You want me to sit down for a half hour, an hour?  Isn't that why we invented voice recorders, and why we have Dragon software for the PC?  So I can just dictate my brilliance directly into an electronic document.  I do realize that it doesn't quite work like that, but my eternally 12 year old self thinks it should.  The truth being that writing can be difficult and easy at the same time.  I write because it makes me purposefully engage in a slow activity of expression and self realization.  I write because I become better when I do.  There's more "Dad" in my fatherhood, more depth and clarity in my presence, just completely more "Me" in myself.  The act of writing draws out the colors within my life-slowly steeping out of me as I make time to be.  Quality of life cannot be microwaved, we know that intuitively in our souls...and yet we still try to get away with it from time to time...slowly slipping into black and white instead of the vibrant colors we hide within us.  Quality of life through slow, deliberate motion towards life giving activities.  There are none of these activities in my Wii, or an X-box, and very few in my PC.

I feel like I've won today, I started out to explain what I hate about writing, and stumbled directly into why I love it.