I always appreciate being at the top of the food chain and not being someones meal. It’s the little things :) #Life
Unnecessary comma aside, I’ll take seeing this image on my dashboard as an opportunity to address the crippling paralysis of “What should I do with my life?” that I’ve seen among a lot of my friends recently.
The notion of productivity or usefulness or value re: a life is so foreign to me that sometimes I feel autistic. Like, you are biologically on this planet. That’s all we know for sure. You undergo a lot of biological processes — respiration, puberty, hunger, sex, disease — and then you die. And the earth absorbs you and makes your cells part of a tree or a fern, or some earthworm eats you and then a bird eats the worm and HOLY FUCK! Energy! The big bang! Matter!
That said, the primary main objective for me has always been to just gather experiences — grow my brain, grow my heart — and help other people do the same. Talk it out. Laugh at stupid shit. There will always be someone smarter, there will always be someone prettier, but there’s no one living the life I’m living right now at this moment, and that’s always felt immensely powerful and indestructable and true to me.
Having an ellipsis punctuating whatever part of your life you’re at isn’t debilitating. And yes, obviously there are finances to worry about, and money helps you take care of your biological needs in America in 2k12, but at a certain point (and hopefully that point comes much, much earlier in your life than later) you realise that all of that is secondary in value to the fact that you are alive and breathing with a brain and a heart and so, so many good ideas. The money, the job, the “meaning” and “productivity” are arbitrary and imposed. They’re a means to an end that has nothing to do with anything that’s gonna make you feel good in the long run because they’re constructs. They’re the product of socialisation — of being raised in the pattern and tradition of generations and generations of other people who have broken in your desk chair for you — and you’re not a fucking robot. You have personal needs. Personal thoughts and dreams and emotions — you need the opportunity to exert yourself naturally as a human being, even if it’s something as simple as painting a fucking bench or learning to play guitar. The “unproductive” and “pointless” things you want to do are the ones that make you feel human. The ones that grow you. And believe me, you want to be an organic hen, not a cage hen.
At the end of the day, you’re the only person who’s going to bear witness to 100% of your life. You’re the protagonist. And it’s important not to sacrifice that ownership out of fear that you won’t be able to buy something forty years from now.
The thing that makes the ellipsis-time in your life fucking invaluable and magical instead of scary at any given point is that it’s yours. You own it. You own that uncertainty and you get to decide what becomes of it.
And obviously it can be crippling and depressing and I’m not trying to say that those emotions aren’t valid, but I am saying that the only way you’re going to come out of an ellipsis a happier person is if you acknowledge ownership.
So don’t complain. Don’t wallow. Don’t blame the economy or your bum knee or whatever else… BP. Pelicans.
Just enjoy the shit for a minute. Savour it. And then do something else. Move. Grow.
But make sure you bear witness to your own life. Be present and never shut up.
These are the vistas, my babies.
I think [writer’s block] is a Western notion of demonizing inactivity. No one can be productive all the time. If there’s a period of weeks when your imagination decides it needs to take a nap then maybe that’s what it needs to do. - Elliott Smith