Think about every lesson you've learned so far in life, from the little ones like how to not eat so quickly that you bite down on the fork while chewing or how to not get shampoo in your eyes while showering and why it's a good idea to stand back from the curb on a rainy day to the larger ones about when to listen and when to talk or why it's sometimes easier to sacrifice something you're not fully passionate about so that you can make your stand on a more important issue later or how everyone else is pretty much as scared and stupid and just trying to get by as you are so there's no reason to be intimidated or upset by careless words or actions. There are all these things you know about how to live, through hard experience and the numbing repetition of the days that make up your lives. Let's not even talk about the books you've read, the movies you've seen, the music you've heard, the trips you've taken, although, to be sure, they all add to the total of who you are, who you could be and how you look at life. All of these things, in the end, mean nothing. You will die, and everything you've learned will be blown by the wind until it is as if you never knew it. The pain, the pleasure, everything you put in and everything you took out—everyone's balance sheet has a zero at the bottom, because none of it is ever worth more or less than anything else. You are born, you struggle, you expire, and all of it to be the punchline of some cosmic joke directed by genes whose only interest is passing themselves along. Whether you're trying to keep yourself from crying at the grocery because Shania Twain's "Still The One" struck you the wrong way or staring glassy-eyed at the people passing by on the street and doing your best not to imagine how equally futile and full of pain their lives are, perhaps you can find a little consolation in the fact that after a certain point it will all be over. And, as of Sunday, the clocks go forward an hour, so at least it isn't so dark when you wake to face another day. Maybe that helps a little too?
Thursday, March 7th, 2013