I have finally accepted, through “A Labor of Love”, that I am a lazy person. I am learning to just accept this now, instead of worrying about my future, as most say I should. And the key, for me, is to feel like I am in control of my life.
I’ve posted in “A Declaration of Independence” about how I should learn to accept responsibility for my mistakes, and learn to make my own decisions and live my own life. But it is still terrifying: namely, due to my main goal in life, which is to be lazy.
I do not want to be so lazy as to be homeless, living underneath a bridge, begging for bare sustenance. But I feel pretty close to that already, working in retail, with no other alternatives that seem appealing to me besides writing and comedy. Money is not the most important thing for me when it comes to a career. I could very easily do a different job for more money. But I don’t. Because I want an easy job. But, more than wanting an easy job, I want a fulfilling job.
Right about now is when everyone starts clamoring about how “You can’t always get what you want”, and other things. And to be honest, I don’t want to listen to any of that. And I probably won’t. It will only make me miserable. Why would I do that to myself? Why be sane and miserable when you can be insane and happy? (See: “Harvey”). Besides, deep down, I don’t really think I’m that insane. …About this topic, at least.
In some ways, what I’m currently doing is not the answer for me. And in some ways, it is. Retail (my current line of employment) is not satisfying. It has its perks, such as the ease of the work, but it comes with several nearly insufferable problems. And other “practical” solutions do not appeal to me, either. Mainly due to the repetitious factor. Here’s where you tell me that life and work are repetitive, and here is where I say “I don’t want to listen to you, so I am not going to.”
The only things that make me happy currently are writing (in the brief moments that that actually happens), but mainly comedy. And, I suppose, dreaming. I love doing things that make me laugh, or doing things that I believe others will laugh at. But the main goal of making others laugh is simply the recognition that I can make others laugh. The goal is to build a “career out of comedy”. Before you interject on how you “actually” build a career out of comedy, 1) let me state that I don’t care what you have to say, and 2) let me state how I’m going to approach this.
My happiness comes first and foremost. My happiness is the most important thing to me in my life. I want to be happy. In fact, I think that is the purpose of life, but I’ll leave that for another piece. If you aren’t happy, you’re miserable, and being miserable is no way to live. I have been subject to lapsing into misery. I did it a lot in the past, and I still do it from time to time. It’s unavoidable, many times. And, indeed, I’m very cynical and pessimistic (which provides humor that I enjoy). But sitting around thinking that life is all about doing what you don’t want to do is not life to me. It seems to be that way for many others, but not to me.
“That’s life” is a common phrase used to end conversations and make people miserable. I don’t think it’s always intended to make people miserable, but something is very disingenuous about the phrase. Most people that I know that use this phrase, in a small, Southern town, have very small worldviews. Worldviews warped by religion and envy. I know these worldviews all too well, and I know the underlying meaning behind them, as I’ve believed them myself. But there start to become too many exceptions to that rule, and I finally began questioning that belief, and developed my own personal thoughts and opinions about life. And some of them are as follows:
Do what makes you happy. You need to find something that fulfills you. Something that makes you happy. Whatever it is. Although I’m subject to this, and many other people are as well, you can’t be too fatalistic about how shitty life is. Or, at least accept what parts of life are shitty, but you need something to take your mind off of it. An escape. Everybody needs a fucking escape. And, most people do have escapes. Whether it be football, reading, drinking, what have you. And, in some ways, I think those “escapes” are some of the most important things in life. Do they put food on the table? Not necessarily. And do you need food to survive? Of course. But without sanity, what makes life worth living?
I think that, above all else, the thing that keeps me sane is dreaming. Dreaming of the future. Having dreams to work towards. Having certain principles to live by, and living them day by day. Those are some of my escapes. Dreaming of escaping menial work, avoiding difficult work, risky work, boring work: that keeps me sane. Perhaps you would call that insane, but it makes me incredibly happy while I’m “delusional”, so I dream. Will it hurt me in 5, 10, 40 years from now? It could. It probably will. But if it makes me happy, I am going to do it. As long as I can handle the consequences of it afterwards, I will be alright.
So, I’m a dreamer. What do I dream of? I dream of many people reading this, and other stuff that I write, and saying “Hmm…that was good. That was interesting. I want more.” Or reading my jokes, and laughing so hard that they cry, and needing more. I dream of creating creepy characters, and having people afraid of them and creeped out by them, but wanting more. And, of course, I dream of wealth, and a life of sloth.
Are all of these stupid, crazy, and a waste of time? Perhaps. But I think you need to define what all of these mean. What do you mean by “stupid”? “Stupid” as in I “should” be focusing more on money, and a legitimate career…driving trucks? Or something else that I will hate after a while? Is it crazy that I am “not considering the financial implications of my future”? Is it a waste of time when I could be learning a marketable skill? The idea that I have not thought of these things is nonsense. Of course I’ve thought about them. And I’m still leaning towards the creative endeavors. I’ll probably be a starving artist, flipping burgers into my 40s. But what will maximize my happiness? What line of work would bring me the most joy? I don’t care too much about the money. At least not right now. Perhaps I would start to feel a crunch later, and reevaluate my choices, and contemplate making new ones. But right now? All I can think about is my art. My comedy. My writing. It consumes me. All I want is to make people think, and laugh. That’s it. At this point in time, I can’t envision myself doing anything else. I’m going to tell so many jokes that people want to throw up. Think the hardest that I can in my articles so that I’ll be compared to 3rd graders. It consumes me. But I want it to. At least at the date and time of the title of this article, I want to become consumed by writing and comedy (and acting). I do not want a day to go by that I don’t feel committed. I want to constantly be working towards one of those three. It makes me happy, and I cannot help but dream of success. What’s the worst case scenario? 80 years old, flipping hamburgers? Thousands upon thousands of manuscripts unread? Living paycheck-to-paycheck, and possibly even being in debt? Suffering an expensive, life-threatening illness? Are any of those worth changing my life direction, and stop dreaming about writing, comedy, and acting?
No. Because the alternative is misery. The alternative is the acceptance that my life will be going nowhere, and that I have nothing to look forward to. Praying for death to escape the misery of repetitive life. For what else would I have to look forward to? Here’s where people say something like “Wife and kids”, but that’s how divorce and broken homes start. I don’t even want to address the wife and kids issue, as it really is just bullshit thrown in by people who just want to bring me down. All I want to do is write, write, write. And tell jokes. Maybe down the road, I’ll desire something different. But I hope that the desires continue and that I only get better at all of the above. But I refuse to stop working, refuse to stop dreaming, and, at least for the time being, I am going to choose to ignore most of the advice I am being given. I don’t want to listen to them anymore, and I wish I knew how to escape them…but I suppose that will be a topic for another time.
All I want is more, and to get better at it. And, of course, I want “fans”, and money, but I accept that 1) those aren’t guaranteed and 2) that it could be a very long time before either of those accumulate to a significant degree. But, thankfully, those aren’t the reasons why I create. But all I want to do is create, and improve, and if I can ignore others and accept the responsibility of my own actions, I will be able to create and improve. And I think this is my best shot at happiness, with, in my opinion, happiness being the purpose of life. But “that will be a topic for another time.”
(It’s very interesting to go back and read some of the above links. It’s almost as if I wrote them yesterday. I take this as a sign to continue, considering the length of time between then and now, and my desires and philosophies about them).