I knowingly bought a ticket to the known world. The place where all the pieces are planned and mapped out. Where life doesn’t just happen to you. Where most attempts to find vibrant life end with a mediocre thought of “at least I tried”. But I bought the ticket anyway because it is a place where I knew I could sit back, feel normal, and make sense of what I’d been through. Now that I’ve recuperated internally I’m looking out and I can’t help but struggle with my decision. I look back and wonder what could have been done differently in all the wildness. I guess the unrealized sense of a piece of life being over has now become fully realized. In efforts to create a new plan it makes sense to look back and list out all the dislikes in order to make better decisions for the next round. This time around, part of me didn’t realize it was over. Part of me is ready to go, part of me wants to stay, and most of me can’t afford to leave. All in all, it is good that I stepped on the train, because the known world is good for people who don’t know what to do next yet.
This world is highly evolved, I’m still amazed by the existence of the clock. I think it is funny that one day someone looked up and realized that time exists and we can track it. I think it is even more funny that people write about different worlds because seriously this place exists and has a history (proof of which is given in the existence of a clock) so other places must exist too, right? What I don’t understand is why this idea of other worlds became embedded into everyday life; here is my guess for how it got started:
I think that once everyone realized the odd existence of this world and postulated other worlds, the idea sparked the dawn of a new industry. Everywhere people started preaching of what they thought other worlds would look like. Since technology didn’t exist back then, there was no way to answer the question of “But how do we get to these other worlds?” So the smartest preachers said “You get to them when you die!” “When we die?” shrieked everyone in the crowds.
The farmer preacher said “yes! but only if you plough my field really well for your whole life, will you be able to get there.”
And the Doctor preacher said, “Only if you maintain your health and the health of your family will you get to see the best of the other worlds.”
And the evil preacher said, “only if you give into temptation, will I let you have power in the other worlds.”
And the scientist preacher said, “If we can build a space ship together, we can fly past the stars and take a super nova wormhole to travel to other worlds.”
By this point the idea of other worlds had become so prevalent in the society of humans on earth that no one dared question it. Over time certain preachers gained larger followings than others and we able to wield power over larger and larger groups of people.
It just makes sense to me to stay living for the real world… the one we know exists, then figure out the other worlds when we get there. But maybe that’s just how I travel.
Day Four of the Ant Infestation:
This day of our lord, the 5th of October, Two Thousand and Ten.
They keep coming back. Honey is their main target. They’ve ambushed all three jars, which we made the mistake of storing in three different parts of the kitchen. I thought we had their liquid gold sealed away safely, but Mom didn’t put a jar of honey back in a zip lock bag last night and they found the jar. By morning they had ambushed the last part of the Kitchen which has anything in it. I’m hungry and I can’t find any specific food among the random bags and boxes packed into the living room. The bug spray smell holds me hostage in my room where I have only limited space to play with my dog. Homework and my computer are my only comforts.
Since I’ve had the jolly of living the retired life along with my parents for the past too many months I have really realized how beneficial it is to take time to actually live my life as I would naturally do without all the external stuff stimulating me (job, lots of friends around, obligations, etc.), funny how in an instant I realized that I achieved yet another old goal that I had forgotten about. Something to smile about because now I can fully move on to other things.
Despite so many great books and stories written about people who go off away from their constant numbness of the life they’ve been thus far living, I don’t think people really realize what they are missing by constantly doing what is expected of them. A break from that really has done me well in restoring myself up to a fairly stress free platform, I owe that to the fact that I never got to the point of throwing everything away, I’ve managed to merely step aside briefly and continue on properly without being too haunted…. or if I am haunted by anything, I take pride in knowing that what haunts me is definitely a choice of mine that has allowed the haunting because I can use that haunting in my everyday life, such things drive people to be better people.
Perhaps I’ll move on to something that isn’t so obvious at least not to me at one point in time or another. I enjoy thinking about humans as if they are some other kind of animal… I ask myself, how are we like ants in an ant hill? like schools of fish, like a pack of dogs, like any animal structure really, and lately more so like a herd animal. Nietzsche was the first one who was able to explain this concept to me in a way that I understood the broad idea, not just know about it as one knows a trivia fact, but really understand it to the point of being aware of the aspects of life that are like living in a herd of animals. So what then? okay, I understand the comparison between humans and basic herd animals, what do I do with this new level of understanding how and why people relate to each other?
What I am going to do about something or how am I going to use it is the important part here. ‘Understanding’ is the foundation; to understand for me is to fully live this new understanding, to see it in the most basic aspects of life, like the beach, the mall, my house, etc. From there it is only inside of me and for my enjoyment, but now that I have embraced and felt this new way of looking at the world I cannot help but to express it, not just in a note like this one, but more by using it to solve problems and make things better. It is a systematic thing really, all done in the abstract screen of my mind; I zoom out on a situation and break down its fundamental parts and flaws then analyze its contents separate from each other, only then can I fully understand yet another underlying root in how things work. It is my method for being good things I do. Once you are aware of yourself can you actually apply it to other aspects of life, but those details from me are unnecessary, your life is far more interesting to you than mine is.
I read an interesting trivia fact that the human eye is pretty much blind while in motion, only when it is able to focus can it actually communicate to the brain what is in front of it. Our lives operate much like this. We cannot fully understand what we are doing or have done until we take some time out and mull over the pieces. Someone who is reading this says,” yeah duh, I do that on the weekend or vacations,” but dude, I must tell you that once you realize that you are doing what the rest of the people around you are doing, then you too are sucked in, and of course you like it, no one wants to believe that the system they have spent their whole lives striving for actually has very sick limbs.
Considering the education of the masses is only a few hundred years old, I’d say the most of us are still surfs or slaves only instead of directly beating us, we are ‘made use of’ by the constant usage of a higher power over us. Striving for happiness is how we have trained ourselves to stay in the mindset of slave or surf, work hard and give yourself up for the greater good of your life and you will be rewarded. I’ll win the lottery if I submit to this? brilliant, sign me up. Question to ask youself: are you blind to the fact you are in a herd and blind to the effect of yourself?
So there is a whole wealth of knowledge out there and we study it either diligently or grab it out of the time gust that blows by us, regardless we have to take notice of it and think about it in order for it to serve a purpose and be useful. I cannot state enough that no amount of education is worth the money and time if in some way one fails in their attempt to communicate that knowledge to the masses at hand, either indirectly or directly.
Anyways… on to the meat of things….. There are somethings that I cannot say any better than our predecessors, neither do I need to, but it is important to be reminded, so here it is:
“Perhaps we know more about the world than we used to and insofar as knowledge is prerequisite to understanding, that is all to the good. But knowledge is not as much a perquisite to understanding as in commonly supposed. We do not have to know everything about something in order to understand it; too many facts are often as much of an obstacle to understanding as too few. There is a sense in which we moderns are inundated with facts to the detriment of understanding.
One of the reasons for this situation is that the very media we have mentioned [radio, TV, etc.] are so designed as to making thinking seem unnecessary (though this is only an appearance). The packaging of intellectual positions and views is one of the most active enterprises of some of the best minds of our day. The viewer of television, the listener of radio, the reader of magazines, is presented with a whole complex of elements – all the way from ingenious rhetoric to carefully selected data and statistics – to make it easy for him to “make up his own mind” with the minimum of difficulty and effort. But the packaging is often done so effectively that the viewer, listener, or reader does not make up his own mind, somewhat like inserting a cassette into a cassette player. He then pushes a button and “plays back” the opinion whenever it seems appropriate to do so. He has performed acceptably without having had to think.” – Adler from ‘How to Read a Book’
My problem is that American life style relies too much on what package of life we choose for ourselves. It isn’t about the package or packages, it is what you do with your knowledge and how you put it together without letting others know what package you’ve purchased for yourself. It is easy to plug into the system, join a club or social group, go to school, work in a specific field… that is why we do it, because it is easy, especially when you can get positive feedback and be accepted by those around you. But what is the point of joining a group and uploading all their facts into your brain of you can’t apply it to everyday life without their logo on your T-Shirt or cheerleaders on your sideline. Perhaps I’m going off on a tangent… give me some space to come back into orbit….this gets better….
What really has got me going tonight was the above quote, which you have all heard the message from millions of times hopefully, and a friend of mine who pointed out that “we are the luckiest people in the world.”
And what are a lot of so called lucky people here doing? Watching shitty TV shows so they can numb themselves from reality by turning off their brains for far too many hours a day and possibly as a result drugging up the 4 year old because mommy is too tired to play with him since she was working all day to buy the big new TV. But at least she has something to mindlessly talk about at work the next day. How is that for a nice packaged life? You can buy that one too, on clearance in this market.
People are slaving themselves away all for an illusion of a packaged lifestyle that doesn’t exist. It doesn’t exist people, you can watch it on TV as much as you like but it ain’t you in that story, you are in your own story. So why not make it unique?
I got back a piece of myself just now…well a ‘piece’ isn’t quite right, more like: I got back a Zoroish mask of myself just now, perhaps a combining of masks actually….just let me explain, I’ll get to the core of this while I write. Throughout today the mask slowly assembled, it started with a phone call at the way too early hour of 9:30am, no wait….that was yesterday…or was it on Monday? Hmmm…so, okay the mask has been building for two or three days now. Moving on.
Larry and Adam called to see if I could come with them to pick up Adam’s car from the shop to bring it home. “Finally, an opportunity for some adventure,” I thought to myself. After working out the logistics of our intended maneuver, we succeeded in getting the ’76 Civic back to Adam’s house. The details of which aren’t as interesting as what the team effort brought out from inside me that hadn’t come out in a very very very long time. It felt great to do so simple of a task with friends who I wouldn’t trust with everything (i.e. driving my car), but that I know in which ways I CAN trust. This ‘CAN’ makes all the difference.
There is a lot of testing with newer friends that has already been accomplished time and time again in the older ones. We know each others strengths and each other’s weaknesses and it is exciting when we know how to overlap the two to cover for each other, in a seamless, high style fashion. It is just that feeling of being deep on the inside of relationships with those around me and not being so conscious of the connection and relation we have with one another. That was the first piece of my mask…lets say the right eye.
The second piece, the left eye, fell into place while talking to Lavina on the phone. I realized that I hadn’t heard her voice in almost 2 and a half years. And all I can say is that I felt like a fairy was hovering above my head sprinkling me with the most soothing, sparkling magic dust and it took me to new heights.
The third piece, the nose, fell into place while hanging out in ‘The Backyard’ tonight. I was back in action, fulfilling my old shoes (figuratively and literally speaking because I put on my old tennis shoes and some toes socks, I hadn’t worn close toed shoes in over a month, felt awesome and warm) while managing to bring in so many new aspects of myself that are now naturally coming out of me and fitting in nicely to the social matrix at hand.
At this point I could hold the mask up to my face and see through it, but it wasn’t until the strap that holds it on fell into place that I felt this extremely full feeling of being complete within myself.
There I was in my mismatching/striped toe-socks, with glasses on, my jeans constantly sagging down past my butt crack (all this yoga melts me), wearing a puffy blue jacket, and my hair in a pony tail, dancing in my kitchen using the back window of the house as my mirror, all while waiting for the kettle to boil water for my tea. I’m not sure how much time had passed in this classic Stephanie state-of-existing when the strap of my mask finally *snapped* it into place and held it there long enough for me to glimpse myself in the mirror, just being myself and honestly enjoying myself.
It is good to be back.
I’ve created a list of things that i can do at home to help spare me the frustration of not being in more exciting locations. (By more exciting locations I mean some place new, where people speak different languages and have adventurous stories to tell. I in no way intend this to mean that home sucks because it doesn’t, so please just question me next time you’re pissed off that I didn’t meet your expectations and I can explain that you have simply misunderstood me without a whole lot of wasted anger)
Further for the record, these are hobby ideas for heaven sakes, hobbies meaning things I will do in my spare time while in the company of my family, friends, hopefully a boyfriend one day, etc. This does contain some jokes, so please feel free to laugh…
So here are my ideas, some of them are far fetched but who knows, anything is possible for everyone.
Take classes like:
Work for the bathing suit company again if I have spare time when I’m working for Mr. Jim-is-genius
Learn to drive a stick shift while off roading
Redesign the sewing room so that it actually fits all the fabric and machines in it
Teach English so I can brush up on my Spanish in preparation for a South American adventure
Get a puppy so Lula can help me train it (I wonder if mom and dad will be so happy to have me home after babysitting my puppy all day while i work… Mu ha ha ha ha ha)
Join the scuba dive club and dive the Galapagos Island with them
Go sailing and flying with George (most definitely a must)
Find a job in Europe
Maybe a job in New York, but honestly if I’m gonna be that far away I may as well be in Europe.
Plan a trip to Thailand
Hmmm anyone else have any ideas?