There's a lot of pressure out there today on us. Especially us youths. Pressure to be somebodies. Go to school. Get a life. The status quo has changed. In order to get anywhere in life, you gotta have the exalted sheepskin these days. The college degree. Whereas when my dad grew up in the 60s, it was your high school diploma. College was a plus, but if you didn't have it, it wasn't like McDonalds was your only career option.
Every kid I know has this unmovable, engrained notion that as soon as they get out of high school, they've got to floor it all the way into college. What's the big rush? What is all that drive? That pressure? The societal demand for uniformity? I mean, in preschool, you had to color within the lines. And it hasn't changed. In middle school? Perfect attendance, straight As and a lot of other crap that you're finding out now is really inconsequential. And in high school it's college apps, graduation, GPAs, blah blah blah. And boy did they have us fooled into thinking that our future employers would be looking at our resumes and going, "Geez dude, a B- in social studies in 8th grade? Tsk, tsk, I don't know if you're right for this position."
So what is this obsession with being somebody? Better yet, by whose standards are we even somebodies? Society? The government? Our friends and family? Who set the bar and triggered this thirst for success? When did it go from Bob Dylan to "I've got an MBA, but I work at Starbucks"?
Anyway what I'm saying to you is this: It's all a load of irrelevant bullshit. All the hype, all the drama, all the build-up, all the hollywood, all the Big business. It's junk. Throw it out. You don't need it. Especially if that's all you've got is your so-called success. Your success which is measured by some majority-rules manifesto composed of the dried up opinions of old scholars. Some of them participate in some pretty funky "extra-curricular" activities though if you.... know what I mean...
It's not about what people are saying now. It's important to know what they will be saying. It's also important to know what you are going to say back. And I sincerely hope, whenever anybody passes any kind of judgement on you, that your reply runs along similar lines as, "Hey, man. I'm happy. Lay off."
That's what counts. You find that thing that lights you up, gives you purpose, makes you genuinely happy, and you hold onto it for dear life. You don't let that shit go for anything. Not the prettiest girls, not the hottest guitar, not the fastest car (unless of course any of those things are the things which make you genuinely happy). Not even the sexiest six-pack. Unless of course it's just this unfathomably crisp, chiseled masterpiece of a six-pack. Then by all means, have at it.
And of course there are a few ethical and moral codes surrounding that statement that I think we can all agree on as being good guidelines for healthy lifestyles. Not by anyone else's decree, just by natural order. Like for instance: Don't kill people. Even if by some strange genetic mutation it makes you happy. Killing people isn't cool. Ever. Same applies for basically every major crime, i.e. arson, rape, grand theft, etc etc etc.
In all seriousness though, find your calling, people. Find your calling by your standards. What makes you
On a semi juxtaposed side note: SELF-SATISFACTION IS NOT A CRIME. Why shouldn't you be pleased with yourself? That's square one. And hell, some of you aren't even giving yourselves a chance. You're stepping up to bat, but in your mind, you've already struck out. It's like you exited the womb rolling snake eyes. This is not so. I'm saying that if you can obtain/retain/sustain that one thing vital to your well-being, whether it's a money maker and you end up with a mansion and a different matte black Lambo for every day of the week, or you scrape and scrounge and barely get by, yet you're doing what you love so it really doesn't matter. If you can find that, it's home runs and smooth sailing forever.
You do what you are. And nobody can't take away what you are. That's yours forever. But you gotta love it. Every ounce of it. Your hair, your eyes, your laugh, your smile, flaws, vices, whatever. Accept the imperfections. Because it's the originalities, the tooth gaps, the freckles, the knobby knees that give us any kind of distinction, any kind of character. That's the miracle right there guys. That's the "solve for x" you've heard tell about. Not, why are we here? Just that we are here, and we are cool and awesome and different. And we have the capacity to love. We could love everybody. But everybody includes ourselves. It's gotta come from within us.
And on a completely unrelated note (and this is directed only at one person in particular, but I'm sure it applies to lonely hearts the world over, and I'm just throwing it out to the cosmic void we call the internet because somehow it feels better writing it out anonymously than not telling anyone, or even telling anyone for that matter, but), I really hope you're happy with that guy. He seems pretty cool. But not as cool as me. And nothing about the two of you could ever kick ass as much as you and I. And I think you know that. And I'll wait here for you, sure, because I'm a nice guy and I believe in second chances and stuff. But I differ from the other nice guys in that eventually I'll leave this town in my epic dust, and I'll be so far gone the only way you'll ever be able to look me up is through my old, out-of-date LinkedIn page that I forgot to delete when I realized I actually wasn't cool for having one, and that Linkedin is just essentially a Facebook for white businessmen in their 50s.... their late... 50s.... Anyway. Rambling now. Basically, I love your friendship, but I hate that we are seemingly, irrevocably bound to be just that. Plain old friends. Forever. And to the guys in movies that say they're okay with just being friends with the girl they're head over heels for just, just because it means they can remain close? YOU DUDES ARE MASOCHISTS, I SWEAR. HOW YOU CAN YOU EVEN BE MILDLY OKAY WITH THAT? YOU ARE SO FIBBING. TOTAL FIBBERS. I CALL FIBBAGE. I'M SO ONTO YOU AND YOUR FIBOSITY.