Wednesday, February 15, 2012

venial variations

i think if i could wish for anything right now, it would be to be good at something i care about. sure, i'm great at some things. drinking a ton of beer at one sitting or sleeping late, for example. but the interests i've solidfied for myself such as art, music, programming, makeup, et al. i'm not very good at any of them. i find myself constantly questioning what i'm doing, where i'm going, and what i should do next. all my life i've wanted to be everything, and flitted from one thing to the next like a moth confused among candles scattered around like stars in the sky. ultimately this lack of focus has left me with shallow scratches into the things i love and no deep grooves to fall into. this year i have been trying to focus, and that is probably the hardest thing i've ever tried. time is flying by at accelerating rates and whenever i look back to check my progress i'm inevitably deflated by what i see. there are many great stories of people overcoming hardship and struggling to accomplish something and actually succeeding, but i've never come across a story of someone struggling to accomplish a bunch of things at once and making it happen.

as i meander through my morass of interests and try to get good at something, anything, im constantly distracted by something else. life for me so far has been one great anti-epiphany, a consistent mediocre stumble through situations and interests that has left me befuddled and stupefied and ultimately not very good at much of anything. when i try to do something to lift myself out of the quicksand i'm inevitably dropped into another mire.

take beauty school for example. a few years back i was working a SHIT job doing the WORST work with the most AWFUL people i could imagine. the hours sucked, the food sucked, everything just fucking was awful and i couldnt take it anymore. so i decided, "hey, fuck this. i'm not going to stand for this garbage any longer than i have to. i need to take a step up and walk the fuck out of this rat race once and for all." i knew i needed something quick because i wasnt going to last much longer in the state i was in. "beauty school only takes a year. i'll be able to look how i want and fuck all to everyone else. i could have hair, nails, wear makeup, act like a fag or a straight or whatever i want to do, and i'll be able to do it part time and make enough to get by. this is a great fucking idea!"

fast forward 4 years and i'm seriously considering abandoning the trade i worked so long to become a part of. beauty school was worse than a joke, as i've detailed here. the hair industry is fraught with the same narrow minded assholes that i had to deal with in every other field i've slaved away in. part time is not an option in this industry until you own your own shop or are taken care of by a sugar daddy. the beauty industry is so rough that most people drop out of it within the first two years (if they didnt drop out of beauty school to begin with), and i'm in serious danger of becoming part of that sad statistic. i like what i do, but i certainly dont love the way its done. to learn anything in this industry you have to put everything you have behind it financially and chronologically. skill and clientele take time, time that i dont feel like i have. the idea was to do this while i put myself through school to become a programmer so that i wouldnt be miserable through four or five years of college, waiting every day through every class thinking "when will this finally be over? when will i be FREE?"

what i've come to realize is that cosmetology will not set me free. working as a programmer will not set me free. in fact, becoming a programmer may drive me deep into debt to some overpriced institution, and debt is the modern form of slavery. freedom to me is doing what i enjoy to make a living, and having the time to pursue things that dont earn me money. freedom is being good at the things i love. the things i've done so far that i thought would bring me closer to this goal have in fact slowed or even halted progress in the areas that make me happy. i made more music working fast food than i do working beauty. i did more coding doing construction than i do working beauty. i did more makeup, looked more fabulous, dressed better, felt better and was more inspired before i put myself down this current path.

being a slave to someone else's idea of reality has only subjugated me further to the doldrums of the rat race. it doesnt seem to matter what i do to get myself closer to happiness, because as i age i only become more tuned in to the wavelength of everyone else's existence. the more i stick out the faster the hammer comes down to smash me back in.

i love drawing, but i havent drawn in years.
i love performing, but i dont have any skills worth showing to others.
i love coding, but i cant write a program.
i love makeup, but i'm terrible at it.
i love playing piano, but i cant play more than the c major scale.
i love playing bass, but i cant play anything more than a random convolution of scales i made up.
i love learning languages, but i only speak english.

there are so many things i love. and they all feel so out of reach. the minute i start to pursue any of them, something immediately stands in my way. i think that if i could go back and learn anything differently, it would be the skill of seeing something through to the end. i never learned how to single mindedly hammer away at something until it was thoroughly finished. i've never stuck with anything long enough to be really good at it. and every time i try, it either blows up in my face or sputters to a halt.

the stories go that after many trials, the hero succeeds and accomplishes his mission. but with so many missions, how can this hero ever hope to accomplish anything at all? add to that the fact that his missions are made secondary by the society in which he resides, where simply living with food in the pantry and a roof over his head requires 2/3 of his time devoted to slaving away in someone else's demented idea of an economic reality, and the other 1/3 is devoted to sleep and commuting?


there is simply not enough time in the average commoner's day to make enough money to get by, pursue the things he is interested in, become reasonably proficient at any of them, do the laundry, keep the living space clean, keep himself clean, keep his partner happy, keep good food in his belly, cavort with his friends and get a decent night's sleep. this is unsustainable and unhealthy. this cant go on indefinitely. this has to end.

i need to create my own reality. but i have no idea how or where to start.

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