Monday, May 28, 2012

Can't get no satisfaction

Some famous person, philosopher, writer, someone, once said something like satisfaction is the first step toward death.

Something to that effect.

Like, if you stop dreaming, aspiring to something more than what you’ve achieved, you’ve given up.

What happens when you have a dream for your whole life and you achieve it? Satisfaction is an unacceptable reaction to that, apparently. I go back and forth about how I feel about this whole thing.

I know when I first read this; I nodded, understanding where they were coming from. Born with the heart of a wanderer, I think that this is something that I can get behind, at least for the foreseeable future.

Having decided to forgo all the things it seems everyone else is doing, mainly getting married, having babies or just doing what their parents did in general, the whole world has opened up to me. I can go wherever and do whatever I want with only my dreams to keep me company.

Satisfaction seems to be the last thing that I want. Half the fun of getting somewhere is the journey. How do people fuel themselves further when there is nothing driving them?  Satisfaction seems like the last thing in the world most people want.

It’s really an odd idea- that we spend so much time working toward satisfaction and then loathe it when it gets here. Like maybe the journey was the best part, but we didn’t realize it until we got there. And we really wished we had taken more pictures.

That’s all I’m planning for right now- the journey. Because I don’t know where it’s leading yet. Maybe I’ll meet satisfaction someday down the road. Maybe not. But I’d like, if I ever do meet it someday, to maybe meet it on my way out of here, so that I can hold it’s hand, okay that we didn’t meet sooner.

Life is all about the journey. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


I’ve always been afraid of clowns.

I couldn’t tell you why. As far as I can remember, I’ve had no traumatizing experience. I didn’t get lost at a circus as a kid and wander into the clowns tent and see them shooting up or anything. I just don’t like them. I never will.

When people ask me what I’m afraid of, clowns are always my answer.

But when someone scoffs at a story idea, or tells me a character isn’t believable, my dialogue too trite, do I really get gripped with the one thing that could scare me more than a vat of clowns- the fear of failing.

I’ve always felt like my dreams are too big for the world that I live in. My feet were never on the ground, and my head was always in the clouds. I wanted to be an actress; I wanted to be a singer. I wanted to be a chef, a lawyer, a teacher. I changed my mind so many times because I was worried about failing.

There was always someone better than I was. Or someone who had more people that believed in them. I come from sensible stock- a modest family that believes in hearty careers that if you are willing to work, you can do it. Doctors, nurses, engineers. Scientists. But I blew in from Dreamland. Where everything is a possibility and the world is too big for me to stay in one place.

I see people that just seize their dreams in a chokehold until they get them. People who are in bands that got their chance when they were 17. Singers who put a video up on YouTube and got signed by Usher. Luck found them, and they are doing what they’re supposed to.

But how do you keep your faith in a world that’s running out of room for dreams? Too many people want too many things. When you have to depend on your parents for everything because no one will look at your manuscript. How do we grow up and give our dreams a good kick in the pants?

Dreamers are always lonely. I think that’s because only people with huge dreams would be willing to call themselves dreamers. These people are often frowned upon by society. Such hope makes most people uncomfortable.

But at this moment in time, people need to get used to it. I refuse to leave this world without having meant something to it. I don’t want to live trapped in a dream that I couldn’t fight my way out of to make it happen.

I have to find what my path is. I know it’s to something amazing. I was meant for more than I’m living now. I know I am. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

I've got promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep.

Sometimes I get frustrated that I’m so blaringly single.

I get frustrated that I can’t walk two feet without running into a couple in love or hearing a really sweet couple story. When plans are being made, people have to check in with each other. A sickening smile crosses most people’s faces when their special someone’s special ringtone goes off and they answer the phone like they haven’t spoken to them in years despite the fact I just had to watch a very lingering goodbye kiss minutes before.

They seem to have found all that they need. And maybe that’s enough for them. I wouldn’t know. Maybe falling in love is what most people wait for. It certainly is what keeps the movie and music industry in business.

But is it the end of dreams?

The universal thing about college is that while the buffer of education surrounds us, we can dream that the world beyond is whatever we need it to be. Nothing is out of our reach. All pre-med majors want to build clinics in Botswana. All French majors want to spend their years sampling cheese in Paris. All English majors will publish the greatest American Novel.

But when we fall in love, these dreams lay forgotten in the darkest parts of our brain. This big bully, Love, sweeps through and nothing else matters. He’s a big selfish brat, Love, and he needs to be the center of attention.

Too many times I’ve seen people forget the dreams they had for themselves to focus on the dream of the couple. To do what’s best for them. Decisions are made to make the relationship last. When they do forgo the relationship to do something they’ve wanted to, like study abroad or finish a degree, they spend the whole time missing the person they left behind, effectively ruining the experience you left for in the first place.

If I was a dream, I would say what the fuck.

Our dreams have been there for us for so long, and yet they are always forgotten when love comes along. Love has a way of making you think that being wanted by someone else has been the dream all along.

Think about what you wanted to do before your relationships. Are you still working towards those things?

I can’t feel too upset about being single when my dreams are already too big for me. I love all of my friends that have found that other person. I am so happy for them.

But like Robert Frost said, “I’ve got shit to do.”

Actually, I think he said something like “I’ve got promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep.” But I was paraphrasing. Maybe falling in love is enough for them.  But it’s not for me.

Maybe love only seems like the enemy of dreams from an outsider looking in. Maybe there really is someone out there that will only be help and never a hindrance. Maybe there’s someone who will always be your sounding board, who never tells you to calm down, or think rationally. Who never asks “What about me?” But can you be that person back to them? Will it ever be fair to both of you? Is it worth it to even look?

Can a dreamer ever really fall in love?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Love Today- A Lesson Inspired by One Direction

The word of the day is rescue.

Rescue- to free or deliver from confinement.

There is a story that was told in some movie or another that speaks of a bird who had been in a cage its whole life and then all of a sudden it is set free and all it looks for is a way to get back into the cage because that’s all its ever known.

How often do we live in the familiar? Change is frowned upon and is something to be avoided at all costs. With everyone around me graduating, everyone has made their Plans. Big Plans that are going to outline their lives, to make their transition into the real world as seamless as possible. To make the change not a change at all, but a transition.

But rescue is different. The word seeps with drama. To rescue implies that one was once in danger. And something or someone came in to change that.

A new infatuation with One Direction has me thinking about what it must be like to be 18 and have the entire world watching everything that you do, and criticizing harshly. They ask for rescue in one of their songs. Is it a Hollywood written ballad, or are they sincerely asking to be delivered from something?

I’m here to argue that we’re all in a cage. One that we choose to be in. Like the boys in One Direction, who alongside the adoration of the entire teenage set of English girls also have to deal with the hatred of the world. We may not have it tweeted right to us like those poor boys, but we have it pressing down on us.

An inclination to impatience, a stressful set of circumstances or the lowest self-esteem can all be things that can lead us into hate. This cage of hate entraps us and we just live inside it, wondering why the sun doesn’t shine anymore.

But I know that just within the reach of our fingertips is love that we can all pull into our lives and give to other people.

It’s so much simpler to just not care about anyone. But that’s no way to live. That’s no way to love.

A offhand comment about someone’s outfit, or a vehement dislike of a certain celebrity may seem like small potatoes compared to war and terrorism, but let’s be truthful- they had to start somewhere.

I’m going to call all of you to reach out of your cage that you may not even know you’re in and decide to not hate for just one day.

Just one day of trying to find the best in people and of smiling at people who look like they need it. If this happens for just one day, what if it could change the energy of the world? If a war could be started by an offhand comment, maybe it could be stopped by a sincere inquiry about someone’s day.

I’m calling you all to Love Today.