…And now I have one for real. Written mostly last night very late powered by too many days of too little sleep, this rant isn’t for everybody. If you like the general tone of irreverant, lighthearted bullshit on clapboard, I suggest that you don’t read the crap below. It’s just stupid and unimportant whining, really. Whatever.
Today I’m off to New Orleans. Maybe we’ll stay a night or so. Maybe I’ll drink a hurricane and everything will be better. Maybe I’ll take a goddamn picture or two. The last one is doubtful.’, ‘If I tell you that i’m okay, I’m lying.
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I’ve taken up this lying habit and i don’t like it much – i don’t know exactly when it started and I don’t know how to end it, either. I’m not okay. I hate a lot of what’s happening in my life right now and that’s not okay. I look at the lives of everyone else i know and i envy them – i want to have a job, an income, a boss. I want to have a 401-K, insurance and stock options or an annual bonus. I want to ride the subway to work in midtown from my upper west side apartment; i want to look in my closet every morning and wonder which all-black ensemble to wear today. I hate wondering where I’m going to get my rent money – I hate being convinced that I’m not going to make rent next month at all. I hate instability, I hate insecurity, I hate having a disturbingly-negative net worth. Ready for the kicker?
I choose to live this way.
I choose to have no security, I choose to have no money. I choose to look at a Friday night and weigh the potential that I’ll miss rent next month if I want to have fun this weekend. I choose all this crap in the retarded pursuit of some pipe dream too cliché to even make the movies. Come on, like an over-privileged lucky white kid from the burbs without any particular trauma to speak of ever really succeeds in the long-shot dreams. We grow up to be doctors or engineers or teachers, secure in the knowledge that the general privilege of our upbringing is enough to ensure our futures against catastrophic failure. Do you know that, statistically, white people with college educations can commit a felony and get off with a fine and community service? I mean, that’s saying something about where we fit. It’s all too easy for me, so when the road gets rough, I don’t know what to do.
Except to pretend that everything is fine, like it “should” be. I mean, life teaches you that everything is fine, easy, whatever, when you’re upper-middle class and white – of course I’m going to try to convince myself and others that everything is fine – that’s what I know to be the normal order of things. But things aren’t fine.
I live every day with the fact that there’s no way i can make it as a filmmaker. Does that matter to me? Does it strike a chord, inspire me to work hard, overcome all odds, make it happen despite the challenge? No, of course not. everything is easy for me, remember? It’ll all work out. Because I can’t imagine a world in which everything isn’t handed to me on a silver platter, I am incapable of knowing the real fear of failure and of acting on that instinctive fear.
So what the fuck? I mean, everything is fine for me. I have an apartment, I have family and friends that love me, I have my health – everything is perfect. What the hell do I have to complain about? Nothing. If you’re feeling this way, you should have stopped reading years ago – you have real complaints, real problems and have no business in my world of imaginary problems and frustrations. I mean, what does it matter if i don’t become a filmmaker? I won’t starve. I may not have any marketable skill, but I’m socially-adjusted enough to do whatever comes my way (since so little of life is based on what you know but what you can learn as you need to). Who cares if i fail to reach the stars? Silly question because I care if i fail and I have to live with myself for the rest of my life. If I get too miserable, nobody else has to live with me – nobody else would want to, but I always have to listen to myself complain, cry, or carry on about how i failed or didn’t carry through.
I always said that if the work dries up in New York, I’ll move to LA. Easy – I mean, i tried in New York, then I can try in California. Right. If the work dries up in New York, I have nothing but debt and bad credit. I can’t go anywhere – I can’t get work to pay the bills much less get a plane ticket to LA. Okay, so I sell everything I own, slip out the back in the middle of the night and hitchhike to the airport, cash in hand from the crap I hocked (“Do you believe how little Smiley wanted to give me for my DVD collection?” and “Who knew computers were worth so little to criminals nowadays?”). I buy a plane ticket and have just enough cash left to rent a place in LA. That’s desperation. Generally, I don’t have a problem with desperation, especially when it comes to following a dream, but what does that say to all the people that are important to me here on the east coast? I’ll give you a hint: it says, “while you hold nominal importance in my life, in reality, you don’t rate high enough for me to plan ahead like an adult and make mature decisions about my future because my selfish goals don’t make room for anyone else.” That’s no fucking way to behave. Adults plan ahead, they make rational decisions not based on pipe dreams meant for children. So I get a job. A regular job. With a 401-K and paid vacation. And you think I’ll leave that once I have it so that, at age 30, I can go starve again, in yet another city with yet another group of new friends? Please – I left that life once before and that’s one more time than most people leave it. I know how hard it is – I know what foolishness that requires. And I know that doing it twice is geometrically more difficult (and dumber) than doing it once.
So I guess I should just shut up. I guess I should just float through this with my eye on getting a real job where the misery is mainly quantifiable in 8-hour segments and the sameness of things is comforting. The misery of chasing an impossible dream changes daily and is impossible to keep tabs on, making the weighing of a particular misery near-impossible.
And of course, there’s more to this than sheer economics. I mean, who do I like and why? Who likes me? Why? Are those two things equal? No, of course not. There always seems to be inequity and that’s fucking lame. Who wants to start that all over again in some new city? I mean, having people like you is part of the game, this much is true, but I’m getting sick of that part of the game – or else I’m getting to love it, to embrace the rampant lies. Which is worse? Both are social suicide in a game where who you know and who knows you is the most important thing imaginable.
And I want to have sex. A lot. All the time. Without strings or emotions or attachments because doing what feels good is the best way to pass the time. I mean, why else do any of this stupid “follow-the-dream” crap? Nevermind – back to no-strings sex. But then you start and you discover that the lifestyle that you chose isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. You discover that your lifestyle serves as a warning for others, a signpost at the edge of the bad part of town and you don’t want to live there. Of course you don’t want to be a degenerate, of course you don’t want to be a nameless nobody in a string of nameless bodies. But leaving a place once you’ve gotten there takes the conviction that you can, indeed, have value to one person over a period of time longer than it takes to watch a movie. And I know the value that i offer and know what it’s worth – I know that it’s not actually that good of a deal for your money. I know that you stand to get scammed if I let you get too close to me, even if you think that’s what you want. I’m an astute enough student of history and social science to know that your judgment is based on only the information that i choose to share and is therefore irrelevant because you don’t have remotely all the facts.
Fuck it. I’m tired. I’m unemployed. I’m unsatisfied. I’m unconvinced. I’m irritated. I’m sure that none of this matters tomorrow. If I paste this into my journal, I’ll bet that it’ll just be as a record of the weird shit that I feel like saying sometimes. You know, just because sometimes you need to vent about drama bullshit that doesn’t really exist. Really, I shouldn’t be left alone for too long. Tempests begin brewing in the teapot of my brain.