Thursday, January 01, 2015

21 Things I Learned in 2014

2014 was a hell of a year. I don’t just mean culturally, because that’s a given. It was shit. A shit year. Terrible in most ways. But on a more individual level, it feels as if the weight of the entire, craptastic year was dumped right on people’s heads.

I feel that 2014 was the year where a lot of die-hard optimists removed their rose-colored glasses, looked at the cultural wasteland at their feet and took a collective dump out of fear and resentment.

A lot of people are using the birth of 2015 to look forward to new beginnings and wondrous opportunities. Maybe marriage looms for some; for others children; and for still others My Little Pony sleeve tattoos abound. It’s an exciting future. But before 2015 rears up and does its best Bill Cosby impression* all over our tender, innocent minds, I’m going to try to remember what I learned last year so I don’t make the same mistakes again.

That’s right. I’ve got a future full of new mistakes to make! But, until then I’ll remember that…

1.       Just about everything is overrated. But nothing started out that way.

2.       Stupidity and blind positivity are the new religions. They help people cope with the garbage they slog through every day.

3.       Don’t bother pointing out that stupidity of positivity in those around you. People aren’t fans of others pointing out their mistakes, weaknesses or inconsistencies. Even if you think you’re helping. It pays to be a dummy. Nobody likes a wiseguy.

4.       Having an opinion, point of view or correction to make is never as important as knowing when to express it. Which is typically never. Reality is not always well-received. See point 3.

5.       Everybody knows that the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes. They’re too lazy to point it out.

6.       You can’t change people until they are receptive to voices other than their own. If you just accept people for who they are, you’ll save yourself oodles of aggravation and flow more freely through life.

7.       People are constantly trying to change each other. Nobody is good enough as they are. Divorces, breakups and apartment building fires result.

8.       People are too busy being the loudest voice filling the void of the internet, to be bothered with things like knowledge, research or facts.

9.       The truth is a dirty slut who can bend more than the most limber of Mongolian contortionists, and is more submissive than a Japanese businessman being threatened with tentacle porn.**

10.   Raising awareness is a far more lofty and noble ambition than actually doing something. Why bother making a difference when you can always tell other people about the problem and hope they do something for the both of you.

11.   Americans also seem to equate throwing money at problems with solving said problems. There hasn’t been a problem man, nor nature, has created that can’t be solved by large quantities of green pieces of paper.

12.   Whether you’re an optimist or a pessimist, how you view life is a choice. You choose to ignore some things and focus on others. Keep that in mind when you write sarcastic blogs. Or mindless tweets.

13.   Everything is horrible and there’s nothing you can do about it.

14.   We try to teach our kids to be themselves, be unique or special. Disney has pretty much cornered the market on those morals.

15.   We teach adults to shut up, fit in and be like the rest of the cogs. To stand out is a defect, an abnormality. Peer pressure is the worst when you’re a kid, it’s vital to the functioning of society when you’re an adult.

16.   If a singer wants to sing about past relationships they win awards and get rich. If I want to just think about the past I’ve got issues and need to let go of stuff.

17.   Perception and superficiality are far more important than substance. We demand words over actions in all arenas. As long as you look like you care about something, people are satisfied. See points 10 and 11.

18.   There is no such thing as equality or fairness. Especial not fairness. Life won’t fit into the rules and laws that we arbitrarily create. Sometimes, no matter what, be it everybody’s fault or nobody’s fault, some things just end up sucking leper taints.

19.   Everybody lies all the time. To themselves most of all. People hate that they lie to themselves, but feel that it's a necessary evil. This leads to crazy brains. We all have those.

20.   Don’t believe all the bad hype about giving up. Don’t listen to all the nonsense about positive thinking.

21.   It’s easier to be part of the crowd. It’s more fulfilling to not.

* A year ago, talking about somebody doing a Bill Cosby impression would have meant a whole other thing. It was a simpler time back then. Birds used to sing, children used to play in parks. Were we ever so naïve?

**Those two random references aside, I love our neighbors to the Far East.


1 comment:

John said...

Ha ha! Well said.