Friday, September 25, 2009

Spontaneous (Something Intelligent and Relevant)

This was inspired by Rachel over at Diary of Why. I was going to leave her a comment, and then I realized that I wasn't talking to her. I was talking to myself. Therefore, it became a blog entry.

I'm going to offer some unsolicited advice. Personally, I hate getting advice, because I feel like people are just telling me shit I already know. The only advice worth hearing, in my head, is the stuff that feels like religion and math and blood, and so few are able to appeal to all three of those things, as much as they might try.

But being me, one who embodies hypocrisy and embraces with zeal, here's my advice, to anyone who wants it. But mostly, I say this to myself:

I don't believe in destiny or karmic retribution, and I sure ain't no precog, so I can't offer reassurance that “things” will get better, although I hope they do.

I don’t see any evidence that your life is so bad, so unsuccessful. Your life, my life, our lives.

You know what’s easy to change, and completely free, and only requires action on your part and no one else? Your mind. Just change your mind about the definition and degree of success.

Because success can't be measured; this isn’t the fucking metric system. There can’t be a standardized scale to grade something so multidimensional.

It’s actually impossible. I promise. Stephen Hawking couldn’t do it. Go ahead and ask him. Call him up and say, "Hello Stephen Hawking, how do we measure success?" and then Stephen Hawking will generate a big "ummmm" with his vocal synthesizer, because let's face it: Stephen Hawking totally doesn't know. And if Stephen Hawking can't measure it, then...okay, you know when people discover dinosaurs and name them after themselves? Stephen Hawking discovered the theoretical collected radiation of subatomic black hole particles and named those fucking things after himself. And he uses that to figure out how to measure the gravitation of one thing to another, which is the only consistent type of interaction between every single thing that exists in the universe. Ever.

To put it another way, for all of you Christians out there: Stephen Hawking is theorizing how to measure the effect of God.

His job is to discover how to measure ridiculous shit. That is all he does.

So if Stephen Hawking can't measure something like success, well...fucking no one can.

Because success isn't theoretical physics. Success unraveled is legacy and happiness, and both of those are built up by time, love, energy, audience, failure, contribution, risk, and most importantly, the reactions to all of those factors that filter through your own brain. So, to be considered a success, here is what you need to do:

Do not listen to me. I make shit up as I go along.

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22 comments:

Logical Libby said...

The fact you realize success is not quantifiable had to be some measure of success. You know, like once hand clapping.

Nikki B. said...

people are always trying to measure shit. and label shit. and measure the shit that they label. it's dumb.

daisyfae said...

goal modification changed my life. strive for what you want, then after you kinda start to get there you realize it ain't worth all the fucking effort, then get happy with what you did and move on...

daisyfae said...

oh, and stephen hawking is totally hot. i want to convince him to talk dirty to me using that 'see n say' thing he uses...

DiaryofWhy said...

Hey, I don't know what to say in response to your post, but thanks for writing it. I've sat here staring at this comment box for oh, too long now, so anyway. Thanks for reading. Thanks for responding.

Susan Berlien (warmchocmilk) said...

I I'm just stopping by, but I have to be honest and tell you.....something about your font hurts my eyes. I'm not trying to be rude...I would just want someone to tell me this abut my blog if it were the case. You writting is good though.

Rassles said...

Hmmmm...I really don't know how I can get more simple than black on white.

Jane said...

Great post.

BTW - your font looks like totally normal standard Google font (Verdana, maybe) to me. Maybe it's a browser thing for the earlier commenter?

renalfailure said...

Measure yourself up to Tag Larkin. When you realize you can't, the less will be learned.

Chris said...

Beautiful. Like music.

Meagan said...

" I make shit up as I go along."

Me too, then I get slightly embarrassed when I notice that I've been taking myself seriously, and even more embarrassed when I realize people are listening and expecting me to come to some kind of point.

I think I measure success in my life in both large, unlikely goal posts, and tiny, almost inevitable achievements. I have no idea how they balance, but so far they seem to work ok. I'm happy at any rate. Other people may well dispute whether my life is going anywhere at all.

formerly fun said...

Success for me used to be high income/high responsibility job with high pay. Now? It's high pay, low responsibility job with time for my man and my kids and time to fuck off and write stuff no one but a handful of people will read. And 2 years from now, it will be totally different.

I heard something about success once that has stuck with me. Don't remember who said it but they defined success as the degree to which you have control over your own time. So yah, I want that.

Schmee said...

my word verification is foozing...that's all I have to say

hereinfranklin said...

Shoot...and all this time I thought success was a great big house with a teeny tiny yard. And granite counters. Oh, and a home theater system. And a Hummer. Yeah.

Sack Posset said...

Religion, math and blood. Religion, math and blood. This is something I will be repeating to myself for a long time. Happiness is the pursuit of attainable goals and I want to be religion, math and blood.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Your success can probably be measured directly against your expectations. Expect to suck and you will.
Expect to be happy and you will.
Expect to be successful and regardless of what that success brings, you probably will-- or maybe you'll just be miserable-- and then you're back to sucking.

Did I even just say anything?

Why you so deep girl?

Sid said...

This is by far my most favourite post ever. I loved that you mentioned Stephen Hawking and how he's trying to measure the effect of God. Loved it.

Del-V said...

I measure success by how many people I piss off. I’m not as successful as Michael Vick, but I’m doing a lot better than Mother Theresa.

Kono said...

Hey did i tell you your font hurts my eyes but then i went and stole Stevie Hawkings eyes and now i can see the future and your font is not so bad. The word success does not exist in my vocabulary, why would an arbitrary theory set by the hegemony matter to me? i guess the closest i've been to a "success" was when uh someone smuggled seeds back from Amsterdam and grew this wicked Afghani White Rhino, after smoking that shit i thought i was more successful than Jesus.

Not Afraid to Use It said...

And the kicker to all this is that even when you think you are successful, there will be scads of people who think you are not. As you say, best to look to yourself. Why measure yourself on someone else's yardstick when you don't know what kind of baggage they are carrying? Success is whatever helps you sleep at night.

Blues said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Blues said...

way too many typos. let me start again.

I would totally be called bullshit by the gods if I said that to me success is just being content just me and my hubby wherever we are with our cat n shit.

But success for the longest time to me has equaled being able to afford a home. And because I haven't been able to afford a home long past the time that my whole 'timeline of how shit is supposed to happen' told me I should, I have deemed myself unsuccessful because of this. And it's pretty hurtful towards my husband because he gets all balled up in there in all the failure in my mind. And I'm too fucking smart to think that way but I do. I'm getting over it though. Kinda.