Monday, January 24, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011


I hate how the simple yet most meaningful phrases of our language have become just "things we say." Things like asking someone how they're doing. Or even something as simple as a thanks. A please, a hello, an apology. Sometimes I wonder if when someone asks me how I'm doing, do they really want to know how I'm doing? And how many times when I ask someone how they are, honestly wanting to know, do they tell me they're fine, things are good, but really there's so much more they aren't saying?
One of the few things I remember from my intro sociology class last year is how we use cues and "scripts" to communicate. The gist of the lesson was that our conversations nearly always fall into a predictable pattern that we have become so used to that it is like a film script. When the conversation leaves the path that we are familiar with, we awkwardly try to bring it back to the designated form that we're used to. Supposedly we automatically use these scripts for all kinds of communication, whether it's a conversation with a stranger, an argument, a job interview where we have to be reserved and respectful, even conversations with the people we love the most, where you would think we would be more open and unpredictable.
I wonder, is this something our culture has invented? The only other possibility would be that it is an instinctual urge, and since when is man reserved, predictable and desirious to restrict everything into his comfort zone by nature? I hate the idea that culture imposes rules and restrictions on us, yet it does every day. As children we have to be quiet. As teenagers with boyfriends/girlfriends we have guidelines as to what is and isn't inappropriate to do in public. As adults we are fenced in by overwhelming rules that have become second nature to us.
Who decides these things? I don't mean to be anarchical, but the more I see of society, the more discontent I am with it.

I don't want to live a scripted life.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

I now walk into the wild.

"I wanted movement and not a calm course of existence. I wanted excitement and danger and the chance to sacrifice myself for my love. I felt in myself a superabundance of energy which found no outlet in our quiet life." 
-Leo Tolstoy

I just finished Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer. It's about the fascinating life of Chris McCandless, who at 24 left behind the typical life of privilege and trekked into the Alaskan wilderness. His body was found four months later, where he appears to have starved to death.
There is overwhelming negative feedback directed towards Chris, the most common being that he was no more than an arrogant and overconfident idiot obsessed with "finding himself" through the solitude of nature. And while it's true that he might have been ill-prepared due to his confidence, I cannot help but see his life as an incredible inspiration.

"here's to the crazy ones. the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers. the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. they're not fond of the rules and have no respect for the status quo. you can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. about the only thing you can't do is ignore them. because they change things, they push the human race forward. and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do." 
 Jack Kerouac

Books have always had great potential to move me. I seem to drink in the words that I read, adopting them and feeling as proud of them as if I had written them myself.

"The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun. Do not fail to discover all the wonderful things that God has placed around us to discover. Don't settle down and sit in one place. Move around, be nomadic, make each day a new horizon. You are wrong if you think Joy emanates only or principally from human relationships. God has placed it all around us. It is in everything and anything we might experience. We just have to have the courage to turn against our habitual lifestyle and engage in unconventional living. My point is that you do not need me or anyone else around to bring this new kind of light in your life. It is simply waiting out there for you to grasp it, and all you have to do is reach for it." 
-Chris McCandless

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life; to put to rout all that was not life, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." -Henry David Thoreau

I want to live in these words. I want to paint them on the walls which are the first thing I see as I wake and the last thing I see before I fall into sleep.
I can only hope to live my life with the same kind of passion.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

you are not.

You are not your bra-size, nor are you the width of your waist, nor are you the slenderness of your calves. You are not your hair color, your skin color, nor are you a shade of lipstick. Your shoe-size is of no consequence. You are not defined by the amount of attention you get from males, females, or any combination thereof. You are not the number of sit-ups you can do, nor are you the number of calories in a day. You are not your mustache. You are not the hair on your legs. You are not a little red dress.
You are no amalgam of these things.
You are the content of your characterYou are the ambitions that drive you. You are the goals that you set. You are the things that you laugh at and the words that you say. You are the thoughts you think and the things you wonder. You are beautiful and desirable not for the clique you attend, but for the spark of life within you that compels you to make your life a full and meaningful one. You are beautiful not for the shape of the vessel, but for the volume of the soul it carries. 

reblogged from boyghost