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Monday 12/13/21

When people congratulate themselves by saying, "I'm very proud to have gotten this far on my own," I always think, "Where do you think you've gotten?"


Standards for self-congratulation are typically quite low.


Yesterday I wrote of care and how it is largely lacking. Standards are the same way.


I think there's a notable difference between words and sentiments like the above, and true accomplishment. One finds motivation in pieces in one's life. The mini-goals that are part of the day, the week, the year, and so forth. They are internal. Or the stuff of the diary. They are not individually the achievement, or, I should say, at the standard of achievement. Many make the interval, the building block, the thing that has to be be done as part of the basic portion of life, the achievement. They're not the same.


I've noticed that many people will say they have a passion for being active. That's not a passion. It's like saying I have a knack for breathing. No. You'd have a knack for swimming. When someone speaks in such a vague generality, they're telling you they really don't have a passion for anything, save this nebulous concept of what they think they should have a passion for. Like an answer on a test. Who is more active than I? I can tell you what my passions are. Would take some time. But I would never answer, "my passion is for being active." In that nebulosity, that's not a thing. Instead, the absence of anything.


These are not words of cruelty. They are not even words of criticism. They are words to the effect of belief. That people have much more in them if they would take care and have standards. In all things. In themselves. It's a belief in people. The lack of belief is in their effort. It's not in what they possess. Not with this. All of us have it in us to be more than what we are at any point in time.


Sent my eight-year-old nephew a very belated birthday gift: three Star Wars graphic novels. He likes Star Wars.


I ran 3000 stairs. I sent the Sam book to the Guggenheim. I sold essays on Otis Redding and Freddie Redd. I screwed up by not seeing an email in time for what would have been a piece on Christmas ghost stories. No self-congratulations there. I wrote a story and put it aside.