Saturday, February 21, 2009
Though I'm only a self-proclaimed writer, story teller, author, and poet, I'd like to think those in our trade have a good way of looking at life. For example, to some, a trip to the laundromat could be just that... a trip to the laundromat. But for me, its an adventure. I notice the sounds of the machines in turn with the noise of traffic in the street. I catch the eyes of patrons trying to catch the eyes of other patrons. I watch the bus stop interactions through the window to my right, and the under-payed, under-slept manager scurry in circles like the clothes in the dryer. I watch all these seemingly meaningless things occur and morph together, making a simple experience anything but ordinary. And thats the beauty of an eye for simple things. It shows that even the smallest occurrences in human existence are only small if we perceive them in that way. With the eye of a writer, the wait at the bus stop becomes a visual spectacle. The walk to school becomes a gourmet tasting for touch. The minutes preceding class begin to resemble beautiful music. With the eye of a writer, one learns to train the senses, and experience the world in a more holistic manner. Each step is felt. Each word is heard. Each moment is bliss.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
So my dad used to always quote Winston Churchill saying, " If your not a Liberal in your 20's than you have no heart, If your not a Conservative in your 40's than you have no brain." I would always giggle and think how my liberal side would never leave, and that conservatism is evil. But today, my laughter was stricken with fear. I found myself very skeptical of the "Liberal Optimistic" view on economics between the North and South. I started to question if maybe in my old age (22 in two weeks!) I've become cynical. Maybe my ambitions for ending world hunger and poverty are a sham. Maybe my inclination to push for social justice will slowly dissolve. Maybe I'll start supporting the GOP and hop on the pro-life wagon...
But then it clicked. Growing up doesn't necessarily mean becoming cynical. Growing up means seeing the world in a more rational light. I don't think Mr. Churchill meant we are all going to give up our liberal hopes and dreams, but instead that we are going to act on these dreams, and with each attempt, we are going to learn something. We are going to take that knowledge and shape our future endeavors, so that we don't make the same mistakes. We are going to hold our blissful dreams of unification, and make them a reality. What we are going to do is change. But if that liberal light stays a-shine in our hearts, then rationality won't lead us to cynicism, but to hope. To a more worldly view. To a higher way of thought. What that knowledge will do is increase progression. So if rationality is the underlying message, maybe instead of quoting Winston Churchill, my Pops should have said, "Son. When you are in your twenties, your going to be reckless and silly, but each day, your gonna learn something. Maybe if you retain some of that information, tomorrow you'll have a little bit more wisdom, and approach life with a little more care."