Saturday, April 01, 2006

That's what friends are for...

I can always count on my outspoken pal Johannes to toss my half-baked ideologies into the woodchipper. On the phone this morning, I mentioned that there are some people who go and get rich by being shrewd and exploiting the marketplace and others who accidentally become rich as a result of pursuing their passions much to the delight of (paying) others. Reasonable, if not profound. (Actually, I stole the line from some ridiculous horoscope, so, mind your sources). I also said (again based on the horoscope) that of the two types, I would definitely fall in the latter camp. Johannes was quiet until I finished then said that this was a completely "redneck" thing to say, and that anytime I have such thoughts I should "take a breath and not say them." He said that most of us unsatisfied souls struggling to realize ourselves end up being no more than useless self-flaggellators lost in our own self-limiting mind games, and that he new a good shop where we could all buy cat-o-nine tails and whip ourselves bloody on the streets of LA. I suppose he was gently implying that one should not entertain such "either/or" fantasies, or impose strict rules as to how life should (must) unfold. It was a sobering remark. I am not a masochist, but show me a person who couldn't benefit from a cold (rhetorical) slap in the face every now and then, and I'll show you a cadaver. Oh and, "The Squid and the Whale" is worth watching, especially to see Jeff Daniels' brilliant dead-on portrayal of a vainglorious, cheap, and royally self-deluded mass of urban leftovers. The movie does a good job of showing that the sources of our ideas and words are often as flimsy as a horoscope, even as we pretend to have invented them ourselves.


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