Set for Life

A coworker’s old paystub somehow found its way into my mailbox at work. He’s been with the company for more than a few years than me so I was curious how much he made. I know it’s confidential but I told myself that since I already have some idea of how much he makes it’s not really a big deal. Okay okay, I’m sort of piece of shit. I can live with that. If it was a scene in a movie though you would probably think nothing of it.

It was the last paycheque of the year so I was able to see the yearly gross amount. When I saw it I was like, holy shit. Then I thought, what the hell? I could be making this too in a few years for doing my bullshit job? It excited me for a bit and then the realization set in that in order to continue to earn that money for the rest of my non-wrinkly life, I would have to continue to do this job for the rest of my non-wrinkly life.

It wasn’t even that long ago that my goal in life was to find some place to work at for 30 years that would pay me basically what I’m getting now. It was probably my goal because I was in love with the unknown. Life seems to be a series of having goals and achieving them just to know that it’s not what you really want.

The initial plan for most people is to be “set for life” by a certain young age. “Set” in this cultural context does not mean finished but instead, the start of a long and seemingly straight road to a predetermined imagined destination.

It all sounds good at the beginning because we can picture ourselves easily living a certain life for the next 30 years because it only takes about 5 seconds to imagine it in our heads. The other reason why it can seem desirable is because the security feels good. If you just keep on this path then you will never have to worry about sucking some dude off for lunch money.

For whatever reasons, life often conspires to lure you into signing the rest of your life away before you barely had a chance to live it. Before you’re even 30, you could be married with kids, have a 30 year mortgage and decide that you’re never going to do a different type of work for the rest of your life. It doesn’t seem like it could be that difficult given that so many people have done it before you. The weird thing we overlook when we are 30 or even 40 is that we have never stuck with anything successfully for 30 years except eating and excreting. The main reason to keep trucking on or quit is dependent on whether or not you feel you have to.

Some people or maybe even many would consider me as being “set” but I can’t help but see this path like a prison sentence. 25 years to life with the chance of parole for bad behaviour. The sad thing is that the prison gates are always open for me to leave without any fear of a sniper shot yet I just can’t seem to escape.


Daily Prompt: Successful

Attracting Readers to your Blog

You write a post, send it out there, hope that by chance someone will come across it, click on it, read it and hopefully leave you some kind of indication that they liked it or hated it (I feel just as accomplished when someone informs me of their disgust towards my content).

From my experience, the majority of readers that I’ve ever had, discovered my blog by seeing a comment I left on their blog or on somebody else’s. Someone finding your blog through one of the WordPress tags(life, opinion, thoughts, humor,etc) seems to be an ineffective way of attracting readers. Even if people do find your blog there, they don’t seem too compelled to leave their mark, probably because they don’t feel any connection with you. It’s similar to real life in that you will have a far better chance of meeting people if you go up and start talking to them instead of standing there and hoping they will come talk to you.

There’s those who don’t even respond to comments or only respond when they feel like it. I guess that’s up to you but again, just like in real life, people don’t like people who ignore them. Obviously, you want people to read your posts otherwise you wouldn’t be publishing your writing online, unless your main intention is to leave some kind of memoir.

There are people who will find your blog through WordPress tags but many of them will be the type who spend a great deal of time ‘liking’ and ‘following’ every post without even reading. It’s obvious who they are because you see their piece of shit gravatars on every blog post from every corner of the blogoshere even if it’s in a different language. I’m a dickhead sometimes and I’ll leave a comment on their blog accusing them of being a fake liker. One time I complemented this girl on how she was able to read my post after 2 seconds of me publishing it. Her response:

Ha. I usually read the blurb on my reader, like it (if I do) then open to read the rest 🙂

Right. You ‘like’ it first and then read it. That’s like giving a restaurant a good review without tasting the food. My guess is that the name of the game is to become a famous blogger. Anything is possible these days when there are women out there who become wildly famous and successful for practically nothing. Oh my god, she sucked cock on grainy video. I want to follow every second of her life. 

The sad thing is that most of these types of people on WordPress don’t even respond to comments left on their page even though they spend all that ‘effort’ trying to get readers. They seem to just get off on their blog stats which are inflated by their BS likes and follows. Every time I see them liking my posts, I want to urinate all over their pretentious gravatars. But that’s just me.

When your Options Suck

Sometimes you come to a fork in a road and instead of choosing a side you jump off to the unknown. When I left my old friends they were split up between being married with kids or drinking and snorting cocaine. What to do, what to do. I’ve always been the type of guy who would carve his own path regardless if it meant swimming alone. To most people, choosing the route of solitude is not an option. To me, choosing a route for the sole purpose of not being alone is foolish.

Often times, your connection to others is derived from what you identify with in your present life, and not your personality and interests. You are friends because you work together and once you stop working together you are no longer friends. It can be difficult to give up the drinking and coke snorting when your alternative is nothing.

Married people with kids can be annoying. They think you want to be like them but it just hasn’t happened for you yet. They think your existence is in limbo until you’re living their white picket fence life which could also be temporary. I’ve been polite to such people but I’m almost at the point where I want to tell them that I think their life is kind of dreadful. I pretend that I’m in envy of their newborns but I’m just being nice. I don’t give 3 shits about your kid and I wish you would stop trying to get your kid to say ‘hi’ to me and call me ‘uncle.’ I’m not jealous that you shot a load into your wife and a kid came out of her vagina like billions and billions have done before you. You’re not that special.

To drink alcohol and snort coke in your mid-30’s on a regular basis is hoping for a segue into a better life but not knowing how to get it. When you have nothing else going for you in life, the alcohol and cocaine can be like your saving grace.

Afraid of being alone is often the demise of our life.

Life is a Conspiracy

There’s a point in life for many when they throw in the towel and decide to live the rest of their life exactly the way it is regardless if they hate it. You gotta do what you gotta do. Some do it at 30 and others later. The game plan is to die a respectable death. You want to go out by natural causes, heart attack or even cancer. Suicide and starving to death are considered to be failures.

They say our era in life is easy compared to before but none of those cave people had to live an average of 78 years. I think getting taken out by a rock to the head or an infected wound at 25 is much less painful than 40 years of grinding it out at some building and then another 10-20 years of drinking prune juice and falling and not being able to get up.

There’s people at my company who have been there for 25 years. Some appear to be content and others look so miserable that they wish they were dead it seems. But in the meantime they will just sport a frown and let everyone feel their wrath.

The strongest instinct we have is to avoid death which makes me believe that the afterlife is full of bliss. If we knew a great life followed after death then we would just off ourselves once life became just a little bit painful. It’s a conspiracy.

When Life Hands you Lemonade

Six hours into my shift, I’m doing my deliveries in a residential area when I drive by a lemonade stand operated by 3 Asian munchkin girls. As they see me drive by they’re screaming out, “lemonade, lemonade.” I pulled over and got out to support their cause. I hate lemonade. They tell you to make lemonade when life hands you lemons but if life didn’t hand you lemons then you can make something else.

Do you know where I can get some lemonade?

Right here!

Okay great. I’ll have a cup please.

One girl excitedly runs into the house to tell the grown-ups that they “made their first sale!” The other girl excitedly but professionally dispensed my lemonade. I’ve never seen anyone dispense a drink with so much determination and passion. They had this nice lemonade dispenser and even a cash box with an arsenal of change. The whole setup was quite impressive and so cute.

My plan was to drive around the corner and pour it out because I really didn’t want any more sugar in my body. Just 20 minutes prior I had a Dairy Queen Oreo Blizzard(ice cream type treat)I imagined their little faces if they saw me pour out the lemonade and I just couldn’t do it. There was also no lid so I had to drive around holding it in one hand. I just drank it slowly.

That was the best 30 cents I’ve ever spent.


Dumping Rice

When you’re Asian, you live your whole life eating white rice. You eat so much of it that you buy it by the 50 pound bags. Some will say that they love rice but how can you really love something that tastes like nothing. What they really mean is that they like rice when it’s soaked with sauce or mixed with meat.

I don’t know the origins of rice consumption but I would bet it has something to do with cost efficiency for the number of calories. Other than being a filler, white rice has not much else to offer besides type 2 diabetes. This is why I might be giving up this poverty grain for the more nutritionally dense russet potato.

Old habits die hard but to live in a developed country and still be eating white rice every day is like taking a bath with your siblings to save hot water. Thank goodness I’m an only child.

When I revert back to white rice it means I failed in life. What kind of a loser can’t even afford a russet potato lifestyle? I’m buying a sack of potatoes tomorrow. I can feel your envy through the blogosphere already.

Tonight’s dinner: Spare ribs, russet potatoes in a sauce comprised of vinegar, coriander spice and chili powder. I should add some cilantro so it doesn’t look like dog food.


Being a Hater, Real Titties, Dead Artists

Today started with a Howard Stern interview with Conan o’Brien. I was delighted to hear that amid Conan’s success that he battles with a slight depression and sees a therapist as well. It makes me feel better when successful people have some misery to deal with. This is a good sign that I hate my life. With a life as decorated and accomplished as Conan’s, him being depressed must be real unlike the millions of other regular folks who are taking an anti-depressant to compensate for their shitty lives.

The highlight of the day was watching the movie Wild with Reese Witherspoon. The movie was good but more importantly there were many scenes where Reese shows her titties. As mainstream beauty becomes more man-made, the unimplanted boob becomes more desirable. A natural B-cup will do more for me than a monstrous Frankenstein DD.

Patsy Cline has been dead since 1963 which means it’s okay to download her music without feeling any guilt. You can’t steal from a dead person, I don’t think. And whoever reaps the financial benefits from her music doesn’t really deserve any of it. Who’s buying Patsy Cline CDs today anyway? Now I feel bad for sounding like an asshole.

I had a very Chinese dinner today. Pork side ribs with rice and broccoli. There’s a theme to most classic Chinese dishes which is cheap. Side ribs are cheaper because of the fat content. Rice is so cheap that people throw handfuls of it at people and laugh.

It’s about time to play dead soon so that I can be well-rested to be less miserable at work tomorrow. What a great way to live life. Life is beautiful.

Goodnight.  Muah!

Age Related Social Disease

Feeling incompetent or what is commonly referred to as a ‘loser’ is often related to your age and where you are in life. It’s almost as if the rite of passage at whatever age is just a gateway to not feel like a loser.

You’re 25 and you still haven’t…….

You’re 40 and still…..

I’m not sure why it matters but regardless, a good number of people won’t respect you unless if your accomplishments match up with your age. Obviously it’s some kind of unwritten marker that has been set by society because it doesn’t make much sense. I guess some primitive wiring in us makes us want to shun the incompetent. If someone is nowhere near our level in life then they are probably not much use to us.

We’re a very numbers based species. It’s all about how much, how long and how many.  We use numbers to gauge performance, worth and people.

I remember the pressure in my early 20’s above all else was to become ‘someone.’ I had this goal of wanting a career and being en route to marriage by the age of 25. That goal was set so that I could solidify my place far away from loserville, so I thought. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while you’ll know how far from that goal I am at age 35. By most people’s standards, I should now be where I wanted to be when I was 25 or at least halfway there in some form. Currently, I’m a very competent 22 year old.

Every once in a while at work and maybe quite regularly, a new hire past the age of 40 will walk through the doors and everyone in their 20’s is thinking, I wouldn’t want to be that guy. It’s demoralizing to be in the same position as a bunch of kids because you know they’re judging you. Plus it’s like being potty trained by your nephew. It might be immature to care about what a bunch of kids are probably thinking about you but it’s just not a positive environment to be in.

If it’s too difficult to find something or someone to fulfill you spiritually then the next option is to find something or someone to fulfill you in your place with society. I suppose life is often a race to not feel like a loser even though we all end up dying in the end.

I don’t really live by all this mumbo jumbo but it is real and sometimes maybe you have to play along at least just a little bit. To let yourself be tortured by these unwritten rules is an injustice to yourself and your life. If your place in your world is dictated by this gauge then you have to know that your membership needs to be regularly renewed because it can expire at any time. There’s not a lot of loyalty in the program no matter how many points you have accumulated.

Going Backwards

To adapt to a life that is seemingly better can be done with ease but to have to go the other way is often grueling. Something about evolution wants us to only go where we think forward is. Some people would rather choose an early death than go backwards.

For most North Americans they have historically done a little better than their parents. That’s not going to be so much the case now. The difference is the current young generation cannot easily do better than their parents. They can do better but there’s a lot more work involved now. You’ll often hear about how much harder it is now than just a few decades ago to make a good living. That might be true but it’s probably still easier than most eras in history. None of us are involuntarily shipped off to war or working in coal mines.

Regardless of how easy we have it, it won’t stop us from complaining and doing nothing much to better ourselves. Part of it is the dynamics on what this younger generation has to do compared to any other generation in history. Working the coal mines might be more physically difficult than attaining a university education(for some) but there probably wasn’t much of a choice. You either worked in that mine or you and your family severely suffered. The choice that people have now is to either seek higher education or possibly just survive. Not being able to buy a house and have a middle class lifestyle might suck but you can still live an okay life. And that’s the option many will take…the easy way out. People are often as tough as their options.

Evolution seems to be weeding out the unambitious people living in developed countries who were commonly referred to as the middle class. Seems wrong to let the majority of your population go to shits but nothing stands in the way of progress. You have to crack a few eggs to make an omelette, right? Whether or not this is progress or if we’re making a burnt omelette, we’ll have to wait and see. Our lives are just a small small step into the future. They could have never made a car without inventing the wheel first but no one ever saw the car coming.

It seems normal to expect a little better for yourself than what your parents had. But I also think we want something different. Evolution is not only progress but also change. Some of us might be disenchanted with the values that were once held. What was supposed to be the next step? Everyone was going to own 2 houses? Or is this whole system just going to break down and we’re just going to start over again trying to attain the white picket fence life?

Part of the disenchantment with being obsessed about having The American Dream is having witnessed it which takes away from the novelty. Much of what we think is happiness is not actual happiness but just an idea of what happiness is supposed to be.