Imaginary Face Off at McDonald’s

At McDonald’s yesterday there was this guy with his 3 sons. He didn’t look like anyone I knew at first besides a father. A second look told me that I might have known this guy from high school. It looked like him but I was a little surprised at how old he looked. Maybe it’s not fair to say that because I’m comparing him to myself who still gets ID’d for buying lottery tickets. Not everyone can be as beautiful as Mr. Johnson.

We crossed paths at one point and both looked at each other. It was definitely him. I believe he recognized me as well. In high school we never really spoke. I was part of the “cool” crowd and he wasn’t. You know how in those TV shows the cool guys in high school become losers and the losers in high school become winners? That may have just played out. There’s the long game in life and if you stop playing it too soon you begin the path of misery.

The internet tells me he has a career in the engineering industry. These days if you don’t have a profile on LinkedIn people assume there’s a fair to high chance you’re a loser. I haven’t spoke to anyone about or heard of this theory but I’m theorizing that I’m correct because that’s what I would think. The other theory for not being on LinkedIn is you’re just way better than most people and don’t need to advertise yourself.

No one thinks having 3 sons means you failed but I bet he’s feeling like a loser right now. No one cares too much which gender their first child is but they care more about the second child because if they don’t get one of each then they’re sweating bullets for what the third one will be. Who the heck wants 3 boys? That’s like having 3 spoons when you want 2 spoons and a fork. That third spoon is going to get neglected — an oversupply. Talk about rolling the dice. Now you have to raise that third child and pretend you care about him just as much as the other two. Every time he stinks up the bathroom it was a stink that you didn’t need to smell. When you look at him you secretly imagine him in a pink Hello Kitty dress. The mind can go into some dark places.

Maybe we’re both losers because we’re both at McDonald’s. He spent more money than I did. I didn’t have fries or a soda with my burger. I had coupons and he might not have. I own McDonald’s stock which I’m up on. Maybe I won.

Advising 25 Year Olds

With all the self-reflection I’ve done and conclusions I’ve arrived at with my life and life in general, I was lost on how to advise the 2 unambitious young men working at the games & collectibles store. One guy has decided he’s too young to bother trying to figure his future out. “I’m 25, what am I supposed to know?” he says. He’s not being irrational but his attitude isn’t encouraging. He tells me he’s an art student whose main interest is painting but he also tells me he doesn’t do much painting. Over the last 2 years I’ve periodically told these guys to just quit since they’re always complaining how much they dislike their job. If you don’t have the guts to quit your minimum wage job that you dislike then your tolerance for risk is much too low for this life. I’ve gone as far as threatening to email their head office to inform them that they sexually harassed me using a vinyl action figure.

The other guy attends college when he can afford it. He takes General Studies courses which is basically what one would enrol themselves in to defer feeling like a loser. It’s expensive and requires a lot of time and effort to not appear to be a complete loser. He tells me he’s poor. I tell him it’s okay to be poor when you’re 25 because all of your friends are poor. That was my subtle way of telling him that it won’t feel okay to be poor in the future.

The biggest deception in life is that people have very little idea how they’re going to feel in the future. People believe they’re going to feel similar to how they do in the present. Guys like them tell themselves that they’re going to figure it out but it’s really just a hope. In a country such as Canada you have all the opportunity in the world to do anything including nothing. From my experience most people who defer making a decision never figure it out. The decision is just made for them at some point.

Perhaps there’s too many options but none of them seem to check all the boxes especially the enjoyment box. There’s good paying jobs out there but to many they involve too much discomfort so instead they pick something easier and unrewarding hoping something that checks the enjoyment box along with the high income box as well as the no risk box will come along one day. I know all about that. That seems to be the core philosophy for many but it’s not a realistic one for most people.

There’s probably no guidance I could give them that would shift their attitudes. At their age I blocked out everything I didn’t want to believe. And maybe I’m in no position to offer advice to them. Maybe they’re doing just fine. With their current trajectory though and in today’s environment I don’t believe the odds are in their favour. I read somewhere, instead of giving advice it’s better to tell your story and have people take what they want from it.

What I believe now to be healthy core philosophies sounded shallow and disheartening in the past. In such a safe civilization it’s easy to dream up hippie-like philosophies to avoid the uncomfortable realities. Life hasn’t changed much in the last 100,000 years — it’s a competition, the winner is often the one who gets their first, isolation and inadequacy is a horrible feeling, lacking resources is a precarious position to be in. A good life is a relative measure so be better than most people.

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Night Thoughts

There’s videos of Asian toddlers on YouTube playing piano like they’re masters. Apparently there’s a saying,

Roses are red
Violets are blue
There’s always an Asian
Who is better than you

Gazelles run fast so they do. Giraffes have long necks so they use them. I have a human brain so I used it to do as little as possible. My clock is one hour ahead right now because I told myself daylight savings will just correct it in a few months.

If I was sitting around a table with people my age I wouldn’t have very much to brag about. I’m a jerk of all trades but master at none. I realize that the majority of people may be in the same camp but it’s still depressing to have no adult merit badges. Perhaps I could expound my knowledge of the stock market but even then I’m just a retail investor who could get his ass handed to him at anytime. Only time will tell if I know what I’m doing or if I’m just an impostor thriving in the longest bull market in history.

Some hate and complain about immigrants but without them we’d be a country full of the laziest sons of bitches who ever lived. When China or India wins this economic war we’ll all realize the magnitude of our loserism. We’ll be a new category of humans, homo loserien. The museums will have us displayed as an overweight human holding a remote control in one hand and a fizzy drink in the other with Cheetos stains around our mouth. The description will read, They did nothing. No one misses them.

When you’re well into your adult years it’s almost too late to be that good at anything. Anyone who is good at anything has a 20-30 year head start on you. Your goal then becomes to be a little better than your friends who are also good at nothing. King of the Losers, is the coveted title in your crew. Sadly, it’s often not until you get older that the realization that you could have done so much more hits you out of nowhere. It’s the unfortunate human condition that makes us hate ourselves for the life we wasted. It’s mother nature’s punishment for not being a better slave to her.

Bladder Tales

After 5 hours of sleep last night my body signaled me to wake up and urinate. At a large retail chain a few weeks ago the clerk and I were talking about our Fitbit watches. “I like it because it tracks how much sleep I get….or the lack of it. Once you hit 40 years of age you start getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom,” he said. He’s one of those boomers who got one of those well-paying menial jobs in the 1980s and handcuffed himself to it for life.

I wasn’t able to fall back asleep so here I am writing about the ordeal. The same thing happened last night. I know the culprit. Both nights I had a big bowl of homemade vegetable soup as a late dinner. It seems innocuous but I remember a night not so long ago when I had a big bowl of salad and an apple for a late dinner and had to get up from bed and pee multiple times. Many vegetables and fruit contain about 90% water.

Conclusion: eating vegetables and fruit produce a slow release of generous amounts of urine.

As a child and teenager I never monitored my liquid intake before bed. It was very rare that I ever had to wake up to urinate. Sure, when I was very young I would sometimes wake up because I urinated in my bed. A soothing dream of urination would be followed by the realization that it was too good to be true. It’s also true though that I did not drink much water or eat fruits and vegetables as a kid.

There were more than a few times as a kid that I almost peed my pants walking home from school. I was never conscious of my peeing habits back then. I think I would just go straight to school without peeing and not go the entire day at school. Come 3:15 PM my bladder was screaming. The closer I was to home the more urgently I needed to go — it’s like you mentally give up the closer you think you are to relief. Sometimes I would get right to the door but couldn’t hold it so I had to publicly urinate in front of my home. Any neighbour who might have been watching would have thought I’m some kind of animal.

My rule for awhile now has been no liquid 2 hours before bed. I have to add another one: no water dense fruits or vegetables 4 hours before bed. I wonder if urination issues are a leading cause of insomnia. Perhaps fruits and vegetables aren’t so good for your health.

 

 

 

Life Isn’t Fair

A woman in the neighbourhood was telling me how she dropped out of high school after the 10th grade to work an easy job that paid $18 per hour back in the late 1980s. I would have dropped out in the 7th grade for that kind of money. Her story made me envious and pissed off. After barely graduating high school in the late 1990s I attained a shitty job as a retail clerk that paid me $7 an hour. $18 an hour would have changed my life even during that time. I didn’t make $18 an hour until 2012.

$18 an hour straight out of high school would have changed my life financially but maybe more so on a psychological level. I would have advanced on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs — my fears and anxieties would have subsided to a large degree. My outlook, self-esteem, level of kindness and how I would have navigated life would have changed completely.

I came out of high school after the tail end of an era of good money for easy, entry level work. Like many others with a loser mentality I had a resistance to change due to fear and denial. While many of my peers touted post secondary education as a must I told myself I would eventually find the slack off union job of my dreams. We were both right and wrong. You don’t necessarily need to attain post secondary education but the union job idea was probably not so good either.

Failure to adapt makes you unfit for survival according to that Darwin character. The generational attitudes before me molded a belief in me that I would pick up where they left off and have my time on the gravy train. When you have hope that you might have easy options available to you then you’re much less likely to sign up and endure the more difficult ones even if they’re more rewarding. Because death or starvation is not imminent for most young adults, many have decided to look for excuses to avoid doing what probably needs to be done.

This country is corrupt.

Why work so hard when climate change is going to destroy us anyway.

It’s not my fault I’m poor. 

The baby boomers ruined it for the rest of us.

It’s not fair.

Your beliefs will shape your outcome. Be careful of what you believe. Just because you believe something it doesn’t necessarily make it even remotely true. It might make you nothing but an extreme fool. It’s difficult to convince anyone of what they don’t want to believe — only reality will.

Thoughts at the Moment

The last 30 minutes was spent eating Doritos, drinking half a can of Coca-cola and watching YouTube videos. I’m procrastinating practicing piano using the ultimate human excuse of, I don’t feel like it right now. If you only do things when you feel like it then you’ll probably end up never doing anything unless you believe you have to.

The one job that I applied for in the last 4 years appears not to be interested in my interest. Before I left my last job my manager said I was “rehireable” or if I wanted I could work Saturdays only. Some would say ‘why not?’ just work one day a week. I say that’s a wuss move that would be indicating I’m too fearful to completely let go and bet on myself.

I’m entertaining the idea of making it my life’s purpose to never work a job again or at least not a full-time one. My life would be ‘easy’ if I attained full-time employment but I’d live and die like the billions of other chumps who dedicated their entire lives to comfort and fitting in. If I have a tombstone after my death I’d like it to read:

Mr Johnson
1979-20XX
‘No job since 2015. Go fuck yourself.’

What will I do myself with no job or child to raise? The reality of life is that evolution does not care about your life. We’re all tools for progress. In order to feel alive you always need to be working towards something or risking towards something. And then you get to die.

The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.

-Bruce Lee

 

 

 

Hope Is The Last Thing That Dies

At about the age of 30 my despondency was showing to the people I had known all of my life. As usual I was unhappy with my situation in life but what was unusual this time was my inability to tell myself that everything might be okay. The married men made it clear where their priorities laid. Everyone else was snorting cocaine while poorly imitating a life from the show Entourage.

When you’re 20 years old, you and everyone else tells you that you have lots of time. When you’re 25 years old it’s, ‘you’re still young.’ When you’re 30 years old it’s, ‘you still got time.’ After that if you still haven’t found some solid footing in life there’s more pity than there is encouragement.

For once in my life I started to question the probable future and didn’t let my feelings get in the way. Most people will only see what doesn’t make them uncomfortable which is why so many people end up living unsatisfactory lives riddled with failed experiences and regret.

Option #1: Snort cocaine, hang out and see what happens.

Option #2: Completely walk away and see what happens.

The more money you have the more loose and carefree you will likely be with your spending. The same goes for time. In my mind, time was becoming scarce and I could no longer be a degenerate gambler with my life. Option #1 seemed even less attractive than betting it all on the roulette table.

Option #2 was what made Mr. Johnson the greatest unknown blogger you know today. It was also what made him a rational thinker who lives by a philosophy rather than day-to-day emotions. Both options were not appealing but I figured one of them at least carried a possibility of a brighter future. It’s difficult to leave the herd but when you envision a slaughter house future you have to make a move. The thought from some is that I could dabble with the cocaine users and the married people but in my mind there’s nothing of utility for me there so what’s the point. Whether you’re holding on with both arms or just 2 fingers you’re still holding on. I didn’t want to take any chances and have to look back that dabbling might have been the cause of my ruin.

From what I have gathered not much has changed for a lot of my old friends except they’re all 10 years older. Those who were snorting cocaine are still doing it and some of them are hitting it harder apparently. The idea of making a dramatic change outside the confines of accepted practice is too heavy a psychological price for them to handle. It’s a case of the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t.

A decision is just a bet — a prediction on the future. Those who make good decisions in life tend to do better. The lesson? Learn how to make good decisions. How? You have to always be EXTREMELY critical towards your thoughts, feelings and actions. There’s this thing called a brain in your head and if you don’t learn to use it then it’s going to use you to make caveman decisions.