It is of notable importance that I mention a few acquisitions, of the last few days:
1) An internet connection within the confines of my own home, rendering the need to stand outside Starbucks at late hours inconsequential. Maybe just for kicks, in future (meaning not soul-shatteringly cold) days.
2) A complete and utter surrender to the world of technology in the form of an iphone 5. It still hurts. But I kind of like it.
It should be said that due to the former -- and within the last few hours, the latter -- that I have spent much time and deliberation doing copious amounts of market-based research. Meaning, I've wasted most of the last few days wading through a bunch of shit on the Internets.
This leaves a sour taste in my mouth. Or maybe a too-sweet one, like after you eat an entire bag of M&M's. Not to mention a dull throb behind my left eyeball. Though I have thus far successfully resisted the growing urge to abandon all attempts at productivity in lieu of watching countless hours of Breaking Bad on Netflix. I should probably get this done as soon as possibly before the desire becomes greater than what they say about fat kids and cake.
(Speaking of cake...how long do you suppose a flourless chocolate cake lasts, when refrigerated? Also, what do you think that smell in my fridge is? The cake tasted ok today, anyway.)
Disregarding the numbed-out affliction my brain takes on when too much time is spent in front of a screen, it's more about the content upon which I fixate when immersed in a techno-binge that causes the problem. Because it's always there. There's always more to look at, more to obsess over, more to get lost in. And right on the edge of that more is the soft song seeping through its pixels that, when passed through the central lobe, screams I TOLD YOU THEY WERE BETTER THAN YOU.
I had told myself before I began this post that I was not going to rhapsodize, yet again, on that which I agonize in myself is not good enough or comparison-worthy. So I won't. I'll simply note that it is my greatest disparity in living in a culture so saturated with information that it seems as though our clothes may never dry. I have my faults. And self-deprication is obviously top of the food chain over here. Moving on.
The upside to diving into the sea of information more accessible than flouride-free water is that it's gotten me thinking about what I'm made of. More specifically, what I'm good at and where I'm hopelessly flawed. I'm really good at mixing the same color paint, on repeat. I'm really bad at remembering (or maybe it's caring) to clean my toilet before mold grows on its edges. In both cases, it would appear that the definitions are getting both clearer and more muddled down the line. And by "line," I mean IN MY OLD AGE.
What I'm trying to discern, though, through all of this "understanding" and "defining" is not what I'm inherently good or bad at, but what I'm PASSIONATE at. For someone who has defined themselves as a painter for so long to experience a dip in desire, it feels shaky to find myself without a perch to stand on. I could say maybe "I'm a writer" but even I don't believe that any more than you do. I like to write. I like to paint. Sometimes I really like to write and sometimes I more than really like to paint. Sometimes I really like to listen to couples fight on the train. But this lack of consistency is where I find myself right now, and where the columns of "good at" and "not good at" are alternatively becoming both helpful and a huge disservice.
Because there are a lot of things I'd like to be good at. And there are a lot of things I'd like to never try again, ever (like discus). What I want is to be completely consumed by whatever that thing is I'm doing at that particular moment. Like, every moment. And Netflix does not count.
I started reading this blog today and at first, though I couldn't look away, it made me feel completely sub-par at, well, everything. But I think I need that. I get comfortable in feeling "good enough" too often. I rest in the place that I'm standing without looking further ahead. I'm trying not to get ahead of myself. But I'm trying to let that which I'm good at be enough to get better, and what I'm not rest in peace. I'm on a journey for my passion again. Let's hope this is the only melodramatic stop on the way.