Thursday, March 19, 2009

Narcissism

I've been on a hiatus from TheseGentlemen the past few weeks. It's in part because of a changing work schedule where I actually have to work hard while at work, and part because I've honestly had few thoughts I felt were appropriate for this site. Arts, politics, music, film, social norms... whatever the topic, I guess I just haven't been in tune to making observations about the world. Instead, I've only been focusing on my life, my world.

But I miss writing here, and so you know what, if all I can think about is myself, well then gosh darn it I'm just going to have to write about that until I snap out of it and finally start making some grandiose remarks about the state of journalism today.

I am the prince of lists. I promise I make more than you. I make one almost every day, and I keep longer lists saved on my computer of things I need to do over the next few weeks and months. I have to-do lists and lists of bills and lists of movies and lists of bands and lists of baseball athletes. Sometimes I even make lists of friends.

I realized though, I've never made a list of goals, life goals, or anything of the sort. Like in the movie/book High Fidelity, where John Cusack's character has the lamest Top 5 List of Things I Want to Be When I Grow Up.... I don't even have a lame one of those.

To-do lists help me remember, prioritize and motivate. The only thing better than completing something on my to-do list is making a new to-do list altogether. If you're starting to worry about me right now I think that might be appropriate. For some reason though, I think I have a fear of making a to-do list of life goals. I'm afraid of not being able to cross something off the list. Or that maybe it will be some daunting reminder of something I'll never accomplish. Perhaps most of all, I'm afraid that completing these life goals won't actually satisfy me at all; that I have some insatiable propensity to simply want and desire and no matter what I do I'll always just want more. I'll never learn to be happy with what I have, and so all my happiness will always be fleeting. It's like consumerism of life.

And what if we take things a step forward. What if I'm like a combination of the characters from Scrubs, and I only want things I can't have, but once I do have it I don't want it anymore. And what if that's stemming from the fact that I only think I want something because it will make me happy, but really I just like being unhappy, so I go after things I know will sabotage my happiness, so I'm actually going after things that make me unhappy. Kind of perverse huh?

What if publishing this on the Internet is a bad idea???

I don't really know. What I do know is that now is the time. Now is the time to make a list of life goals - most just simple things I want to do and see and experience through life. No, I'll never cross many of them off my list, but I'll at least have targeted some of them and completed something.

A list:

- Walk along much of the Great Wall of China.
- Hike/backpack much of the Appalachian Trail.
- Go on a road trip from the southern tip of Alaska to the southern tip of South American in Argentina/Chile by driving along the entire western coast of the Americas.
- Eat lunch and drink wine at a cafe in Paris.
- Scuba dive off the Great Barrier Reef.
- Be a reporter on television.
- Play Barack Obama and Adrien Fenty in a pickup game of basketball.
- Write a screenplay.
- Ask someone you've only just met to go on a date.
- Climb an active volcano.
- Run at least a 5K with my mom.
- Take a photo that only I could take.
- Help my friend start a successful bar/club.
- Believe in a higher power.
- Actually read the Bible all the way through.
- Live in Manhattan.
- Time travel.
- Hang out with Woody Allen.
- Slap Gary Sinise in the face.
- Run for public office.
- Congratulate a friend for winning an Academy Award.
- Act again, but with more clothes next time.
- Learn to properly ballroom dance.
- Be a successful leader.
- Live on a tropical island for a month.
- Have the need to use a machete.
- Sky dive.
- Live without back pain.
- Go to space.

So... where do I start?

13 comments:

David Pratt said...

This is a fine list of goals to have, but I don't understand why anyone would want to slap Gary Sinise.

Jason Heat said...

I have done two of these things - oddly enough, they are next to each other on the list.

Nevie said...

i have some thoughts on this whole romanticized idea of "happiness" you might be interested in hearing. not to suggest it's an entirely depressing opinion. at least i don't think so. but it sounds like we may have some similarities in that respect.

Alex said...

You know, I actually tried to read the Bible once... I got about five pages into Genesis and just couldn't handle it.

B.Graham said...

I share your love/obsession for lists. And I have a list of Things To Do Before I Die sitting across my room at this very moment. The most recent item I checked off was "Vote For A Winning President." The most recent item I checked off on today's to-do list is "call the mac doctor."

Jason Heat said...

You really want to write a screen play, I'll help.

Ozkirbas said...

I'll read it.

Also, If you want to go Sky Diving or jump off the great barrier reef or climb an active volcano, I'm totally down with that. Count me in.

Damo said...

I'm down with these. Lemme know when you start booking airfare!

- Walk along much of the Great Wall of China.
- Hike/backpack much of the Appalachian Trail.
- Go on a road trip from the southern tip of Alaska to the southern tip of South American in Argentina/Chile by driving along the entire western coast of the Americas.
- Eat lunch and drink wine at a cafe in Paris.
- Scuba dive off the Great Barrier Reef.
- Climb an active volcano.
- Time travel.
- Run for public office.
- Congratulate a friend for winning an Academy Award.
- Be a successful leader.
- Live on a tropical island for a month, or forever.
- Have the need to use a machette.
- Sky dive.
- Go to space.

Jason Heat said...

I will happily win an Oscar for you all.

David Pratt said...

I also keep a list of things I want to do after I die.

Jason Heat said...

@ David -

My #1 is 'Be Relevant'

David Pratt said...

Really? Mine is "Come back."

lindsay said...

start with sky diving...come with me after graduation?