It’s about time that I acknowledge a strange and awfully sad feeling I’ve borne lately. I usually like to think that I avoid getting teary and personal in blog posts that nobody cares about, unless I have reason to believe my emotions are relatable to most human beings, such as that post about the Friend Zone. I hope what I’m about to describe, some stray reader may share this obscure sorrow I bear.
I’m well off for a post-college graduate: I have a job that’s in my field and is fairly dignified, even though I can’t stand the people I work with sometimes; I have an apartment, which is quite spacious and quaint; I sustain contact with my parents, because I have a fancy-pansy iPhone that also serves as internet; ah yes, and one of my stories is finally getting published. In short, you’d think—I’d think—that I should be pretty damn happy. “Zippidee-doo-dah, zippidee-yay!” *As animated birds fly around my head.*
Having reached a state of “happily ever” goal, I’m left wondering what to do with myself. Write more stories? It would seem to only fuel my vanity. So I binge on Lost episodes, take advantage of my spare time, indulge my family and friends with my presence. That staves off the dread –for awhile at least. There is a bizarre, awful shadow that lingers over my head. I’m in the Matrix. I want to escape it, just break open the shell of the mundane world and look down on all of it. It certainly doesn’t help that my friend died shortly before I graduated college, so now humanity’s mortality is making my proper adult life feel very much pointless, sad, and silly.
Stories, books, movies are supposed to enrich or at least smother the overwhelming blandness of human life, but lately I find even literature to be a pointless escape into worlds that are not real, never were real, and never will be real. Readers fill their heads with knowledge and pseudo-experience of media and literature, and then what? We are left to endless conjecture, eternally delayed action. I’m paralyzed. The world has stopped turning.
As all men do, I work, so I can feed myself, clothe myself, survive so that I can indulge in a quadrillion petty luxuries before going back to work, doing it all again, day after day until I’m struck down by a stampede of antelopes or something. And then to awake in the afterlife, where I will be enlightened and finally understand the purpose of the mundane world, too late to have lived it properly of course.
But I’m sure in retrospect I’ll realize I was happier now than I ever will be, as I look back fondly on my days as a hapless bachelor. Yes, that’s another point—being single means far more to me now that it did in college. So much, in fact, that I’m willing to cough up $55 for one month of a dating website subscription. Since moving out on my own, I’ve experienced urges for human connection that were completely uncharacteristic of me before. I even went to a coffee shop today, all by myself.
Maybe it’s love that takes us out of the Matrix. Or maybe love is the shared delusion which ties us into the Matrix, and at least makes living in it bearable. Or perhaps if people quit taking their blessings all for granted, they wouldn’t need love in the first place.
Perhaps I’ve taken every joyous thing for granted. It’s just that, sometimes, I wish that if I can never escape the Matrix, I could blend into it like everyone else.
Blah. Okay. Enough emotions for tonight.