Jitter #44

While out walking today, I found a book lying on the ground near the bushes called “The Lost”.

Somehow I found it aesthetically satisfying that someone had lost a book called “The Lost” and that I had found it.

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Jitter #43

Great

I enjoy playing the piano, but I’ll never be a concert pianist.

I like to cook, but I’ll never be a master chef.

I enjoy pursuing occasional artistic endeavors, but I’ll never be a great artist.

I dabble in writing music, but I’ll never be a great composer.

I have been writing software for a living for decades, but I’ll never be a great programmer.

I have people under me at work, but I’ll never be a great manager.

I’m a parent, but I’ll never be a great father.

I’m married, but I’ll never be a great husband.

I enjoy being intimate, but I’ll never be a great lover.

I write, but I’ll never be a great writer.

And you know what? It doesn’t matter.

It’s not the large things that matter but the small ones.

What matters is that you try.

And never give up.

Jitter #42

Dream

I see so many people taking sides, arguing. I see so many opinions thrown around. So much conflict. So many battles. So much animosity. “This side is this” and “that side is that.”

Just for a moment… stop. Take a breath. All the real world stuff, push it to the side. For just a little while, let yourself be free. For just a little while, don’t worry about what’s practical. Don’t worry about how hard something would be or all the issues. And for just a little while, don’t worry about what “your side” says.

For just a while, let yourself dream.

Imagine what you would like the world to be like. If a genie came to you and said that he could make the world anything you want, what would it be?

Would it just be about you? Or would your ideal world be a good place for others, too, for everyone?

Would you just live in a country, or would you be part of a civilization?

Would everyone be taken care of? Would everyone who shares your great land with you be happy and free, would there be no one who suffers or lived in poverty?

Don’t worry about how it would happen. Just dream. Let it become real in your mind, even if it’s far-fetched or impractical, even if you don’t think it could happen in a million years. For just a while, forget all that. Let it at least happen in your mind. See how you’d like things to be, if you had the ultimate power.

Learn what matters to you. Is it money? Is it other people? Is it the greatness of a common cause?

Then once you discover what really matters to you, let that shape your dialogue. Let that shape the decisions you make. Let that shape how you live your life and how you influence the world.

Because even though your dream may seem impossible, even though it might seem unreachable – the first step toward making a dream happen is to at least identify what it is. To make it real in your mind.

Pick the ideal world for you and everyone. Picture the ultimate for the human race. Let it seep into you.

Want it. Crave it. Need it.

Don’t be satisfied by what is. Think about what could be.

Don’t be dismayed by difficulties. Working together, anything can be overcome.

Don’t expect the worst from others. Instead, discover the potential we can find together, by bringing together all the varied, wild and wonderful talents buried inside each of us.

We are yin and yang, different parts of the same whole, defining the whole, inseparable.

Leave the muck behind. Rise above.

Dream your dream. Because the first step toward making a dream come true is to have one.

Jitter #41

Morning Doubts

(Written Feb. 20, 2009)

Doubts creep in at morning,
greeting me with glee,
awake in quieter moments
to make their voices heard
over the traffic of the day.

Where am I going
and what have I done?

What am I doing
and where do I belong?

She presses herself closer
and I drown in her hair
for a moment
before oblivion comes
and steals her away again.

I can feel her sleeping.
Does she love me still?

I know how she felt
but how does she feel?

I study the foundations
for cracks,
knowing they’re there
since I put them there
with my dim, thoughtless hammer.

And I struggle to take
the world’s futile measure
with a small plastic ruler
I got once long ago
in a box of Cracker Jacks.

 

Jitter #40

Whispers in the Dark

(Written Feb. 15, 2008)

I hear a whisper in the dark
With you sleeping so near
Right where I always
Wanted you to be,
close to me.

It’s the sound of your heart
Whispering to mine
Beating together
Finally become one,
to be forever.

More than a touch
More than desire
More than a dalliance
More than either of us
could have imagined.

The longing’s still there
Though you’re here.
But changing, changed.
Never diminishing
never gone.

Stay with me now,
No matter where we are.
Stay in my heart and my soul
And my laughter and my life,
always part of me.

 

Jitter #39

I had an experience when I was young(ish) involving trying to share some music I was interested in with someone else that forever changed how I viewed such things, even though I didn’t have the words for it then. The incident itself is not too relevant. What I took away from it was.

It doesn’t matter if anyone else likes what I like.

That might seem a bit trite or obvious, and yet I have met people in my life who seem to need validation over issues of taste and preference.

Music. Food. Movies. TV shows. Even colors.

If you say you like “X” and I don’t happen to like it, I’ll just nod and maybe even offer some sort of positive comment, to acknowledge what you have said. I don’t have a need, even, to tell you that I don’t like it. You’re reaching out to me with something that is a part of you. Why would I want to inject negative energy into such a situation? If I happen to enjoy it as well, then we have made a connection, and we can take it from there. But if not… acknowledge and move on.

I have known people who will go to great lengths to tell me why they don’t like something, even when I have just said I enjoy it. This might sound a bit harsh, but, honestly, I don’t care. You don’t have to convince me of why you don’t like it. You don’t have to, perhaps, even try to convince me I shouldn’t like it. That is actually quite a conceit, to assume your personal taste is somehow superior to mine.

You don’t have to justify yourself.

Neither do I.

Personal tastes are just that: personal. They are subjective. There is no right or wrong. It baffles me when people get into arguments about subjective things. But human beings are funny that way. We have minds that analyze. We have the ability to reason and to express. And we also have the tendency to apply those things in situations that don’t make sense. You can say, “I like Coke.” If the other person likes Pepsi, does it make sense to argue about it? We can try to come up with “logical” reasons why, but at the end of the day, it’s just “I like it.” That’s good enough. And you can’t force that on someone else through rational argument, because it’s not a rational thing. It’s not reasoned.

We like what we like. We dislike what we dislike.

It just is what it is.

And any sort of rationalization is meaningless to someone else.

You don’t have to justify yourself.

And neither do I.

The best thing to do is celebrate the fact that we’re all unique, and our personal likes and dislikes are part of that uniqueness. It’s a thing to be embraced, not fought about. We can welcome other people’s thoughts, not attack them.

Because, at the end of the day, the person behind those likes and dislikes matters more than the likes and dislikes themselves. And to attack them is to attack the person.

Why do it?

Embrace your uniqueness. Relish the fact that you are different. Not in a good way or a bad way – but in a “you” way. Your personal tastes make you neither a better person nor a worse one. Don’t expect anyone else on the planet to like what you do. And be pleasantly surprised when they do. It’s a bonus, an added thing in common.

You don’t need to justify yourself.

And neither do I.