Thursday, July 17, 2008

You Know Nothing

I'm reading A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (again) for my book club this month. There's this section in his faux Real World interview where he's admitting these things about himself that most people would consider very private or at least too private to reveal to the general public. And when the interviewer questions him he responds with:

"What am I giving you? I am giving you nothing...It seems like you know something, but you still know nothing...You have what I can afford to give. You are a panhandler, begging for anything, and I am the man walking briskly by, tossing a quarter or so into your paper cup. I can afford to give you this. This does not break me."

If I've ever heard a better justification for blogging I can't remember it. There's this tone...this idea...that I can give of myself freely and that you are a fool for thinking that you know know nothing.

And it's not just blogging, it's a lifestyle choice. The choice to lay yourself bare, to live, to allow yourself to do something other than sit on your ass and watch hours of Tivo'd crap, to do something...anything. At the end of it all, don't you want to have something to remember? If you were so careful and so guarded and so fucking boring and if you never made mistakes or did something stupid or revelled in your stupid mistakes...will you have experienced life? Or will you find that you have lived a boring sitcom of a life with a stilted laugh track and banal guest stars?

A List of Things you may or may not know about me (an homage to Meganude)

1. when dining solo, I feel that Kraft Dinner is a well balanced meal
2. I am judging you for wasting your life
3. sometimes I worry that I am wasting my life
4. I feel better about myself when I realize how much more sad your life is than mine
5. I will leave one cookie in the bag so that I don't have to put in the enormous amount of effort required to throw away an empty cookie bag and I do this in spite of the fact that my brother did the same thing throughout our childhood and it drove me completely mad
6. I hog the bed
7. when I find a song I like I will listen to it a dozen times in a row
8. I don't experience regret
9. frankly, I don't even believe in regret
10. I will eat the last piece of cake, even if I've already had more than my share


Kathleen said...

Seriously... no regret at all? I'm having a hard time picturing that. Not that I am consumed with regret, but I do experience it regularly (usually when contemplating how I am wasting my life)...

Lady Rose said...

Because I am a sum of all my experiences. So regretting something is like regretting who I have become.

Everything that I have done has shaped me into the person that I am right now. And I like that person.

That's my take on regret anyways. :)

And you're not wasting your life! You're going to law school. Though I could insert an appropriate lawyer joke here...

Kathleen said...

That's certainly a reasonable position. I guess I just haven't quite let go of the desire to change the world, despite having accepted that I won't be able to. The law thing won't change that; I'll just have more money.