When you come in through the door you have to go for the cologne right away. You can’t go to the shower because that’s too clean; the lingering stench of neglected anger must be allowed to rise above what rationality you’ve kept in reserves. You want the anger and disappointment to spill over the rational mind and consume reason. Reason demands hesitation and glorifies a moment’s peace that would give birth to a sensible solution. But, you don’t want to stop. You’re not interested in a sensible solution. Solutions are endings and endings are for realists and pessimists; dreamers want plot. The plot must go on unhindered.
Two sprays on the neck; that’s just right. Now, light some incense. Set the mood. It’s just enough of a personal victory to ward off any craziness that might lead you downtown needing a lawyer and a good PR guy. You don’t want that. PR guys are expensive and annoying; always going on about how you “gotta network” these days and all the while, all you want to do is smash his face in with a damn iron for assuming that your choice to opt out of that techno-dick networking cult is because you don’t know how to do it—it’s because you don’t want to end up an asshole like he is.
Anyway. You sit down and think about the whole damn day that sucked a whole damn day away from your life today.
There’s an incessant nature to the endless parade of mindless tasks that are imposed upon me while I sit in that damn chair at that damn job. And each new inquiry is a blatant insult to my intelligence. It’s not about thinking I’m above it all, it’s about work that doesn’t inspire me because it has no true outcome but the letters I type and the file that holds it. Some of them go no where, and others are copies of prior assignments. If that be the case, then just equip me with a copy machine, but don’t you dare waste my fucking time pretending like my work is meaningful. I get why people get depressed about work and how a life of this can drive people to turn blades inwards upon themselves; it’s about doing meaningful work. Is there any other kind really?
If there’s no work that might be assigned to me which affects the survival or improvement of this office, why give me anything? I’d much rather sit and research something that might be useful someday, recharge my batteries, or hell, take 5 minutes to be human. But the office drones can’t live with that. They can’t stand the idea of idleness; it drives them insane. So, in the name of a silent fear for idleness, let us keep handing me pointless tasks. Such tasks are of a nature that, when they’ve finished plucking every last brain cell from my mind, they’ll move on to my soul.
There is value in boredom if you look hard enough. Boredom is THE void to be eventually filled with creativity and innovation. Yet, the potential for filling the void can only come when given enough time to mature properly. It’s like waiting for your eyes to adjust to the night after being in a brightly lit room. At first it seems hopeless that anything can be seen. Yet soon, the images become clear and the possibilities, much wider. Soon, when all the bright lights of expectations are turned off, you can finally see the stars.
I’m a big believer in boredom. There has always been a reason why people with big ideas were usually associated with a lack of real employment or wealth. You hear terms like “starving artist” and wonder where it comes from, or perhaps just assume that it’s a trendy catchphrase. Only, it’s not. There is infinite wisdom in those words, and that is: the reason the artist is starving is because, if he ever had a real job, he wouldn’t have the time nor energy to create anything.
You can’t inspire children to be scientists by explaining to them that U.S. technology markets need you to grow up and take math courses so that it can stay competitive on a world stage we like to boss around so much. You don’t tell children that becoming a scientist is good for the economy and that it helps fight terrorism; you ASK them if they want to be the first person to set up a space colony on Mars. You ask them if they want to meet aliens someday and travel to the stars. You ask them if they want to make history and save the fucking world. Watch the hands fly up, and watch them take EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US WITH THEM.