There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is in having lots to do and not doing it. - Mary Wilson

Doing things that your “supposed to do”

Posted: November 17th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: | 7 Comments »

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One thing that bothers me the most is people doing things because they are supposed to be done a certain way.  Well guess what, doing things because your supposed to do them will give you the same life that your average person gets.  Last time I checked, your average person is fat, depressed, and in debt.

Well today’s the day to start questioning everything you do.  Let’s look at the “normal life.”

Go to college, meet future wife, get a “good job”, buy a new car, get married (15-40k), buy a house you can barely afford, 3 years later when the marriage isn’t going so well have a kid, you wanted a girl and got a boy or vice versa so have another kid, wake up and realize you’ve spent your entire life at some shit job to come home to someone you used to like to fuck but now hate been in same room, buy a porsche, buy a divorce, and find a second wife, work 20 more years, retire with your second wife or alone in the same city you’ve lived all your life or in florida if you really saved, sit in your house or retirement home eating cat food until you die.

This is the good version, this is the “dream.”  If you fuck up at any point it’s not even this good.  Don’t save your pennies?  You have to buy a used miata instead of a porche or worse work until your incontinent.  Didn’t go to college? congrats, you are completely fucked.  The average cost of day care for one kid will be more than your annual income after taxes.  Oh you had three kids?  Great, perhaps they will make up for the fact that you are one paycheck away from not even buying balongna sandwiches every week.  Picked the wrong industry to work in?  Sorry, you’re not getting 80 grand a year to put bolts on cars.

Assumption number 1:  having kids is a great idea if you make less than 100k a year.  Sure your parents did it, but your parents could also feed your ass on one blue colar income.  Day care in Indianapolis, one of the cheapest mid size cities in the country is 250-400 a week.  A fucking week.  Sure money’s not everything, and it seems that most people love kids.  That said, did you ever stop to ask yourself, would having the next kid right now be that much better than driving around in a fucking ferrari, because that’s what a kids costs these days.  Oh and ladies, when your husband who you thought was the most perfect guy in the world leaves you for some skank, your not going to feed that ferrrari payment of a kid on 16k a year.

Assumption number 2:  Buying a large house is a good investment.  Being house poor is a terrible idea.  Your largest expense will be housing.  When you buy the most house you can afford it does a number of things.  You become a slave to it.  You can’t pay it off quickly.  You have no financial freedom.  No money to tell your boss to fuck off.  If you don’t get a check tomorrow you’re out of the street.  If your particular industry goes to shit, you get laid off, and take another lower paying job, you will lose the house because you can’t make the payments.  Sure houses are usually good investments, but not when it’s your only investment.

Assumption number 3:  Shopping is entertainment.  Buying things to fill up your huge house, to impress your friends/coworkers/family/wife, or to pass the time, will only result in one thing; an empty boring life where you are never satisfied.  In 10 years most of the crap you’ve bought will be worthless or gone (either thrown out, lost in the divorce, obsolete, or broken).  At the end of your life, will you say “Man I’m sure glad I got that new flaming shit?”

Assumption number 4:  Passive entertainment is a good way to spend 100% of your free time.  Watching imaginary people on TV, learning facts about celebrities, even listening to music will never be as satisfying as having your own life, your own adventures, or creating music.  Be someone do something.  Will anyone remember bob the guy who watched every eppisode of whatever television show?  If Earnest Hemingway sat around in his condo watching Friends instead of going out and living life, would I read his books?

Assumption number 5:  Working dilegently for 40 years will result in a nice retirement on the beach.  Most likely you will have a heart attack before retirement and either die or be to old and fat to enjoy retirement.  In all probability you will be downsized, right sized, or if you’re lucky, fired when you finally crack and tell them to go fuck themselves. You are only worth the revenue you generate.

So what do you do?  That’s not as important.  What’s important is to think about your options.  When you realize that the best case scenerio is completely fucked, that gives you something very important:  freedom.  Trying something crazy doesn’t seem so crazy when you see how crazy ‘normal’ really is.  You want to be a painter, rock star, basketweaver, surf board maker, go for it.  The worse thing that could happen is you end up in debt, alone, or dead.  Guess what?  It’s going to happen anyway.  Most people are already there.  The difference between you and them could be that you gave it a shot.


7 Comments on “Doing things that your “supposed to do””

  1. 1 Darko said at 4:48 am on January 8th, 2009:

    I thought I was missing the courage to do something about my lifestyle. Well… no. It was just me being lazy. But you’ve put the options on the table so beautifully I think I’m done being lazy.

  2. 2 Nishant said at 3:04 pm on January 15th, 2009:

    Buddy that was bloody awesome! haha. I cam across your site while reading through the comments on four hour work week. You hit the nail on the head. Great writing

  3. 3 Chance said at 7:09 am on June 1st, 2009:

    Thank you for this, quite the gem and I enjoyed reading it.

  4. 4 Cathy said at 10:57 pm on July 22nd, 2009:

    I really like the point of this article, but there are a few grammar problems/spelling problems which are distracting.

    1.Oh and ladies, when your husband who you thought was the most perfect guy in the world leaves you for some skank, your not going to feed that ferrrari payment of a kid on 16k a year.
    –Should be “you’re”/”you are”
    2. Most likely you will have a heart attack before retirement and either die or be to old and fat to enjoy retirement.
    –should be “too” old

    3. Will anyone remember bob the guy who watched every eppisode of whatever television show?
    –episode

  5. 5 Leo said at 2:36 pm on July 23rd, 2009:

    Thank you for posting this. I often wonder if it is worth it to go to school for 7 more years to become a physicist, but then I realize that I have to do what I really want to do with my life, and that is learning about what the universe is made of. This gives me hope when I see three needed degrees ahead of me and wont be making a lot of money. However, it will all be worth it. I would rather be a poor scientist than a rich, unfulfilled, mindless office drone.

  6. 6 l Shelly said at 10:24 am on April 12th, 2011:

    To Leo mainly -
    Don’t always assume you need to have all the college credentials to “think” about physics. That’s what a physicist should be spending most of his time doing anyway. The “hardwired” experimentation to prove what you or other’s believe about how the universe works is where all the mind numbing work comes in. (Sorry about ending that sentence with a preposition Cathy. You feel free to edit that for me please.) I doubt I would enjoy physics as much as I do now if I had to make a living doing research. I enjoy learning and thinking about physics but I would not enjoy the process of justifying the funding thru demonstration or experimentation. Although that is a necessary evil in the profession.
    There is also a very likely risk of being on the wrong trail for most of your career trying to prove a theory that just isn’t correct. Even though nothing ventured nothing gained is true in all walks of life it just seems wrong to do this on other peoples money once you begin to doubt your theory has merit. I’m afraid there are a lot of disillusioned yet still “faking it” physicist out there knowingly running pointless experiments. That’s probably why some researchers sound like a nudist wrangling porcupines when they speak about their project . The researcher is comfortable in his own skin but he’s afraid someone might make him find a point. (Hope you liked the analogy) Anyway, good luck with your education. Find something useful to figure out and do your best to retire young. That means you were a great success early

  7. 7 a said at 3:33 am on June 19th, 2014:

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