I always thought that there must be some secret handshake to enter the kingdom of “The Cool Kids”. I never did figure out the secret code. Nevertheless I persisted. Your experience may be similar, and it is possible that I am internalizing a feeling that I had as an insecure teenage boy. It may be that we all see ourselves as outsiders and secretly hope that someday, a successful career or possibly winning the lottery will exact karmic revenge on all of those that spoke ill of us during our troubled teenage years. I can say with some authority that you can forget that shit. It ain’t gonna happen. The only person that is gonna rescue you from your angst ridden youth is you.
Ultimately I did survive teenager-hood, went on to college, and a successful career as an engineer and business owner, no thanks to anyone but yours truly. I worked, retired, saved a bunch of money, and am now collecting on the fruits of my labor, playing golf and drinking beer just like I always dreamed. However at this stage of the game, in retirement, I have discovered a new conundrum that seems to be on the verge of overwhelming my seemingly idyllic existence. What is that conundrum, you innocently ask? Well lemme tell ya …
Everyone annoys me. I mean every fucking person on this great green earth annoys me. Each and every one of them has at least one fatal flaw that drives me fucking nuts. I know it doesn’t seem possible, but it’s true. From the old bastard driving his Escalade at 10 miles an hour in front of me, to the old lady filling out a check to pay for a pack of gum at CVS, they all annoy me.
I’ve often said to my “friends” and “acquaintances” that if they ever see me in a Stewart’s convenience store sitting in a booth and slurping a cup of coffee, that they should pull out their Smith and Wesson and immediately put a bullet in my brain pan. Nothing annoys me more than old bastards acting like, well, like old bastards. Being an old bastard myself, I can appreciate the annoying traits that continue to annoy other old bastards. I’m reasonably certain that if I met myself at Walmart, there would be an ugly incident showing up in the local police blotter the next day.
I’ve often pondered “existential angst”. I’ve had this condition my entire life and it seems to be finally blossoming into a full blown flaming case. Why are we here? Why are we born to suffer and die? We labor away our entire lives in a seemingly senseless effort to attain what? Like Sisyphus we are doomed to forever roll our giant rock to the top of a hill, only to watch it roll down just as we are about to reach the top. We strive but never attain. I leave you with the words of the wisest man that ever lived.
Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity. What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun? One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever. The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose. The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits. All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again. All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us. There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.Ecclesiastes