Monday, September 5, 2011

Are We There Yet: An Essay On Great Expectations and the Everending Paradigm

It seems at all social developmental points in our lives we are oxymoronically optimistic and accursed; we are forever looking forward, wishing for our imaginary archetypal futures to arrive, most of us living a lifetime of yearnings.

Here are some of our lifetime asterisks, so to speak:

*When we are small tykes, wading and playing in puddles, we look forward to being bigger tykes. Bigger tykes get to go to school and learn stuff.

*When we are bigger tykes we look forward to recess and being teenagers. Teenagers are cool and can drive.

*When we are teenagers we look forward to being kidults. Kidults can live away from home and party and drink.

*When we are kidults we look forward to being career adults. After all, career adults become important and get rich.

*When we are career adults we look forward to better pension and health benefits so we can retire by age sixty. Having the life of a retiree means having the life of Riley and doing whatever we want and in style.

*And when we acquiesce into our old age and become sexagenarians we look forward to becoming octogenarians. We've still things to do and desire to live yet another day.

Generally, while living such asterisks we imagine that the fates shall be kind and not deal us too many unexpected hardships in our destinies. Generally in our optimistic yearnings, we tend not to include any shattering specifics such as breakdowns in families, finances, and friendships.

In our youth we are auspicious, our lives ever so promising. As emerging adults we are full of endeavor and emprise. In middle-age we can be both banausic and fructuous; banausic in the sense of realistic, fructuous in the sense of rationalizing our individual accomplishments as being positive to date. Come old-age we must be somewhat austere, oftentimes necessary for the giving to others. This, too, is the time for reflection and the realization that for the most part, our lives have been a middle-class membership in the working class peloton.

I am thinking we aspire to expire. We imagine our lives to be exciting, yet stick with safety and comfort. The riskiest behavior for most of us will be driving our cars. (In fact, just check facts and stats on our human road kill.)

As we age we are forced into change. Accepting change becomes necessary because of our psychological and physical limitations. The longer we live the more positives (and negatives) we experience. Accepting change, especially negative change demands a certain courage. And courage, by the way, exists only because we are finite. If we could live forever, there would be no need for such a concept as courage.

No matter. Whether we are puppets or paupers, pirates or poets, pawns or kings, bankers or buskers, our lives are transitory, mere fillips.

Our yens end when we end.


Enough of this! Outside it is sunny and I am going busking!

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