The Write Idea

The Write Idea

Creativity is like a muscle. First, you work it out. Then, you give it time to rest. After that, you let it atrophy back into mush. Then, you keep telling yourself that you’ll get on it. Following that, you buy a creativity pedometer and creative exercise equipment. Then, you have a credit card payment. I forgot where I was going with this.

Ah, yes, creativity muscley. To create is to develop ourselves, and to consume is to add raw ingredients. When you expend energy, you are burning your Slim Fast/Jim with a measurable amount of calories. Those calories enable you to work to the capacity that your muscles let you.

In the same way, creation is our mental calories burned from the psychological food we digest. In the same way that sitting on your butt burns ~2,000 calories a day, going about daily life burns mental energy. We’ll say it’s ~1,500 brainfarts, though less for most college graduates.

Unfortunately, like food diets, we must watch our mental intake. I’d have a hard time digging a hole fueled by Ho-Ho’s and Pop Tarts. If I watch nothing but the Dukes of Hazzard and King of the Hill, it will be hard for me to create a compelling science fiction novel unless it involves space rednecks.

Lately, I’ve been slacking off on a proper mental diet, but it’s hard to find anyone to hold me accountable. The internet is a dump truck of mental food, and meaningful discourse is hard to find among the droves of philosophically bankrupt consumer-gluttons. The ones who do want to discuss more often than not prefer to worship a 3-pound blob of gray tissue they’ve never seen but are convinced is better than yours.

In the meantime, I’m working through my 100,000 Tips, trying to update it to something grammatically correct and formatted according to standards a semi-literate monkey could tolerate.

Thankfully, my Woozy Drunkers is driving out of California in about a week and a half. I’d join her, but driving a small building across the country keeps me a bit indisposed to accompany her on her trip, though my parents have decided to come along. Once we get to Iowa, I’m sure we’ll find a meaningful crowd of folks that we can connect with in a meaningful way.

Des Moines is known for its philosophers, right?


Tattered Visions

Tattered Visions

Every parent desires their child to be great. Whether it’s in passing the family tradition on or invalidating the family curse, all decently humane fathers and mothers would be satisfied with a successful adult child when they look at the bag of drool and unspoken possibilities sticking their finger in that light socket.

One of the cursed blessings of being a long-haul driver is in the endless opportunities presented to ruminate and ponder pretty much everything. Since nobody told me that thinking is a dangerous hobby, I’ve done gone thinkin’, and it’s messing with my worldview.

Greatness, like repulsiveness, is rarely defined but at first blush seems to be universally agreed-upon. When you dig deeper into the intricacies of being great, it appears to be a mixture of a well-utilized personality and a fully-seized opportunity.

Unfortunately, the abstraction of an idea doesn’t do well to connect it to benefit the ones who are great. I’ve been observing a mystery that confounds me.

Greatness itself may be perceived by others, but nobody who seems to attain it ever really notices their transition into it. Was Einstein a “great man” when he discovered the theory of relativity, or when it was published? Was Henry Ford great when he developed a highly efficient company, or when his brand became a household name? Do presidents and kings become memorable as they do things, or when the consequences form?

The reality is that history has to write greatness, and it will only be written by the others who come after. C.S. Lewis did wonders expressing Christianity in a modern setting, but how many of his colleagues shared his thoughts and weren’t given credit for them?

In fact, how many ideas can we really attribute to Lewis in the first place? Or anyone else for that matter? Ideas have a funny tendency of not coming exclusively from ourselves, and any contribution we could ever make to humanity is merely stacking upon the body of pre-existing knowledge and creation that travels all the way back to Adam and travels all the way forward to the end of the earth.

No, nothing in this world is genuinely new, but it is new to each of us as we encounter it. Our own tragic fate, however, is to hold the messenger of the information in higher regard than the message, a bit like a tribal culture that worships the man who brings knowledge of carpentry and masonry.

When an idea is seen as new, it really isn’t. It is usually beyond the pale to express it, but the most in-depth pursuit of truth should drive us to squint into the distant haze of ancient history, philosophy, and storytelling to discover the most unadulterated version of the modern remix we see today.

If we want to understand ourselves and the world around us, we must see it from new perspectives. Many of those come from beyond where our comfort zone will send us.

With all of this said, this provokes a personal battle that verges on an existential crisis.

Finding room for greatness in the world of ideas and expression requires creating original and unexplored concepts and illustrations. However, with everything I said above it’s literally impossible to find something “new” that others haven’t tread upon. It seems that the more I read and discover, the smaller the box I have to work with to create something that I have no doubt will add to the incessant buzzing noise of the best digital publishing network this world has seen.

You’ll know if I come out of this existential mess. In the meantime, I’m cleaning up my 100,000 Tips and paying my bills with a good-paying mind-numbing job. This might be the logical consequence of the mental breakdown that invariably seems to come from absence from anything that looks like normal human interaction, or it could very well be something I ate.