To get good at anything, so the saying goes, you have to do it over and over and over again. And then over again sideways, upside-down and backwards. You have to be so fully immersed in what you’re doing—the skill, the art, the technique—that it becomes one with every fiber of your being. You can’t be a great tennis star or a golf star or a movie star or any form of star if you don’t do this shit that you do so many times it becomes a part of your inner core and being.
Great artists and musicians and other masters of their craft have put in thousands upon thousands of hours of work to become “great.”
So if we sit around and worry and put ourselves down and fret and find everything negative about our world and its surroundings, then I guess many of us would be considered masters of this craft and technique of negativity.
If we focus on the negative, we get negative. It’s our algorithmic brain just doin’ its job. I knows no better. If you say the sunset sucks; it’s filled with pollution and the smoke from fires far away and the people who live under the sunset are stupid and evil and just a general moronic bunch; then I guess that sunset looks like shit to you.
If you forget (for a moment, please) that, yes, maybe the sky is filled with smog and chemicals and chem trails and plane exhaust and factory soot and shit who knows what else; but that sunset actually looks damn good with that oily patina and those rich, rich oranges, yellows and reds all melting together in a cosmic chemical soup over the ocean that yes, is filled with plastic bags, chocking turtles, beer cans, old cars, the recycling of a billion people never making it to the recycling center—if you look at the ocean in this way, then maybe that beautiful ol’ sun setting over that beautiful ol’ ocean is just a mirage, a pipe dream, a pollyannish fantasy. It ain’t that beautiful. How can it be—with all that shit living right under the beautiful silvery blue surface?
Just a thought.
I still like to watch sunsets. And my wife and I like to watch the sunset on New Year’s Day. Watch the first sun of the new year fall into the silvery blue water. Make some amends, plan some shit and say hello to another year. And plan and pray and hope the new year is better. Much better.
We do this every year. And every year somehow gets better. Maybe. Or maybe it’s just our outlook.
Some things about the new year are better, some maybe not. But we’re still here. In a new year. And with that, anything’s possible.
This year I will try to be a more positive person. I really will. I’m sure I’ll relapse many times into being a moody, negative fool. A Ninja Bitcher™. A Chronic Kvetcher©. A Master Whiner™. Like a great artist, I’ve practiced being pissed off for too many years to not be a supreme master of the craft.
I can’t get in my car and drive more than five minutes before I’m cursing some other fool on the road.
(And my, oh my, how many fools there are on our roads…)
But I will try and flip my outlook and see a beautiful sun setting over a beautiful ocean filled with happy fish and melodious songs. And maybe even mermaids and dolphins singing and dancing with crabs and seahorses. Maybe even the sharks will get nicer in this new year and not bite off anyone’s leg.
But yes, even so, I know that ocean needs work. All the oceans do. And so do people and maybe even ants. Ants could learn a little more civility. They could possibly understand that we really hate them traipsing across our floors as if we don’t see them stealing our food. It’s just damn inconsiderate.
And that lucky ‘ol sun? How does it feel about the new year? Or our oceans? The sun is way too far away to give a shit about turtles or plastic bags or smog.
In fact, some say it’s just making our planet hotter and hotter. So I guess the sun ain’t that nice after all..
But go easy on the sun. It’s got its own troubles. It can’t stop burning itself to death. Oh shit, but it’s been going for so long now, maybe it’s already dead. We’re just watching the pre-death of the sun. The way light travels, they say the stars we see in the sky are actually long dead. Like watching a movie but the actors have all gone home.
I don’t know.
I haven’t had enough caffeine yet.
©2022 Bruce Palma. All rights reserved.