"It’s utterly immoral to be slothful about the qualities you have," said Lawrence Durrell.
Rewatching Project Runway Canada yesterday, I remembered how inspired I felt when I saw Lucian devote three months to creating a fashion show. Watching So You Can Think You Can Dance last week, I felt inspired by the drive and work ethic exhibited by all the dancers. Funny, considering that I'm aware of how TV produces, using editing, the (fictional) narrative that maybe if we pursue our dream enough and work hard enough, we'll be able to make it big in the world.
But without the narrative I feel groundless. Maybe these master narratives aren't always harmful (sorry, what, postmodernism?). I remember how driven I myself used to be, and I see how tired and defeated I am now. I know I need to pursue my dream somehow, or if not pursue my dream, at least do something that contributes to this world. I can't keep biding my time. I'm 22. I have a shelf-life.
Sergei said, "You have to find a way to pull yourself into a purpose-bound bullet."
Pare all things extraneous, remove rough edges, streamline. Harden, condense body and mind. Solidify willpower. Rocket forward.
I shall wake up earlier, I shall not waste my breath by sleeping after the sun rises. I shall not be slothful, nor immoral, I shall write reviews, I shall write stories, I shall apply to this, then that, I shall read more, see more, do more, be more.
I know I need to stop procrastinating, stop waiting.
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Another year, another Pride Parade. Somehow I can't help but feel disappointed. Not by the Parade, mind you -- that was great -- but by myself. Because I've failed.
Failed to reach out in a greater way to the community. While others were doing meaningful work, I comforted myself by telling myself that I was doing meaningful work because I was part of UofT's Sexual Education Centre. I love the Sexual Education Centre, and I do believe I do meaningful work there (I wouldn't be in it otherwise) but it's a small University organization, and its reach is ultimately limited.
Watching the others march in the parade, I screamed at the top of my lungs and cheered with as much spirit as I could muster, but inside felt lonely and dispirited. Because in a way I haven't accomplished shit. I am so afraid of being an activist, so afraid somehow of reaching out to people and trying to understand people who are different from myself. In Lit Theory I worked hard to understand queer theory and read feminist texts, and I agree with much of the theory, but I don't have the courage to join an activist group. I don't have the courage to go to the meet ups of any other LGBT groups, either. Why, why, why. Is it because I am
shy? I've tried to mitigate my social anxiety; I've even seen a therapist! It's still difficult. I want to volunteer for an LGBT organization, but I keep finding myself set back.
Going to Pride this year I saw another way in which I haven't done shit. I met several gay writers at Glad Day Bookshop, and read many articles written in OutLooks or fab or IN magazine or xtra by people who are most likely gay and/or queer. I want to write more, but now that I'm out of school I see that my output has been most pitiful. I don't really even have a portfolio, and all I've written is informal posts answering high school students' questions. I've failed; I have no discipline -- having written nothing for the last two months except for cover letters -- and I have lost any semblance of control over language I once had. In summary, I not only haven't done shit, I haven't written shit.
I think I want to volunteer. To be honest, I don't know if it's the best way for me to actually do something meaningful for the world but maybe there's nothing to lose (except time, except I feel like I have that in reserve right now) so I might as well
try. I am still going to apply for Youthline and ACT, but I am nervous. But I will, I will. And God I swear to you that by next week I will have written something, I will, I will not have written shit; I will write even if it's shit.