Recently, I Netflixed a DVD of Henry Rollins’ stand-up. I’ve always thought of him as the archetypal post-modern badass, what with his prodigious tattoos, swarming use of profanity mixed with SAT-worthy words and charmingly liberal politics. His persona is that of literate, hyper-aware, angry white guy which sharply contrasts with the mass of other angry white guys in the public light who generally espouse shtick on intellectual par with the average FM radio morning show.
Amid stories of ill-advised adventure on the Trans-Siberian Expressway, Rollins related his extreme devotion to keeping busy at all times. His rationale for this dogged devotion to activity is that if he slows down, he’ll delve deeply into introspection, realize his misery and his mid-life crisis will finally catch up to him. As someone borderline struggling with a self-indulgent, thinly-defined quarter-life crisis, I instantly related.
I’ve long said that having too much time on my hands equals bad; but I found in this former punk rocker an incredibly kindred spirit and some sage advice. “What doesn’t kill you makes you a funny mother fucker,” Rollins quipped and suddenly it all made sense.
In this strangely consoling worldview, my frequent feelings of general malaise of late are really just fantastic fodder for this blog and my readers’ collective entertainment. Maybe the daily insanity of my job, such as the regular discussions of tablecloth colors at meetings I helm, is a disguised blessing since it will surely yield treasure troves of bar-night stories. I’ve heard on more than one occasion that my dating stories are received with delight – though mostly by my friends who are either married or in long-term relationships. Maybe every bad date I endure is truly a gift to the world transfigured by my gift for bullshit and eloquence.
Either way, as another season and year (at least according to the Jews) slip away – it’s certainly cause for some bizarrely warped and yet refreshing optimism.