Bitter Pill

I simply look out the window to witness the plight of the working poor. I go out for a drive and I’m confronted with the arbitrary nature of law enforcement. While out amongst the spectrum of people, I’m repeatedly reminded of discrimination and inequality. While shopping, I sense my ever declining purchasing power. While watching TV or browsing the Internet, I’m struck by rampant misinformation and systemic corruption. You say to focus on something of interest, find something fun — well perhaps life should stop flooding my field of view with such unpleasantries.

To be fair, it can be fun to evaluate and criticize. Frustration arises when you believe your complaints should create some sort of change. For instance, you don’t review a movie intending for the producers to fix the script and remake it, the movie is already made, you simply enjoy the process of critiquing the piece. A bad movie can be an enjoyable experience under the right circumstances. Much of comedy is simply pointing out how absurd something is.

So scrutinize and judge life all you want, but do so as if it’s a story already written — resist the urge to lament its static nature. If the world was fixable, it would be fixed already — thus the world is intended as a drama generator. And just imagine a problem-free world, what can excite the mind more than the passion of injustice, cruelty, betrayal, and dissatisfaction — the anguish of life is haunting, remaining ever in one’s thoughts. If the object of life is to provide fodder for the mind, there is no better way than bitterness for leaving a lasting impression.

But bitter candy exists, does it not? Bitter can be fun if accepted with a lighthearted attitude. Life seems like a demented bully if approached somberly. We need to laugh at life’s crude attempts at merrymaking. Yes people are literally crushed in the process, life is quite the rambunctious storyteller — but don’t overlook that much of our fictionalized entertainment deals with death and destruction. To have your sandcastle kicked apart seems savage at first, until you realize it would have crumbled anyway — and a completed sandcastle means the fun is done.

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