We Are Very Busy People

My Symphonies:
Very Busy People by The Limousines 
In The End by Linkin Park | The Future by The Limousines

We’ll end up numb from playing video games and we’ll get sick of having sex. And we’ll get fat from eating candy as we drink ourselves to death. We’ll stay up late making mix tapes, photoshopping pictures of ourselves, while we masturbate to these pixelated videos of strangers fucking themselves. There’s crusty socks and stacks of pizza boxes leading trails straight to the bed. And when we’re done sleeping we’ll stay busy dreaming of the things that we do not have yet. Well there’s a long list of chores and shit to do
before we play. Oh, let’s just piss away the day… We are very busy people. — The Limousines

We all know Michael Jackson, Heath Ledger, Elvis Presley, Whitney Huston, Albert Einstein, Britanny Murphy, Amy Winehouse, Audrey Hepburn, Bettie Page, John F. Kennedy, Theodore Roosevelt and William Shakespeare. These are people who had goals and visions, struggled to reach them and eventually went through their own ups and downs in life. These are people who, just like us, had dreams about the future and had passions. Different they may be in terms of their fields of interest and expertise, levels of success and gravity of influence in the world, they’re all similar in one sense: the fact that they’re all deceased. 

A little more than a couple of months ago, I watched this movie called Art Of Getting By (2011, starring Freddie Highmore and Emma Roberts). I am not a film critic nor am I one of those hardcore over-educated people in the film industry who have the ability to say what is and what isn’t a great movie, but I am a human being, and I have access to a lot of emotions and experiences that enable me to watch something and be greatly moved by it. This being said, I found that the movie really makes so much sense. If you’ve watched the movie intently, you may remember the very first lines in the very first scene. It goes like this:

George Zinavoy (voice over):

Since the dawn of recorded history, something like a hundred and ten billion human beings have been born in to this world, and not a single one of them made it. There are 6.8 billion people on the planet. Roughly 60 million of them die every year. 60 million people! That comes out to about a hundred and sixty thousand per day! 

I read this quote once when i was a kid: “We live alone, we die alone. Everything else is just an illusion”. It used to keep me up at night. WE ALL DIE ALONE! So why am i supposed to spend my life working, sweating, struggling… for an illusion? Because no amount of friends, no girl, no assignments about conjugating the pluperfect or determining the square root of the hypotenuse is going to help me avoid my fate. 

I have better things to do with my time.

From the beginning of this line up to very end of the movie credits, I was there lying down the couch, fully aware that what I just watched will definitely make a profound impact on my life and on how I perceive it. Despite the fact that I seemed to be in a total shock after I watched the movie, I also have the knowledge that this issue of life’s nature has always been at the back of my mind. It has stayed there since I was little. For approximately a decade now, I have long wondered what our real purpose here on earth is. Why are we here? Why do we live? For what? What is it that we breathe and wake up every morning for? These questions have been bugling my mind for quite a while, yet none of them have been answered. As I go on living, it starts to appear that those answers are not something I should look for, but something I should discover. You know, there is a fine line between search and discovery. I just haven’t seen that line yet. But I have clues, and hopefully these little puzzle pieces can help me figure all this out. I shall begin scribbling my discovery herein…

I am living barely the last two years of my teenage life. I am now 18 years old, living with my family, busting my ass in college and hoping that one day I’ll get to where I [think] I’ve been wanting to be. I am not the best student or the best brother, or the best son, but I can say that I have been working hard in my own respects. I managed to be the most well-behaved student in pre-school, I was in the school paper in elementary, I was able to be the top student in one fateful part of my high school, withstand the teen drama and win several writing and speech competitions, I was brave enough to venture the unfamiliar grounds of The University of the Philippines in college, and I am good enough to try my best and survive an even more unfamiliar journey of moving to Canada. It has been one hell of rollercoaster ride, and everytime I look back, I do not only see the successes and the failures. I also see what’s between those two extreme experiences and I begin to scratch my head out of amazement and curiosity. Because what’s between those two extremes is a never-ending cycle of pain, grief, laughter, anxiety, love, hate, fear, hardships, joy, sorrow, and some sh*t load of sacrifices. Today I take a look at where I am now and I can’t help but wonder what all of those sacrifices were for.

Take a walk downtown or just roam around your city and you’ll see what I mean. Businessmen hastily driving to work or for a meeting, assorted bunch of employees impatiently marching down the sidewalks in an effort to keep the job they either don’t want or just need, strangers grabbing tall cups of coffee for another long day of who-knows-what, university students rushing their way to the library, cramming for exams and dashing for deadlines, professors leaving their homes and their families for another ten hours of teaching, young mothers pushing and pulling strollers at the park, homeless unfortunates doing what they can just to get through the day alive, nurses and surgeons waging wars and battling in their hospital uniforms to save lives, dancers and snowboarders fracturing knees and breaking ankles in their passions’ expense, athletes excreting blood and sweat for that life-long dream of winning the Olympics, aspiring actors and artists willing to starve and struggle as long as they do what they love to do, hardworking parents working 9 to 5 just to send their kids to a good school, writers burning the midnight oil finishing the final draft of their manuscripts with the hope of finally getting published, cute little one-year olds learning their first steps and politicians putting masks on as part of their propaganda of “saving the day”. We are all very busy people. We spend our entire lives doing so much things– so much that there comes a point where we lose track of what we’ve REALLY been doing. More importantly, we lose track of the reasons WHY we’ve been doing those things on the first place.

Purpose. This is such a strong word. Right now, I can confidently say that it is stronger a word than love and hate. Love and hate are just emotions, but purpose– it’s a revelation; a veiled one at that. So what’s our purpose? Even now, as I am writing this, I do not know what my real purpose is. Why do I even write? Why do I bother to spend an hour or two writing here? What is all of this for? Money? Nope, I do not get paid to do this. Fame? I don’t think so, very few people know I even have a blog. Passion? I don’t even freaking know what my passion is. And I doubt anybody does. We are all lost in this world, and we don’t even know it. We go around acting like we have it all figured out, but let’s admit it. At the end of the day, when we are lying down our own comfy mattresses, or when we hit the shower after a long day at school or at work, we all do nothing else but wonder. Most of the time we are unconscious of what it is that we want to know, but other times, we know deep in our guts that we have no idea what the hell we are doing in this place.

If we’re just gonna die one day, why do we bother to live on the first place? Why do we stay up til three or four in the morning trying to get it together? Why do we bump and grind trying to make ends meet? Why do we work so hard for something we will only leave behind after our death? Why do we cry and why do we laugh despite our blunt knowledge that one day those tears and laughter will simply be rotten emotions buried six or seven feet under the ground? Why do we fight and fall in love? What is that for, if a time will come when none of the people in our lives right now will be there in the bend? Why do we bother spending billions and billions of minutes converting oxygen to carbon dioxide? What do we really get from what we do?

I do not know. And I’m guessing I never will.

3 thoughts on “We Are Very Busy People

  1. Kenn – In the July 23rd edition of Macleans Magazine (2012), their feature article concerned the supposed discovery of the Higgs Bosun particle – a half century search that the 10 billion dollar Hadron Collider in Switzerland helped find the apparent answer to.

    They subtitle the article by saying this “Higgs bosun discovery does more than just explain why we exist. It changes everythng.”

    This search has been the the focus of the biggest hunt in the history of modern science, apparently, and has given thousands and thousands of physicists around the globe fulfilling and life-long careers.

    In my own ‘Letter to the Editor’ response to the magazine – which may or not get published in the upcoming edition – I said this:

    “You proclaim several times in your article regarding the Higgs Bosun mystery that its solution tells us ‘why’ we exist. It does no such thing – although it might tell us ‘how’ things exist. ‘Why’ denotes purpose and science is first and foremost a story-telling machine that denies meaning, value and purpose in our existence.”

    Don’t you know, Kenn – that one important reason why you’re here is indeed to figure out that very purpose, to make sense of this whole mystery – and then to share your findings with the rest of us who aren’t as well blessed with the intelligence, caring and heart you so obviously possess.

    At least that’s my impression – and I’m sticking with it!

  2. Kenn – I just realized it was very presumptious of me to lay any sort of responsibility of finding life’s purpose on you at all. I apologize for doing that. If I think it important or possible to find a purpose in life or our existance, it is as much my duty as anyone elses to discover it – and I can’t lay that responsibility or duty on your shoulders – or your life. However, maybe consider my ideas just more grist for the mill, OK?

  3. Pingback: 77 Pieces of Advice On Life, Love and Everything in Between According to Old People | Kenntativity

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