[Listen to an audio version of this blog here.]
There is nothing I want more than to be left alone. Of course, that isn't true. People need people and blah blah blah. What people don't need though, is to hear other people talk all day, or to hear other people flush toilets, or to hear other people's music. God made headphones for a reason. He also made noise cancelling devises for a reason, too; because there are too many people living piled on top of one another and I'll be damned if I have to hear another verbal altercation regarding some asinine thing that does not, in the name of all that is holy, matter.
Sometimes people bring Bluetooth speakers on hikes with them. Second to littering, blaring Jay-Z or Lizzo is the worst possible hiking behaviors. Once, I passed a hiker listening to what sounded like gongs. Another time, it was the one and only Joe Rogan, father of all podcasts and king of alien conspiracies. Once, the couple I passed was listening to an R-rated song by Cardi B, if you catch my drift. If I were a mountain dwelling squirrel, I would have aimed a pinecone or two directly at the carrier of aforementioned unnecessary speaker.
I think my job makes me especially tired of people, and not because most of the people I work with and for aren't lovely, butterfly souls with breath that smells like cotton candy and the softest, softest hands. No, my job makes me tired of people because so many people say things that they don't mean. One gentleman told me he was taking his event series "worldwide," which is delusional at best seeing as he hadn't even taken it city-wide at the time. Another claimed to have a "direct line" to Elon Musk, and another could not figure out how to login and instead of resetting his password, called me. My work phone is my cell phone, which would be annoying if anyone called me back. Luckily, they say they will and don't.
It is a great comfort to learn that most everyone is full of shit.
It is a great comfort to learn that most everyone is full of shit. The people who are the most full of shit are the people who claim not to be. "I'm just a straight shooter," they'll say, before lying right to your face. "I'm honest but blunt," they'll say, before calling you an idiot and subscribing you via email to the QVC network. "I'm not one to say things like this," they'll say, before saying a thing that they would absolutely say. "I have your best interests at heart," they'll say, while calculating how exactly they can convince you to purchase a set of Cutco knives, they come with a sharpener and lifetime warranty and you know me, right, I'd never sell you anything I wouldn't use myself.
People sell things they never use themselves all day, every day, through any and every channel possible. I professionally sell things I never use, as do most influencers and YouTube stars and celebrities and soccer players. "The most advanced wrinkle cream" will also make your tender undereye skin break out in a dazzling red rash. "The smoothest tequila" makes you throw up stomach bile and steak fries into an innocent shrub. "The best insert-any-technology-platform" is also full of bugs and will inevitably not do one thing you need it to, so you buy another, which you then have to connect with the first one, which requires a third one, and so on and so on into infinite.
Today is the day before Labor Day, and instead of laboring at a job, I am laboring at my keyboard. Have you ever stared at a blank page and wondered how you, a stupid, vacant, insipid human could ever fill it? Same. Labor Day is funny in that there are 260 working days in a year and good old Uncle Sam gave us one. I'm sure there are many CEOs and business owners and capitalist mongrels out there who bemoan even the thought of a holiday because poor people just don't want to work nowadays. Meanwhile, all us normal, non-CEOs are busy grilling hot dogs for our in-laws, cleaning up after small children, and scrubbing bathroom linoleum, but I digress.
Some very optimistic person once said that if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life. I find this notion not only wrong, but incredibly misleading. I love to write, but you can bet your bottom dollar that most of the time, writing feels like work. Nothing worth doing well is enjoyable all of the time, which is why, on this Labor Day, I will speak minimally to strangers. I will go to the gym with fully charged headphones and my trusty resting bitch face. I will sip a glass of chardonnay slowly and without expression. And I will absolutely not, under any pretense, pretend to enjoy a person who I cannot actually stand.
Peace, hope, & love,