Wednesday, April 14, 2004
the most random post ever
I hated grades in college, and I hated even more the people that got all worked up over grades. I've always thought that grades are only a small measure of a person's success, and most of the time the pursuit of academic excellence detracts from a person's overall happiness.
I don't want you to believe that this is rooted in laziness, though I am admittedly an incredibly lazy man who happens to own an uncomfortable amount of VHS pornography and is dreading its inevitable conversion to DVD format. I do believe that grades are important to a certain degree; I don't want to proselytize here and say things like, "Grades don't matter!" and "Down with grades!" and "Fuck grades!" and "Take off your shirt!" I did ok in college grade-wise, to the point where I have no academic regrets.
My roommates and I used to argue that we had the best grades-to-work-output ratios around. For example, if you could get a 3.5 and get bombed most of the time, cheat on or try to cheat on your girlfriend constantly, and do only the minimal amount of work required, weren't you much better of than the person with the 3.9 that spent forty hours a week in the library? (And really, if you study that much, how intelligent can you be? You can teach a fucking monkey to drive a car and a dolphin to make a sandwich through constant repetition. If you have to read something over ten times, wouldn't you be better off calling it a day and grabbing the bong after the third time when it's not sinking in?)
Therefore, I don't think success (meaning money, power, respect) is the true measure of a person's greatness (another abstract term that's difficult to define). I think it's more important how you obtained that success.
I think certain people are psychologically predisposed to how they perceive what being "successful" is and how to obtain it. I'm not the type of person who's willing to work eighty-hour weeks from ages 22 to 45, so that I can retire at age 55 on a yacht and sail the Mediterranean. I'd rather take it one day at a time, spend 23% of my gross income on intoxicants, and have as much sex as the courts will allow me to.
Where the hell is this coming from you ask? I have no idea, as I am really on a tangent rambling away here, killing time as I wait for my soup to cool. I guess I've just been thinking a lot recently (after all, this is the "Jason Mulgrew 25 Years On Earth Celebrational Year") and I'm learning that time is very precious. Look at me - I'm almost 25, and I don't have any kids yet! Not one! Not even in Mexico or any of those Mexico-type countries! Sero!
This idea carries over to all aspects of life. Professionally, if one can get their work done in normal business hours, is it really necessary to stay after hours, in the hope that the boss will see you staying late and hence will gain a greater respect for you? No, because if you can produce the same quality of work while maintaining a high quality of life, you win.
Romantically, it would be great if one could just ask someone that they are attracted to if the feeling was mutual. This is not the case. Instead, one has to spend hours and hours drafting humorous emails so as to come off as funny but not creepy funny, while creating the impression of having 1) a good job with respectable income; 2) a large group of diverse and upstanding friends; 3) a wide array of intellectual and physical interests; and 4) a loyalty to family and loved ones, all the while appearing confident but not pretentious. The result in most (not all) romantic pursuits: wasted time and energy. I do not mean to sound overly pessimistic about "love" or any of that gooey stuff, but sometimes, and not just in romance but in all things, you have to ask yourself: is it worth it?
[I just read this over - what the fuck am I talking about? Good lord! Did someone slip some cocaine or pills in my Raisin Bran Crunch this morning (phenomenal cereal by the way)? Holy shitballs!]
[Also, my brother, who is currently in Europe draining my family's financial resources and getting me into legal battles, is 21 today. Happy Birthday jerkoff.]