Josh and Failure Vs. The World: Day 53
Where to begin? I was sick for a week so I didn’t do this blog – but that’s an excuse. I still could have done the blog while being sick. Do I even have the right to say this is day 53 when I keep skipping days? Yes. Oh, well that was easy.
In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities. In the expert’s mind, there are few. So I should probably notice how there are 0 possibilities of hope in my mind at the moment.
Am I being hyperbolic? Yes. Well, ok then.
I fail to have faith in myself. But how do I turn this around? By lying to myself and everyone else about how much confidence I have in myself? Yes. Oh, well, ok then.
I think that is not the answer. The answer is to do what I would do if I were not afraid. Well, what is that? A podcast. Are you serious? Yes.
So what I’m saying is that I have a fear of podcasts – now there’s a premise for a horror movie. It takes place in a world where there is only one human being left who does NOT have a podcast, and swarms of podcasters are after him because they so badly need a guest.
That’s what this is all about? A podcast. Yes. A podcast. Now, granted, I have been doing a podcast once a week for a year. But have I been promoting it? No. Moreover, have I been doing everything I want to do on it? Not in the least. So that’s what I have to start doing. I have to commit to this podcast. Focus on the podcast. It’s all about the podcast.
I can’t believe how much I hate myself right now – I don’t want to be another guy with a podcast, and yet, here I am with a podcast.
So instead of writing about how much of a failure I am, I actually want to put failure in action, by doing this podcast. Should it be a daily podcast? That seems a bit much. I think a weekly podcast would be better. Yes, that is my take on that – a weekly podcast- so that’s what I’m going to do. No more writing about failure – it’s time to put failure into action – I am going to do a podcast, precisely because the world does not need another podcast.
Josh and Failure Vs. The World: Day 43
Here’s how I’m failing today: my diet is horrible. I should know better than this. I paid attention in health class. If I keep it up, I will die young – or live to be 105 and piss off all those kale eaters – who knows?
I’ve failed to be at peace with my loneliness – I’ve started meditating again, in the hopes that I could at least accept my emotions instead of trying to fight them. The theory is that if I label my thoughts, gradually, I will see them as just thoughts. And I will come to realize that I do not need to be ruled by them. I can look at the thought of loneliness and say “you’re not going to get me down today! I will triumph over you.” And then, loneliness will say “check out that hottie over there,” and I’ll say “ok you win, you bastard.”
I also failed because I avoided writing another five-minute set. I have a five minute set about how I lost my virginity – but now I want to come up with a five minute set about something other than this. Sooner or later, I’m going to have to sit down and compose this five-minute set. Perhaps by aiming to write twenty minutes – five of which will be worth anything.
So, instead of sitting here whining about it, shouldn’t I just go and write it?
Well, yes. I suppose I should. In the meantime, what else should I say here?
The point of this blog is to point out my failures, because if I can see how I am failing, perhaps it will lead me to the next step – which is to risk even more failure.
So here goes.
A new five minute set.
I suffer from anxiety. So yes, I am Jewish.
I’m not trying to copy Woody Allen or Richard Lewis. Oh, to be Tim Allen!
The only time I don’t worry is when I get a fever and I’m too sick. Somebody asked me if I got a flu shot. I said “are you kidding? I deserve a vacation.”
The greatest moment of my year is the moment when I’m just starting to recover from a cold, so I know I’m not going to die, but I’m still too sick to worry. That’s the closest I get to experiencing a Friday night.
The irony is, in spite of this, I’m terrified of getting sick. If I’m sitting at a coffee shop and somebody coughs near me, the day is ruined.
When somebody coughs near me, I immediately wash my hands – because I’m assuming the airborne cold germs will avoid entering my mouth and nose and go straight for my fingers.
What if Death isn’t the end, and whatever is coming afterwards is worse? Or, even worse than that – what if what’s coming after death is more of the same. What if I die, and I wake up, and a guy says to me “you’re late.” “For what?” “Work.” “I just died.” “What’s your point? These excel spreadsheets aren’t going to fill out themselves.”
I worry about my parents’ health. Watching them get older – it’s like a preview of watching how I will degenerate. It’s like watching the trailer to the movie about how I’m going to fall apart. “In a world with high cholesterol. One man has to start taking that pill.”
“You take this pill, and it lowers your cholesterol, and you can eat whatever you want.”
What are the side effects?
There aren’t any side effects.
Whenever I hear “there aren’t any side effects,” what I really hear is “no one’s been sued over the side effects yet.”
Josh and Failure Vs. The World: Day 42
Here’s how I failed today:
I didn’t get up at 10 am, jog for five miles, only eat kale, and invent a cheap and clean renewable energy source.
More importantly, I failed to be at peace with my life – I’m terrified that it’s going to take an enormous amount of pain for me to appreciate what I have always had. I wish I could get to that point INSTEAD of having the pain. And instead of dying, I’d like to transform into a being of pure energy and somehow still be eligible for a SAG card.
I’m holding myself back from being in a relationship because I am not ok with myself. So that means it’s time for me to deal with that.
Perhaps that’s what I need to focus on today. I’m going to do my best to relax. (If you need to go somewhere to laugh out loud, I totally get it)
Relaxation – how many of my problems would be solved by relaxation? Fantastic question.
(Idea for a sitcom – a main character name Roz has to learn to relax – the show is called “Roz-laxation” – Clearly Jean Smart would play a supporting role of some kind).
I’m also in a silly mood today, which is no good for anybody – so maybe I’ll just end the blog with this:
GIRAFFE 1: She said she thought I was smug.
GIRAFFE 2: This is why happens when you try to date a zebra.
GIRAFFE 1: I tried to explain to her that I only look smug because I’m so much taller.
GIRAFFE 2: I don’t think that’s it. You come off as smug.
GIRAFFE 1: Really?
GIRAFFE 2: It’s not like you’re a bad person.
GIRAFFE 1: How do I come off as smug?
GIRAFFE 2: Remember when Simba came by and asked how we were doing, and you said “no worse than usual.”
GIRAFFE 1: How is that being smug? I’m depressed. That’s my thing.
GIRAFFE 2: Well, yes, it’s fine to do that with friends, but Simba’s more of a loose acquaintance.
GIRAFFE 1: You do remember that a week ago, he ate my sister.
GIRAFFE 2: Circle of life, buddy. She was sick.
GIRAFFE 1: She was getting better.
GIRAFFE 2: The last thing I want to do is get dragged into a conversation about assisted suicide with you.
GIRAFFE 1: Now who’s being smug.
Josh and Failure Vs. The World: Day 39
Here’s how I am failing today: I am lonely and I have been lying to myself about it.
The irony is that I love being alone – I can make my own decisions, watch whatever I want to watch, and not be told I am wrong. It’s a paradise. However, there’s also this thing about human beings being communal animals, etc, etc, etc.
I don’t want to date. I hate dating. I hate it. I hate it. I hate the whole concept of it. I hate sitting there having an awkward conversation. I am a chronically depressed and aggravated person. Why must I interrupt that with banal conversation?
Ah, but if I really click with somebody, perhaps I will no longer be depressed? I don’t care how many racing stripes and spoilers you put on a Honda – it’s a Honda at the end of the day. I’m not sure if that’s the right metaphor. Hondas are good cars. I’m more of a Yugo.
I am not a happy person, and sometimes, the last thing I want somebody else to do is try to cheer me up or fix me. Am I saying I choose to be depressed? Well, yes, but it’s not like I’m at home conjuring it. But it seems that when I’m depressed, people around me either get uncomfortable or try to fix me. And neither works. I am what I am.
But back to the whole dating thing – people tell me I need to lower my standards.
What the hell does that even mean? I don’t know how it works with other people, but either I’m attracted to somebody or I am not attracted to somebody. I’m not running them through a 15-point inspection.
Well, I suppose I answered my own question. “Lower your standards” = just date anybody, even if you are not attracted to them.
This notion frustrates me.
Maybe because it means there is no magic in the world of love and romance. It’s like buying a car. You get the best you can, and hope it lasts.
I want to avoid being in a bad relationship – what do I mean by a bad relationship? A relationship where two people are screaming at each other. A relationship where there isn’t mutual affection. So, most relationships.
Am I lying to myself? Deep down, do I truly want to be alone? A wise man once told me that we say we want certain things, and we should pay attention to what we are actually doing. I say I want a relationship, but I seem to be going out of my way to avoid one. So, deep down, perhaps I really don’t want one.
And yet, I am still lonely.
Perhaps both are true at the same time. I am lonely. I don’t want to be in a relationship.
I don’t have the answer.
Here’s how I failed today- I didn’t enjoy myself.
It’s ultimately not that hard to do this. Just take in all the wonderful things in the world, and be at peace with nature – but I was too busy getting one of those Otter Boxes for my cell phone – it’s a thick cell phone cover that says “hey, world, I’ve given up on not being clumsy.”
The Otter Box may well be this decade’s fanny pack.
I don’t know why the phone doesn’t automatically come with this case -these phones seem really fragile- oh, wait – of course, that’s because they are fragile, and the more people drop and break them, the more they have to buy them. The man who has an Otter Box is the man who thinks waiting until 50 for the colonoscopy is the move of a daredevil.
I’ve lost the ability to have fun lately- even the things I enjoy – writing, first and foremost, doesn’t seem fun anymore. Perhaps I’m back in depression. I think, maybe I am.
The key to depression for me is to act as if I weren’t depressed – that is to say, to take actions I would take if I were not depressed. So even though I feel like absolute crap, I’m going to continue writing.
I keep looking for something in the stand-up – specifically – a moment of epiphany. A moment where I suddenly feel like I know what I am doing and I no longer have to try hard. Perhaps this is an illusion. Or, more realistically, there is always room for improvement, and this will never end – well, all things end in death – or not – perhaps people are still writing jokes after death. Heaven could have it’s own version of MAD magazine.
So my course is clear, I suppose. I have to just keep going. It’s like meditation. The practice is simply to continue.