August 31, 2014


I have not been trolling Facebook as much as usual. It's too gorgeous out and my email access is irregular here in Provincetown. I popped back on and see so much celebrity death and illness and unrest in the world from Ferguson to Gaza to Iraq to countries stricken with ebola. It's unsettling, and I don't think the answer is to ignore issues, which is why I'm often pounding my soapbox about a variety of issues. But the world will always have problems. The question is how much we allow the world's issues to spill over into our own worlds. Don't forget to enjoy yourselves in the last days of summer. We can't control everything in the world but with so much ugliness, sometimes we needed to be reminded that it's important to create joy in our own lives. Corny, perhaps. But the summer is ending. Have a little fun! And feel free to throw this post back in my face the next time I'm ranting about injustices. But I read this article in the Village Voice, which I swore I'd never pick up after Michael Musto left, that reminded me that we must cultivate joy or our existence will be sad. I know I needed to hear this--maybe it will speak to you as well.

An excerpt: "The very nature of partying is to provide a life-saving release from the constant pressure to "take things seriously." Seriousness of the sort you're describing is precisely why things like partying are crucial to our mental and spiritual health. I take joy very seriously, and partying is the formal pursuit and celebration of joy itself. I'm having a party to celebrate life. I'm having a party to celebrate partying itself.

It seems to me that people often equate intelligence with seriousness, and stupidity with playfulness. These people also tend to overvalue a sort of stoic distance and lack of excitement and enthusiasm as somehow being a sign of wisdom and advanced thinking. An austere and somber attitude doesn't make someone smarter or more intellectual. Sometimes people are overly serious because they're afraid of looking unkempt, unimportant, uneducated -- they fear they'll "make a fool out of themselves" if they don't remain dour and stiff. In my opinion, if more people aspired to the level of life-mastery and self-actualization that a true fool has attained, there'd be much less conflict in the world. Fools realize that the most ignorant people are usually the ones most violently accusing others of being ignorant. Fools realize that in most cases, understanding is overrated. Most importantly, fools realize that no one really knows what's going on, starting first and foremost with themselves."