8.1 What Doesn't Matter

A few weeks ago, I was driving in my car and a recent unfortunate experience popped into my head. The experience was a small one, like minuscule small, so insignificant that if I tried to explain it here, I would feel embarrassed and ridiculous. But that’s the thing, I’ve probably thought of this experience no less then 2 - 3 times a day since it happened. The reality is that the other people that were present when this happened have probably thought about it zero times a day. It’s a secret shame, one that makes no sense to anyone but me, something that if I attempted to explain to my closest friend, he would probably be confused by my inadequacy of not being able to get past these kinds of things.

But then after that moment in the car, another thought popped into my head and that thought was: It doesn’t matter. And that third thought was: yes, that statement is true. And I thought about all the things and the people and the situations that don’t matter. Maybe some of these things that don’t matter to me are important to you, and I mean no disrespect, but that doesn’t matter either.

The world as I know it is built for people with significant others. This is a fact. But it doesn’t matter because if you want to wait, perhaps be waiting until you are old and wrinkly and wondering what was the point of all those years of being alone, at that moment, a person will walk into your life, right through the door, step inside the room with you and perhaps you’ll get a few good months or years if you’re lucky, that’s all you need. Isn’t it better to spend an intense amount of time with the right person instead of decades with the wrong person?

It doesn’t matter that you are alone, that over the course of the last year, there have been moments, deep dark moments where you’re sitting alone in your place with the lights off, the only lights being the streetlight directly across from your window and even that light is faulty, it keeps flickering on and off and the only thing you could do is curse the city workers who should be keeping on top of this streetlight situation better and you know your cursing is aimed at the city workers because there simply isn’t anywhere else to focus it on and so, you eventually pick yourself up off the floor and go to bed and wake up and perhaps feel an inch better but sometimes all you need is an inch.

But poor me, right? Who gives a shit about any of this? I mean, what’s the point in wallowing? There’s never any point to wallowing. But wallowing can be fun and hit you in all the right ways. Self-pity, insecurity, self-image. It’s the perfect way to give yourself permission to eat some pretty terrible food. We are multi-dimensional human beings with a wide range of how we see ourselves. And how we see ourselves rarely lines up with how others see us. Oh, we might think we’re projecting our true selves, that which is only found in our hearts, but that is simply not the case.

Let me point out here that I rarely write from the ‘we’ perspective, I find it condescending and patronizing of me to think I am speaking for all of us. In this case, it doesn’t matter. What I can speak to and which I think is common to us all, is the confusion it is of being a human being.

I realize at this point that this particular entry is a bit messy and all over the place, but being human is about being messy and all over the place. Besides, this entry represents the eighth year I’ve been writing this blog, so I am attempting to cut myself some slack because at some point I will run out of things to write about, but not yet. Perhaps I am entering into my meandering phase where I just write a bunch of random things down that have the slimmest of connections in an attempt to sound ‘worldly’ and ‘wise’ and ‘profound’ and ‘interesting’ when really it just means I’m getting older and lazier and my patience to actually put the work in to find those actual connections between things is losing its sparkle.

On that note, let me take a hard left turn.

The concept of the multi-verse is actually a comforting theory for me. The idea that there are many other worlds out there that are each slightly different then this one gives me hope. Perhaps in one of these other worlds there is a me that made all the right decisions, or at least the right decisions 99% of the time, is confident and sure of his choices, doesn’t need to receive assurance from those around him, is happy and appreciates and deeply loves those around him, does his part, lives without abandon, makes no apologies to anyone unless they deserve it and means exactly what he says with no funny business and doesn’t fuck around with time wasting regarding people or situations or experiences that mean nothing to anyone and which will then pop back into his head 2 to 3 times per day. Nope, this 99% Perfect Paul would have no time for wallowing.

And I think, stop it, just stop these thoughts that are holding you back. They are no good for anyone, most especially not you. On a podcast I listen to, a comedian was asked about the most important lesson he has learned about love. And what happened is what only happens on podcasts - there was a long pause and you could hear the comedian get choked up. He didn’t speak for along time and the host shut the fuck up and I in my apartment stopped washing dishes and we all waited and he said, “Just stop your shit.” He explained, but I knew what he was talking about, it was about people he had lost and people I had lost and how we are so sad about the people we have lost, but this is going to happen, it’s going to happen to all of us and all of the people we love, which is a difficult truth but one I think is important to understand because although we have lost and we long for those that are gone, there are still so many people here, right now, alive and right beside us or a text message or phone call away, and I am sitting here writing this and thinking about this instead of texting them or phoning them, but that doesn’t matter, because I am writing this to all of you and it’s sort of like a shot across the sky, all these hundreds of blog posts and podcasts and films and books and everything else that I do, I sometimes forget why I do it and I do it because it’s what’s right for me in this multi-verse, it’s my way of texting and phoning and telling you I am here and wanting to know that you are here.

So, just stop your shit because it doesn’t matter and let go of it all.

Paul Dore