That Easy but Complicated Ride

Lake Pontchartrain Causeway (Louisiana), one of the longest bridges in the world. Condé Nast Traveler

Have you ever felt undeserving and in a rut? Are you sometimes feeling down and you don’t seem to be able to get out of it? We like to believe that it is only part of human nature.

We are used to working non-stop and not taking time for ourselves. We should be coming back to what matters: joy and love, the two things that make the world spin around. Until hell freezes over, we are on the go. We are having difficulties saying no to new opportunities, but, at the same time, not going ahead with projects that are on the back of our mind.

When we pay attention to what is taking place, weeks go by so fast. Next thing you know, a new year is starting. Time feels like it’s flying by, not like when we were young and innocent. Unlike Elon Musk- Tesla CEO- we are only humans and we can only take so much in one day.

Even if we preferred otherwise, a day equals 24 hours. You need to slow it down every so often. The more expectations you put on yourself, the more you think you are unsuitable and that you didn’t do what was “right”.

Getting back to joy and love, we wish we had both, even though it rarely comes as one and nice package. Life rarely, if never, comes as expected and things are not served to us on a silver platter. We all have perfect examples that come to our minds to demonstrate that perfect scenario. The unexpected things are part of the process (better get used to it).

One fun but ugly assortment is worth a thousand beautiful but superficial ones, which as become more and more common, especially in the LGBT community; where people rarely want to commit to a relationship. That can lead to loneliness if you are not meeting the guy of your dreams.

Let’s be clear about superficiality. From what we see on the screen participants aren’t using lots of their brain cells. It may be just for the show; some people love to be just a character.

However, we get what we see and it isn’t really deep sometimes. Same goes for celebrities making tons of cash by only talking about themselves. “Influencers” as we call them. Most of them have something to say and bring something useful to the table and some are just media “fillers”. Their acts aren’t making us evolve.

For instance, eating Tide Pods, filming it and putting it online (like we saw in 2018) isn’t deserving of some prizes and valorization. It is just unintelligent and troubling! I think we can all agree on that.

Within our social media world, it’s becoming harder and harder to feel good about ourselves because we constantly idolize personalities. Often and many times, we aren’t sure why we are following their every step. At that point we stop living, and are just constantly dreaming.

Yes, we need to dream, but once the dream as come to an end, we need to act on it. Dreams need to be short-lived and cause us to change.

We crave the way they are behaving and the clothes they are wearing. The doomsday scenario would be if everyone loses their authenticity. If people end up becoming the same; losing that originally that was something worth looking at before. It’s nice to be different than others in a crowd and walk with a confident posture. It’s great to be recognized in line at the grocery store. Turning nothing into something.

We value “perfection” even though this freaky concept doesn’t exist in reality. What is perfect is the imperfection. A little bit like the best new year’s resolution is having none whatsoever. But visual mass media shows us in an influential way what we should look like.

If not, beware, we will be missing out on something that “those people” have. Money is the best example of that. The body is another one. Those guys in the underwear commercials will always have the same body and the same haircut. This is not what we observe out there, in our everyday lives.

I am who I am. Part of me loves writing and part of me wants to know everything about everything. Matter-of-fact, I don’t care if anyone reads my stuff. That’s what I’ve been talking about: conformity.

That hobby (which takes freedom into account) is therapeutic, which is why I do it in the first place. I’m not the finest writer, no one is. In writing, comparison is the worst thing to do. That fact should be a no-brainer.

You should love all kinds of writing styles. You should be able to adapt what you read based on your feelings. Creative reading is worth it once in a while, even though it might not be in your comfort zone.

Getting out of that zone is the best possible thing we could be doing. While you are at it, believe in yourself even if nobody else around you sees you succeeding. When you are so passionate about something, you will find a way, even doing it may seem like you are taking the long ride to reach your final destination. That destination is subjective; based on your own experiences. Don’t see the sky as grey, but as always pink.

The world is such a better place when you see the sky as being pink all day long. Image designed in Canva.

And like a lot of you guys, the last thing I will do before passing is to write. Whenever, wherever, whatever; just like Maxwell’s romantic song, from his 1996 debut album. The world would be a better place if his songs were playing everywhere in the collectivity.

Write about all the exciting situations you lived, good and awful, and all the people that have inspired you, especially teachers. From a relationship stand point, everyone had some dates they wish they could forget. This is part of the growth progression. Sometimes, especially on first dates, you don’t even know why you are conversing with that individual. But it makes for interesting and funny stories at the annual Christmas family dinner.

Feeling inspired by someone you have met is typical. Even the ones you saw for a short period of time and then, the next thing you know, you lost touch with them. That’s when you know that the world is a big venue, without even referring to the entire galaxy. It is also at that moment, while meeting, that you realize how short-lived our existence is.

Some brilliant souls left us while they were blooming. One hypothesis that lives on, in our own fantasy world, is that the brightest end up dying early.

Others may have private problems and insecurities going on, like I learned this week when my parents told me someone on their street took her own life. A human tragedy.

She- based on what I know- was under 25 years old. She may have had too much going on and couldn’t deal with everything. Loneliness can be another explanation leading up to that disparate act. Some feel so lonely that the only thing that can counter this reality is ending it all. After all of these years, I have learned that this sort of goodbye will never settle anything. Let’s remind ourselves that once we fall, we can only get back up. Just give things a chance to cool down. You won’t regret it.

Talking about your feelings should be the solution to everything. Nothing should be off-topic. But that would make for a great topic for another article.

Why is this game (or ride)- if I can point it out that way- so complicated and easy at the same time? It can fluctuate so fast, as a shaky roller coaster, up and down in a few seconds. One day, we think that we have found all of the pieces to the puzzle. The other, we feel like we are so alone and that the world around us is crumbling. We then get caught in that down-spiral nightmare.

After a while, we get there, at the end of the ride that we all go through. Some spend less time in this world, for reasons that are out of their control. They get shot by a monster at their school. Please be reassured, the guns are not a problem, as is the republican’s motto. They never are, just continue blaming it on mental health. The problem is that things will not be changing in the long-run if policies stay the same. Man made the gun after all, as said by Mick Hucknall in one of his songs. “Man made the bomb, that doesn’t mean that we should turn them on.”

We can make everything so complicated. Like every little thing should be understood, even though only a few things actually are.

It will always be about those two things: love and joy. From my understanding, as a nobody who is trying to get ahead and change the world while taking the long road, love can only follow joy. Having fun, enjoying one’s self and feeling deserved is worth something for someone. And then everything will unfold for the best; the snowball effect.

RuPaul is someone that was born to destroy stereotypes. Living without taking people’s judgments into account and succeeding while at it. We know him for his famous quote: “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else.” We should believe we can accomplish everything that’s imaginable if we just find what’s gold inside us. And then, only then, we can share this treasure with someone else.

Don’t feel like writing about politics right now (one of these phases). It might be as a result of the winter blues. Summer is on the horizon- not that I can’t wait- but it will arrive after a while, like it always does.

Pleasure is worth acknowledging. Life as a whole is a pleasurable matter. If not, there should be no point to it. Surprisingly, we still need to rest at night. Still a weird way to create a human when you think about it (whoever or whatever did create us). One unquestionable fact is that we all need rest. That moment when you get off your damn cellphone and electronic gadgets, just spending time by yourself, in the present moment.

What if the goal of life is happiness? Are we missing out on opportunities while sleeping 6–8 hours every night? Should we continuously be acting as if this current day is our last on earth? Should we stop worrying what others think of us? I sure don’t judge others and I don’t care who they are. I will also try to help them if I see they are in a rough patch. Why do some feel so bad about themselves to be willing to lash out at others for no tangible reasons?

Well, as like everyone, I sometimes cannot sleep because my brain is in a tireless work out. Those times, I want to relax but my mind is way too excited; way too many projects to think about.

Best illustration of this was on November 22nd. I couldn’t go to sleep, because Coldplay was releasing their most recent album with a live performance in Jordan. That display was superb, well thought out and brightly executed. It couldn’t have been better. The lighting, the atmosphere, etc. Utopia on earth.

Coldplay Sunrise Performance- YouTube Originals

I was witnessing something great while being on another continent. If you never saw it, take 28 minutes. Just half an hour to yourself, some sort of meditation in a way. By the time you finish it, you will feel like a brand-new person. As if you just had a makeover session with the best designer in the business.

Some of the most fascinating creations are seen from abroad. That’s why a genius named Philo Taylor Farnsworth created the television. Yes, that little box we used to have.

That’s why a revolutionary guy named Mark Zuckerberg created a social media in his university dorm, with the intention to bring us together (that ended up alienating us at the same time). Our technological dependency is one of our generation’s biggest dilemmas that we will need to tackle. If we don’t take the time to stop and think about it, it may end up bringing us more pain than gains. Might as well stop developing new social media that don’t bring us any values, like Snapchat. The ones that we learn nothing from.

On another topic, while we are thinking out loud, for better or for worst.

Why did my parents meet at that precise bar in Calgary when the stars were all aligned in the same direction? Where the generic odds against them? Sure thing, they form the best couple in the world. A real power couple, which can seem unattainable for someone who is in his mid-twenties and that has never been in a long-time relationship; not that I didn’t want to.

Now that we are asking questions- as we should all- why did I survive when I should technically be in my own grave? Why did I wake myself up in that small room in the university residence in Montreal? Life would have been different not only for me, but for my entire family that I love more than anything in the world. I now love life. I’m full of joy, with a nice job in an open-minded organization.

My parents would have lost something they created with all of their love.

With all of these existential questions comes unquestionable realities that are straightforward. That’s when it’s too nice to be true. But you can feel that the ride is easy and liberated.

Sometimes I just feel like I can’t stand the rain; feeling useless and on my own. The next thing you know, I’m back on my feet, stronger than ever before; as when someone is jammed in the subway station with a big smile on his face even though no one stops and smiles back.

A house can even survive the worst hurricanes. This one is located in Union Beach, New Jersey, after the passage of Hurricane Sandy. Getty Images (modified in Canva).

I’ve been writing music these past years. It’s mostly a personal journal but I can include melodies once in a while. Songs that are mostly in English even though I’m French Canadian.

I have not shown the songs to anyone, I keep them to myself. But it’s all in there; in a big blue binder. My unconscious may believe that I want to be a singer-songwriter.

It’s enjoyable to do something more distant than politics once in a while. On the other hand, politics is never very far off my mind.

Politics is everything, in part because it influences everything that surrounds us. Culture is politics. People become cynical with the process even though there are great people in politics. It is only normal that a few of the politicians have bad intentions and don’t represent the whole system. If you are cynical about it, jump into the ring and make a difference.

Love can be bigger than being with someone else. “ You’re in love with something bigger than love, you believe in something stronger than trust”, as sang by Abel Makkonen Tesfaye.

YouTube

The writing is not what it used to be. I now have my first full-time 9-to-5 job since finishing my studies. Like lots of you, I feel like I’m missing out on something. Not that I don’t love my job that is related to the LGBT community, I feel that I am valued and I’m making a difference.

Why did I choose this picture of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway? It’s a beautiful picture, it represents perfectly that easy and long ride. I didn’t want to pick the usual long road stride. It may be too easy.

Everyone recognizes that a land road is safer than a bridge. As drivers, we all take the bridges even though they could fall, break, and it could certainly be catastrophic if you drive off of it. We do take the bridges because we trust the engineers who designed them. More simply, because the roads take us where we need to go. And land roads merge into bridges, without us wondering why that is.

We get-up-and-go and trust ourselves. We keep the faith that it will be okay; whatever ends up happening.

Whichever rocks get thrown right in front of us, the road of life is comparable to a long bridge. An easy but complicated ride. The bridge must have been arduous to shape but the driving couldn’t be easier.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed this all over the place reflection. It’s now your turn. As curiosity follows me everywhere, I want to learn about your story. What brings you love and joy?

I will leave you on this. If you are not smiling while watching this live performance of Orphans, something is wrong with you. YouTube Originals

Back to politics and the impeachment trial.

Graduated with a masters degree in politics from the University of Quebec in Montreal. Human rights, LGBT issues, sports and music. Twitter: @OlivierPilon

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