I live on top of a Chinese Restaurant.
When my wife and I feel super lazy we order from them.
At least we don’t ask them to deliver, ha!
We always order Yeung Chow fried rice and ginger beef.
Like any good ol’ Chinese our meal comes with a pair of fortune cookies.
My wife and I always read the little message inside the cookies to each other.
And to make it more fun we always add “… in bed” to the end of the fortune message.
For instance, “Relax, something great is going to happen” becomes “relax, something great is going to happen in bed“. We look at each other and giggle like naughty teenagers even if our teens were over just about 2 decades ago.
This brings me to realize that in a couple of weeks I’ll be turning 40.
I think that’s when you are officially starting to be old. At least, that’s when about 50% of the people I see around me are younger. Hell, I’ll be older than 3.5 billion people, oh my!
The last time we ordered Chinese, my fortune cookie said “Make up your mind and do what you want to do”, … “in bed”? (I think we have that one covered) but, what about “… in life”?
Then I came to the sad realization that I am about to turn 40 and I don’t know exactly what I want to do in life (or whatever is left of it which ranges from 0 to about 13,000 days).
The sadness didn’t last more than 7.41 seconds because, by now, I’ve developed a pretty resilient mental muscle capable of defeating almost any negative thought into oblivion.
My real problem is not knowing what to do. The problem is choosing One Thing out of the many things I want to do.
I actually got pretty happy when I realized that having many things to choose from is quite a luxury.
Most people don’t have as many choices as I do. They wake up and their only choice is to do everything possible to survive. They don’t get to sit on their arse and ponder which thing to do that day, or the next day, or possibly ever.
Having choice is the result of freedom. The freedom to choose is something I don’t take for granted, especially after spending a bit of time studying history.
What bothers me about choosing is that committing to one thing is the immediate mass murder of all the other things I didn’t choose to do.
Every decision I make, kills all the other options – instantaneously!
I don’t like to kill anything, nor even potential options. But we only can move forward in life by systematically mass murdering millions of possibilities.
Interestingly enough, nature has no problem making decisions by killing indiscriminately.
Every human male kills about 100 million potential human lives every time he shoots his juice of love into a sock, his lover, toilet or keyboard.
This amounts to about one trillion potential lives obliterated during the average span of the human male.
And no one sheds a tear.
You and I are here today thanks to the most outrageous systematic genocide of possibilities ever imaginable.
In a twisted way, to live means to kill. To live is a choice, and like all choices that means millions had to die for that option to happen. Millions of spermatozoids, millions of your ancestors, millions of other potential you’s that never existed so You could exist.
To choose is to live. Not choosing is usually the worst decision because not deciding is a decision in itself.
Not deciding is passing the responsibility to someone else. The government, your parents, or time itself.
Time will always decide for you. In fact, ultimately if you don’t decide, and be ok with killing all other options, Time will kill you. Time has already decided to kill you the day you were born. When Time kills you it’s only making room for more options to exist.
I can’t complain. I’m quite satisfied with how things have turned out even after being tormented by acute indecisionitis for a big chunk of the last 4 decades.
I’ve stumbled a few times and somehow I landed on my feet. For that I’m immensely grateful.
When I was 20 I was certain that by 40 I would have figured out my life. Well, I’m happy to admit that I haven’t. I have no clue what I’m going to do over the next 5 years, or 10, or the potential 13,000 remaining days or so of my grumified existence.
I know I’ll always hesitate to make choices. I actually enjoy the hesitation process. I like teasing the future. However, I despise letting Time choose on my behalf. My life is the only time I’ll get to decide which choices live and which ones die unfulfilled.
So eventually, I’ll choose what to do with my life. At least for the next 24 hours or so.
My mind resists to commit to longer term decisions. After all, a short term decision kills a lot less options that an long term one.
Here is a possible short-long term decision I’m hesitating to make.
I was thinking to start a YouTube channel illustrating some of these ideas in a unique way, a Grumo way.
What should I call the series? I was thinking something like CookieMind, ChorizoField, AThoughtParty, GrrGrrGalore, Wachitron, PlisPlasOhYeah… or… or… HypercolatedDelugeOfMentalDiarrhea-24X7-MarkVIII*.
Oh no! I can’t decide!
How many million possible names will have to die for me to choose one?
Will you join me in the mass murder of millions of options so I can choose one name?
Peace, Love, and Fortune Cookies,
P.1.: One of the reasons why I find writing so hard is because each word I type is a new decision that needs to be made. Choosing the right word, the one that fits, the one that accurately represents my thoughts is hard. Specially when I realize that there probably were many other better suited words that didn’t get chosen. The lesson is, to make better decisions, I need to make more decisions. In order to write better, I need to write more, even if it means killing a million better words in the process.
P.1 (cont’d): Does this mean than in order to live more, one should commit more, more often?
P.2: *I’m leaning towards the last option because I pretty sure the .com domain is available.
P.3. Just finished reading “Moonwalking with Einstein” by Joshua Foer. Highly recommended if you are into learning more about how memory works (and improve it if it sucks like mine).
P.4: If you missed last week’s email you can read it HERE.
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