cause it is beyond their understanding
to many, the earth is very simple --
for me the complexity is where interest lies
if everyone believes one thing, I want to explore the other.
There is a correlation between winning a Guinness Book of World Records for endurance poker and succeeding as an endurance-focused author and musician. I tell this to myself every day. Let me rap for a while in my four-cornered room and explain it to you as well (actually poolside at the Las Vegas Hostel).
Basically, being the type of person I am, I have traded a lot of short term recognition for the opportunity to exist on the fringes, without too many expectations. Why? Because I can observe, observe, and observe.
At age 19 I decided to follow the path of the Tao. This seems fairly ludicrous when taken at face value, but I promised myself I would hone my abilities in writing, music, and the arts as far as humanly possible. I had a higher purpose, which involved getting low down (suits me anyway). “The straightest path appears the most crooked.” This was the Lao Tsu quote that really got me. I was hiking a lot at the time, it was particularly apropos.
I spent a lot of time doing shit that made people wonder where I was headed. Not drugs, though this is the explanation that most find easiest to stomach. Collecting life experiences, you might call it. Traveling with no other aim or purpose than to experience life and store these life experiences until I was able to synthesize them into meaningful prose. I found in particular that women did not understand (or were not attracted to) what I was doing. Maybe I was just shy.
It saddened me that people (Americans in particular) had become so superficial and focused on a McMainstream suburbanization and automobile-driven spreading out. It sickened me to my soul, if I can be honest. Creating sheltered, status-bound progeny on this overcrowded earth became far from a priority.
Endurance writing requires sacrifices that I did not realize, or really think of as sacrifices, when I was younger. For one, it required giving up on that which those around me coveted. Whether it was an attractive woman at my side, a pathway to dot-com riches, the ability to buy a meal. I admired Van Gogh a lot when I was younger. Now I understand him.
So where is this all leading? Somewhere in the mix, around my early 30s, I lost faith in my gift. I had a girlfriend for a couple years while living in Japan, I saw another life opening up before me. And when the moment of decision came very close at hand, when I was going to have to “grow up” and accept life as a bread winner, sacrifice my early dreams — I rebelled. When push came to shove I preferred adhering to my own higher purpose (what some would consider shirking more elemental duties) and pushed on on that lonely path, the crooked/straight path of the Tao. Only now I am chasing the sun.