Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Life of a Bum

There are may horrors to being idle. For some people, it means reflecting upon one's life and examining it with more depth. For me, it's utter boredom, and a deep sense of loneliness. The former, because I have lots of time, but unfortunately, everyone else doesn't have that luxury. I also don't have money, so I really can't maximize the fact that I have free time. The latter because well, I don't have any real close friends. At least in the country. And getting in touch with other people is awkward at best, and sometimes, they are busy and you don't want to disturb them.

It reminds me of the time when I was still studying (grade school, high school, college). Everything was pretty simple (although no less difficult) back then. You had set goals (study and pass all your subjects), you got paid on time (allowance is always good), and there's an atmosphere of social interaction (they're called classmates and batchmates). Everything was pretty much predictable, even the surprise quizzes. You do this and you get that. Allowance came at a predictable time. And since everything was predictable, you could also schedule your leisure time with friends. Making new friends was easy too... you already had something in common (i.e. going to the same school), and making an effort to talk to the other person is as easy as complaining about a certain subject or teacher.

Life outside school, of course, can be more difficult than that. For one thing, your social atmosphere is gone. You can't be a passive friend. If you want to make new friends, you have to actively make new friends, meet new people. And of course, the problem there is either you're shy (which I am, by the way), or the other person might interpret it the wrong way. Two, you have to set your own goals. No one's going to tell you what to do (well, our parents can always try and even then, it's usually in vague terms, such as "get a job", not specifying which type of job and how to actually obtain it). No one's going to schedule your life today, tomorrow, and the day after that. If you get a job, another person will schedule your life for you. But hey, in the end, you only have yourself to blame for that. I mean, why else did you apply for that job? And third, there comes the problem of money. Which is why most people look for jobs. Some companies don't even pay on time (if they pay at all). I mean if you thought getting your allowance late was bad, you should try not getting paid on time when you have bills to pay and groceries to purchase. Last but not least is the fact that you're more suspectible to random events. In school, you're more or less sheltered (physically and emotionally). In real life, you could suddenly get fired, find yourself lost in the middle of nowhere while it's raining, get robbed by a thief, or simply be the victim of illness when you have an endless list of tasks to do.

Simply put, real life is a nightmare. But hey, that's what freedom and free will entails. That's the good news and bad news about living. You determine yourself, but no one ever said it was going to be easy. We can ask advice on how to do things, but most people tend to shrug off advice and learn from experience (which isn't a lot at this point). It's a rollercoster ride with its ups and downs.

I'm just wondering when it'll be my time to flourish, and how much time and effort it'll take to reach that point. I really can't expect a big pay-off without the necessary hard work and smart planning. I just wish though I had the support of friends, and perhaps the aid of a mentor or two (perhaps one of the most disconcerting moments for me was when my dad admitted to us that he was simply lucky when it came to business since he was riding on the advice of a friend).


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