Instructions: How to Use Your Life

Welcome to Poppa’s Cottage, a cozy little abode where we will gather to discuss life and other things over some steaming hot chocolate (or local small-batch bourbon, if you prefer).

We are mere specks – picture us gathered around the hearth sipping our even speckier mugs of cocoa. Now step back and view our little cottage nestled against the Rocky Mountains. Step back further and our cottage becomes a speck in the forest. Another step and the forest is a speck in the spine of the Rocky Mountains. Another step and the strange outline of North America appears on our blue globe. Are you getting the picture here? A few more steps and our solar system is but a speck in the Milky Way, then the Milky Way is a speck in the universe. The universe is a speck among other universes. Can you keep going?

It’s been awhile now, but pondering the immensity of the universe has occasionally led to a sort of epiphany for me, possibly as a result of my mind making just a little more space into the realm of the infinite. I’ve reached out as far as my mind can go, beyond my previous understanding, and then it just flips, and I’m back in my little world. There’s something very comforting about infinity, and I think it comes down to realizing how much bigger this mofo is than we could ever imagine, how insignificant we little specks are.

One way to take this train of thought would be to indulge in an insouciant nihilism – to say fuck it, I can do whatever I want and it doesn’t matter. But that line of thinking only sees the shadows on the cave wall. To truly see the light, you have to see what’s making the shadows. Despite the fact that we are insignificant specks, and nothing we do matters to the infinite (or it matters infinitesimally), we are infinitely important to each other, we are infinitely important to the here and now.

While I lean toward the importance of the here and now, I like to stay aware of my infinitesimality, to understand that whatever problems I may have are relatively minuscule. I strive to strike a balance between thinking about ME and thinking about the WORLD. And to the small degree that I think about the WORLD, it helps me gain more satisfaction, more fulfillment for ME. Maybe we all need to do a little more acting locally AND acting globally.

Balance is an ongoing theme of this blog. Balance here, balance there, balance everywhere. But before we go too far with it, I have to say one thing: Fuck Balance. It’s important not to have too much balance, lest you become so worried that you might fall that you become stuck mid-beam. In other words, it’s good to have a balance of balance.

With that in mind, here are some things we will explore at the Cottage:

  • Where to get your teeth cleaned by a cleaner shrimp
  • How to see beauty in a pile of dirty dishes
  • How to solve world hunger
  • How to have an art show at the local museum
  • What RPPs are
  • How to live forever
  • The real scoop on cholesterol
  • How to make a concrete sink
  • How humans evolved
  • How to eat crickets
  • How to raise healthy, happy children
  • Why poop matters
  • The meaning of life

See, balance. So, if this hasn’t shrunk your violet, I hope to see you around the Cottage from time to time.

 

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