As one ages, one becomes (or so the hope should be) more irreverent.
You look into the mirror in the morning and the face that has peered back at you all these years is a bit more worn, maybe a bit haggard, hopefully with wrinkles of wisdom, but still, older.
The idiocy of one’s youth, twenties, thirties and even forties is gone. If you’re lucky, the idiocy of those years has been replaced with a bit more coherency of thought, maybe some more intelligence, and if really fortunate, a bit of wisdom and, most importantly, some first-class irreverence.
Irreverence, from a discerning eye’s worldview, enables one to quickly discern bullshit in all it’s varied forms. And it takes a good 50 or 60 years to understand that bullshit is about all one deals with 24/7/365, no matter who you are. For the first 50 years or so, one might be a bit fooled into believing that there was a glimmer of icing left on their cake, hoping to reaffirm slivers of hope that sunshine, chocolate swirls and fanciful dreams are just around the corner. They might be fortunate enough to catch a lightning bolt of good fortune here and there, but that quickly segues to the nearly uninterrupted flow of the horseshit of life. It’s like being told you’ve been granted immortality followed by a soft whisper that it will be spent suffering total paralysis.
From the BS experienced even in the best of families – BS from relatives; sifting through unintentional and sometimes well meaning spousal BS, but still BS nonetheless; BS extremis from friends; from the average citizen you’ll never meet but have to deal with their BS from time to time…and then into the motherlode of all BS – coming from the media, government crooks, entertainment deviants, co-workers who delight in ensuring your 8 hour slave shift is peppered with their choicest BS and bosses who are so supremely full of BS that you cast your gaze heavenly and ask God, Mother Earth, the heavens, or any other grand soul who’s departed this plane of BS, pleading for direct, divine, cut-through-the-shit intervention to circumnavigate all the BS. Typically, the sound of crickets can be heard after such pleas.
So, after 50/60 years or so of fending off BS, sifting through it, trying to determine the rankest that can be laughed at or just completely ignored – to those more subtle scents of BS that requires a bit of a supple mind to see through – one develops irreverence for all that stinketh mightily. It is one’s only defense to maintain some semblance of mental health.
One can’t even read through the “news” no matter what news site one might happen upon, without the prevailing thought of a sane mind being…”this is utter bullshit”. And it is.
What isn’t BS?
Music – except the canned, computer generated music of today, but music composed by real people and not some corporate approved sinkhole. Bach, Handel, Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Marselis, Brubeck, Coltrane, Fitzgerald, Bernstein, Gershwin…and many others, come to mind.
Truth, isn’t BS – but try getting that out of…well, almost anyone. One is never quite sure what 50 shades of BS they might be getting. It’s almost always masked, always perfumed up – but should we think it would be otherwise? Think to yourself, will you freely admit your strange quibbles, your odd and little understood (by everyone else) attraction to a few of life’s bizarre offerings here and there – to anyone and everyone? Probably not. Finding the truth of all other things…not that’s a life long quest.
Love and kindness, more than all, has no place for BS. Love or kindness from one’s self, freely given, without an expectation of anything in return, has no room for BS. In fact, BS is utterly defenseless in such a scenario.
The kind word to a loved one, friend or stranger; the help given to those who are sick, aging or dying; the kindness of encouragement to another depressed or discouraged; the kindness of patience in listening to another; the kind smile – love and kindness never fails – us or the recipient.
Of course, all this doesn’t explain most people you run across who haven’t experienced the dawn of thought yet and as the saying goes, believe their own bullshit. Forget that – let them continue to believe their own bullshit – meanwhile, throw a kind word or act their way and watch their bullshit vanish!
In the end, we will each probably measure our lives with how much we helped others, no matter how small or great our well of gifts we might have had to share.
Tonight’s musical offering:
A bit of “mambo” – full symphonic orchestra style – to hopefully provide a smile, clapping, toe-tapping, foot stomping, head bobbing, a bit of dancing and maybe other delights!
Gustavo Dudamel ~ Mambo’s
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