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How do people get so entranced by something that they grab onto with every ounce of their being?  Some are so ready to throw themselves off a cliff, chasing a parachute, in hopes that they’ll be great some day. We have people who play video games for a living. Others make entertainment on youtube like Freddiew or Boogie2988

We’ve all got a music collections we bounce around within.  Some of us listen to manufactured content (a lot of Top 40), which there is nothing wrong with (South Korea does this far more than the US).  Some hate that “fake shit” and prefer grass roots music, or something of a classical nature.  Right now I’m listening to the musical genius Chilly Gonzales’.

These are people that make a living doing something that has no intrinsic value until it is heard.  There is no tangible asset here that can be sold or manipulated, there is only an idea.  This idea captivates us.  FreddieW makes a living making fake guns and explosions and video game references, pop culture.  Boogie2988 talks.  Chilly blesses my ears with ideas in music form.  As a friend once said to me: “If he had words for those ideas, he wouldn’t be playing the piano”.

So this idea draws us in.  We are so fascinated by their ideas, their beautiful, crafted, chiseled, perfected (according to us) ideas.  And this gives us hope that our ideas can be wonderful, magical, powerful and give us an audience of our own.  If this wasn’t true, I can’t imagine why I’m writing this, or why you’re reading this.

Why even write this note then?  Isn’t the idea of writing about ideas simply “meta” and boring?  I could go into some loop about how this idea about how ideas form ideas and spark ideas in other people are the nature of the human condition, but then I’d just be some pseudo-intellectual trying to pawn off how much more intelligent than you I am (note: I’m not, I don’t want to be, and I prefer blissful ignorance to informed misery… ok maybe not that last part).

I enjoy Oration like Boogie2988 does.  I spent 3 years in the Navy selling Network Defense systems to admirals and generals.  I loved the oration process, getting up in front of people, entertaining them, teaching them.  I had an audience, I had ideas, those ideas mattered.  I had some sort of power.

It came crashing down one day when I realized I was Otacon from Metal Gear Solid. (fast forward to 55 seconds)

What a bad taste in my mouth.  My software development work was part of an ongoing arms race.  Although this arms race had nothing to do with nuclear devices, physical weapons, or giant death robots.  It’s what I simply called the Cyber Arms Race.

Around that time I lost much of my ambition to be the best at anything.  I learned to do just enough to get by, and used my silver tongue to manipulate situations in my favor.  I started looking to video games, youtube, blogs, forums… the places I grew up… to figure out where I had gone wrong, and how I could chase what I wanted.

Maybe I’ll find it.  Or maybe I’ll just fly right by the parachute and dive into the ground.

I wish I were a really old man.  They get away with everything because they can just pretend to be senile.

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