Do you have faith in who you are?
Assuming that you are a soulless shill, and that you don’t really have any reason to exist or anything to offer from the core of your being (because you are a duplicate, an extra) then you can always make it by finding a preexisting genera with well defined expectations, and produce within those expectations. You might even become the personal secretary or caddy for someone who has been successful (in the literature about how to become a successful shill this is called getting a mentor.) Because it is all about the metric — it is all about the public sign of success. It might be (this year) the number of pumpkins you have on your doorstep for Easter. You yourself might never have thought of putting pumpkins on your doorstep for Easter, but if that is what is “going” this year — and someone else has figured that out — you notice this by seeing that the beautiful people are at their house on the weekends, they have an expensive gardener, a lot of blog traffic. Well then, whether you understand it or not — better put those pumpkins out.
And that is why there are so many people watching what other people do. And there are magazines and TV shows that are dedicated to watching what other people do. And there are books that tell you how to interpret the magazines, and magazines that tell you how to interpret the books. And there are stores that sell the clothes that the people on the TV shows are wearing as they explain how to interpret the magazines that tell you what the other people are doing.
All of this makes people very tense. I’m not kidding — try going to some of the places where successful people go, and watch them watching each other. Those are some tense motherfucking people — because so much is riding on everything they do. They are looking at each others shoes and shirts and dresses and stockings. They have to keep everything cleaned and pressed and matched — that takes a lot of time. And it has to look like they aren’t trying — so even though they are all watching the same shows, and spending the same amount of money (which is most of their discretionary income — after you subtract out the payment on the student loan for going to the right college, and the rent or mortgage payment to live in the right neighborhood.) — even though they are all playing the same game, so they all know how much it costs, they all still lie to each other and try as much as they can to pretend like it all just happened naturally. And since they are all telling the same lie — no one wants to get caught, so no one important is going to blow anybody else’s game, because once fingers start pointing everyone comes out smelling like ass.
But as hard as that all sounds — at least there are some definitions. If you want to be yourself you have to worry about choosing your first principles. And then you have to worry about how you build up your actions out of them. Maybe no-one has feedback for you, so you just have to keep talking and hope that someday someone will hear you. You have to throw away all the easy answers — like too good to be true credit offers. You have to sound words out, you have to cut the trail yourself, you have to climb bare rock — you have to be willing not to cheat — you have to settle for what accrues by justice to you for being who you are. Do you have faith in who you are?
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