BY SETH REISS
[Originally published February 8, 2013.]
That’s life. You deal with it and you move on. Sometimes you lose your job, or you can’t make rent, or you get sick, and you just have to be able to say to yourself, “It sucks, but that’s life.” Whether your computer just crashed, or your cell phone just died, or you just ate your cell phone, or your cell phone just ate you, or you have to deal with some eight-armed, three-headed lunatic who’s running around eating everyone’s cell phones and yours is next, well, sorry pal, that’s just how life is.
Look, I don’t mean to be a hard-ass, but life’s tough. It’s difficult. Things happen. One second you’re talking to your mom and the next, boom, she’s dead. Or boom, you’re dead. Or boom, your mom’s still alive and everything’s fine and she loves you very much. Or boom, your mom’s dead, she comes back to life, everyone’s pretty scared by that, and then boom, she’s dead again and everyone’s secretly relieved.
Life’s weird that way. There’s no rhyme or reason to anything. You can go into one building and see one group of people, and then go across the street into another building and see an entirely different group of people. Can you explain that? Of course you can’t.
Life is unpredictable. Who knows where you’ll end up? Maybe you’ll run a marathon. Or maybe you’ll run a marathon in an administrative capacity, in which you make sure everyone is wearing the right number identification cards, and the water stations are placed evenly throughout the course. Or maybe you’ll run a marathon recruitment office that places people in the perfect marathon for them. Or maybe marathons aren’t your thing, and you’re more of a finance guy. Maybe you’re even a woman.
The bright side of this is that, in life, anything is truly possible. If you want, you can be a doctor or lawyer or murder Kevin Costner. Or you can murder Helen Hunt. Or you can murder Carl Reiner. In this day and age, you can even murder the entire cast of the Broadway revival of Glengarry Glen Ross. Or you can say, “Look, pal, I don’t want to murder anyone. Except Hugh Grant.” And that’s fine because, in this life, you are entitled to murder whoever you want whenever you want.
Personally, I’ve murdered tons of people. It’s great.
Albert Einstein once said, “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” What an idiot. For someone so forward thinking, you imagine he would have just said, “Life is like a car,” and left it at that. But he didn’t. And that goes to show you that, in this life, you can either let people get away with saying some of the dumbest crap, or you can fly to Albert Einstein’s great-grand-daughter-in-law’s house, and say point blank, “Hello, Ellen. Your great-grandfather-in-law, despite having done some really remarkable things, really dropped the ball on that life quote. Is he here?”
People ask me all the time: Who are you? Who are you talking to? Why are you talking so loud? Do you have any form of identification? Sir, whose blood is that? And to all those questions I say, “Life is full of little mysteries, the answers to which we’ll never know. But a lot of the answers to your particular questions can be chalked up to the fact that I am a mentally ill person.”
Look, there are winners and there are losers in this life. Some people know how to party and, if need be, can really let loose on the dance floor (winners), and some people are like, “It’s Saturday night and I don’t know what to do” (losers). Some people can hack the work down at the docks (winners), and some people think dock work is too tough (losers). Some people are winners (winners), and some people are losers (losers).
All in all, the one thing we have to remember is that life ultimately comes to an end. Sad but true. And you can either choose to live life to the fullest or with regrets. My friend Eric lived life to the fullest and died in a parachuting accident.
SUGGESTED READSSome Common Life Problems, With Possible Solutions
by Tim Carvell (3/21/2000)
Events, Over a Life Span, That Precipitate the End of Fun and Games
by Greg Ryan (9/29/2010)
Famous Quotes from Shakespeare Altered to Describe My Everyday Life
by Elizabeth Bastos (2/10/2010)
RECENTLYI Feel Like NPR Doesn’t Like My New Radio Show Idea
by Dan Kennedy (4/24/2015)
How to Find Love: Lessons from an Old Maid: Letter to Adults Who Are Also Having Zero Sex
by Connie Sun (4/24/2015)
Open Letters: An Open Letter to the Former Owner of My Queen-Size Bed
by Catherine Tung (4/24/2015)