Sunday night I was hard at work on the Internet, launching a campaign to help an impoverished Bob Dylan and save him from degrading advertising work. I'm not sure it went so well. A lot of people seemed to think he was doing it on purpose. Shudder, brrrr, a chilling thought. That does not sound plausible! Anyway, there I was on the Internet, and the Internet started yelling at me about the Academy Awards.
I have no interest in the Academy Awards or in any other competitive sporting event so completely untethered from any objective measurements. But, in a matter of moments, having seen not a single movie involved, I formed deep opinions, complicated favorites, and a fierce partisan interest. I developed an analysis of how everything will go according to an inevitable trajectory that I abhor. I monitored, in dread, as my horrible expectations were fulfilled, and then, just as I was about to whip into a feverish lather of rage about the whole thing, that tiny voice, like unto the one from Horton's dust speck, came back to me. What was it again? Oh, right, I don't care about the Academy Awards. I am not interested in the Academy Awards. The Academy Awards mean nothing to me.
Helpful little voice, that. A voice that saves the world, no matter how small, and I seize on the voice to pull myself out.
This is a good trick. I like this trick. I would like to do this trick a lot more!
Here is the thing. I can form a ferocious opinion on any subject in scant seconds. Even when formed off of the mere fumes of actual information, my opinion will be fierce, sharp, clever, thorough, unusual, and idiosyncratic. Full of confidence, occasional humor, and commitment, this opinion will burst forth like time lapse photography of a blooming flower.
And then, in that same magical speed, it will rot back into the mud, forgotten.
And what will I have gotten for my dexterous burst of fanatic tumult?
Righteousness. Mastery. Superiority. Energy. Disillusionment. Despair.
Usually in that order.
Can I get by without these?
I am thinking it would be good to try, to follow the small voices in the clouds, the ones that are actually my own, and to see what other worlds there might be.