March 2008

Open Letter #1

I wonder if other people feel this way. I wonder if this sense of outrage lives in all of us somehow, only kept beneath the surface out of sight and out of mind, sedated and distracted by sports or TV or the desperate pursuit of any other number of mindless opiates.

I get funny looks when I talk about what I want to do and what drives me, which is so bizarre because those things are so basic to me.

I feel a little sorry for you.

I'm saying that a lot lately I find.

Perhaps I should rename these sympathy notes instead of reprisals.

Anyways, I'm starting to fall victim to those digression gods.

Yet again .

Many many moons ago, some brilliant pissed off writer came up with the a way of telling someone to go hell in a new and innovative way.

Obviously in writing.

But what made it special was that it was a letter that specifically intended for an individual, it was made public. Posted in public, distributed in public it went against the convention that a letter was generally sealed and only to be opened by the party that it was addressed for.

Being that it had no seal, it was called an open letter.

And so is this.

In all liklihood, the first of many.

An Open Letter To ****

Dear Sir,

After much consideration and thought I felt that it was important to clarify a few points regarding your current position on the planet.

You sir, are in fact, an ass.

In fact not only are you an ass, but you are in a majority of ways largely unacceptable as a human being.

Now I know that a bold statement like that is likely to cause you to take up something of a defensive posture, but I want to ask you to take a moment to seriously consider my arguments. They are not frivilous in any way and are certainly not expressed with the design to shock you into a state where you are unwilling to consider anyones opinion but your own.

Because, let's be honest, you've been in that state for a while.

But let's not rush ourselves, shall we? If you would be willing to provide me with your attention for a few more paragraphs I have sincere hopes that I might be able to help you see some of the challenges that are currently ensuring that you will remain (at least for the forseeable future) a person who is not wholly disposable and without any significance or merit.

My first point of concern is best stated by simply stating that you are living a passive aggressive lie wherein through good intentions, reasonably formulated plans and a staggering lack of follow through you manage to consistently disappoint many of the people around you. While you are passable at completing short term commitments that improve your overall public image and popularity for brief moments in time you are stunningly incompetent at maintaining that effort over anything more than a few alchohol fueled evenings. In the long term, this means that you have built up a reputation as someone who while being entertaining in the now is completely unreliable for maintaining any sort of effort.

You're sort of coasting.

Perhaps the best way of explaining this is that you still live your life as if you are enrolled in high school. You play the role of the social butterfly and you exert the minimum effort to ensure that you can maintain the illusion of "moving forward", but you have no understanding or consideration of how your actions or lack thereof effect those around you.

To be sure, High School for you was over ten years ago.

Over ten years and your social and moral compasses have failed to evolve in any way whatsoever. I sincerely hope that statement alone will serve as something of a wake up call for you to begin to re-evaluate the entirely predictable exercise in banality that your life has become.

My second point of concern is the ability you have developed as some sort of a justification/coping method to use future plans that you certainly won't ever follow through on as a way to excuse your stunning failures as a human being in the present. Having a really snappy idea doesn't actually carry any sort of value or weight unless you eventually act on it. I could have an "idea" on how to bring about world peace, but if I never attempt to do anything with that idea, I am in fact a far worse person than the one who never came up with the idea. Having an idea on how to make the world a better place on either or small or large scale and failing to act on that idea is the very definition of failure as a human being.

That being said, all of the grand ideas and plans that you kick about in your head but fail to act on?

They clearly define you as a failure as a human being.

All of these plans and ideas should not serve to comfort you, they should serve to drive you. Every plan that you have every found yourself excited over that you have only seen through to the first week and never to completion should feel like a knife that you have driven into your own back.

You have a lot of those sticking out of your back right now, each and every single one carefully placed by your own hands.

Finally, and I just want to be sure that we're on the same page here...

You are not as cool as you think that other people think you are.

Always the same tired predictable looks with some sort of meaningless "twists" to make it yours or unique in some way that only you can see. A unique that falls so tragically short of where you want it to be, where its everyone else that sees it, not just you.

I realize that you put a great deal of time and effort into ensuring that those around you realize how little you care what they think, but let's be honest, you do. In fact, I would feel reasonably comfortable going out on a limb and saying that what other people think of you is probably one of the more significant driving forces in your life.

Which there is absolutely nothing wrong with, to be sure. Just so long as you are aware of it.

You clearly are not.

What you present as yourself to other people is an absolute falsehood. You want people to see you as someone who is dependable and always there. You are not. Which is understandable, that's a hard thing to be. You, and all of those who know you would be much better served if you consciously represented the reality of your situation with more accuracy. You are a well intentioned person with a myriad of commitments which sometimes prevent you from being the everything to everyone that you wish you could be but aren't.

Present yourself like that and everyone will be happier. If one day you find the testicular fortitude to make the necessary changes to yourself and your priorities so that you can be someone who can be relied on and an inspiration to others then and only then can you present yourself as that.

Until then, make things easier on everyone and just play it where it lies.

I hope that you'll be able to take these thoughts and give them the serious consideration that I believe they deserve.

Thank you,


You know where to find