Saturday, February 05, 2005
scratch one competitive person
Tonight was a bit different than my usual schedule... I actually left the house and ventured out into the world beyond the southend. It's been awhile since I've been out to downtown Seattle on a Friday night, but my little sister was having a little (late) birthday celebration and I thought I should attend - a small party at a bowling / billiards joint on Capitol Hill called Garage (Firefox users beware, mostly IE functional only).
My impression of the place was that it's like Jillian's, except a bit trendier and the crowd a bit younger. It was also a bit pricey, but the pool tables were aight, they were showing the Houston/Minnesota game on TV, and the DJ was playing some good music - Wu-Tang, Outkast, Rage Against the Machine, and the Neptunes.
Since I've always been more of a billiards sorta guy, I ended spending all my time playing 8-ball and 9-ball with Shiv. Since we were just playing for fun, I frequently "adjusted" our games by moving the balls for easier shots for her and letting her shoot twice. I think she found it a little strange since she knows I can be competitive at times.
Being competitive is sorta one of those unconscious, prehistoric male instincts that will continue to endure until evil female scientists someday figure out a way to splice a gene into all males to make them love ice skating, cry while watching Oprah, and spend hours looking over matching color swatches for their housewares.
As a random insight into the maturity of a male: Immature boys are slaves to their urge to compete. Real men can control their urge to be competitive.
"Looking out for number one" is such a dominant philosophy here in America, especially in the past 30 years. It's almost as if the decadence of the '80s and pre-bust '90s has reinforced a self-centered, amoral personality into our country. The attitude of "F$@k you, what about me?"
If you doubt me, turn on an episode of the American Idol casting calls and witness how many completely un-musical people are convinced that they can sing like Aretha Franklin or Whitney Houston or Marvin Gaye. Hearing their screeching voices isn't nearly as insanely comical as hearing their inflated egos scream out, "I'M THE BEST HEAR ME SING I'M A GREAT SINGER BLAH BLAH BLAH." Seeing the bewildered expressions of people who suck as they're rejected flat-out by the judges can be both funny and sad.
The American Idol competition, Iraq, Afghanistan... it's all related, really. After all, what sort of attitudes causes people to make joke songs about the tsunami victims or not care about 99% of what happens in the rest of the world? We live in a country filled with self-deluded egomaniacs who neither try to understand or can sympathize with anybody who is shred different than themselves or doesn't fit into their narrow definition of humanity.
I love my country, but the signs of the wackness that's so prevalent in modern American culture continue to be displayed prominently.
I'm not sure what I'm trying to say here, but I suppose it's this: competitiveness may have its uses in a game of billiards or bowling, but it isn't a catch-all philosophy for living your life as a human being. People keep trying to compete in a game that doesn't exist. Your family, your job, your GF/BF, your possessions, your lifestyle etc. are not about competition. Cultural imperialism, war, and ignorance are not games that are won by launching missiles, sending our young people to die, or indulging in tokenism.
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