Knowing I had to start my blog, and not knowing how, I began right where I was:

Recently graduated, just finished reading a book I'd been lusting over for a year. Suspended in the disturbingly disorienting place between the glory of 'I made it,' the somberness of 'it's over,' and the blind excitement of 'what's next?!' on both planes.

Naturally, in these fluid states between motions -- that somehow prove to be more constrictive than freeing, despite, or perhaps due to, the overwhelming emotional/mental leeway they offer -- , we find ourselves sitting down, looking up at the stars, and asking, "Why? What's the point of everything?"

Right? Just me?...

Okay, let me explain.

Of course having finally graduated from high school, my first act of freedom was to read a book NOT assigned by my English teacher. I read The Time Machine (1895), expecting a cool ahead-of-its-time science-fiction / fantasy novel much like The War of the Worlds (1898)...give or take the Tom Cruise (I'd prefer take.) What I discovered, as I passed through the pages, was a perfectly packaged manifesto of the nineteenth-century visionary H. G. Wells' expectations for humanity. The existentialist twinge, subtly detectable within The War of the Worlds' insinuation that the human race was not alone, was probably not the best, and could be quickly smudged out of existence, appeared in indisputable flashes within this piece. And no Tom Cruise flash-SIGNEDCruise-smileof-a-smile appeared at any junction to provide relief from the inferno.

No, I had no excuse to overlook what H. G. Wells was plating for me in what I'd thought would be a nerdy escapist retreat. Instead I fell into the familiar pensive abyss that had caught me many a sleep-deprived, desperation-filled school week during my high school career. This time, it was mixed with bittersweet admiration for the beautiful imagery that it was plopped into. But painting the stunningly detailed time travel experience was the least H. G. Wells could do in exchange for forcing me to question the significance of my life on a Monday morning.

If you haven't read the book, I won't spoil it for you yet, but I will mention a particularly sublime scene in which, amidst his struggle to return to his own time and his observation that the human race "had committed suicide," (85) the Time Traveler suddenly stops to look at the sky...

HGWells

H. G. Wells as the Time Traveler

 

    "Looking at these stars suddenly dwarfed my own troubles and all the gravities of terrestrial life. I thought of their unfathomable distances, and the slow inevitable drift of their movements out of the unknown past into the unknown future."  -- (H. G. Wells, The Time Machine, 65)

Thanks for the reminder that humanity is nothing but a coffee drip -- not even that...a caffeine molecule -- on the four-dimensional white t-shirt that is reality.

Coffee-spill

Suddenly my first sentence doesn't make sense. You have to start a blog? Why? Why do you have to do anything? The answer is obvious: you don't. As my seventh grade English teacher Mrs. Richardson always said, "You don't have to do anything but breathe. After that you'll die, and your body will decompose." The inevitable truth. Eventually, I'll become a part of the world's stockpile of matter and probably end up partly in the atmosphere mixed in with exhaust fumes and partly in the sewage system, and the amoebas ingesting the particles that evaporated from my body won't care what I did with my life. They don't even have brains. How naive I was to think I had to write...But for now, I'll return to the previous quote from H. G. Wells.

This could be considered a beautiful observation of the vastness of the universe and the relatively minuscule nature of our worldly concerns. This could be a good thing -- a weight off of the individual's shoulders. HOWEVER, the pessimism continues. 

Click here to read part 2.

 

 

Cited: Wells, H. G. The Time Machine. USA: SoHo, 2013 (Original Published 1895). Print.

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Published by GracieLo