Thursday, July 2, 2009

Be Fine

In The Blind Assassin, Margaret Atwood says:

"Why is it we want so badly to memorialize ourselves? Even while we're still alive. We wish to assert our existence, like dogs peeing on fire hydrants. We put on display our framed photographs, our parchment diplomas, our silver plated cups; we monogram linen, we carve our names on trees , we scrawl them on washroom walls. It's all the same impulse. What do we hope from it? Applause, envy, respect? Or simply attention, of any kind we can get?

"At the very least we want a witness. We can't stand the idea of our own voices falling silent finally, like a radio running down."




It occurred to me when I read this that blogging is another means of trying to make ourselves matter - to stay alive longer than our bodies will allow, knowing that while we are so obviously (and sometimes secretly) relevant to the ones immediately in front of us, in the long run we are nothing.

It sounds very nihilistic when I say it, but I think the secret is to be fine -as in "of superior quality, skill or appearance" AND "very small in size"- with our insignificance.

3 comments:

Amy said...

Happy Fourth of July. Love the look of your blog. Great Changes.

Yaya said...

I won't settle for being nothing!

Christine said...

I like your last sentence, that idea of accepting, even embracing, our smallness. It's what I loved about being in Denali, that feeling that what I usually think of as such a big deal is really very small, and that I really can't mess anything up that much in the grand scheme of things.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Be Fine

In The Blind Assassin, Margaret Atwood says:

"Why is it we want so badly to memorialize ourselves? Even while we're still alive. We wish to assert our existence, like dogs peeing on fire hydrants. We put on display our framed photographs, our parchment diplomas, our silver plated cups; we monogram linen, we carve our names on trees , we scrawl them on washroom walls. It's all the same impulse. What do we hope from it? Applause, envy, respect? Or simply attention, of any kind we can get?

"At the very least we want a witness. We can't stand the idea of our own voices falling silent finally, like a radio running down."




It occurred to me when I read this that blogging is another means of trying to make ourselves matter - to stay alive longer than our bodies will allow, knowing that while we are so obviously (and sometimes secretly) relevant to the ones immediately in front of us, in the long run we are nothing.

It sounds very nihilistic when I say it, but I think the secret is to be fine -as in "of superior quality, skill or appearance" AND "very small in size"- with our insignificance.

3 comments:

Amy said...

Happy Fourth of July. Love the look of your blog. Great Changes.

Yaya said...

I won't settle for being nothing!

Christine said...

I like your last sentence, that idea of accepting, even embracing, our smallness. It's what I loved about being in Denali, that feeling that what I usually think of as such a big deal is really very small, and that I really can't mess anything up that much in the grand scheme of things.