Saturday, 28 November 2009
Some mornings I wake up happy,most mornings I wake up not particularly happy or sad and some mornings I wake up troubled,with the black dog on my shoulder and at odds with the world.Yesterday morning was one of those mornings.
The word 'slacker' is a word I like.It has positive connotations for me-things like slacklining and Yogaslackers(a group of yoga enthusiasts,slackliners and adventure racers whose lifestyles I greatly admire).The Wiki definition mentions that 'slackers may be mentally stable,well adjusted people and may actually be productive to society,or they may have depressive conditions,resulting in lack of motivation'.Also-'a slacker is a term for an educated person who is viewed by society as an underachiever'.This is where my gripe begins.Underachiever in this context refers to work and indeed a further definition refers to a slacker as being 'workshy'.I am increasingly finding the attitude of most people to work increasingly hard to comprehend.
In Western society most peoples identities are defined by the work that they do.If people choose not to work,they are viewed in a derisory way by society.Children,nowadays,start formal education early and there is the constant pressure placed upon them to work hard,in order to secure a good job.I am not rallying against work-some jobs,including working in health care and education are extremely important and rewarding,however much industry is not.Many manufacturing business' produce items that we don't actually need,wasting vital natural resources and shops fall into the same catagory-selling items we are led to believe we need,but in reality don't.People are encouraged to work to earn money inorder to buy items they do not need.If thought was given to things that produce true happiness-time with family,friends ,rather than material goods,people would realise that the money they actually needed would decrease,resulting in the actual time needed to work decreasing.
I guess the ideal is to find work which you enjoy,which has a positive effect on society,rather than being a drain on natural earthly resources.Children have to be educated for educations sake-to be told that securing a highly paid job is not always the ideal.A life of seeking experiences and travel can also be of equal merit.
I have always been attracted to individuals living at the edges of society-living traditionally unconventional lifes.The person who is the latest to intrigue me is Charles Tucker III a.k.a.Chongo.Chongo is a legend among the climbing community and is also credited with being one of the innovators of the discipline of slacklining.Chongo is homeless in the traditional definition of the term(although he argues he is not,as wherever he sleeps the night is his home),and spent long periods of time sleeping outdoors in Yosemite national park,unlike forbidden to by court order.He currently lives homeless in Sacramento,California.The reason he fascinates me is that it seems he is homeless by choice.He has no evident problems with drugs or alcohol and is well educated-writing books on climbing and also quantum mechanics.I admire his decisions and ,in some ways,envy his lifestyle decisions.A one off and a true hero,in my eyes