Comfortable lives and boring gravestones

Maybe it’s just me, but I have this idea in my head, a theory, to be exact and even though you might think I’m being silly and ungrateful, here I am to share it with you.

What makes humans different from animals is that we think in categories. That’s why we have racism, sexism and many other things ending with -ism. For me, very broadly speaking, there are two types of people (I know that there are not only two, but in a particular category there are two subcategories, to me).

Type one lives and exciting life. This person has to deal with a lot of grief, a lot of bad luck, a lot of garbage. On the other side this person is also more prone to get really lucky, to have sudden successes. Type one is the extreme type. Type one is wise through experience and often the more interesting person too.

Then there’s type two: The boring, disgustingly average, all-ok citizen. This person grows up under normal circumstances not worth commenting on, does quite alright in education and work, earns well, lives well and dies well.

Type number two is me.

I realize my theory came from possibly quite small-minded, grass-is-greener-on-the-other-side type of thinking, but it’s just the way I feel, the way I have felt for a while.

The more time I spend on this planet, the more I see how normal and comfortable my life is. I see people everywhere with lives more exciting than mine, but those people will have to deal with harsh down-falls too.

My friend and I were once flashed in a car and I told her she should not worry “When you’re with me, everything will turn out fine.”

Turns out it was not a proper flash from a speed camera. It flashed every car that night (I hope, she hasn’t received a letter yet or anything) and indeed up until now everything seems to be turning out fine.

It’s calming in a way to have this proven security that nothing bad will ever happen to me, as long as I’m willing to accept that nothing exceedingly great will happen to me either.

My highlights in life are my meetings with friends or when I manage to have an easy-going chat with a guy I’ll never see again or when I pass a maths exam (happens rarely enough). The worst things that have happened to me so far were the deaths of my guinea-pigs and the disappearance of my cat, aswell as my first heartbreak. A couple of times I thought my parents would get divorced, but that’s probably the most normal thing in a child’s life.

I get on well with my family and we annoy each other from time to time. Normal.

I will never have to attend my grand-parents funeral because they all died when I was little. I did attend some funerals, but I don’t remember. So I won’t have that great feeling of loss, despair and emptiness.

When my parents die it will probably kill me too. It will most likely be the first real tragedy in my life. Even for someone as normal as me that’s inevitable.

Not that I’ve tried lots yet, but I don’t believe to have a problem with sexuality like Franz Kafka or a difficult relationship with my father, a fatal disease or sister who died in the Holocaust. Seriously, Kafka’s life was a mess, but he was a brilliant writer.

And I guess this is what this post is really about.

Every great writer we’re read and read about in German class had some problems that apparently influenced their writing.

Heinrich von Kleist had issues with his parents (he committed suicide), so did Georg Büchner who was also some kind of a revolutionary. And Goethe, well he was just a whiny rich kid who could not settle for one girl. He’s the odd one out, I have no idea why he’s so famous.

I have encountered people who write, people who have written and they are brilliant. But their lives are ridden by highs and lows.

My life is ridden by comfort, I would say. There’s nothing wrong with comfort. I just know that I was not born to be great. I was born to be alright.

This is not me giving up, I will still try to make the best of it, but deep down I know that I will never be a great writer, I won’t be remembered as a heroine of this thing or another. I’ll be remembered as the person who had big dreams, who lived a normal life, with a normal, half-way enjoyable job and a pleasant group of friends.

I’ve probably been watching too much television, reading too many novels about people whose lives were looking hill-steep down and then something miraculous happened.

Welcome to my road of life, so straight you can already see the horizon.


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