October 16, 2008

Another cup of Joe, please


A few moments ago I was two clicks away from a cut and paste of an old post from a previous blog. It suddenly occurred to me that not only was I possibly plagiarizing myself, but also that I was dredging up something that I had already gotten out of my head and onto 'paper'. Now going into your past and remembering things is acceptable, sharing nostalgia with others is friendship binding and often fun, but regurgitating thoughts and wrapping them up in a different package is just kind of boorish.

I have always liked the phrase; Jack of all trades, it's the master of none part that bothers me. We all, or almost all of us, have hobbies. Whether it be playing sports or dancing, travelling, painting, etc. This is good! It gives us a chance to get rid of the stress that builds up from the day to day humdrum that encroaches on our lives, hobbies also allow us to stir up the creative juices in our souls so as to keep them from getting stagnant.
My problem is with a particular line of thought that I constantly encounter. People I meet, who have similar interests, are often either belittling their talents or thinking about purchasing something that they believe will allow them to perform at a higher level.

Why do we have to strive for greatness in every area of our lives? Isn't a little mediocrity satisfying?
I am not a good guitar player (wife looks over shoulder, reads what I have just typed and walks away laughing uproariously) but knowing that I am not going to be trying to impress anyone allows me to enjoy what I do and be realistic about the amount of money and time I am willing to spend on it.

I don't plan on becoming a professional photographer so why would I want to float two or three thousand bucks on a professional set up. My camera suits me fine and I believe that I take decent snapshots with it.

I like blogging because it's cheap. I get to write about silliness such as this and I never worry about rejection leters. Hobbies are supposed to relieve you of the stress you get from having to excel at work.


I like my mediocrity. How about you?



21 comments:

lime said...

oh heck, in guitar playing i'd be striving for mere mediocrity! that would be a major accomplishment.and yes i think hobbies should be for pleasure. if striving for excellence in a hobby is a pleasurable thing, great. if not, then it should just be enjoyed for the sheer joy of engaging in it at all.

jGrrl said...

I like you just as you are, just as I liked an old green friend of ours just as he is/was. I like your images, I like your thoughts and you shouldn't try to push anything any further unless its what you truly want to do, otherwise - just be you. You are loved out here no matter how you wanna see/be it :-)

NYD said...

Lime~ It's the idea of perfection that drives so many people that confuses me.

JGrrl~ Shhhh! Not many folks know about the little green blob.

The Grunt said...

The guitar will eventually come to you. Just keep playing with it--just like that thing you did to yourself when you hit puberty, it will come:D

Megan said...

I enjoy my mediocrity too. Thanks for this post, it articulated something I've been thinking about in a nebulous way for a long time.

And I think I just figured something out...

Bear said...

I like my mediocrity. How about you?

No thanks, I have my own... but you do make some great points.

Cheers.

Mona said...

You are spot on! I think there is nothing like the simple pleasures of life. Somethings that give you enjoyment with peace.

To be truly creative, you have to BE what you are doing. If fame & money come, fine. If they don't then too fine. They are mere byproducts of your creativity!

Mona said...

You don't need to be master of anything or anyone, except yourself! If that happens, everything automatically happens right!

NYD said...

Grunt~ The spirit of the thing is with me just not the ability to play before thousands of ovulating women.

Megan~ Ma'am, because of my inability to correctly string words into claused and phrases that make any kind of sense, I seem to have mislead you. I do not like mediocrity. What I dislike is the detrimental effect that pursuing perfection has upon the spirit of doing something that you enjoy.

Bear~ My best points are often found at the top of my head.
Cheers back at ya.


Mona~ I am surprised! For once we agree on something.

Allan said...

Jack of trades?
I prefer "dilettante". I suspect that the less I take myself seriously, the longer I will live.

Still, when I am mixing a band, I get consternated by flaws that , to me, are glaring but that no one else seems to notice- it drives me nuts : "Can't you hear that?" I am prone to asking.

I used to be into playing guitar with a ridiculous amount of gear- nowadays I just plug straight into my amp and hope for the best. Just play. It'll be fun and that's the key.

Last point: I'm in my fifth year of blogging and I'm telling ya it's OK to re-post. There are always new eyes.

The Troll said...

Can't recall having read such a thought on ADULT hobbies, but I agree. Sort of.

I think GOLFERS are about the worst I've encountered on this. I have friends/clients who buy EVERY new gadget that comes out.

I have 9 clubs in my bag, none of which I paid for. I've been known to forget to wear my "golf spikes". I've never turned in my scores and don't have an official "handicap" to confirm my mediocrity. I haven't visited the practice area in years.

It ain't so much that I love mediocrity, but I enjoy playing and don't mind losing to people who spend 20K a year on Golf.

But I LOVE it when I beat them! And they HATE it. They even get mad when I hit my driver further. Which is the ONLY thing I'm remotely good at.

A.B. said...

I was thinking the other day that after I accepted my "good enough" theory when it comes to hobbies/projects, things actually are finished and I'm truly happy. When I apply crazy expectations I am only setting myself up for some false failure.

So, when I'm in my basement with a my glue gun in hand.... I'm at my most happy.

Mona said...

yea, you are growing up...

moi said...

I like to think I excel at my job. And I do like to work on something until I get really good at it. But I'm way too interested in too many things for mediocrity NOT to be the end result in most things. And I'm okay with that.

VE said...

ha ha. Perfectly said as usual. I hate the workforce where they try to focus on peoples weaknesses. Forget that, find their strengths and tap into them. Back when I bothered to work I had a friend that did very technical computer work but he was an incredible 'out of the box' thinker. Somebody you'd want in a creative session. I almost always had him come to things like that even though he had nothing to do with my group. I had others I wouldn't invite because it would have been painful for them and a waste of effort.

As for perfection...you're right. Let not other judge you; be happy judging yourself. Some things I'm curious about and get so entwined in them there isn't a person on the planet that knows more about the subject. Other things I couldn't care less that I'm not so good at.

Nice post!

Megan said...

Yeah, I get you.

citizen of the world said...

Oh, I'm also all about my own mediocrity. Although I like to think of it as authenticity!

Carla said...

Nice post and well said. We all need to enjoy life a little more and do things that give us a sense of pleasure and satisfaction.

puerileuwaite said...

I like blogging because I'm cheap.

whimsical brainpan said...

I agree, some things should simply be done for the sheer fun of doing it. Who cares if you do it well?

Grant said...

I am the Jackoff of J-tail, Masturbator of one. I have a Ph.D. in anal penetration. By which I mean I talk a great game and have lots of documentation, but no practical experience or skill. I'm basically a serial dude.

Sincerely,

Dr. Bunny-blaster