This is more of a personal entry rather than an informative story about the land of the rising sun. Nevertheless, if you’re at a crossroads in life, I’m sure you’ll understand my thinking.
Is this the way the world works? All my life I, and so many others, are told the same thing – “get good grades, go to school, go to college, get a job, meet a girl, get married…” I’m enjoying my time in Japan, but bottom-line, I know it’s not my final resting place, and that’s scary enough in itself. All my life has been a transition phase from one short goal to the next: when I was in high school, I was preparing for college, when I was in college, I was getting ready for a job… From one random summer job, to the next, to waiting in Austin a year after graduation, I find myself here, another transition.
We never look at the time spent outside of this path, the time we’re supposed to use to develop ourselves. Even right now, I’m looking at jobs for when my time in Japan comes to an end, if my time here comes to an end. Is that it? One continuous flow from one uncertainity to the next? Where is the happiness, really? I know work isn’t supposed to be fun 100% of time, but I expect it to be satisfying. Lately, I’ve been wondering if I can ever find a job like that, a life like that.
“I see all this potential, and I see squandering. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need. We’re the middle children of history, men. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War’s a spiritual war… our Great Depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off.”
All my work history? It hasn’t been preparing me for anything. Retail, teaching, Alaska, business owner, even my diploma means nothing without the will to use it. The world is anyone’s for the taking, if only we would all accept that fact. I just haven’t quite gotten there yet.
I’m in Japan because I chose to be. I’m in Japan because my life has been a string of irregular and unusual jobs, and this is the latest link in the chain. I’m searching for my place in the world among all these jobs, experiences, people, and still have yet to find it. I crave adventure. I yearn for feeling, loving, living, desiring. I can’t stand being suppressed, condescended, or pounded into submission. You won’t see me working as a telecommunications operator. I won’t be behind the counter at the DMV. I believe in things like courtesy, chivalry, honor, virtue, and courage. I would die for a stranger, and live to help another. Money, work history, and job experience be damned, I just want to know what the future holds, where I’m meant to be.
I am the twenty four year old boy. Trying to sail away from the safe harbor, and getting stopped by my own anchor. Doesn’t mean I won’t keep pulling, keep trying to set out into the unknown… good night.