The older I get, the more I feel the urge to create things. When I was younger, I used to create things all the time. As a child, I loved to play with Lego. Whenever you get a new set, you use the instructions to create the model, but that isn’t the end — it’s just the beginning. The next step, obviously, is to smash the model into the ground (violently) and make smashey noises. Once the model is broken apart, you are free to build it into whatever you like, and that’s the real joy.
I (mostly) grew out of playing with Lego. Over time, I found other ways to express some creativity. I had a (cringey) phase in high school where I used Photoshop to create ‘graphic art’. I created forum signatures for other people, and larger pictures which would incorporate sci-fi or fantasy elements into them.
Some of these were good, some were terrible, but that’s kind of irrelevant at this point. I have struggled, more and more as I age, to be creative the way I was when I was a kid. I am a bit of a perfectionist when I create things. I think it’s because I am hyper-critical of everything, that I see the flaws in anything I try to create. Want to write a blog post? Better never bother doing it because there’s no way it will be New York Times quality. Want to take a picture? Better buy a professional grade camera and learn how to shoot in manual, otherwise why bother? For a long time, this has given me a convenient excuse not to create anything, or to half-ass it if I did so that I wouldn’t have to deal with the criticism. It’s the sign of a fragile ego, and it’s caused me to repress my creative instincts. I’m hoping that this blog will be a kind of therapy for that.
So, there are a few things that I know I would enjoy creating, had I an excuse to create them. I like to take pictures. I just started, but it seems like a decent and relatively risk-free hobby to take up. I recently started to learn how to shoot manually, and so I’ll be posting that journey in this blog as I go. Most of the pictures will be mediocre, but at least I’ll enjoy learning.
I also used to skateboard quite a bit (cringey high school phase #2: skater kid). I find it really difficult to go out and do now, partially because I am embarrassed to be a 26-year-old school teacher riding a skateboard in public. Skateboarding, though, is a creative sport. I miss it. I think about it all the time, and it’s kind of pathetic that I’m not doing it anymore for (mostly) silly reasons (I also hurt myself badly every time I try).
Lastly, I enjoy writing. I majored in English, and I usually enjoy writing pretentious pseudo-intellectual philosophical treatises (cringey university phase #3: philosophy minor). It’s way too easy to make fun of myself. I’d like to do quite a bit more of this, so this may be a place to write a load of random articles on political, social, or psychological developments in the world.
I hate the concept of a blog. I am not a fan of twitter. Facebook status updates make me sad. It’s easy to make fun of anyone who gets on the internet and creates something, because why should they be the center of attention? What makes YOU so special? The idea of sharing the mundane details of your everyday life with the internet, shouting out into the darkness to see if anyone cares makes me deeply sad, but now I am going to do it. I’m not implying that anyone should read this blog, praise me for my work, or acknowledge me as a particularly amazing human being in any way. I am hoping that this will give me an excuse to create things so that I can scratch the itch that I’ve pretended wasn’t there for so many years. So, hello world, it’s time to make some shit.