Why I Hate Partying/Drinking/Drugs:
While it’s true of pretty much any hobby that you can get lost in said hobby (I’m calling partying a “hobby”) I’ve never before encountered one so consistently destructive. I’ve seen many people, not just my brother, get ruined by partying and drugs. There was a kid named Gus, who I considered an intellectual equal, whose life now consists of waiting for the next high or getting drunk next. One of my best friends is slowly deteriorating in front of my eyes, and there’s an old best friend who’s long gone. On the list of causalities is my brother, as well. My brother was not just my brother, he was my best friend and my only parent, my only role model… he was the only person I ever believed when he said he loved me, and the only times he did say he loved me was when he was drunk. Does that mean anything? I can’t help but think so.
There is no other “hobby” I know of that can destroy even good people so readily. Sure, things like extreme sports are accident prone, and if you aren’t careful you can get hurt worse — ruin your life more — than a little drinking. But typically the only people who get hurt doing other hobbies are the ones who deserve to be hurt (via lack of preparedness and caution). My brother did not deserve to be ruined like that. Gus didn’t deserve it. My other friends didn’t deserve it. Partying/drugs/drinking is the only hobby I know of that can take even the best and brightest you know and turn them into worthless degenerates incapable of anything productive or positive.
Now, I know logically that not everyone who parties is going to be taken in the same way that my friends and brother were. Yet, some of the people who’ve mattered most to me in my life have been taken by booze/drugs/what have you. That has an affect on my emotions, and it’s an irrational one. I can never respect anyone who does something so obviously (to me) self destructive and risky. Aside from the obvious loss of money, I fear that they can be so easily lost in the whole thing, like all those other people important to me were lost. And I won’t rest until I see them come out the other side fine, which means I’ll constantly worry about those people until they reach a certain age and are still fine. I don’t like having to worry about people, and if I think I’m worrying too much and not getting too much out of the relationship, I typically am forced to end it. I can only worry about other people so much, especially when I have other (namely, my own) worries too.
No matter how highly I regard a person, they will always lose my respect for being involved with partying/drugs/alcohol. I know that’s irrational, but that’s just the way it is.
If you ever hear me talk about considering doing drugs or drinking alcohol, slap me. That basically equates to me talking about committing moral suicide. Lots of people tell me to stop talking about that kinda thing, but I don’t think they tell it to me because they care so much. Lots of people tell me to stop talking about lots of things, so I figure when someone tells me to shut up about that they’re just annoyed. Words only mean so much to me these days, unless I can really tell that they’re sincere words, but that’s pretty hard (unless you’re special in some way to me).
If I committed moral suicide, I might as well be really dead. I’d pretty much be empty, there’d be nothing left of me, nothing commendable, and I wouldn’t be the same person. But I don’t think I’ll be thinking too much about it anymore. A friend of mine, Dave, lent me a pretty interesting movie on Quantum Mechanics, and one of the ideas discussed in the movie was chemical addiction. I have reason to believe this part… basically, the brain can become addicted to ’emotions’ (or rather, the chemicals responsible for said emotions) if one experiences them enough. What happens is if you’re addicted to a particular chemical (read: emotion), when your cells divide the new cell has more receptors for that chemical and less for everything else.
I believe this because I’ve always struggled with the fact that I seem to ‘enjoy’ sadness. That is, whenever I was sad, I would consciously or subconsciously do things to further my depression. Now, I think, I was addicted to the chemical responsible for sadness. With this knowledge, I can now stop this nasty cycle. Really, it amounts to ‘thinking’ myself happy, which sounds kind of retarded, but it works. If it works it can’t be all that retarded, can it? I’m hoping to reverse the process and become addicted to happiness instead. It’s a much nicer chemical, don’t you think?
I’d been considering giving up my moral crusade against partying/drinking/etc, but now I’m not anymore. I have some kinda weird morals, I guess. Above all else, I value self-improvement, the constant search to better oneself. I believe the best way to attain that goal is to be completely honest. Not the only way, but the best way. Kai put it best, however: “Self improvement is the only priority; honesty is merely the best way to achieve it.” That’s one of my biggest morals, and I dunno, perhaps my only one. I don’t consider partying something that betters oneself, and hence I am dead set against it.
Essentially, it doesn’t take much for me to respect someone. There are three main criteria… the first two are pretty easy to meet, I suppose. One has to be able to hold a conversation with me. One must also have some kind of morals or ethics that drive them, and the ethics or morals must not be completely retarded or faulty. I can respect and enjoy conversation with most people because I often find that most people fall under these two criteria. However, my list of respectable people gets weeded down tremendously by the next and most important element of my respect for someone:
Whether or not they have control of their id. For those of you unfamiliar, here’s a quick crash course… the id is believed to be a part of everyone’s psyche. Basically, the id does only what it wants. It cares not for the reality of the situation, it only has desire, and it acts with incredible self interest. A baby’s psyche is comprised mostly of the id. When a baby is hungry, the id makes it cry. When a baby wants milk, the id makes it cry. The baby has no regard for its parents or concern, crying whenever and wherever it might need whatever it might need. It acts only in its own self interest.
As you age, you are supposed to form the Ego and the Superego, which all serve to balance out the id. However, it has been regarded as a rather difficult task to balance out the id, and I’m starting to believe it. Most people I’ve encountered, you could say the “average” person, cares very little about long-term goals. Most certainly, very few people at school seem to care about long term goals. While I agree with them in their sentiment that school is bullshit and the work they do doesn’t matter and that they’re not learning anything… I can get past all that because I know that eventually my work will pay off. I will be able to go to college and get a better job and make a ton of money and not have to work for very long. Should I play my cards right I could retire by my mid 30’s and spend the rest of my life enjoying life.
However, most people just use the fact that school is bullshit as an excuse to give into their id. The id wants to have a good time, so they neglect their school work and stay out late and party and have a good time. While they may be having a better time than me now, I sincerely doubt that they will be having as good of a time as I could be having when I’m 30 something.
The trick is to know when to give into your id, when to act now and when to hold off and wait and suppress your id. Certain actions can be taken now to have a good time, and that won’t sacrifice the good time that you’ll be having later. Most people haven’t mastered that trick, or even have the slightest grasp on it. I’m still struggling with it, although I’m getting better. I tend to suppress my id more than I probably should; lately though, I haven’t. I’ve been opening up to people, I have a “significant other,” and other various things that my old self would never have dreamed of doing because they’d be far too risky. I could probably be better at controlling my id, but I have a grasp of it.
I respect people who suppress their id much more than people who give into their id. And I respect people who can control their id above all others. I believe life is harder in the short term, especially during, say, your teenage years, if you suppress your id. But I also believe it makes you a better person for being in control of your base desires and knowing when and when not to act on them. Since I, above all else, believe in self-betterment, that is why I respect people who can control their id. That is why I can never respect people who only give into it without thought and make up excuses to justify their submission.
Quick Thanks to Friends:
Thank you to all the people who read this blog and comment on it (namely: Dave, Aaron, Cody, Nick, Dan, Kai and probably some other people but there’s a lot of anonymous people who sign my blog). Thank you to Mrs. Johnson and Mr. Smith who’ve been helping me out a bit lately. Thank you to someone who’ll remain nameless because he or she wishes to remain so (which bothers me but oh well). You’ve all played a part in me turning my life around.
Also thanks to those of you who don’t read this but still made a change in my life… namely Nate.