Self (Art) Anonymous


A career is an illusion and love is a myth. In the former, you actually had a string of dead-end jobs where you were treated more like a machine than a human resource; you were bought, used up, and then replaced again and again. In the latter, you became unwilling devotee of a religion that was full of embarrassing and painful rituals suffered now for the undelivered promise of joy and bliss later.

When you were young, the Others really counted for something; what they said about and did for and to you really mattered.  Your Self was more about them than you, really. When you got old, when some of those Others–bosses and lovers mostly–you depended on have deserted you, your Self becomes yours and yours alone, whether you like it or not.

Now the illusion and the myth are threadbare and easily seen through. There is nothing beyond them. But hopefully, grief and relief have canceled each other out by now, and the bits and hints of friends and family that you’ve been lucky enough to keep, keep you going. Now is when, as they say in the 12-step program, it is best to take “One day at a time.”

That’s not saying that life is getting worse. The jobs can still be fun, even the fantasy of a career can be, as long as you know it’s just that as well as when to let it go and move on. That’s sound advice for love, too. And that’s why it’s good that there’s Art. Art is done one day–image, post, whatever–at a time and it’s a fantasy no one else can destroy.  Best of all, with it you can patch all those holes in your Self made by the now-absent others.