Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Ambition is trying to kill me

I've been called a passionate person. Intense. Impulsive even. I'll wear those snug little shoes and not think a thing of prancing a mile in them.

But once in a while, those qualities come together in a shitstorm of ambition, laying me out.



Oh, it starts out innocently enough. A song, a movie. A random interaction with a stranger. The interest of self-improvement.


I'll think, 'Hey! I should TOTALLY learn a new language. Knowing the names of my fingers and toes in Norwegian isn't useful enough. I should learn a language! But fully!'


And then I try to decide WHICH language to learn.


'I do love opera. Ooo the Italians in particular! I know a little already from singing those songs, so why not learn Italian? GENIUS! Oh, wait. Except in terms of being able to communicate with other people, Italian is sort of... niche. Maybe something broader would be better! Something like... Mandarin? Yes! Oh, no. I don't ever plan on actually GOING to China. So maybe not. We get a lot of Mexican Immigrants - maybe I should learn Spanish! And Spanish is close to Portuguese, and I know those songs in Portuguese! Yes! OR I could learn Norwegian and Dutch as a tip of the hat to my ancestors! I still have family in Holland and Norway! How cool would it be to learn the languages, and go there for a visit?! YES! Oh, but that's niche again. Le sigh. HEY! I already know some French! I could just carry on with that! It's practically cheating since I took it in school! Yes! But I'm not particularly DRAWN to French.'


Which makes me say FUCK IT, I'll just learn ALL THE LANGUAGES!




Only, I never quite seem to get around to actually doing it because in the meantime, another idea will creep up behind me, an evil minion sent by ambition.




*writes 'The End' on 8th manuscript.* Hey! I've written ALL THE THINGS. *orders 37 books from the library to catch up on TBR List that grew while I was in the writing cave*


Wait a sec. Now that I have time, maybe I'll work on my music! *writes lyrics* Yes! This is amazing! *goes to make the song* DAMN IT! My vision has surpassed my ability. If only I could play ALL THE INSTRUMENTS, I'd be able to get what's in my head out into the world! YES! I already play some guitar, and I HAVE a violin. I'll start with those two. Oh, and the bass. Crap, programming drums electronically sucks. I should just learn that too - it will make my life SO much easier.'


But those things NEVER happen the way I intend. I SEE what's happening, but am powerless to stop it!





I want to be better! I want to do it all! AND THERE'S NOT ENOUGH TIME! Oh, man, all the things I will never get around to doing haunt my steps like an unfortunately rancid fart, surrounding me with the stench of failure and shame. Failure because I've spectacularly failed at meeting my goals.


Sure, I get things done. But not all the things I wanted. *snivels* And I'm not one to half-ass things, so it gets overwhelming when 37 books arrive in for me at the library, all on intensely technical music theory geared towards general, bass, and guitar - because I never bothered learning theory. Oh, I can sight read, and I played piano when I was eight, but my theory book and I came to an understanding back then: I would NOT learn it, and it would NOT get ripped into tiny tiny pieces. Everybody wins!


Everybody except PRESENT TAMARA! Because Past Tamara?



Because of you, and your partner-in-crime, Ambition, this week I'm supposed to learn three languages, read nine novels, read and learn five books of music theory, do an online course, write forty pages, hit the guitar hard - and then the bass or violin - not sure WHICH will be first, edit two manuscripts for other people, figure out the music to two songs you came up with lyrics but no music for, come up with lyrics for that melody you shouted at me at four AM, and go to work.


And try not to hack my lungs out because clearly you didn't plan on me catching the flu this week.


Are you TRYING to kill me?


Screw it. I'll get to it all NEXT week instead.