May 03, 2011

The Great Pretender

The price you pay for reading this blog is that every now and then I go off the rails and write about things I have no right to write. Right?

Well, today I want to write about the meaning of life.

No, I'm not kidding. What is the darn meaning of life?

It's a question that has puzzled mankind since, well, at least since I was in junior high school.

Now the truth is that deep down inside we all know the answer. We pretend we don't know, but we know. The answer is that there is no meaning. Our primary job is to turn food into fertilizer.

When a cat dies do we ask what the meaning of its life was? How about a guppy? Does a guppy's life have meaning?  How about all the life forms that existed for hundreds of millions of years before we showed up?

Our species has been around for about 200,000 years, and we know next to nothing about the first 195,000 of those years. What was the "meaning" of those lives?

What gives us any reason to believe that our lives have more meaning than theirs? The fairy tales we've invented?

So then what are we to do?

I think that in order to live happy, healthy lives we need to pretend that our lives have meaning. We need to pretend that lawns are worth mowing and that advertising is worth doing. You see what I'm getting at here?

Even if it's all a bunch of meaningless nonsense and in the blink of an eye it will blow away like a mote of dust, we still have to pretend it means something.

Because if we don't, then all hell breaks loose. And we can't let that happen. It might be too much fun.

And speaking of too much fun... are The Platters singing The Great Pretender.

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