Wednesday, May 30, 2012

i don't know.

I don't know that much about anything, and it really pisses me off.
For example, I don't know that much about sailing. I can sail an actual tiny vessel, probably. Maybe a Sunfish or something small, you know? I've done it before, when I spent a summer in New Hampshire as a kayak instructor. I sailed that lake a few times, but I was always in a state of borderline panic while doing it. I can't trust the wind as much as I can trust the water because I can't for the life of me read it. Still, I sailed. I managed it.  But I don't know all the nautical terminology and how to tie dozens of kinds of knots and how to read the wind. I hit one child with the boom as it swung wildly once and honestly, I was more mad than concerned when it happened. Why would they send me out to instruct sailing? I don't even trust the wind! Mostly not being able to read the wind bothers me, because it seems like a skill that you either have or you don't- you can try to teach it, but you can never really master it unless it is a gift you are born with.
I love to read, I want to read everything, why don't I know how to read the wind?
So frustrating.
Also frustrating to me:
I don't know anything about poetry.
In fact, I get literally no pleasure from poetry and it makes me feel low class, like someone with unrefined and poor taste. Uneducated. Shallow. Mostly I hate that it makes me feel shallow.
But I also feel kind of a mild disdain for people who want to talk about and brag about reading and writing poetry, because hello, pretentious.
I don't know if I'd rather be shallow or pretentious.
Ideally, neither, but I don't know if I can have my cake and eat it too in this scenario.
I don't know how to play the violin, or the piano, or even the clarinet. I've never played an instrument and it grates on me that I don't know if I would be good at it. I'm 25, almost 26, shouldn't I know if I have any musical aptitude by now?
Most of the time I don't know what day of the week it is, how much money is in my bank account, what I'm having for dinner tonight, or where my cell phone is. I don't mind not knowing these things, usually, unless I need to know right then, but usually I don't so it's okay that I don't know.
It bothers me greatly that I don't know how to play bridge, or change a tire, and that I've never started a fire with damp wood and no matches or lighter. I can't stand that I don't know more about my grandparents lives, any other language fluently, what people are thinking about when they go suddenly quiet, or if I'll ever actually get to the point in my life when actually enjoy exercise.
But I think I secretly know the answer to the last one there, and the answer is no,  so I'm just going to keep on acting like I have no idea.
I don't know how to paint watercolor well even though I can't seem to make myself stop trying, or stop cursing in front of children, or how to go to a bar or party without drinking. But I think those things are parts of my character, so I'm trying to embrace them.
Sometimes I wish I knew how to fly a plane, steal a car, knock someone out with one punch, and disappear, become someone else completely. But those are all romantic things, left over from a dream of becoming a spy that I've never been able to outrun. I don't know why I've always wanted to be a secret agent. I don't know how to go about becoming one.
The worst, I think is knowing just a bit, enough to get by, But not really knowing that much at all in the grand scheme. Everything that I set my mind to, I want to be the best, throw myself into, know the most. When it becomes evident that the task of learning every single detail about soemthing is nearly impossible, I usually give up and desert it all together. I don' t know why, I just do.

1 comment:

  1. I feel similarly. I feel like where I work, everyone knows a lot about their job - a lot. I feel like I know nothing. I read back on some of your old posts and was curious if you ever applied to grad school??? I'm sorry if you've already addressed this but was curious. I'm hoping my going back to school will help in my pursuit to, at least, be REALLY good at one thing. Eh, probably not. You're really good at writing! You got that goin.