It’s a funny feeling when you think you are number one, though, isn’t it? And then you realize you aren’t… hell… probably never were… but your sense of balance goes a bit wonky. Number one… We make such a big deal of it… why? i recently had occasion to have a contest of sorts and to give out prizes for first, second, and third place. Those who came in after that were offered a piece of candy… a consolation of sorts… and something from me akin to, “You may not have won, but you are certainly not a loser” or some such nonsense. Yeah, they took the candy… and they rolled their eyes.
i say “nonsense” because it all is… the winning is nonsense and the losing is as well… attaching so much significance to either position is meaningless and perhaps even destructive.
There’s a song by Andy Lau about this that i stumbled across a few years ago when i was preparing a presentation on disability. The “official” video is emotional and a bit heavy-handed, so i’ll link to a fan-video below instead. i like most of the song’s message, but the notion that “everyone is number one” is rather silly, yes? Or perhaps not.
i recall once, having a discussion with the spawn, in which she asked about the Fundamentalist Mormon’s view on plural marriage. i was trying to explain to her the notion of those who followed the doctrines being gods in the afterlife rather than simply angles/servants to the gods… etc. She responded in a way that is truly indicative of her ability to sift through bullshit. She said, “What’s the point of being a god if everyone can be one? If everyone can be a god, then everyone is the same… so what’s the point in calling yourself a god?”
Ah, wise indeed, young grasshopper.
Saying that “everyone is number one” is perhaps a grandiose version of “Namaste” then… simply saying that we are ALL fan-fuckin-tastic and NONE of us are losers. Yeah… or sumpin’
Well, i’m trying to sift through my life right now and let sands fall through the screens… look at the shiny bits that are there and decide if they are diamonds or glitter… pull out the substantial chunks of things i find and determine if they are touchstones or boulders about my neck… decide what merits keeping and what should be given away or buried or burned or tossed over my shoulder and forgotten.
i am trying to determine what/who should be most important to me.
i am wondering what/who is number one in my life.
i’m sitting here… trying to decide if i am number one. Am i my own number one? Am i anybody else’s?
It is important to be our own “number one” i suppose. People say it all the time. They whip out all manner of useful analogies (the oxygen masks dropping from the plane’s ceiling is probably the most popular one) and the truth is that we are born alone and we die alone and it is silliness… perhaps… the crazy desire we have to make connections while we are here on this plane, but we all do it in some form or fashion.
This song (trust me… or go look up the english translation… wink) begins simply… “My way is not your way…”
Um… yeah… that’s a helluva simple and yet profound statement. We are all bouncing around on this ball in the universe in hopes that we will bounce up against someone else who is enough like us that we can do marvelous things together… and we sometimes get lost in the translation, but i think that it’s astonishing that we find the lids to our pots, so to speak, at all. And once we do… we want so desperately for that to mean something. We find a certain amount of our self in the reflection of us in others. We grow as we engage with others. We become more than the sum of our parts when we join with others.
We scurry about this planet – some of us scraping to get by and others hacking each other apart to get what we want or need. Some of us are not happy unless we rule, benevolently or malevolently… others have no such agenda and simply want to carve out a place on the planet to call their own. Some of us are motivated by community and by love, others are simply running a ledger in some sort of zero-sum game. The saddest among us (my value judgement…my bias) are those who do not care about anyone but themselves. Those folks – i’m happy to say- seem to be few and far between.
Ah, but most of us want some place in the world where we feel like we are number one.
We want someone (a child, or a parent, or a lover, or a friend) to look at us with that look that says… above all else… i love you… i cherish you… i honor you. We want to believe that there is someone besides ourselves that sees our beauty and that holds us in esteem… esteem is a valuation… we want to be valued. We want to be with someone who digs us so fucking much, they want us to be happy… they get joy in our joy… they feel sorrow in our sorrow… we are connected.
i want to be number one.
i can be my own number one… but i’m not fooling myself into thinking that being number one for myself is the same as that sweet, warm, intimate connection that comes from someone else looking at me with softness in her eyes and saying i love you… you are in my blood.