Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Reckless, Restless

This was a well known fact:

He did not take risks.

Contrary to the rather portentously precarious year he had decided to embark on, the Boy considered himself a particularly conservative [...] person when it came to gambling.  When Lady Luck would make a pass at him while wearing considerably provocative dress, he would return to whatever nonsensical task he was tending to, most likely reading novels or peeling fruit or worrying about the future.

He needed information: price, price per unit, advantages, disadvantages, emotional stability, long-term benefits, short-term benefits, relationship status, color options, mortality rate, coolness factor, and the amount of time he spent weighing all these factors into making a decision.

Buy the Cheerios or the generic Honey Os?

Buy this awesome smoking jacket from Salvation Army?

Ride the Giant Drop, or just watch from the funnel cake stand?

The blue or the yellow shorts?

Box 1, 2, or 3?

Watch The Ring or Saw?

Keep talking with the roomies at dinner or go back and read articles?

Date you?

Every choice was calculated, planned, and executed, all results lying somewhere on the "mediocre" to "incredibly painful" to "blindingly awesome" spectrum.  Unfortunately, with the gathering of information came extremely long periods of decision-making, and restless frustration with both himself and the world for making things complicated.

With his time in Uganda swiftly coming to a close - two weeks left? - the Boy encountered a new decision: Where to next?

The dancers from Country X had never responded to his emails.  A relatively rude woman from Country Y had accused him of 'failing to answer our questions pertaining to [his] stay with our company' [not true], claimed that he 'barraged [her] staff with emails' [also not true], and promised that upon his response, 'we will further discuss your interaction with the company' [ESPECIALLY NOT TRUE].  The artistic director of Country Z - the Boy had so desperately wanted to go here sometime in his life - had offered him a place to stay for a reasonable price.

As a German woman [a neighbor at the CTC] once told the Boy:  "Isn't the choice obvious?  There are signs pointing you in the direction you should take.  What's convincing you otherwise?"

Money, simply.  Travel to [and, probably, stay in] Country X and Y was painfully cheaper than Country Z.  Considering the European countries he would travel to afterwards, it would be wise and safe to save money now.

"I don't know," the German woman said, "If money is the only reason that's keeping you from going...  I'd say that's a pretty sad reason."

The Boy made his choice [no, not out of peer pressure].  This year was about change, about stretch, about doing things he had never done before.  So what if he was reckless this early in the game?  There'd be plenty of time to fix that later.

But for now, he was fine being so Restlessly Reckless.


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