Monday, March 27, 2006

In pursuit of the game

One of the reasons that i have been oddly quiet is that i have filled my time with a new adventure.

Since March 13th, i have been an active participant in "Street Wars", an assassination game taking over the streets of Los Angeles. Played with waterguns, various active 'killers' pursue each other through the moments of our daily lives.

What started as only a game has been transformative and thought provoking.

See, my father and I often talked about playing a game like this. So when the opportunity finally appeared, i leapt at the chance to prove myself. However, the challenge has been more than i ever conceived.

It's all more time consuming than i ever imagined. Waking up at 5am to stalk before work. Keeping a change of clothes in the car at all times, in case you come across an evening when you can't go home. Hunting way past midnight on a school night. James Bond never had to report in to another day job. Assassins cannot give 40 hours to "the Man" AND still have 100% to give to the pursuit. These are all bits of 'intell' that have become readily apparent to me.

But more than that, I'm tormented by unresolved issues about being "good enough", and this frivolity has brought that home in spades.

My 'target' has been elusive, and my pursuits limited due to my other obligations (i.e. the job that pays my bills). Additionally, in my head is ever the thought... "How would my father behave in this situation? How would he handle this? would he wait in the rain? Would he have found another way to find and pursue this man?"

How did some 'extra-cirricular' activity become another way to fail my family? Why did an 'entertainment' become a tool for judgement and self-flagulation?

Look, I write this with some humor and the ability to see what it is I'm doing to myself. And in truth, this week, I am much better, much kinder than I was the first week of play. However, i still am amazed.... i took something that was supposed to be fun and frivolous, and i turned it into a metaphor for all i find i lack.

I always wanted to be 'killer'. A Femme-fatale. The pinnacle of sexy and dangerous. Mysterious and deadly. Instead, what i found myself to be is... ordinary. Not bad. Not hopeless or lousy or wretched.... Just boring. Just... normal. And that has disturbed me greatly.

Did you ever want to be a superhero, and find yourself merely human? Is this a common thing amongst people? Do we always hope for greatness? Are we always disappointed to find ourselves just "ok"?


Adri said...

Being a superhero is a state of mind. I just convince myself of it daily. If I didn't, I would totally get mired in the disappointment of normalcy... but then again we are all extraordinary, and I don't think anyone could really pigeonhole you or me or the people we know into any kind of "ordinary" or "boring" category.

jennifer said...

i have a necklace from andrea (superherodesigns which i know you're familiar with - i think i've seen you post there before but maybe not?)...just wearing it makes me feel happy and superhero-ish. which just means, i have never, since i can remember, wanted to be "normal" or "ordinary"...i was going to be a poet in 2nd grade (i wrote about unicorns often), a folk singer during 3rd and 4th grade. a journalist. a writer. i was going to be well known - famous in some way. and i'd help people of course...a very superhero like quality. i liked my wonder woman underoos very much. now, even when i struggle to be a good girl and follow the rules the rules never feed me the way i need to be fed to be happy. happiness would be living my life like a superhero. using all of my great parts, even if they don't fit the rules i have in my head. you're doing that right now, aren't you? you're pushing your daily routine - doing something that you want to do.

i do crave greatness. i have a hard time seeing it in myself but am stubborn about believing it really isn't there. i can see it more easily in other people - and while i don't think your post is asking for it - i would like to tell you that seeing greatness in others includes you. i see your greatness all of the time - in your thoughtful posts and responses to other posts. in what you share about your loves, your pain, sadness, being brave. these are, i think, superhero qualities too.

Anonymous said...

What Jennifer said, for the most part. I also think about greatness all the time--about being extraordinary.

I think your passion for crafting exactly the kind of life you want makes you a superhero.

And I think we should start calling you "Mata Teece". This game sounds incredibly cool, BTW. I am jealous!

The Dung Beetle said...

I think it's only human nature to strive to become more than the sum of your parts.

Personally, I've always coveted the role of the Supervillain.

BTW- Thanks for stopping by and posting a kind word on my blog.