Candy Rant

"I killed a rat with a stick once."

Friday, September 15, 2006

Pardon Me For Jumping From Cat Feces to the Meaning of Life

But that's in the annoying, bubbling crock pot of my head today.

And it just could be that that pungent pile of haute couture crap from the House of Hankie cleared my sinuses all the way to the brain layer representing Deep Existential Questions.

The following question has never seemed tough to answer before:

"Why should I bother being a good person?"

I just took it for granted that that was my job. As a human. Especially if I believe in good and evil (I do) and God (I do) and in trying to grow and develop and achieve as much self-actualization as possible while living on this very challenging planet.
(I do.)

But sometimes the ethical tectonic plates shift in Candy's cranium, and suddenly what was just moments ago a quiet, semi-contented tribe of natives sitting down to an evening bowl of seaweed and grublets, turns into a shrieking band of angry pygmies who have, every one of them, accidentally sat down on hot pokers. Really hot pokers.

And when I ask questions like "why should I bother being a good person," I feel like a pygmy. A spiritual pygmy. Like if my spiritual capacity was measured and documented, I'd be placed on the Eternal Shortbus. And while the more advanced humans would, in the afterlife, be given subjects to ponder like "Why was evil allowed to dwell on the face of the earth?" I would be in the group assigned such quandries as "Should you have thrown away your empty Pringles cans, or used them for craft projects?"

Here is why all this is bothering me:

Today, I was involved in a very intense road rage interaction. I did not start it. But I jumped in full blast and the whole thing was dangerous and stupid. On both sides. The little voice of reason in my head had no chance in hell of stopping my participation. It was dissolved in the adrenalin rush of my brain like a Cheerio in hydrochloric acid.

My heart pounded all the rest of the way home. And it hit me. I've had a mighty temper my entire life. I've wrestled with it, indulged it, hated it, taken strength from it, tried to pray it away, taken it to therapy, hidden it from some, shown it to others. And no matter what I do, it's still here. It still comes out and acts like a total assh*le, it still makes me feel like a sub-human, and I still feel powerless against it. Whether I'm really happy with my life, or as miserable as I can imagine enduring.

Thus came my question. Even when I do bother, when I make the effort, albeit feeble, to be "good," I lose. Regularly.

Is it the effort that God wants? The intention? Or is that so futile and worthless that even He rolls his eyes?

I would prefer not to have these questions pounding on the bongo in my brain.


  • At 3:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If I were forced to go all theological on you and stuff, I'd have to say God appreciates our attempts to be good, but busts His celestial buttons when we admit we can't do it without Him.

  • At 3:49 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Dang, JWebb. You have no idea how helpful that sentence was to me.

    And I love the idea of God's celestial buttons.

    You sir, rocketh.

  • At 9:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Well said, JWebb. You are sew right.

  • At 10:46 AM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Yeah. I'm STILL digging the celestial buttons thing.

  • At 10:24 AM, Blogger Gail said…

    Also, there is no actual commandment against acting like an asshole. It's what my confessor would call a character fault rather than a sin. We strive to imitate Christ in our limited ways. Most of the time we fail.

  • At 10:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    some of us try to immitate christ and ghandi and others (although not mother theresa)who perceive life as a challenge that demands the best of us even though we don't believe in god. my point is that believing in god or not does not necessarily make one a good person. being a good person means believing that life is valuable, and therefore respecting life in all its forms, whether reptilian or otherwise. i asked myself when i was 10 if i wanted to be a good person or a bad one, even though i wasn't sure what either one required. i chose to be good because bad hinted at the possibility of hurting others, and i knew what it felt like to be hurt. so, regardless of your beliefs, compassion for and understanding of yourself and others are the tools for alleviating anger towards others or yourself. sorry if i have gone on too long, candy rant, but i think you'll forgive me.


  • At 10:47 AM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Gail and spic, this is such helpful stuff for me to think about on a gray Monday. I ponder it no matter what, and it's so much better to have input from thinking people than reruns from my own little band of brain monkeys.
    Thank you.

  • At 9:24 PM, Blogger Ana Martin said…

    I'm thinking low bloodsugar. Is what I'm thinking. Low bloodsugar causes most of the rampant assholery in my own personal life. Keep protein in your body at all times. It's much easier to control your temper when your body doesn't think it has to kill a zebra or something. I swear. This is useful advice.


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