“You choose what to think about. And you may not feel that way every day, but the truth is, that you choose what you think about. It’s one of the few things that you can choose and it is—it’s kind of the definition, I think, of being a person. It’s that you have this weird gift of consciousness and you get to choose how you direct that gift. Like, how you direct your ability to think about things. So, if you choose to think about the relative health of the romantic relationships of The Situation, you’re making that choice. MTV is not making that choice for you, The Situation is not making that choice for you, you are making that choice. If you choose to think about astrophysics, you are making that choice. Every second of your definitionally temporary consciousness, you are choosing how you spend something that will not last forever. You are choosing how you spend your life, and it will be spent. And that’s a very serious thing that you have to try to take pretty seriously, even though, of course, much of our lives—because consciousness is kind of a burden—needs to be spent turning that off, which is, you know, why God made television. But we have this responsibility to ourselves, to each other, but also to the people who came before us and the people who will come after us, to think consciously about what we’re thinking about. And that was, in some ways the beginning of The Fault in Our Stars for me, was trying to think about, what I should be thinking about. Trying to think how I should be orienting my life, what should I value, what should I prioritize. And I grew up—and so did most of you—I think, in a world that values a very specific kind of heroism. The kind where you jump on a grenade to save your buddy, or you die heroically because your family says that you can’t marry the girl you want to marry, and you’re fourteen and somehow you think that’s a deal breaker?—which is the plot of Romeo and Juliet, I ruined it for some of you, sorry; I should have prefaced that with a spoiler alert, but if you haven’t read Romeo and Juliet, that’s your fault—or in another of our great epics of heroism, The Odyssey—which I’m also about to spoil for you, but it’s a good reading experience, regardless. There’s this dude, his name’s Odysseus, he does some good warring, top-notch warring, and it takes him a long time to get home, because a bunch of stuff happens, and then he finally gets home and his wife has a bunch of suitors, and the correct response to that situation is to be like, ‘Hey! I was gone for a long time, and there’s no text messaging, you didn’t know I was okay, like of course there’s a bunch of suitors living here, that’s cool, but suitors it’s time to head on out and, you know, find someone else’s house to occupy.’ And instead, what happens is that the palace floors course with blood, and that is your happily-ever-after ending. And Augustus Waters in this novel really buys into that idea of heroism, that idea that the best lives are lived on the biggest possible stage, and that the best lives are lived with an eye toward the grand heroic gesture, whether it be sacrificial or otherwise. That, like, the good life, by definition, is the big life. Well, I’m here to tell you that even the biggest lives are temporary, including the life of Odysseus, including the life of Romeo and Juliet, because, you know, we’re temporary. And if that’s the only way that we orient our lives, if that’s the only thing that we value, we’re doing ourselves, I think, a great disservice. So, I wanted to write The Fault in Our Stars because I wanted to write a story that was about the kind of small heroism that almost all of us are going to have to choose; very few of us will have the opportunity to jump on a grenade and save many, many people. The vast majority of us will have to find tiny ways to take care of ourselves and each other in the best ways that we can figure out how to do. And that’s really what The Fault in Our Stars is about, ultimately. It’s about these two kids and their parents trying to figure out how to take good care of each other and trying to figure out how to leave the best possible world for those who will come after, and also live a life that honors those who have come before.”—John Green, on The Fault in Our Stars at the Tour de Nerdfighting Event in Austin, Texas (21 January 2012)
A rather long post about my priorities and their relation to my grades
Ok, so I got chewed out some about my grades today, which is fine, because they’re kind of crappy. My parents used several phrases that I agreed with, such as ‘you can do better’ ‘you’re going to college soon, you need to figure this out’ and ‘you are forgetful and lazy’ (I’m paraphrasing these.) But there was one that really stuck out to me that I didn’t agree with: ‘You need to get your priorities straight.’ Umm, no. My priorities are in pretty good order. Here is an simplified list of activity related priorities in order of most to least important.
2. Any play or musical I’m in.
6. Being a fairly balanced teenager and relax sometimes.
7. School work
(Along with several thousand other things.)
"But Lucas, school is so far down! How can that be straight?" I’ll tell you, imaginary person. God, Family, and friends are pretty obvious, they’re what are most important to me in this world. Then musicals and plays. First off, I love acting. It makes me happy and it’s one thing I’m fairly good at it. Secondly, the second I step on to that stage at auditions, I’m making a commitment to find time to show up to rehearsal and give my all to make the production great. Same with journalism, I enjoy and I made a commitment to do my best. Photography, I love and made a commitment to myself to do it. Band, I love the people, and you guessed it, commitment to the directors that I would be there. Here’s the crucial part of the list. I care more about me relaxing every now and then more than school. Why? Because I made no commitment to school. I’m required by law to go there. I figure that since I’m there, I might as well learn some stuff and try, but I feel no pressure to do well like I do in the other things because I did not choose to make school a priority, my government and parents did. Again, I should still do homework and stuff, that’s still a problem, but you can be damn sure that my priorities are straight as an arrow.
“I heard the voice
Calling from just outside the well
She said, “You fool, now that you know your end is near
You always fall for what you desire or what you fear.”—Arcade Fire - The Well and The Lighthouse
The very bad grammar in this question prevents me from answering it properly. I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to my (3 or 4) followers for spamming your feed. I can’t back down now though.
Right now it’s Outta My System by My Morning Jacket, but overall, I don’t really have one. I have lots of favorite bands, such as Arcade Fire, Death Cab for Cutie, Noah and the Whale, and Bon Iver, but no real favorite song.