7 December 2010

On being a people person on paper

A few books

I have been doing extra lot of reading recently. Of course, surely many read much more  than me standardly, I say as a disclaimer not to sound pompously arrogant; of which I am obsessively afraid of for some reason. Perhaps because I am pompously arrogant by nature, but I digress. I have read a fair bit recently. People books.

I have read about broad selection of individuals of all sorts. A few of them wrote about themselves and many were written about. People like Kierkegaard, Russel Brand, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Olof Palme, Bill Hicks, Haile Selassie and so on. The list actually does continue. I am not listing all of the books and then saying and so on (I am doing the disclaimer thing again).

People of all kinds – their stories are addictive. Of course, it is important to remember that these are just case studies. I have always felt that when reading a book about David Beckham, which I haven’t by the way, it is important to keep in mind that while it may be somewhat realistic account, it tends to ignore the thousands of kids dropping out of school to play footie only to not achieve their proverbial goal, now delivering milk or so. But of course there would be no point in focusing on that when writing about someone to whom it doesn’t apply. Fair play.

But I have so little interest for Becks Spice that I leave him be. The people that I have read about are magnificent. Well, most of them really are. Not because they never made mistakes, but because they did and still were great. Probably a few reggae people would not appreciate my cynicism towards Ras Tafari, who I don't find particularly admirable, and a few others from the list also have  made so many mistakes that your Professor of Mathematics would lose count. But I have learned that no one worth my admiration has had it easy. Perhaps the statement isn’t all true – and here only for an effect – but it is indicative of how I feel. I may wish I was clever like Walter Sisulu, but I don’t want to have spent decades in prison; I may wish I was brave like Steve Biko, but I don’t wish I had already died at my age; I wish I was funny like Russel Brand, but I don’t wish I  had  a decade of addiction to booze, drugs such as heroin, and enough sexual over-appetite to  land me in rehabilitation. It is not necessarily that greatness comes with a price, but that struggle makes us strong. That of course only is if doesn’t destroy us. Life is like that. Keep reading.

No comments: