Thursday, 6 May 2010

A Future of Green Grass

There's an experience I've never had - sitting down in the grass enjoying the company of friends passionate about the same things (or even just some of the important ones). Not an unduly ambitious aspiration I think, but one that I have substantial trouble imagining actually happening.

There's a reason why the grass is in the title of this post. The grass is important. I'm not quite sure why.

Possibly it's a more picturesque scene and emblem of good social times than pubs, clubs or cafés, however memorable the times at these might be. There's definitely some kind of cinematic logic to this and to why this particular image seems to knock me around.

Not so long ago I spent a year in a sort of commune, constantly surrounded by grass where we lived and in most of the places we went to. That's kind of how the non-super-urbanised world is built I suppose. In the foreseeable future I'll be starting university, which is a place traditionally with grass, though this particular campus for some reason pretty much isn't. Grass.

I'm not making much headway here am I?

Grass is good because it's one of those mundane everyday objects - even more so than twilight or the starry night sky - that is actually stunningly beautiful. It keeps a kind of routine of awesomeness. This fits, thematically, with the prospect of an awesome social situation. Of people I get a kick out of knowing and being around. The social environment in previous years has only ranged from earth to mud. Sometimes you could safely sit on it, but why in the hell would you want to?

So who are these grassy people anyway? I think I've answered this question in the first line of this post by having them "passionate about the same things", but is that it? Is that that hard, that rare? The truth is, since myself getting excited about things, I have only had the experience twice of knowing for certain someone (outside of my family) shared one of these passions with me, to the same or at least similar extent. This endeared them to me to a certain extent surely, but still wasn't exactly the grass experience we're talking about. Possibly because I didn't sit in them.

The question I'm dancing around is whether it's possible to be passionate about the right things but tedious and inane. Probably not. Not unless these things are mathematics or neuroscience or even just moral philosophy, which actually is one of the passions. It probably is important that I find people I can philosophise about morality with, but, being a man of many (or at least several) interests, I can babble more aimlessly about books and movies and TV shows and even politics and the more specialised creativity and individualism and "metaphysical" beauty and love and mystery and general childish spirituality without losing much. Granted, these specialists probably won't be that easy to find, but once they are, it won't matter so much what they or I say as much as that we say it to and around each other, à la Before Sunrise.

And then life would rock.


  1. Just a few months ago, the two of us sat in a park and talked for a while. We weren't sitting on the grass, but I think we were surrounded by grass at the time. Doesn't that count?

  2. That was a good day. We just need to adjust your passions a little and then we'll be all set.

    You're right that it's unfair to liken you to earth, but it almost doesn't feel worth it to write these entries if I don't get to fly into wild hyperbole.

    The real answer, though, is that, bigger than life though you are, you are not a social environment.