Some thoughts on mediocrity

July 19, 2016

 

I am not a person that has dreams. Maybe I do, maybe I did, but if so, then it’s never something I can actually grasp, define, or verbalize.

 

This makes things such as job search, or even deciding on a study program, extremely difficult. I know I want to work with visual media. Film Studies, my Master’s course, was the only subject I could imagine wanting to know and study more about. Maybe I should have opted for a more practical degree, but I always figured I wouldn’t be able to pay for it. I remember there was a girl I worked together with for a promotion for the German perfume chain Douglas, and she was studying filmmaking, and I thought it was so cool and I was jealous she got to go on shoots, but I wasn’t inspired enough to ask my parents to fund me this sort of education. When I think back now, it’s kind of a joke, because in Germany even private schools are more affordable than public ones in the UK, and not to mention America. We are talking about maybe 500 euros a month. Times 12, or 10 per semester, times three, a three year degree. Yes, the number is still scary but somehow it would have worked if I had taken the initiative to convince my parents this is exactly what I want to do and there is no way I would want to do anything else.

 

But here lies the problem. It was me who wasn’t convinced. And I was terrified of the thought of deciding to do it, and then during the studies realizing I wanted to do something else, and then I’d only have specific knowledge of something. I thought once I committed to it, it would really restrict me. So I completed an academic degree called Arts and Culture with the specialization Media Culture, assuming to have a better idea of what it is I want to do and gaining a broad knowledge and overview of the media landscape by the time I had finished it. I didn’t, obviously. I’m glad I got to do two internships after this, my first actual practical experience. Invaluable to working in the industry, especially if you want to do so in a city as competitive as London.

 

I didn’t know how it worked over here, since the job title runner doesn’t exist in Germany. I did expect my academic degrees to give me an advantage over someone that just got out of high school (college in the UK). Not the case. So I had no choice than to start at the very bottom again, like everyone else. All just so that I could stay in London. A bit insane, I know this now.

 

It’s even more insane because it’s not like I have the most thriving social life or I have built a life for me here, I just like it here and I feel at home, which is due to the fact that I have some friends here, for sure. But it’s not like I’m living life to the fullest, go out and take advantage of what London has to offer as a city, or get any sort of benefit from living here. Quite the opposite, everything is a goddamn hassle, it’s expensive, it’s gritty, it’s dark, it’s dirty, it’s crowded, it’s inconvenient, it’s not a nice place to live if you don’t have any money. Yet I have this feeling of home. And that’s worth a lot if you think about it.

 

I digress. What is central to my existence, and it becomes especially apparent during my job hunt or the search for a professional purpose, is that I feel everything I do is mediocre. Not in a self-deprecating sense. I have a very healthy relationship to myself, I believe. But there is not one passion I am burning for, there isn’t one specific thing I want to throw myself in, nothing drives me, I don’t have strong interests, I don’t have a focus. This makes it hard to go somewhere. I’m quite good at speaking English and making people think I’m American, but in an English-speaking country, this is hardly a plus. And I used to think I was exceptionally creative, but you see where all of this has gone.

 

I envy people that have always known what they want to do. This way they can direct their focus, take the necessary steps for them to get to where they want to be, and then eventually they will get there, even if it is hard work. I’m really just freestyling through life, making lots of excuses along the way, but when I work on something, I want to do it well. It’s funny because it is taken for granted by many people (employers, parents, etc.) that young people have a vision for themselves, when in reality we couldn’t be more clueless.

 

Lots of words, little sense. It is 33 degrees today and I have finally painted my nails black again, after nine months of not being able to paint them because I was a runner and couldn’t have any chips in them, but no time to take care of them either, so I just left it altogether. Too much digressing in this post, but that sort of supports my argument. I can’t get to the point. Bear with me. Another five years or so and I’ll be able to produce a coherent idea, and maybe find passion for it.

 

 

 

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