It’s Christmas time, the time for Desire – of things. Letters to Santa, hints to anybody who’ll listen, visions of video games wreaking havoc in our heads. Rapid heartbeats as we survey the presents and wonder is what I want in there? Will my greatest Desire be fulfilled and make me eternally happy? Maybe. It’s Christmas, the time for miracles.
It’s always time for that other kind of desire. The kind that can drive you crazy. The kind you don’t need Valentine’s day to gear up for. The kind that gets you right in the crotch when that one special, to your eyes, one walks by. The one that makes you do crazy things, like go up to him/her and try to be hip and cool to impress, but instead stumble and sweat and make a complete fool of yourself. Which could take your desire in two directions.
The Sandman’s sister, Desire, might lead you to obsession. “So what if there’s a boy or girlfriend, a husband or wife,” you might say. “We are meant to be together, (meant by who is never questioned) so whatever dark place I have to go to to bring us together is right and necessary. ” This is the Desire of nightmares, sleeping and waking. The Desire that eats you up inside, alienates you, eats your brain and replaces it it with evil thoughts, makes you a stalker, a killer. A fool.
It also may lead you to the Desire of Achievement. “So what if I made an ass of myself in front of my Object Of Desire (OOD), and they think I’m some lowlife scum stalker who should not be allowed in polite society. I’ll show him/her.” So you turn your obsession to yourself. You claw your way to success in business, money and society just to impress your OOD. And there you are at a huge dinner thrown to honor your success and good works and your OOD is introduced and they fall for you and you live happily ever after. Don’t laugh. It could happen that way. Or… see below.
I haven’t seen the movie Young Adult yet, but it sounds as if it might be an addendum to this blog.
But this is Christmas. Your desire may lean to video games, or clothes (lame) or a CD or books (Ha! Bet you thought you’d get away without a sneaky promo stuck in) or get togethers with family and friends (isn’t F and Fs getting to be a tad overused?) or “Please please don’t make me go to that party if Uncle Todd and Cousin It are going to be there and Drinking!”
Good or bad, Desire makes the world go round, up to the pinnacle of success and happiness, or down to the depths of Hell. Without Desire there would be no stories – no movies, books or fairy tales. No civilization. Where would we be if the first caveman (or woman) with the first faint spark of intelligence hadn’t desired to cross a river or eat everyday or get that stalker dude/dudette away from me? Nowhere. On the other side of the river ignoring the greener pastures just over there.
What if you did make a fool of yourself, more than once, and were rebuffed each time? Fortunately for you and OOD, you took the success route. There you were, finally good enough for OOD, and you didn’t want them anymore. But they wanted you, bad. Suddenly you were the stalkee. Would you be understanding? “I know how it feels, darling. But it’s not going to work out.” Would you tell them to piss off, because you’re too good for them now? How far would you go to protect your new success. Would you let your Desire to be free of your OOD lead you to the dark side, ending back where you began, on the bleak bottom side of want?
What if you were that first caveperson? What if by some deux ex machina event you had more than a spark of intelligence, it was like an explosion in your head. Suddenly, you got it, knew it all, could figure it all out. Along with that explosion came an equal amount of ambition – Desire by another name. Where would it lead you, what could you hope to accomplish back then? What if you found out you didn’t age, but you could die? What would your Desire to live do to your ambition? What if, knowing what you know now, you were transported back to the cave? Do you think your Desires would be different?
What if you were a kid and you really really really wanted something for Christmas, but your parents didn’t have much money and told you that if you could save half the cost they’d match you and get your OOD. What antics and clever ideas that just didn’t quite work could you and a friend or two come up with? What hilarity might ensue? What lessons learned? What good feeling might be spread. There is a dark side to this What If?, but it’s Christmas so I’ll leave it alone. But it’s still there.
What if, aliens bent of conquest released a gas in the atmosphere that curbed all human desire. Not just for sex or love, but everything. This lack of Desire slowly evolved into apathy. Soon people were too apathetic to eat or drink and they weakened and died. Just what the aliens wanted. But nothing affects everybody. Some will survive and they will fight. In this case a drug cartel kingpin, an advertising executive, a spammer, an auto production line worker, and a biochemist. How would these people restore human desires and save the world?
Desire is necessary for human civilization and survival. Just don’t let them kill you. Besides, without them, Santa would be out of a job. Happy Holidays.