I always wanted to be somebody, but I guess I should’ve been more specific.
If we’re made of the same skin and bones as everybody else, what is it that really makes us different?
It’s a question that haunted every empty second of my life, for as long as I can remember. It’s something that I ponder over and something I get frustrated over. If we’re all going to end up as dust, returned to the Earth, sounding the melodies it sounds, where do our symphonies stand? Interred with our bones? Dead, like the wood of our coffins?
All I know is that I can’t be a pile of organic waste in some catacombs. All I know is that whatever it is that makes us different, I want it. I want to make a difference. I want to be remembered. I want to wrest something out of my life that is worth remembering.
And what if I lose my soul in the process? It worries me that despite the price, I’m willing to do it. Bukowski comes to aid, “If you’re losing your soul and you know it, then you’ve still got a soul left to lose.” I cling onto it like my last straw and hope against hope that Bukowski is right, and he meant what he wrote rather than just stringing words together to play upon the fears of those who read them, inevitably remembering him.
So what does set us apart? Albus Dumbledore offers an answer -“It is our choices that make us who we are, Harry, far more than our abilities.”
And logic interferes.
How many seafarers were chosen to explore fresh sea routes? How many discovered the New World, and hence how many are remembered? One.
How many men entered Alladin’s cave and touched the gold, only to die before they ever got to the lamp? How many people is that cave now named after?
Humans have a memory capacity, and making it there means setting yourself apart from 98 billion humans who have ever lived on Earth. I want to be a somebody in this numerical, but I need to be more specific.