Sally Sampson is always on hand to give you a harsh dose of reality. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it.
You’ve heard it all before. ‘Life is short’. ‘You only live once’. ‘Be the change you wish to see in the world’. Whoopedee-fucking-doo.
Efforts are made to programme and indoctrinate us at a very early age, making us believe that we can do anything. And, as we know, the media loves that shit! They pour endless resources into books, television series and movies to make us believe that we CAN. Athletes overcoming their physical limitations, scientists making grand discoveries, politicians negotiating peace, actors defying the odds, forever immortalised on the screen, all work together to make us wide-eyed with a sense of childlike wonderment.
They captivate us in a hypnotic trance as our inner mantra begins to take shape, speaking to us quietly at first and then louder and louder, until our minds are inundated with flashes of greatness with us as the successful lead characters of our individual stories. In our daydreams, we have it all: we are heroes, we are happy, we have families, we’ve got killer bodies that we don’t have to diet or exercise to maintain, we have great sex with our partners, we have an unquestionable sense of morality and of course, we are so filthy rich, we make the Kardashians look like paupers.
These reveries become our life-blood until inevitably, one day, to our disdain, someone asks us what exactly it is that we want to do with our lives and we realise that perhaps we haven’t thought this through entirely. After all, ‘being great’ or ‘being famous’ aren’t professions and we’re not even sure how we want to be great; we just know we want to be great! And just before we start sweating blood, we think of a role-model, quickly make reference to them and utter a seven-word sentence that has now become just another cliché; another catch-phrases that has lost all meaning: One day, that’s going to be me!
Now, let’s flash-forward down the line to you, sitting in an office, spending more than three-quarters of your bloody time doing a job that you hate more than the sight of ingrown hairs; not quite the picture of greatness you imagined. In fact, when asked, most people who are a part of the daily grind, working from nine to five, making ends meet, would rather be sentenced to a lifetime of squeezing out ingrown pubic hairs off of someone else’s genitalia, than spend another mindless, soul-numbing second in their offices.
Now, I know I sound pessimistic (with the right dose of bitchiness, naturally), but hear me out. I actually believe in all of the catchphrase crap thrust at us. I believe it so much that I don’t want to live in a world where it’s not true. I, too, have visions of ‘greatness’; I want to live a life without any regrets and I want to accomplish something that will be written in the history books. And no, I’m not contradicting myself.
We are brainwashed and we are indoctrinated; to me there is no question of that. I don’t believe that we are brainwashed and conditioned, however, to believe that we are capable of greatness; I believe we are conditioned to believe that greatness comes as easy as it is for us to sit on our asses and watch Will Smith’s ‘The Pursuit of Happyness’.
Unlocking the greatness within us does not come for free; it comes at a price that is majorly underestimated, but we are, each one of us, capable of greatness in our own ways. It’s pretty fucking hard to attain though and we don’t have a musical score to accompany us when we’re lying face down on a pee-stained floor, crying hysterically over someone calling us ‘fat’ instead of seeing our inner beauty. I’m just saying…
I’m only 25, but God help me, after I graduated from acting school in London, I worked in some hell-holes (also known as call centres). And while I was at those jobs, every morning, when my alarm went off, I did one of two things:
a) Pray that on my way to work, I would get hit by a double-decker bus and end up in a full-body cast, thereby becoming completely unable to get into work and consequently NEVER have to answer another fucking phone call ever again!!!
b) Turn the alarm off and go back to bed.
I recently came across a little inspirational poem I had actually written, whilst at my desk waiting for a phone call to come through (what I used to call the ‘eye of the storm’).
These were the highlights:
Bore me to death
Oh wretched clock
And move so slow
Till your hands fall off
You bore even yourself
Going round in circles
You bore us to depression
Provoke us to commit murder
Just to abide the time.
I lighten up a little bit here, deciding to take a look around and see what others are doing:
Rows and rows of people
Bored in communion
Sat at their desks
Watching in unison
The damned face of time
Apparently moving so slowly
So quickly, so cunning
And my favourite bit; the big finale of the piece:
No need to bore me to death
I’m already losing consciousness
I’ve lost the will to live
I’m sinking into oblivion
One minute of 24 hours
Has gone by yet again,
Only one though, mind you!
We’ve still got the rest of the day.
Yeah. It was a tough time.
Despite this, (and not to sound like Oprah Winfrey or anything) I knew in my heart, I was destined for greatness and even in facing the fear of potential hunger, being thrown out of the little room that I rented, being thrown in jail for unpaid debts, and, worst of all, finally confirming my mother’s sentiments that I would never make it in Hollywood unless I quickly started performing sexual favours, I did what I was scared of doing: I quit the job that was slowly killing me (which I wasn’t showing up to most of the time, anyway) and moved back to Egypt.
I didn’t run away; I was determined that I needed to do what I loved and not get bogged down doing a job that was going to forever take me away from my dreams.
If you’re wondering if I’m going to end this piece with a grand encouraging message, beckoning you to go off and hand in your resignations tomorrow and live the life you’ve always dreamed of living… then I just want to say no! I’m not doing that!
Here’s the deal and if you can handle it, good for you; if not, then good for you:
If you’re not going to use your mind to come up with hundreds of plans and alternate strategies that will mostly fail, if you’re not willing to use your hands to build your dream up from seemingly nothing, if you’re not going to stay up late doing the research, if you have reservations about failing, if you don’t like criticism, if you’re not going to fully commit your heart to it, and if you’re not going to, at the end of the day, look up to the Heavens and ask God for strength and perseverance when things look like they’re never going to work out, then DO NOT HAND IN YOUR RESIGNATION and expect that your dreams of greatness will come true.
“Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson
“We often miss opportunity because it's dressed in overalls and looks like work” –Thomas Edison
“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” –Buddha
“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work.” –Emile Zola
This isn’t the Land of Oz, Dorothy. It’s Kansas, where you have to do things the hard way! Build your own fucking yellow brick road and if you don’t want to then shut the fuck up and continue tending the pigs.
If you have stories, pictures, comments, or anything at all you wish to share, I’m starting a community of BITCHES! Like the Facebook page, follow @BitCent, tell your friends, and let’s get this movement started to give BITCHES a voice. Are you afraid of being known as a BITCH? No? Then let the world know as well!