I'm feeling OLD!


Where can I go to get my brain washed or reprogrammed so I have different natrual thoughts than the ones I do now?

This is not really a new thing for me but it seems to get worse each year. Sometimes I can look at old pictures or hear old music and just enjoy it but often I just get the feeling of being old and that things are not as good now as they were then.

For example I watched Moulin Rouge the other day for the 3rd or 4th time. In the movie there is the song Roxanne by the Police resung to fit the story of the movie. It's a great scene but upon reflection I realized that song came out when I was in high school!!! Specifically I remember hearing that song coming out of a car in the parking lot of my church back when I used to believe in that kind of stuff. So of course my next thought was DAMN I'M OLD!!!

I think it's more of an issue of not having met my goals or not being where I thought I'd be at this point in my life. My goals were to (1) have a family and a house and (2) have a successful game software company. Goal #1 has gone almost nowhere and in fact it's slowing disappearing. (or maybe quickly disappearing).

Following my parents' example I would have had kids in my mid 20s and they would be gone by my mid 40s and could go back to play time. As it is now though the earliest I'm going to have kids is when I'm 39 or 40 meaning they will not be gone until I'm in my 60s.

In fact I specifically remember being in high school in the early 80's and imagining what me and my friends would be like in the year 2000. We'd be 35, we'd live in the same neighborhood, our kids between the ages of 5 and 10 would all play with each other and we'd get together regularly several times a month. The truth is that my friends all live in different areas. 4 of them have the kids and house but I'm not one of them.

One friend of mine said that some people choose to play first then have kids, others have kids then play so she says I should look at is as I'm in the first group. The problem is, not knowing that I was in the first group I never *played*. In fact one big issue is that my definition of *play* includes having someone else to play with, travel, discuss, etc. Having not had anybody to do that with my life has felt on hold waiting for that situation to come up. Now I'm almost 37 and it feels like the last 17 years or so were mostly a waste of time.

Speaking of waste, what the hell am I doing in Japan. How has coming to Japan helped my goals? I came to study but my offical *plan* was to just be here until something better came up. I was hoping that something would come up within a year. It's been 21 months now. Can I speak Japanese better than before? Of course. Is there any point to that? Not that I seem to be able to figure out. It's not like I have an MBA and am going to be set up with some fat expat package and an expense account.

Another issue is one of time. How does anybody get anything done? I get off work at 7pm and get home around 8pm. It never feels like I have time for anything. Maybe it's just a matter of being more organized. I've heard the pickle jar analogy where you are supposed to schedule your big items in your life/job and let the little items just happen. I really need to figure out not only what those items are but specific plans of action to get me there.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

I know I tend to whine a lot on these pages. The reason is that generally when I'm happy I don't feel like writing.

I'm also having a hard time with the meaning of life. Don't worry, I'm not thinking about suicide or anything like that. But, as an example, I'm currently reading a programming book. Specifically "Accelerated C++". And while I was reading it I'm thinking: What's the point of this? I'm sitting at my desk wasting my life reading a programming book.

This is another example of something I feel needs to be reprogrammed in my head. I actually often think about how short life is. Current lifespans for someone like me average about 70 years. So, I have 34 Christmases left to experience. 34 summers. 34 New Year's. 34 Birthdays. I can count to 34 pretty quick. Weeks often feel like they lasted about 2 days. There are only 52 weeks a year so it doesn't take long for 1/2 the year to disappear. I still can't believe I've already been in Japan for 21 months. That's the 3rd longest I've been in any one place since I was 18. At 26 months it will be the longest I've stayed in one place.

Some people would say "because life is short you've got to live each moment to it's fullest". That's easy to say but what does that mean? What should I be doing? Should I quit my job and become a monk searching for enlightenment? What does it mean to "live each moment to it's fullest"?

Maybe that's it though. Maybe the issue is that nothing in my life feels like it has any meaning or importance. I am just a grunt, I make money for a company making video games. I'm not curing cancer, I'm not creating jobs, I'm not raising a child and I'm not even pursuing a dream or a goal. I'm just existing.

Picture CDs
What is this?