Thursday, February 10, 2011

What motivates me

Sometime during my college years, a local woman about my age died in what I consider one of the saddest and most random ways possible. She had gone out to a club and met a couple, who offered her their place to sleep off her partying. She accepted. The apartment complex then caught fire, and she died as a result.

A newspaper profile of the woman who died started with something along the lines of, “She was just another country girl.” Her friends and family talked about her love for going out and how she’d often crash with people she’d just befriended.

The main anecdote in the story was a friend’s recollection of how the girl was always losing her driver’s license, because she’d put it in her jeans pocket and it would often pop out while she was out dancing. The friend said she went through four or five licenses a year.

If I recall correctly, contributing to the woman’s death was that she was trying to rescue the host couple’s baby. If that’s the case, then she deserves to be remembered for that.

Still, the story made me think about my own life. Chuck Klosterman once said that everyone’s remembered in one sentence after they die. I think that’s true. This woman will always be remembered as the party girl who tried to save the baby of a couple she’d just met. Not a bad way to go. But a sad way to live.

I told myself at the time that I want to make a difference somehow. I’m still trying to figure out how, but the pursuit keeps me going. I hope that, whenever and however I go, I’ll be remembered for something substantial that I did in life. I don’t ever want to be “just another” anything.

What will you be remembered for?


rhonda said...

i don't know, ian. the truth is that although i could try to say something funny here and avoid the question altogether, sometimes i lose sleep thinking about this. i just don't know what will sum me up. i don't even know if it will be anything good that i did, since so far i think my most distinguishing trait has been that i have managed to break everything i've touched. that makes me incredibly sad.

venessalewis said...

Geez man, too deep. However, suits my mood and the weather I suppose. For one year of my late teens I was this girl. Scary. Glad I didn't die in an apartment fire. As for how I'll be remembered, at this point I suppose it will be the girl who plays around to much on facebook. Insert Rhonda's last sentence here.

Ian McGibboney said...

Neither one of you is forgettable. Don't be so hard on yourselves.

Jenni said...

I'm at the tattoo studio lending moral support to a friend getting his first inking. This also leaves me with time to reflect on your question, though since April, I've thought about it

I'm not sure what the common theme would be from my friends - I'm acquainted with them on so many different levels and intensities. My wish is that I'm remembered for my compassion and witty sarcasm. But ultimately, I have no control over those things. All I can do is fumble through this life the best way possible and try to leave those I love better off than when I found them.