Friday, August 19, 2011

Careful Work, Daring Play

The emptiness of our culture stems from two sources: the lack of care in our work and the lack of daring in our play. There is no danger in our games, and what danger remains is invariably lamented. Hence, "playground reform". There is no value in our work, much of which produces everything from useless plastic trinkets to needless shopping malls, whose only purpose is to serve as the ultimate reference of some financial derivative, leveraged twenty times, to sit in some billionaire's portfolio.

Value and danger: without them, work and play are meaningless. Our enterprises lack pith and moment.

1 comment:

Grace Curtis said...

This is so elegantly stated--what I have been thinking and feeling for so long. I work. I make good money at it. It is often not inspiring or fulfilling. Could the current jobless rate be, at least in part, a reflection of the fact that most of the work we do is boring, non-creative, and not valuable; and, in some underlying way, our naturally creative intelligent selves are catching on to that? We have to come to terms with the fact that machines (or at least we are moving quickly in this direction) can do much of what we have people doing now and we have not figured out where to go next. And, you are right, the impetus—wealth accumulation and unsustainable growth—is, at best, misguided and at its worst, criminal in some cases, as we have seen.