Follow a Band

Not a big band. I’m talking about living for some small scene that no one’s heard of…Yet. Become consumed with a local band with any bit of a following that boasts attractive yet accessible band members who are featured routinely in the local free paper. Romanticize their talent and convince yourself that by going to all of their shows and partying/sleeping with them that you’re part of something big, on the ground level. Spend your time between shows shopping for ironic outfits and procuring illicit drugs to cement your allure.
Just know that somehow the whole scene will blow up and they’ll take you on tour with them to remote Eastern European locations (not to mention the on-stage shout outs and the liner note thanks). Plan on how you will someday slip into casual conversations, “Oh, I used to hang out with Pony Mountain way back when in Baltimore…” winning the respect and admiration of all those around you. It’ll be easy to convince yourself of their impending stardom as you’ll never hear the band sober or during the daytime. Plus, you have absolutely nothing else going on.



Move around a lot. Every couple years or so, to keep a sense of chaos and upheaval. It takes less than that to get sick of your tiny room and the nagging existence of your roommates anyway, so it’ll be easy. Just find the best deal and live there for as long as you can stand it. Then repeat. If you get sick of one city, move to another, or to another country. Ironically, travelling is a good way to stay in exactly the same place in your life.
Move around a lot, and be certain to have nothing to show for it. Maybe even lose a journal, some film, or artwork in one of the moves.
Continue to tell people you are an artist as you shuffle your meager belongings from one shoddy living situation to the next. Just keep working your increasingly excruciating day job and managing (at least a little) between sobs and hiccups to get a few words down, drawings sketched, tunes hummed. Nothing substantial. You are a gypsy, a bohemian, an artist, a pioneer. Cling to these euphemisms and forge on into working class mediocrity, combing your greasy bangs in front of your downward gaze with your nail bitten fingertips.

Fall in Love, Constantly

And never with the right person (that is, anyone attainable or age/hygiene appropriate). Be a hobophile (see Dinapedia). Meet your next lover in a skate park or at a punk show. Fall in and out of love as much as possible. Date old people. Date high school students. Date ex-convicts, bar tenders, drug dealers, club owners, and musicians. Date everyone. Move in with them. If your parents and friends question your decision-making, know you are definitely on the right track. Find someone who doesn’t really want you around and then make being with them your first and only priority. Why simply live your life, when you could squander your prime in earnest yet futile attempts at forcing yourself into someone else’s life?

Longing for love is just as useful a sponge for the years as a string of serious relationships. Fall in love with beautiful strangers to lament how they are probably too good for you. Replace sex with wallowing and/or drinking/writing poetry. Fall in love with people who don’t even exist. Fall in love with tv/film/book characters. Construct a composite of the perfect mate, and then seek out this idealized fantasy, refusing to accept anything less. Spend a lot of time inventing them, and then spend even more time looking for them. Look in the worst places like bars, parties, and church.

If you happen to find a respectable lover who wants to commit, run like hell. Do you really want to be with someone who could love a neurotic bottom feeder like you? Plus, you may risk possibly feeling good enough about yourself to actualize your potential too soon. Stay away from the “right one”. Just alternate between fickle and bitter and watch the years soar by, taking your beauty and youthful vigor with them! (Don’t worry, money and power will ultimately console your ugly and tired old ass.)