By the time you’re drinking Miller Lite and wondering if there’s really 85 calories, you’ve probably figured out that life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be . Where were all those high school dates you were counting on turning down? What happened to that svelte figure you promised yourself as a graduation gift? Did you not get the memo that said no to candy, ice cream, garlic bread, baked ziti and yes to the recipes indexed in the THE GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO STARVATION COOKBOOK? And what happened to that college roommate you thought would be a lifelong friend? Chances are she either dropped out first semester or joined a commune. She may have even married a Little Person.
Anyway–and please don’t argue with me since I’m in an especially prickly mood this decade–the sooner we discover that life is not a Golden Book, the better we are. Take off those rose-colored glasses (they make you look too Lady Gaga anyway), and even if tears are flowing from your itchy, pollen-allergic eyes, make no mistake about it. You are in an okay place. You have won . You know now what everyone is slated to find out, even if they dally to their death beds: that EVERYTHING IS NOT ALL IT’S CRACKED UP TO BE.
And what better example than yesterday’s celebrity homicide.Oscar Pistorius, the legless, bionic Olympic runner, turns out to be just another everyday murderer. Sad but true. If the story holds up under intense scrutiny, Victor got a little pissy at his drop-dead-gorgeous girlfriend and shot her dead four times. Now the accused is crying all the way to his South African cell. (Does anyone know if they have bail in Africa?)
To think, just a few months ago, the entire world –maybe even that super-duper liar Lance Armstrong–rallied around Pistorius and applauded his physical prowess. He had made it his lifelong ambition to run with non-physically challenged athletes–why I don’t know when Special Olympics gives out medals that are just as nice. A court decreed he could, and Victor grabbed his computer-smart limbs and sped off to London. He won, too, of course
Now, back in South Africa, he’s not the inspiration we all hoped he’d be for the rest of his natural-born days. We can call it just another disappointment along the journey of life or we can make a big federal case about it and write blistering editorials, rant on about heroic icons on TV talk shows or tweet a bunch of “I told you so’s”. I usually opt for the latter; it’s a temper tantrum I’ve designed especially for depressive-tendency adults. But don’t wait too long. CNN is planning another big-evening special on Carnival Cruises that Kill Your Appetite, and I just heard that Beyonce is planning to lip synch at her next kid’s bris. So hurry up; don’t fall behind on these tragedies or you’ll suffer from morale problems.
One good thing about failure: you never have to wait too long to be rewarded for your effort.