Gus Cuddy | Essays:

All those wasted days add up to something

21 December 2017

When we grow up, it seems like we have a lot of wasted days.

We spiral around doing nothing. Walk down empty streets with our heads in the clouds. Daydream. Talk to our friends about life and stupid shit at 4 AM. Stay up all night for no reason. Make out drunkly with people we shouldn’t. Write stupid poetry, scribble weird doodles, make new friends and lose old ones. Sometimes we lay in bed and just listen to music, or cry, or watch an old movie.

But there’s a secret to life and that secret is that, if you look for it, all these wasted days add up to something.

It may not be much: it may just be some important aspect of your personality, or something that gives you perspective. But it can also be larger: the friend you made at 3am can change your life. The poetry becomes a foundation for your art. Conversations you had come back into your life in weird and unexpected and wonderful ways. The experiences you share with others make up the fabric of your existence, become the things that tie us together in intimate ways.

Truth is, there is no “reason” for any of this. We’re alive for an incredibly brief period of time and we spend much of our early years just dicking around, and it’s easy to feel guilt over this dicking around.

But you actually have to have faith. Faith that it’s going somewhere. That it all adds up to something. All the pointlessness, all the stupidity, all the wasted nights. They’re actually worth something. It’s a lesson I keep learning, that nights I thought were stupid and wasted come rippling back into my life in profound and positive ways. But you have to look for it.

Wasted