Letter From a Dead Nerd
I just died. It sucks. I mean, it really sucks, for a whole lot of different reasons I won't write in this letter because I have a lot of stuff to do - like watching pure white light coming from everywhere, feel this mind-blowing weightlessness you probably heard about, and hear the peaceful musicality of silence. This is pretty cool, I know, but don’t worry: I heard you’re next. Just kidding.
By the way, you're a nerd like me — whatever that means — and there’s a couple of things I'm going to tell you. Since I just died, I guess you could give me a couple of minutes of your precious time and stop looking at your Twitter stream for a second. You can make it.
One thing that bothers me a lot right now is that there is a lot of stuff I was willing to do ‘tomorrow’ and now, you know, I'm just dead. Passed away. Expired. In a better place. What a bummer. Well, I'm not going to be egotistic and blame the guy who drove over me a couple of hours ago, because he obviously was in a hurry - and come on, who isn't these days? But still, I'm kind of pissed.
Another thing that’s driving me crazy - aside from ruining the rest of my family's life and making a lot of my followers on Twitter feel compelled to retweet whoever writes kind and thoughtful words about my passing - is that I had a huge reading list. Like, a 250 items reading list. That’s way too much stuff to read, and here I have no Kindle. Super bummer. Earlier this morning I was going to read a wonderful piece on The New Yorker about something thought-provoking (of course!) but I thought that for some reason I should have read it ‘later’, and now… I'm dead. Ok, got it, I won’t stress again the fact that I’M DEAD.
But listen, now I get it: I didn't actually want to read it - and now I can see how fucked up this mentality was - I felt like I should have read it. In a way I was trying to be the guy who reads it, and the amazing Internet made me feel I was missing more than I was ingesting. That’s one hell of a paradox, I know.
When you die without a warning call or something like that, you’re finally aware of the fact that you were always telling yourself you had no time to do something (like reading that aforementioned thought provoking piece) instead of telling yourself it really wasn’t a priority for you, or, even worse, instead of telling yourself that you didn’t really give a damn about it.
You should understand that, in a way, being dead is enlightening, and it definitely makes you see your 250 items reading list in a totally different way. And also your Albums to download list. And your Movies to watch folder. And all those eBooks you carry around in your Kindle knowing you’re not ever going to read them all (but having them in your Kindle makes you feel so intellectual).
Now I also see my super-tidy iPhoto library in a new light; I spent much more time organizing it than watching those out of focus but lovely photos. What is wrong with me? Nothing, actually (and this is the scary part). And listen, this week I was halfway through a really bad book, but I wanted to finish it before starting a really good book suggested by a friend. What the hell! Again, being dead now makes me see these behaviors for what they really are. I could go on but this is becoming annoying. Ok, it was annoying from the start. Whatever.
Now I'm here, where space and time make no sense, in a place where this very moment is the only thing I have, and I'm realizing that the present moment is the only thing I had when I was alive, too. I like to think that if I could go back there now, on the rough surface of our lovely pale blue dot, I'd start to live like there's no tomorrow, because there actually isn't one; that I'd suddenly stop following every person who writes a single thing that I like one time and make me feel like I don’t want to miss their next great tweet (with 283 crappy irrelevant tweets in between); that I would totally stop saying that everything is "amazing oh my God you gotta see this now", because now I can clearly see that if you like everything, you love nothing. But maybe I'm lying to myself. If a powerful divine misterious energy shot me back on Earth, maybe my life would be the same as before. Or maybe not.
So, why am I writing this? This is for you, douchebag. The least you can do is to think about it, and try to look at things differently. Of all the things you decide to read, watch, share, send, learn… how many deserve your attention? How many will have an impact in your life?
Now I gotta go walk on the clouds and s**t like that. (God told me to put the asterisks). Have a nice day, because there's not a single reason not to.
- Your dead nerd friend
Sent from my iPhone
(no iCloud joke, sorry)
PS: if you put this letter in your read later queue, I hate you.