The Genius and the Loser

…two sides of the same coin?

I wasn’t previously familiar with this filmmaker, but I followed a link on facebook and stumbled across his work:

This two-part essay video is a more narrative and less quantitative approach to Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hour rule, and it echoes what successful people from Ira Glass to Craig Ferguson have said publicly at various points: that the trick to getting good at anything is really to keep at it, even though nobody notices, for years and years.

We can all be geniuses, unless we turn out to be losers, and there’s no way to really tell which category you falls into (as though there were a categorical distinction) until decades later – possibly posthumously. The only really sure way to confirm loser status is to give up because you’re not receiving adequate recognition. And since conferral of genius status is deferred, subjective, and fickle, it’s not ultimately a sustainable motivation for doing anything.

Meaning: if you don’t like doing something for it’s own sake, you won’t last anyway.

I don’t promote this blog at all, anywhere, including facebook, though it would be easy as pie to include a link to each new post. It generally gets around a dozen views per day, sometimes up to thirty or forty, for no discernible reason. That’s a ridiculous, laughable number in internet terms.

It’s not a quantitative exercise for me – it’s a way to keep writing and turning ideas over in my head, and having a venue to “publish” them makes the practice just slightly more real, as an ongoing public document.

The point is not the pursuit of genius status – the point is a satisfying, slow evolution towards who-knows-where.

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