Whenever I attend a funeral, one of the quality traits of the deceased always seems to be -“He never complained . . . . .” Why not? Anyone who has never complained has never lived! When I die, I want my wife or kid or whomever to say – “This guy complained about everything! All the time and every minute of every day! He was a constant, persistent, never-ceasing monolith of disdain and sarcasm!”
Complaint is change. It is seeing what is wrong with the world and trying to make it better. Anyone who has never complained has never cared about anything. Never wept, never yelled, never angered. What kind of life would that be?
The greatest man who ever lived was also the greatest grumbler. Jesus complained about everything. He didn’t like the temple, was angry at the money changers, chastised hypocrites, didn’t care for stoning, hated possessing demons and apparently didn’t even like to swim! He was the only red-blooded male I’ve ever known who was actually and truly, anti-prostitute! He was anti-roman, anti-jew, anti-swine and anti-religion. He was so anti-everything that the people of the time crucified him. Why? Because complaint initiates change and change is frightening.
It is far too easy for people to get stuck in the rut. Too comfortable with the daily routine of our life to be bothered with the extra one dollar charge on the phone bill, the rising cost of fuel or the high priced dinner that taste like dirty socks. We have become conformist; comfortable with our complacency. So apathetic that our major form of entertainment is watching others entertain us. The average American watches six hours of television a day. Over the term of the average life, that represents 18 years of empty-minded, hypnotic possession. We can honestly say that for a major portion of our lives, we tune and remote ourselves right into oblivion. So much so that our apathy seems to have no bounds. We complain about nothing and care about less.
Now, instead of ignoring the five dollar bag of popcorn at a theater, we overlook the “poor judgment” of public officials. We allow police to hold and search school children at gunpoint and use electronic stun guns on six year olds. We actually encourage invasion by our armies into other countries and turn a blind eye to the rape and torture of its’ citizens. We have been manipulated into a robotic state of being, programmed by our government, our schools and our religion. We have lost free will – worse, we have lost the desire to have free will. We are misinformed, ill-advised, under-educated and stultified. We do not think and have no desire to do so. We are walking, talking and brain dead. And, we don’t care. We want coffee in the morning and the car to run. Nothing else matters.
Someday, something, maybe, hopefully, will get you riled. Just a little bit, maybe. When it does, let out a scream and complain. And, be grateful; you just rejoined the living. Then perhaps, if you’re lucky, when you do die, they will put on your gravestone: “The guy complained about everything.”
I know I’d like that.