I was sitting in my Chinese history class recently, and we were discussing the beginning stages of Chinese Communism. Here’s a brief history lesson… Just bare with me.
In early 1950’s China, agriculture was really important. In the early stages, the farmers or peasants were able to subsidize their income with a handicraft: woodwork, specialty cooking, weaving, etc. This was generally a craft that an individual enjoyed and had skill in.
Eventually, China moved to a collective coop system and most of the income subsidizing, including handicraft, was outlawed.
This got me thinking. My friends and others in my generation so frequently talk of “doing what we love” and getting out of the 9 to 5 rat race. The truth is, 9 to 5 ain’t nothin’. Sun up to sunset out of necessity is real burden. Forget the newest iPhone or flat screen TV, that was work to eat and have a roof overhead. So, if you can do what you love and still eat, you’re doin’ good. Being able to do what you love is a luxury.
So, if you are going to pursue your dream, do it with all the drive, skill and dedication that you can muster. Don’t do your handicraft a disservice. Do it with reverence and respect for the people that aren’t afforded the luxury. If it takes 4, 5 or 100 takes, DO IT RIGHT. The freedom to seek a craft that you love is a luxury. Be thankful if you are allowed to pursue your dreams and still eat 3 or even 2 meals a day. This makes the creation of a quality product more important than anything. Everything else is just public masturbation.
by Jehn Grits