ctrl, alt, Escape.
This word dominates a lot of human life.
For most of us, our lives are repetitive to the point of being often boring and sometimes depressing. It all starts with an implemented routine shortly after birth (usually the culprit here being the parents who feel forced to maintain schedule). Wake up, eat, burp, occasionally throw up, bumble around a bit as far as your little baby legs will push you and then back to a forced nap/sleep whenever your parents feel like you’ve had enough or they need a rest.
As a baby you can get away with disrupting other people’s routines. Your ignorance of the rules gives you an all forgiving innocence in the eyes of the adults. But once you’ve been deemed intelligent enough to communicate and understand orders well enough, playtime is over and routine becomes your master.
You can easily know when you have become a slave to routine when you can attach particular actions to certain times of day. Six o’ clock is the first sound of the alarm and with it comes the automatic pushing of the snooze button three to five times depending on how tired you feel or how angry your mother’s voice sounded that particular morning. Eight thirty: the walk to the classroom or lecture hall. Naturally, this leads to your life gathering an annoying predictability and once enough time has passed without any significant change taking place, boredom firmly settles.
Yet we dream of more. Man is filled with dreams. We look at the sky and imagine ourselves soaring towards the sun or hiding furtively behind the clouds. We hear stories of others, like us! who braved terrible conditions, climbing mountains or wrestling nature’s strongest predators. Where do these dreams come from? Hollywood? Books? But where did these human authors pull these dreams from? Surely they cannot all be inhuman freaks, gifted with some abnormal gene that gives them dreams beyond our own.
No, these dreams arise out of our lustful desires for the feeling of change. The quick alertness that adrenaline gives you when your mind detects that something isn’t in it’s usual place. You want to feel your heart beat faster, churning your blood into that an all consuming energy. To feel that at this moment, you, could match the achievements of those make believe characters, the sportsman turned idol, the billionaire businessman.
Bloody hell! You could leave them all behind! Tear off your suit, run like the wind, rescue the girl, kick some ass and be back in time for tea. You could be the shining star that all other humans look up to and hope to be. The hero that inspires fear in the hearts of the wicked and hope for the young crippled boy. God dammit, you could do it all!
Then it fades. You might shake your head or blink a few times, maybe even chuckle softly at how far your mind carried you away. But you store the memory, even as you go back to your routine. And you relish the thought of the next great fantasy.