“The Clock is Ticking….”
Written by Matt Lazzara
September 7th, 2003
I don’t think a lot of people sit around and contemplate their lives.
I mean, people think about their futures and what they’re going to do,
and what they should have done in order to achieve something, but I
don’t think anyone contemplates their present. What they’re doing
right now. Everyone’s heard of living in the moment or whatever, but I
think very few people act on it. Myself included and that’s something
that I regret immensely.
Life is a finite thing. Obviously, everyone’s life is going to end,
but mine has a time limit. No surprises for me, and depressingly
enough, that time limit is going to run out rather soon. I’ve never
really told anyone how long I have left, or what exactly (in great
detail) is wrong with me, because I would rather my friends viewed me
as a vital, volaile, rather silly human beings, but at age 21, most
people don’t understand or know how to contemplate the thought that
someone you know, they would abandon me for more secure, lasting
So everyday, every minute is vital to me, the most mundane things are
breaths of fresh air. The things that most people take for granted but
shouldn’t – a kiss, a pudding fight, a good long walk or an intriguing
conversation – are now intensely important to me, and I think they
should be important to everyone. The fact that I know I won’t be able
to experience these things makes them achingly more important to me,
and they make me desparate to achieve them one more time.
I want to close my eyes and kiss a girl one more time; the kind of
kiss that makes you feel like you’re floating, the kind where you
forget to do something with your hands because it’s so good. I want to
go camping, and lay in the grass and think how naively beautiful the
day is. I want to shoot off fireworks and run away when the cops pull
up. I want someone to hold my hand and tell me something nice about
myself. I want to be able to read the paper and deride George W. to
someone, and have them hate that asshole with me. I want to sit on a
stoop late into the night, drinking shitty beer and telling stories. I
want to feel alive, and not dead or dying, and think that those things
– the most trivial and passing connections to the world and people in
it – are violently important.
So this is my contribution to you. I’m desperately telling you – all
of you- to take advantage of your youth and vitality. I hear too many
people talking about college and getting shitty jobs afterward. I hear
too many people talking about work and how this and that sucks.
Fuck,we’re all wasting our lives doing things that disconnect us from
everyone else! You don’t need a four or five year plan, and you sure
as hell don’t need to worry about feeling innocent and immature again.
Worry about making everyday something to talk about, and not just
another blank page in your life.
I used to act like you. I had a plan. I had a future, and all that
blew away, but right now, I barely have a present, and that’s how I’ve
realized the error of our ways. Please, please, don’t get old and die,
and die of cancer, and realize you did nothing with your life but make
plans that never happened. Don’t miss opportunities anymore. If you
like someone, tell them, if you think the time is right to kiss
someone, do it. If you feel like you’re in a rut, don something to
stupid and silly and fun. If you feel the world is ugly, make
something beautiful. Stop being so cautious, some movie line said : if
you take life too seriously, you’ll never get out alive.
Trust me, as much as life sucks sometimes, and wow, do I know it
sucks, it is still the only thing we know. It is the only thing that
matters, and it’s wonderful. Life is a beautiful, ridiculous, tragic
disaster, but it’s the only thing we have. So don’t let it lie by the
wayside in pursuit of crap that’s barely important. People are the
most important resource, and so are the relationships we build with
them. I feel the pinch of that more than ever now. If we could spend
400 billion dollars to cure cancer instead of building and maintaining
weapons, I wouldn’t have to write this. So this is, essentially, a
plea. This is the most personal thing I’ve ever written, and I hope it
reaches more people than I ever could.
Don’t forget this is the only life you have, make something worthwhile
out of it, and no one who you’ve laughed, cried, kissed, and bled with
will ever forget you.
Matthew D, Lazzara
April 2, 1982 – February 15, 2004