I’d like to expound a bit on that bit about everything I do needing to have purpose.
In short, when I was 20 years younger I pretty much gave up on drawing because I thought it was more ‘worthy’ to make a living from something where I could help other people for real.
Like doing work for people in so-called developing countries. And I took an education with the view to do just that.
In practice, and for many reasons to numerous to describe here, that project failed.
I only got around to helping people more directly on a voluntary basis, and through jobs as a helper for disabled persons and the odd donation. And also via, of course, my own behavior towards friends and family.
I would be lying if I could say categorically that I did not believe in the prospects of making a difference on a global scale – e.g. fighting against poverty – if I had managed to land a job in an organisation or state agency that do just that.
Of course, I would have believed in the difference of my contribution in such a case. I would have had to!
But more to the point – I do still believe that each of our contributions count, whether we are ‘just’ buying biological groceries or working (paid or volunteer) for a social justice organisation (which is a thing to be proud of).
But with all my present experience – 20 years more of it – I can also say that I don’t believe that is the best I can do.
I don’t know what I can do that is the best, actually.
I suspect The Blog in some sense is the best I can do, because it shares – over 4 decades – my, well, life experience with everything and every thing.
And it is meant to give energy to people – who can get help, inspiration and a bit of courage from that sharing.
And then more surplus to help others – on whatever level they can.
The Blog combines my creative skills (this time: writing), my life experience and my acquired tech skills over time to make a big, big impact – at least once a few more decades have passed.
Or maybe it won’t be such a big impact – who the hell knows?
It is not easy to measure …
But one thing can be measured, for what it is worth: The Blog itself. If it keeps growing year by year and keeps getting traffic and at one time the Putin bots that now are my only regular visitors will be replaced by engaged human beings … then that is a yardstick for impact.
However crude and imperfect.
And I believe it is a better impact – given my experience, talent and skill – then I can give in this life as a social worker or a worker in a social justice organisation, paid or voluntary.
I will not say no to such positions if opportunity arises and it feels right.
But right now the point is moot, because it doesn’t really look like I can qualify for any meaningful position within the humanitarian organisations anymore, and as regards work for individual persons, e.g. as a helper for the disabled, I just don’t have that much to give anymore. I am not getting younger and the job is hard. And it doesn’t scale at all – so: Extremely limited impact.
But even if I could get a job in, say, Action Aid International I would still feel that The Blog is, as far as I can see right now, the best thing I can give to the world.
And that means that my drawing is free from that demand.
And good riddance.
I don’t need to change the world via drawing, or storytelling.
I just need to draw.