For Mature Audiences Only...

By: Ben Beine

      There is a hunger in today’s youth. A rolling, fighting, twisting, gnawing, trying to find your place in today’s society hunger. The hunger of knowing you have to be tough to survive in this world, but I’m inexperienced and still kinda young, so this new independent world is a frightening, intriguing place. And in this new world I need to gain my own competitive edge to dust out the empty obscure niche of this world I was made for, so that I can find my place in the jigsaw puzzle of humanity. But boy, do I feel like sleeping some days, and nowadays, some days feels like every day, and so many of my days end up being nothing days. So my corner in the cupboard of humanity is occupied by only a vacancy sign, because its resident has yet to come home.

      But yet, when I trace my footsteps back through the flowing and branching veins of my life, I have visited many dusty corners in cupboards. I have climbed fiery mountains, I have explored the deepest raptures of the ocean, I have brought death and destruction to the inhabitants of a quite vale of oaks, and I have protected humanity against a covenant this world has yet to see. All of these adventures, and yet I am still lost, still attempting to find out who I am. Because I have yet to decipher “individuality”, it seems to come easier to others than to me, and although there are other things in life which I need, none are more important to me than individuality. Because, being a man today is not the same man as it was yesterday, so to find your individuality in the shelves and cabinets of today's society is a much longer process than it used to be.

      And this road to find ones self has be traversed many times before, so it is now riddled with potholes and road kill, making the journey of today’s youth quite a bit bumpier than that of our forefathers. New side roads and detours have been created, and 18 is no longer a simple fork in the road, no longer a choice between scholar and soldier. 18 is now an aggravating roundabout down the path of life. Some people find their way to be swift and simple, while others go in circles for what feels like years. Some even encounter bumper to bumper standstill traffic in their roundabouts, the product of an accident or their own personal inability to move any faster than the crawl of a sloth in a tree, with nothing to do and nowhere to be. And with that reference to the animal kingdom, I bring you this observation. Why is it that a lion or a tiger or a bear (oh my!) is deemed adult when they can hide away in a cave and do it like they do on the discovery channel, while if a human (oh my!) a Homo sapien did that, well that would be just wrong. Because as Homo sapiens, we are more than simply flesh and blood and primal instincts; we feel, we hurt, we love, we create, we aspire, we dream. Being human is much more than being able to “have a good time”. Being a mature individual is not a defined line of age or ability, it is a multifarious knowledge and comprehension of the world around you, and your place in that world.


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