“That which has to be faced, and is somehow profoundly familiar to the unconscious – though unknown, surprising, and even frightening to the conscious personality – makes itself known; and what formerly was meaningful may become strangely emptied of value…Thereafter, even though the hero returns for a while to his familiar occupations, they may be found unfruitful.”
Joseph Campbell unwound this brilliant yarn in The Hero With a Thousand Faces, which I finally read a few months ago. This piece has lingered in sticking its thorn in my proverbial side as my call to adventure, as “that which has to be faced.” But what exactly am I now meant to face? Or rather, what do I feel like I’m deciding that I want to face?
I love teaching. And, I’ve been able to start performing theater. So it’s not like things in my current situation have “become strangely emptied of value.” Or maybe they have, and I’m not prepared to face that. Because facing that means that I must change. Well, if I want to feel alive. I can easily nest in undead motions, pretending that I’m alive…and so what if I do? What greener grass am I anticipating, and on what other side?
I’ve already attested to my recent awe of Pete Holmes, who treats comedy like a ministry. In other words, he’s a teacher. Appealing, no? A quick Google search led me here. Yeah, to stand-up comedy. Is 30 too old to start? Of course not, Adult Lou!
But why stand-up comedy? Is that just the solution to some deeper problem? What itch exactly am I trying to scratch? Am I getting an early mid-life crisis (which is a crazy generous, optimistic term, by the way, given that we ascribe it to 40-50 year olds…like, really, they’re making it that much longer?)? Again, stand-up comedy? Like it’s EASY or something?