If the Elevator Tries to Break You Down…

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Go Crazy.

I heard Prince’s song, Go Crazy, as I was driving this morning. This line stood out in a way it never has. I’ve always loved the energy of the song, the sexy defiant groove, the quaisi-religious prophesy– the electric merging of desperate and cool.

Go crazy.

Nothing makes more sense to me these days than that sentiment.

It seems to me the only sane response to the complete insanity we are surrounded by. Prince thought of the elevator as the devil.

I’m not really sure what the devil is, but if it is the embodiment of evil and if evil is the force that leads us away from love– a pull toward fear and anger, than we are most certainly in a fast-moving maelstrom of evil proportion.

Climate change is rapid and widespread.

Whether the climate is political, economic, environmental or philosophical, we seem, as a society, to be moving toward fear of, well, everything. But primarily the fear feeds off this sense we will not have enough.

Not enough money, jobs, water, schools…

Who is to blame? Them.

Even those if us who don’t ordinarily subscribe to the “us vs. them” paradigm, are questioning those people, who are supporting the web of lies, insults and generally unconstructive, unbecoming, unpresidential behavior.

How have we gotten here?

I think the better question is how have I gotten here?

By getting on the elevator. By thinking the American dream is about trying to go one floor up from wherever I am – whether that be in my career, my finances, my social standing, my level of physical fitness, my emotional well-being…

By riding the elevator up and down until I get there.

It’s a small box but the payout is worth it, right?

It’s not like there’s another option, right?

We get endless messages of encouragement, of reminders to stay on our current course, to follow the dream, to believe in ourselves! But, wait a minute…

The messages have nothing to do with feeding my spirit, caring for my heart or listening to my soul. The messages say: Go faster. Give more. Jump higher. Work harder. Multi-task longer.

But where am I?

In a world where no amount of effort or contribution is enough, where no level of speed or efficiency is enough, where no wealth of accomplishment or productivity is enough, what else is there?

Prince nailed it.


Crazy is usually negative, as in mentally unstable, offbeat in an unpredictable kind of way, unable or willing to play by the rules. Nuts. Cuckoo. Off the old rocker.

But it begs the question who is defining “stable” and “predictable” and “the rules”?

Society? Culture? Socialization?

Aren’t these cues radically different depending on where you go?

I have been trying to “go” somewhere new now for several years now. To move to a location where my particular kind of crazy would be more normal. But circumstances beyond our control always keep us where we are.

And I am returned again, to the truth, that it is me.

It is terrifying to get off the elevator altogether because then what?

How will you get where you need to go?

I love the idea that the answer is simply to go crazy, but what the heck-fire does that mean? I looked up the etymology of crazy, and it made me smile.

To be crazy means to be “full of cracks”.

Of course. It reminded me of Leonard Cohen’s lyric, Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.

We are not big fans of cracks in our culture. We try to superglue them back together, Botox them, cover them, apologize for them, fix them, psychoanalyze them– pretty much anything that will reduce or hopefully obliterate them.

We are all about our perfect offering. No ne more than me.

But, cracks are what allow the flowers to grow out of us.

So, in the past couple weeks, instinctually, I have exited the elevator I thought I needed to be on. I have made a pact with myself, that when I feel lost, I will not look for myself on realtor.com, but rather dive into the cracks and loo around.


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