Every week, New York City’s own party messiah takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution in his new weekly advice column in The Village Voice. Read the latest edition of Ask Andrew W.K. below or by clicking HERE.
A full archive of Ask Andrew W.K. can be found HERE.
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Dear Andrew W.K.,
I’m annoyed by life. I’m irritated by everyone. I feel a constant frustration and I don’t know why. I’ve tried looking inside myself to figure out what my problem is, but I just get more frustrated when I can’t find the answer. I basically feel on edge all the time and like I just can’t enjoy life. I want to know the meaning of life! I want to understand it!
I tried talking to my friends and family and they say things like, “Just relax”, or “Get out more”, or basically tell me that everything’s fine and I should learn to “chill” and not get so wrapped up in these sorts of big questions. But what do you do when you don’t feel like you can just ignore these questions? What if everything’s not fine? It’s so hard to explain. Am I losing my mind?
Dear Help Me,
Everything is certainly not fine, and you’re completely in the right for picking up on it and reacting. The world has grown into an extremely complicated and frightening place, and no amount of “looking on the bright side” can fully distract one from the horrors and riddles of existence. However, despite how pressing our situation is, we seem to have grown very good at keeping ourselves busy and occupied with a myriad of inconsequential tasks, knowing deep down that we’re dodging something desperately important. We’re supported by so many others as we collectively put off thinking too much about life and our problems for another day.
What you are feeling is your own soul’s natural attraction to the core questions of life. Facing these primary tenets of existence is intense and exhausting but absolutely necessary. Your frustration comes from not just the difficulty of the task, but from a lack of adequate support from your surroundings. Acknowledging our situation and embracing the confusion that comes with life is a crucial step in our development and salvation, but we often shy away from it. You’re opening your eyes to the wonders and challenges of life and working to develop the strength to face it. This quest for understanding is extraordinarily difficult and a life-long journey, but it’s also exactly what we’re here to do. It’s crucial we face the biggest questions of life, not just for our sanity, but for our very survival. We can’t just “deal with it later” or say, “Hey, some things just aren’t worth thinking about.” Really, these big questions are the only things worth thinking about.
Photo by Frank Vierti