That Thing We Call Passion

Everyone has something that they care about. And one thing that I think our society seriously needs to stop doing is putting down other people’s passions.

For example, I do not understand football. I honestly do not particularly enjoy it and, for the life of me, I cannot figure out why it is so entertaining to some people. (It is also possible that for the first fifteen years of my life, I thought the Superbowl was bowling. But that is a completely separate blog post entirely.) Anyways. I don’t like football. However, I know people that absolutely live for each game. I know people that order pizza every Sunday and invite all of their friends over to squeeze into a living room and cheer on their favorite teams. While this practice baffles me, who am I to judge it? It makes them happy.

And call me crazy, but I just don’t think it’s right to tear down something that makes someone else happy and doesn’t cause anyone any harm. Does that guy in your college class liking football ruin your life? No. No, it does not. It doesn’t even affect you. All it does is add a little bit of joy to theirs.

After all, how would you feel if someone did the same thing to you?

Personally, I have a few passions. Music. Cuddling. Disney. Mythology. Etc. But my absolute favorite thing in the world is reading. I have over 1,000 books and that number is continuously getting higher. I adore spending entire Saturdays curled up on my couch with a pile of books. A large pile because I tend to finish books rather quickly. But I digress. I love reading and that is really all there is to it. On the other hand,  some people do not like reading. While this idea is completely foreign to me, I’m not going to sit there and make fun of them for not sharing the same interests as me.

People are different. We have different purposes, values, ideas, opinions, understandings. Not a single one of us is perfect and we have no right to throw away someone else’s passion. We have no reason to make them feel small for caring about something we don’t understand or appreciate.

Some people like music. Some people like art. Some people like museums and historical sites. Some people like soccer. Some people like film. Some people like tigers. Some people like One Direction.

On the same point, you cannot force someone to share in the same passions as you. I’ve tried getting Boy to read more, but the truth is it’s just not his cup of tea. Just like he enjoys coding, I enjoy books. Just because I can’t find the same joy he does in picking apart Javascript and HTML doesn’t mean I can’t sit next on the couch and listen when he tells me about it. It doesn’t mean that he doesn’t like hearing about the latest suspense novel I read.

We are under no obligation to like something just because someone else does. However, we are under the obligation to act like decent human beings and let them get excited about the little things. If we stop letting people be happy, then eventually the same thing is going to happen to us. It’s a vicious cycle and it needs to stop.

Passion is that feeling when you love something so much that even thinking about it makes you smile. It’s the way I feel when I talk about Greek Mythology. It’s the way Boy’s eyes light up when he tells me that he figured out something involving codes and variables and other technical doobly doos that I don’t quite understand. I may not understand it, but I can definitely appreciate and enjoy how absolutely thrilled he gets when he talks about it.

Let people be happy. End of story.

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