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Antje Duvekot

Bugs, Balance and Peer Pressure


hi everyone, `````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````''''''''''''''''''' sorry it's been almost a year since my last blog. too much travel and too little down-time sort of triggered a "mute" button in my creative brain and caused me to draw an extensive blank. it was starting to get eery! but recently the inside of my head has been getting chatty once more. i slowed down from touring and i'm writing again. it's ironic that being on the road as a performing musician can lead to a 'creative coma' of sorts but i guess it's just a reminder that balance must be continually restored. living's sure a tricky art, isn't it? the medium is difficult to control. balance is elusive and it has to be created. we search for a state of harmony but the whole thing is a see-saw prone toward toppling. so we run back and forth with weights all the time to try to create balance...` ````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````'''''''''''''''''''''' so, i've been trying to live in the moment.... yesterday i sat on a rock and watched the bugs. but even this is difficult. i can't help feeling like i should be running instead. that if i stand still i may get eaten. i've been watching BBC's "planet earth" and it's been leaving me uneasy... because while humans can do many things animals cannot, we are also still members of that animal kingdom who share the same two concerns as everybody else: don't get eaten and find something to eat. in the human kingdom, too, competition for resources is stiff, the big ones eat or displace the little ones and chance and uncertainty guide most of life's outcomes. and i guess that's what makes it hard to just sit on a rock and watch bugs. it's not that i think i'll literally get eaten if i sit still. it's more like "i should be doing even more email cause if i don't someone else will" or "i should be preparing for the next economic crisis, save more money, gather, work, get super healthy" cause at feeding time i may turn out to be one of the little ones. aaaand so much for my zen moment.... `````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````''''''''''''''''''''''' another thing i've been randomly thinking about: peer pressure. is it good or bad? peer pressure may have been an oppressive nuisance to people like galileo or charles darwin and other pioneers. while galileo's support of the heliocentric view and darwin's theory of natural selection are now widely accepted, in their day these men met considerable opposition from their peers. i play a little festival in Okemah, OK and i always smile when i see the water tower there proudly proclaim "home of woody guthrie". it's just ironic because the town of Okemah hated woody when he was alive for his trouble-making socialist views. so what if the social pressure to blend in had gotten the best of darwin, galileo or woody during their lives and they had shelved their greatness because of it? bad. right? `````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````''''''''''''''''''''' on the other hand, what would happen without peer pressure? i believe - disaster!!! peer pressure, i.e. the social pressure to conform, is an important tool for keeping order in society. and order is the necessary basis for everything else (i know - so german of me!). conservatives are called conservatives because they conserve societal norms. without these norms we'd be starting over all the time! people have been forming societies for, like, millions of years and so i'd like to believe that along the way they figured some things out. so i suppose peer pressure could be looked at as a social evolutionary glue that has helped humans to preserve cultural norms and keep each others' individuality in check. it's weird to even say it, but maybe peer pressure is also: good. `````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````'''''''''''''''''''''''''' just some (random) things i've been thinking about.... ``````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````` xoxo, antje

updated: 3 years ago