Alice In Chains – No Excuses (1994)
from the album “Jar of Flies”.
Recently, after years of what I will probably later refer to as years of “nothingness”, I seem to have finally found a way in life.
I found the strength to quit a job that made me unhappy, I cut ties with friends that abused my sense of self-worth and for the first time, I find myself in a healthy relationship.
My mother once said to me that the years between 20 and 30 are years of confusion and pressure, both external and seemingly coming from the inside.
You want it all for yourself, and most of all, you want it all to make you happy.
Sometimes, the goal you have for yourself in your mind is so blurry that you get lost on the way and you end up some place elsewhere, where you didn’t count on ending up at all.
“Everyday it’s something
Hits me all so cold
Find me sittin’ by myself
No excuses, then I know”
Yes, maybe there are no excuses. Maybe we all just have to carefully choose our own way, but also keep in mind that it’s never too late.
Oddly enough, the songs that cheer me up and make me happy in these moments are melancholy songs like this one, reminding me that a lot of other people have been where I was once myself. I’m not the only unhappy person in the world that have lost my way.
I mean, we’ve all been there – days when everyday it’s just something –and it just hits you so cold – “this is not me, and this is not where I’m supposed to be”.
Want to take it slow
No more hiding or
Disguising truths I’ve sold”
We all sell our truths in a way, I think.
I took a course in social psychology many years ago, and there was a term we read about called “self-serving bias” – basically how you perceive and alter reality to make it fit your own place in the world and how you view yourself. If you think of yourself as a useless, worthless human being you might tend to see things in a negative way to support this self-image. “Nothing good ever happens to me, oh well, THIS good thing just happened but I know it’s a lie and it’s just going to go downhill from here, you’ll see – I’ll be disappointed in a while, just like I always am, because nobody loves me and I will never get what I want because I’m useless.”
I get the sense that Layne Staley knew exactly what I’m talking about.
Layne was always my favourite singer in the grunge era, only challenged by Kurt Cobain I guess, simply because he always sounded sincere, like he meant every word he said, and that he was able to channel the emotions behind them.
Had a bad day
Hands are bruised from
Breaking rocks all day
Drained and blue
I bleed for you
You think it’s funny, well
You’re drowning in it too”
Layne also knew that you knew. That we all knew. We’re all drowning in it, in how we’re all just trying to fit in, and how we’re all just living in self-serving bias, in a way.
But, in the midst of all this negativity, Layne also shared with us the one thing that can get us out of it; the need for someone else in our life, the need for a real relationship, void of all expectations and selfishness;
“We’ll walk down the line
Leave our rain, a cold
Trade for warm sunshine
You my friend
I will defend
And if we change, well I
Love you anyway”
Count yourself lucky if you have a friend that can make you feel like this, even in your darkest hour.