I had a conversation about three weeks ago that hasn't really left my mind.
It was all about the Austin lifestyle and the conversation went something like this:
Person: How long have you been here?
Me: About seven years.
Person: Holy shit. Seven years?
Person: God damn. Seven years. God damn.
Me: Yeah. I guess seven years is kind of a long time.
Person: Well. Not really. It's only 3 years away from being ten years.
Me: Ten years is a long time.
Person: Yeah. But so is seven.
Me: Shit. It is.
Person: I had a conversation with my father the other day and he said to me "Boy don't fall into the Austin spell." And I was like, "Huh?"
Me: Austin spell?
Person: It's the belief that people move to Austin and just become comfortable. Comfortable with the life. Comfortable with the state of being that they're in. Comfortable.
Me: Yeah, I'd say I'm pretty comfortable. Except I need a full time job.
Person: Yeah, but everyone everywhere is looking for a job right now. You're not alone in that boat. Plenty of passengers there..... But I thought about it and I think that there is such a thing as being under the spell of Austin.
Me: How so?
Person: Well, shit. Think about all of the people that you hang out with. They're all talented people. They're all living the Austin life. But how come they never left? How come they never went somewhere else to try their talents where they could actually go and make some money from it. Get some recognition. Do what they're meant to be doing in a city where it's easy to do that sort of thing?
Me: Because such a city is a myth?
Person: Yeah, granted, there's alot of myths out there as far as you can move to LA and get hooked up like that... and New York... it's all about being poor and broke, it just means you're more artistic and shit at least there is a scene of some sort there. But when was the last time anyone we knew actually talked about going out there and doing something?
Person: Okay... talked seriously about actually leaving.
Me: I don't know. Austin's not really that bad of a place. People wear sunglasses inside of buildings in LA. Inside. And New York is fucking cold and you can't see the sun unless you stand in a certain part of the city at a certain time. Sure Austin has it's drawbacks... but, I mean, it's a great community and it's got a lot of people that support each other.
Person: It's a small pond.
Me: It's good to be a big fish in a small pond.
Person: Bull shit. The big fish is easier to catch and eat when it's swimming around in a small pond.
Person: Don't you ever wonder what it's like? Don't you ever think to yourself, "What the hell am I doing here? What am I accomplishing? What was the point of me being here so long?"
Me: I think I've somehow convinced myself that I can pull off whatever it is I want to do with my life from Austin.
Person: Have you ever lived anywhere else?
Person: Ah yes. Shreveport, the entertainment mecca of the south. That's it? Just Shreveport and Austin?
Me: Um. Yeah.
Person: What's keeping you here?
Me: Well, I've got this great guy.
Me:And I've seem to be doing all right acting wise here. I mean, I've got stuff to do.
Person: Is it stuff that you want to be doing?
Me: I'm not really sure what it is that I want to be doing. Recently it seems the only thing I really want to do is sit on my couch until I get hungry for a breakfast taco and then I go and get one and I sit on my couch some more.
Person: Why your couch?
Me: Because it's comfortable.
Person: YOU'RE IN IT'S GRASP! IT HAS YOU BY THE FUCKING NECK!
Me: Oh my God. You're right.
And ever since that conversation I've run into like 5 people that are moving from Austin. They're moving to places like LA and Minneapolis. I ask them how long have they been in Austin and the average answer is 3 years.
Oh my God.
Am I in the claws of the comfort demon? And why all of a sudden am I doubting that anything can happen here?
I think that alot of this thought has been because I don't really feel like I'm doing anything here. But then I think back on the last year or so and I recall all the times I was fucking too busy to even take the time to wipe front to back.
I think I need a change of some sort but I am not quite sure if that change needs to be a geographical one or a philosophical one.
Hm. I think I shall get a breakfast taco and ponder.