As I grow older and make feeble attempts to analyze my own life, as I try to distill some vague essences of the few odd decades that I have spent on this planet, a noteworthy trait (noteworthy at least to me) stands out very prominently to me. I am not sure how prominent this trait is in others. I seem to see myself, my past, and my "accomplishments", as if I were observing a stranger, in whose life I had so little stake that I could not even be bothered to pass judgements, feel pride or shame, or even care. Let me elaborate. I imagine that people can look at their past and their present and weave a more or less coherent (maybe even compelling) narrative explaining why they turned out the way that they did, that they can tell their story where they can identify their own agency and credit it with making good judgements at certain important junctures. Maybe they feel pride in the things that they have accomplished, in the money that they have made, in the status that they have accumulated, and in the social cache that it all automatically implies. Maybe they have grand dreams for the future, a future which lies clear in their subconscious with the logic and certainty of a clock. In sum, I imagine that people think of their lives as uniquely interesting (and why not, since they have always been the center of the universe as far as they are concerned), and live not only as if they are never going to die but also as if they will not be completely forgotten. I don't find my life to be uniquely interesting at all and I find it extremely dull to dwell upon its "accomplishments". I find myself unable to be interested in grand ambitions for the future. In fact, my patience runs dry when I even start to think about what those grand ambitions might entail. This is not to say that I live my life morosely - I'm the most contented person I know, especially when I can isolate from dreary people who do take themselves too seriously. I attribute my present largely to a series of accidents in my past which had no particularly special consequences. As far as the future is concerned, it is tinged heavily by the intense and ever present realization of my own mortality followed by eternal oblivion. Thus, it makes no sense to me to feel anything but a strange sense of detachment when I look at myself. It's just another life, like billions before me and billions which are to follow.

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