Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Is ignorance truly bliss?

Is it?

I’ve been pondering the question for most of today. I did something today that some might call “ethically questionable.” I had no qualms doing it. I felt it needed to be done, but looking at my actions with technicality glasses on would likely render me guilty. Because of previous missteps on the part of another who came before, I didn’t get exactly what I was looking for, but I got enough. I knew that what I was seeking would be there, but now that I know…….now what? I wonder if it might have been better to not really know.


My brother has a guy working for him that he pays $5.50/hr, only slightly over the Federal minimum wage, to do the shit work that needs done around his shop. There is one, and only one, good thing about this Midwestern hellhole, and that is that it’s pretty cheap to live here. But cheap though it may be, it’s still goddamn difficult to make it on wages that are that low. I’ve been there, I know. The strange thing about it all is that this guy is okay with it. He’s not a crackhead, he’s a good worker, and he’s a few years older than I am. Nice guy, but completely ignorant. IG. NUNT.

Speaking about him the other day, my brother said, “…and he’s happier than a pig in shit. I’ve never heard the guy bitch or complain. He always works hard and is always in a good mood. I’m going to give him a raise just because it’s starting to make me feel bad.”

My bro mentioned that the guy told him that he and his wife went to the movies a few weekends back. It was the first time that they had ever been to a movie together, and they’ve been married for over five years. All I could muster was, “How is that possible?”

He has no idea that there is something better out there and has no inclination to go after anything more than what he has at the moment. The guy is like some kind of unintentional Buddha, completely and tranquilly disassociated, and a small part of me is jealous. Would he be better off if he knew the real deal?


A scary board is on the table. You look down at your middling hand as first to act throws out a bet that will put you down to the felt. Goddamn that board, there are at least three ways you could be beat. You have to lay down the hand, and your opponent (in a fit of fairy tale quality graciousness) offers to let you see his cards. You’re pretty sure you know already. If you’re right, you know you’ll be on tilt. If you’re wrong, you learn something valuable and continue on.

Do you stay ignorant or do you seek the concrete truth even though your frame of mind will be the cost?

I want to know, even if the cost is high, but some days I question whether this is the right answer. Blissful ignorance sure looks nice, but it also brings to mind that the grass is always greener.

I think I just talked myself into the right answer, for me at least.