Mediocrity - when do we settle?

  • Generally, people like to think they´re special. Most of us anyway. We´ve been raised to believe in our dreams, to strive higher,
    to think everything is possible. Until puberty hits, then you´re told you should stop acting like a child and focus on securing your future.
    You finish school/university and maybe get a job. You move out, get your own place, pay your own bills, you go celebrate with a couple of friends.
    Hey, you´ve made it, you´re a responsible adult.
    Or so you think. Then kids come. A wife. She works 10 hours, you work 10 hours ,kids play games for 10 hours. You tell your kids they´re wasting their lives playing games, they should be doing something productive. You´re almost grown men kids, act like it! You forget you´ve been there, playing some other games, but playing games nonetheless.

    Years pass and you´re 40, 50, 60. Grandkids, unwrapping Christmas presents, familly reunions, and you really hate that annoying wife´s cousin, but he´s familly, let him be. Kids leave, wife is somewhere, doing whatever wives do when they need a break from your constant nagging about "good ol´ days".
    So you sit there in your living room, in the house you´ve earned through a lifetime of splinters on your hands, and you have it all - a good, cozy life. A wife that can´t stand you, but still loves you to this day, a herd of younglings that come visit a couple of times a year, a nice, foreign car in your garage, some old buddies from work you meet once a week in a bar nearby to drink beer and throw kinky comments at student waitresses with.
    Good, long life. And then you remember you wanted to be an astronaut. Or a sailor. Or a reporter. Or something else. But you´ve chosen the safe way, the better way.
    Just like your neighbour. And his neighbour. And all the other hundreds living down the street. Do you wish it were different? Would you trade it all for a fresh start, another go at your dream? Do you even have the right to contemplate in such manner? Ungrateful bastard, look what you´ve achieved. There are millions out there who have nothing, and you have it all - a well planned, thought-out, safe life. Good life.

    So why is there something missing? Not everyone can be an astronaut, sure. But you could´ve been... so much more. Or could you really?
    Perhaps mediocrity was destined. Perhaps we are born into it, or perhaps we choose it. There´s nothing wrong with mediocrity. Statistically, most people are just that--- mediocre.
    So when do we do it? When do we settle? When do we take the safe road and think how smart we are for not risking? Should you risk? Why aren´t you? Where are you now and what are you doing to make your life more exciting, and is there a reason to even try doing it, or is the safe way the better way?

  • Excellent post man, answer can be summarized in basic human nature of always wanting more no matter what they have in life. Rare ppl are satisfied with their lives, those are happy ppl, most of ppl always wonder eternal WHAT IF. And if you have few what if's hanging in your mind then you are happy man, if you have many nothing will satisfy your questions in your mind, not good job, not money or house or anything you achieved at that point.

  • being mediocre or not, doesn't really matter

    what bothers me is the constant need for people to compare themsleves with others, in that way they just view people as the objects...
    that is all ego driven with big lack of core confidence

  • Mediocrity can mean different things to different people. What is only average to one person, can be extraordinary to another. Hence, trying to generalise on mediocrity is a Sisyphean task.
    On the other hand, contemplating about our past and future life is human. The fact that we can do that makes us different from animals. We rethink our actions, we judge ourselves, we try to plan ahead...
    Does it always work for us? - No.
    Does it makes us feel better? - Sometimes.
    Will we stop doing it? - No.
    Why? - Because it is in our nature, and there is no escape from that.

    We are always in the search for something...happiness, love, job...and our priorities change on daily basis. What is important today, is less important tomorrow. With the priorities changed, everything changes, and we want something different. I believe that comparing ourselves to other people is not necessarily a bad thing. Especially if we strive for more. And when I say more, I don't mean more money, more of that worthless material crap we are constantly reminded about in the media. I mean more of the spiritual. I refuse to believe that only settling down in life will fulfill us. We should look for fulfillment in the small stuff. Talking to a friend today, recommending a good movie to someone, listening to a great track someone shared with you, opening a Kinder Egg and being surprised and happy by that silly two-part car you got. Only people with no heart will look down on things like that.

    I think that we should all just relax and follow our heart as much as possible. I am aware that the mind is often smarter. But how many of you would trade the adventure the heart can take us on, for the regular, smart-choiced road our mind is telling us to take?
    Because life is not a proffessional 100m race for us to run as fast as we can and grab as much as we can along the way. Life is an amateur cross-race, where the only thing important is not winning, it's taking part and running at your own pace whilst enjoying the landscape and the company.

    "Let me be clear as I can be: In politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue. It's not cool to not know what you're talking about."

  • system is forcing mediocrity, and I think that mediocrity is not bad at all if you find happiness in life
    and yes people are materialistic and trying way too much to be something that they are not
    but true happiness is in small things, family, friends and pets, so by that mediocrity is way to happiness
    and when you are happy in life then you settle down

  • Just write a book my friend

    He actually should >><<

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  • Oh dear. Let's just break some of this down, then I'll offer a counter proposal.

    There's no mediocrity, only an induced sense of want. The society is a brilliant machine made by a few really cunning intellectuals made to wash down all traces of individuality and produce conformity.

    Evidence please. This is rather conspiracy theorist if you refer to "The Society", especially when you've not provided any reasoning behind this.

    Everyone around us is bent on making us feel inadequate, as if we're missing something out, when we're already as complete as we can be.

    Actually this is more a statement about an ideological construct called "Capitalism", mainly that marketing, produces this inadequacy. Do you want to know why women shave their armpits? Because commercials sold the idea that shaving armpits is something women should do. Same goes for things like plastic surgery. What you are describing is essentially an economic and political system, not society.

    The whole idea of society was made on slavery - being slaves to artificial, induced needs, by others

    Again, you are mistaking an ideological system for society.

    The whole idea of society was made on slavery - being slaves to artificial, induced needs, by others. Everyone 'fulfilling' everyone else's needs out of some so-called 'necessity', when in fact everyone is capable of fulfilling their own needs using their own desire.

    Ummm no. Societies have been around long before our species evolved, it is part of many anthropological disciplines, including archaeology, primatology, anthropology, etc. Humans form communities because we are a social animal. That is why we talk, it is why most of our intelligence centres around social intelligence. It is why we have language and we're arguing this very point! We invent abstracts because we need them. Death in Terry Pratchett's novel The Hogfather said it best:

    The point here is that as a solid concrete thing, society doesn't exist. However, it exists in the mind and we need it to make us human. Abstract thought is one of the key things about our evolution, without it, we couldn't have invented most of the things we have. And if you don't believe me, go and take away every piece of music, art, literature, film, etc, that you like. Your argument here uses a film, which uses an abstract piece of reasoning. Society exists because we believe in it.

    since most people believe in the 'necessity' of a society

    Well it makes us human so yes. You are interacting with a society right now.

    even stronger belief of man being a 'social animal'

    It's not just a belief, it is a verifiable, academic position. You've yet to provide evidence against this.

    people reconnect with their individual selves instead of social ones.

    Apart from our social "selves" as you put it are part of our identity. How we treat others is part of our identity and enables or disables us.

    Societal destruction is inevitable - it's not really something made by nature (nature calls for relationships and a natural flow of life, not a rule-based, conformity-forcing system made by humans)

    Apart from any animal that lives in social groups, wolves, chimps, us, gorillas, monkeys, etc are all naturally evolved societies. Are you aware of the definition of what a society is?

    Amnesia calls for the destruction of society. He's practically echoing Maggie Thatcher, a despicable human being who is still hated in places because of her cruel ways, but she said "there is no such thing as society", summing up rabid capitalism and the yuppie phenomenon of the 80s. Yet this ignores the fact that individuals can only achieve so much on their own. Society evolved in animals because it provided the opportunity to work together to achieve individual and societal goals. And it works. Those who are sick can be cared for, as well as the old, the disabled. Individuals can be given better opportunities when society assists, the problem is when political ideologies such as communism can take it to extremes. We need society and if you don't believe me, loneliness is being considered a cause of illness in various countries and there is discussion on whether it counts as a health epidemic.

    So society isn't mediocrity because it can provide more chances than just a lone ape can ever achieve. Instead there are brutal reasons why we aren't all astronauts or world famous musicians, etc and that is somewhat down to opportunities/ privilege and talent. We cannot expect everyone who is given the chance to be amazing musicians. There are people that have better talents in certain areas and those talents won't manifest without help, opportunity and if they aren't there in the first place. So we have new priorities as we get older, we go for realistic dreams. Some make us happy, some leave us dissatisfied because we aren't encouraged to be proud of achieving at our own pace. We dislike failure, yet we don't always appreciate its lessons. Respect your limitations, don't use them as an excuse, but respect that when you are tone deaf, you're not going to be the next Mozart.

  • What you are describing is essentially an economic and political system, not society.



    an organized group of persons associated together for religious, benevolent, cultural, scientific,political, patriotic, or other purposes.


    I'm not sure how politics and economics aren't part of a society, did I misunderstand your words here?

    @AMNeSia I don't think anyone has a problem with your opinion as your right to voice it...but if you don't want people to comment maybe you should keep it to yourself instead of putting it on a social media forum? Just a thought.

  • I haven't read the question premise, or the replies, but I have a quick thought to put down.

    Those of us playing OGame have already settled to one degree or another.


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  • If you expected flak for what you said...then why is it a problem that @Largenton is giving it to you with a demand of evidence? ?(

    I just think it's a mixed signal that you've put words out here and because someone doesn't embrace your idea with open arms they can't ask you about it because "it's your opinion"

    But carry on, I've settled for farming which might be a bit more fun. :D


  • Sorry, it's a public venue, as much as you have the right to talk about this esoteric nonsense, I think he has the right to comment as he wishes, right? Who made the rule he has to ask and can't demand? Can show me where someone has established he can't demand instead of ask, I might have missed it?


  • Oh dear, I've upset someone because I criticised his "opinion"..... I believe this is a Discussion Board, not an opinion board and it still seems to me that you are upset because I demanded reasonable, intelligent discussion which might educate you. I used to mod here and there is a good reason why Cassandra Vandales asked this. Let's go through this to explain the problems.

    The very first sentence of my post says that it's my OPINION. I'm not writing a fucking thesis here, titled "Society: It's history, evolution and possible future." That's not my goal, it's pretty explicit.

    This is a discussion board. Whilst you have an opinion, I think Douglas Adams summarises things best.


    All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others.

    Yes you have an opinion, but if you are putting it up for criticism, expect someone to demand substance to it. Especially as you delve partially into my area of expertise (anthropology and history). Stating an opinion is worthless, what I wanted is some actual thought which you've not provided.

    You want evidence, I'm sure you can find some on your own. I'm not sitting around here to provide evidence to everyone who comes along and demands living proof of what's obvious.

    It is your opinion, therefore the onus is on you to provide evidence to explain it. Especially if you feel it is "obvious". People believed for a long time that it was obvious that the Sun went around the Earth. What is obvious can therefore be a lie.

    Yes, societal destruction is inevitable, because unlike other animal societies you mention, humans can't live in equilibrium with their environment.

    Not what you were implying. Again, I'm asking questions so that you explain your opinion. Even so, with this explanation it isn't inevitable. Quite frankly, you can't predict that even if it seems likely. And your viewpoint seems coloured by nihilism.

    Again, since the whole of it is my opinion, I'm talking from my perspective - yes, I don't feel that we need the society to make us feel human.

    And I, the person with two degrees in archaeology and experience with mental health disorders disagree with you. Because we form societies because it is part of our evolution. Which is why I am challenging you on this "opinion". Because according to actual knowledge, your proposal runs counter to what we actually know through logic, rational thought and evidence.

    A dog doesn't need a pack to feel like a dog, a cat doesn't need a litter of kittens to feel like a cat, a tiger doesn't need a timid deer to feel like a tiger.

    How do you know that? Because you have made an assumption. And a comparison to animals without the ability to think in the abstract as we do.

    No, a society doesn't make us human, our own individual thoughts and perspectives do. Yes, maybe lack of (same-species) social contact will make it not so simple to engage with others, but that doesn't make the one in isolation any less human.

    Actually society does make us human. Because our evolutionary success is based upon society. Literally, we cannot have humans if they don't form social groups.

    There would be no inadequacy of discovering something more in the first place!

    What a terrible thought. A life without wonder.

    As for achieving - yes, it's fun to achieve, but is there a 'need'?

    Maslov's hierarchy of needs. Look it up.

    I'm definitely an exception and not the norm, but yes - I prefer loneliness.

    There are a few individuals that do. But even extreme introverts require human contact sometimes. We actually get serotonin boosts from it.

    And yet, it all comes down to people fighting with each other. They can't stand each other, much less tolerate, even less accept and even lesser - get along

    Actually Stephen Pinker wrote a book a few years ago which showed statistically the world was getting more peaceful. Just a thought. Anyway, there is a degree of nihilism there which does not seem to be evidence based but an opinion derived from pessimism.

    And what's the point of living in a society if people can't get over their own egos?

    In this I quite like the story of Shanidar 1. To those outside my field, Shanidar 1 was an elderly Neanderthal found in Shanidar cave along with other Neanderthal burials. This individual had several injuries which would have made him "deformed" or at least disabled by today's standards. Researchers have concluded that others helped him stay alive whilst he was able to carry out other roles, or provide wisdom from his experiences. There are similar cases such as the Grandmother Hypothesis too, suggesting that the introduction of specialised roles within societies aid humans immensely, giving them the ability to cope with hardships.

    Maybe loneliness counts as an epidemic in this world, but only because humans deem it so.

    No, because not having contact with other humans in adequate amounts can cause illness. That is why it is an epidemic. We are not meant to be alone. It isn't because we deem it so, it is because it has an effect on health.

    Maybe lonely people don't behave according to societal norms, but that doesn't make them sick

    Anxiety and depression to name two mental health disorders are illnesses. Literally, loneliness can cause them or make them worse.

    Yes, society is mediocrity precisely because it provides more chances, since more chances = more contenders = less rate of success. If society can't provide equally for everyone without anyone having to compromise, then it's a failed system.

    Again this is in reference to capitalism, not society.

    And finally, as you put up a story earlier about humans needing fantasies to make life bearable - life is unbearable. Let it be accepted as unbearable rather than live a life through infinite lies.

    Unbearable implies suicide or at least suicidal thoughts. That is not a healthy worldview and that is something that will lead to depression.

    But the fact is, is that it is assuming life is unbearable. No it isn't. There is joy in life and I can assert that having been there and found my own answers. The fact is, is that assuming life is unbearable is a lie within itself. It assumes the most negative outcomes without any hope for better ones. That is a lie just as much as always looking on the bright side of life (if anyone doesn't start whistling because of that, shame on you).

    Lies make us human. Lies are the basis of abstract thought. In order to lie you need to use your imagination. And that ties into what you think about humans full stop.

    At school you may have learnt that atoms were the smallest things that exist and you may have imagined them as like billard balls. Later on, you are told this is wrong, i.e. a lie and given the idea of a solar system. We lie to each other sometimes to make us learn new things, to see new perspectives. Being human is about living a lie through infinite lies. And if you don't believe me, then how exactly can you read what I am saying and understand it?

    Yes, there's no point of living, but neither does that mean we should all die, nor that one has to believe the lies. Life never had a point, or maybe it did, no one knows. But one thing's for sure - society's a fallacy and there's a definite difference between surviving in the midst of it and accepting it.

    The answer is 42. Society though, well society is why we are here as a species.

    I just wish someone had told me this when I could start understanding language - maybe I wouldn't have wasted so much time in the society.

    The irony of this when language is just a well constructed way of creating images and lies to communicate is beautifully comic.

    Edit - And the universe doesn't use scientific papers, thesis, evidence and so on to run. As your story said, let me phrase it: Grind down the universe to the finest sieve and show me one molecule which demands evidence.

    No, scientific papers, theses and evidence is how we learn about the universe instead. Cart before the horse there. And my point was to make you think or at least someone think. It is part of Socratic philosophy and a very good way of viewing the world.

    I'm not sure how politics and economics aren't part of a society, did I misunderstand your words here?

    No, society is more than politics and economics is what I am saying. Capitalism is a system run within society but if removed, society would still exist. Tis an important part, but I am saying society is more than capitalism. Good question ;)

    he shouldn't demand evidence from me of something which is purely no more than my own perspective of the subject in question.

    Why not? If something is wrong then shouldn't it be challenged?

    There's a difference between asking me why I feel a specific way or why I have a specific view (which I did explain) and demanding evidence like a court, or a science seminar. I'm sure you know that much.

    Asking for evidence is an attempt to get you to think why you have made that claim. It is a basic part of discussion. It is something that shows intelligence and I would rather cultivate that and maybe challenge your bleak, nihilistic and worryingly depressed viewpoint to promote something healthier.

  • Man this is something you think about after a mushroom or two and thought about it I have. What I keep coming back to as an answer is fear, fear of failure maybe. We only get one life and I think most fear poverty more then lack of wealth so mediocrity is the safe bet, its what makes people controllable. Maybe its just me.

    I think Kaldor hit the nail on the head though, this game drains time and effort that could be put into other things. When I was younger I used to invest much more of my time in RL and my ogame rank reflected it. Almost a decade and a half later my dreams have come and gone and I find myself living vicariously though this game and spending more and more time here. As much as I love this game I sometimes wonder if on my deathbed it will be my greatest regret....

    Uni 1
    ~RIP Taurus~

  • Indeed, whilst the old Ocrack is draining on the time, one thing I have learnt is that the friendships we have made are sometimes with us forever. I am still in regular contact with the people I knew from the spamboard, people like Kamel, Fiery Angel, Chryssie, Cassie, Bibob, Shockie, Shadowpyre, Leif, Eclectic, Naughty Angel, SirEsh, Chuwie, F_F, etc, all people that I have interacted with and enjoyed their presence. Yeah I could have chosen differently, but this is not mediocrity. This is important.

  • @Silverwind and @Largenton you guys are 100% right and make a great point, some of my ogame friends I have on FB and consider my ogame brothers and keep in contact even though we dont really play together anymore. Thanks you this brightened my outlook on this matter :) I guess you gotta enjoy the little things in mediocrity

    Uni 1
    ~RIP Taurus~

  • Second - no offence meant here, but your degrees mean nothing to me. No one's do. A 'degree' is society's acceptance of someone's information/knowledge/experience in a specific field based on some examination set by people who are no more perfect than the holder of the degree. And yet, one can have all the information/knowledge/experience without a degree, so I'd appreciate it if you didn't flaunt them around like actual achievements. Not to say that I know more than you, but I really don't care about the levels of knowledge in people. Intelligent and informed or not, they're still people.

    Oh really? That is hilarious. Those things matter because of the training involved and what is taught. For example, if you are ill, would you prefer the certified doctor to examine you or some amateur? If you are having water flooding your kitchen, do you prefer to call the plumber or some random person who says they saw how to do it once.

    Qualifications actually matter. They give you knowledge and training. They are achievements of intellect. I didn't take an exam at the end of my Masters, I carried out a scientific experiment to look at what we can extract from dog dental plaque and wrote up the results. I advanced human knowledge like everyone else on my course and most degrees, that is an achievement. Yes we are still people at the end of the day, but I doubt I ever claimed I was some sort of superhuman, superior to those without. These degrees also taught me how to think, a skill well worth learning and something I try to pass on. The ability to look at a claim, determine its value and the evidence behind it and ask questions about it is a good skill to have. You on the other hand have failed to realise this and merely parrot your preconceived notions.

    And this is just an attempt to hide the fact that I used my knowledge to state why your claim is wrong. Because humans are societal animals. So you attack my degrees which is pretty much an ad hominen. I can provide the evidence required to back my claims. Question is, can you.

    Third - as far as evidence goes, I'm one of those who believes that evidence can be demanded for something claimed. If I claim that a specific amount of mass amounts to one kilo-gram, I'm liable to provide evidence. Problem is, evidence is not universal. What WE call as one KG might not mean the same to some other species, or in some other dimension, right? What's more, they might not mean the same in the same damn solar system in the same galaxy, same universe and same dimension!

    Oh please. You made a claim about society being a brilliant machine being made by cunning intellects without proof. I asked to see your evidence full stop. As has been said before, this is my right on a public forum. Fact is, you've provided nothing to back up your statements, instead you are just discussing the difference between subjectivism and objective evidence as a smokescreen to hide your lack of evidence. I asked for evidence for your claim, this is just an attempt to weasel out of it. You made a verifiable claim. This is a discussion board, not an opinion board and I asked for evidence. Like Silverwind said, you cannot blame anyone for using their right to request evidence on a public forum. Stop being so upset because someone has challenged your beliefs. It can be seen as immature.

    Third - you think anxiety, depression and so on are disorders/illnesses, based on some evidence found by prior 'experts' in the fields of medicine, physio/psychology and so on. Great, but I feel not. I love solitude, being cut-off from everyone except for getting a specific job done and even then, I'd gladly prefer contact to be as minimal as it can be. Yes, my being human, or more precisely, a sentient, Earth-bound entity, is not tied to the society. Society doesn't define me, I do. And, after all these years of living, I'm happy to live in a world without humans. If that includes my own non-existence, that's the best solution.

    Two thirds?

    Firstly, I am going to state that your opinion on mental health disorders is extremely offensive to everyone who has one. It is what can be described as ableist, where you are attacking someone's disability, which, I might remind you, is a protected characteristic under German law regarding human rights. As such, it is also against the Terms of Use for the board.

    The reason why is that you state that mental illnesses are not illnesses and you ascribe this to "experts". No it isn't. It is the rising panic for no reason that anxiety sufferers get. It is the inability to motivate yourself to get out of bed that affects the depressed. It is the volatile mood swings of the bipolar sufferer, who may swing from manic energy to black depression. It is the hallucinations and delusions a schizophrenic gets, which makes it hard for them to determine what is reality. It is a vivid flashback that the PTSD sufferer gets, taking them back to the worst moment of their life. It is the mother with Post-natal depression that cannot motivate her will to look after her child. It is the excruciating headaches, lack of sleep, stomach pains and all the other physical symptoms that come with a mental illness. This is not something that experts have ascribed to people who are not neurotypical. These are actual illnesses that result in things such as people idealising ending their life. That people are in so much mental pain that they seriously consider putting a gun in their mouth, downing a cocktail of pills, slitting their wrists, hanging themselves, jumping in front of vehicles, drowning, etc. You are denying those people are ill and have a problem. You are denying those people's experiences of things you know nothing about and that is technically called gaslighting.

    So yes, your ignorance is insulting and rather than attempting to be clever by saying things like this you come across extremely badly and offensive. This is not an ok opinion, it is not acceptable and if you continue to say things like this I will continue to call you out. Do you understand?

    Secondly, the fact that you have got so worked up about me requesting evidence that you continue to come back and make excuses as well as attempt to throw childish insults about my education and experiences shows how much society actually means to you. You're not separate from it and whilst you may be introverted, your nihilism is not healthy. And I am saying this in a, this is the same sort of mind set that you come across justifying and acting out atrocities.

    As I said, I'd state yet another reason for not providing evidence - the thing is, I do have answers (might not feel evidence enough to you), but I feel my time's better spent putting bullets through cops skulls in GTA 5. After all - societal destruction and taking morality and especially authority out of commission never goes out of fashion, does it?

    Yet you wrote this huge reply to me justifying yourself. Sorry, you're just doubling down on what you said previously. Please don't lie.

    And, for the record, while I can't predict the destruction of human society, humans have proved themselves destructive enough that in a few centuries, they'll have mining bases on the Moon and other planets. They just can't leave anything pristine - they grow like a virus and exterminate everything. I can only imagine the misfortune of the universe if humans end up spreading to the other planets before armageddon comes around. And yes, the human desire to have an exchange system (arguably born due to society) is always the center of greed and eventual destruction of everything. Society is doomed, whether or not you believe it or any evidence shows up.

    I love the contradiction. Society is doomed because I say so even though I can't prove it. And what you refer to in terms of capitalism is only a part of society we have constructed. It is not necessary and your ignorance shows that your world view is dependent on lack of knowledge or critical thinking.