I'm writing this after spending the better part of 4 hours staring at my computer screen. This has become the standard of my life since the bulk of my research ended: wake up, answer emails, eat lunch, sit on my Mac and either enter or go over data. Repeat this each day, taking some time off to see friends or visit the significant other. Maybe change the background diversion from season whatever of King of the Hill to something just as inane and thoroughly distracting. But keep doing it, over and over, until it's done.
I came to the realization last week that this might just be the rest of my life. I can't exactly say, because I do go to cons, I do go out, but I just have this feeling that the rest of my days on this earth will be spent doing exactly what I do each and every day right now. And to be honest, it scares me.
I've never been known for having the greatest attention span. One look at my massive anime queue shows that I don't always take the time to look at what I grab, or read what I buy. It's not so much a lack of interest as a constant desire to experience new things. Like a lot of people, most of them far younger than I, I get a thrill when I'm holding, watching or experiencing something I never have before. There have been many times in my life that this has shaped who I am: college was the main example, I had never spent much time in the City (as we Queens folk call it), and suddenly I was there every day. It drove me, fueled my fires, and gave me a wonderful understanding of peoples, places and things to do. And, after maybe 4 or 5 years, I got terribly bored of it. The same is true for fandoms: I've been attached to every fandom around, some more than once, and lord knows if a new one comes around, I will probably throw myself at it as well.
So I sit here and ask myself the question: what is all this? Is it what I want? Am I really going to spend the rest of my life researching and documenting anime? Will my computer become littered with spreadsheets and interviews, musings and saved threads from webforums? How far exactly will I go into this before something new catches my fancy and pulls my attention elsewhere?
Of course, these are all purely rhetorical questions. I don't know what will happen. It's part of the reason I can get so neurotic on my off days. (It's also part of the reason I used to read Tarot cards before I realized they were a load of bunk.) Over the course of the last ten years, I must have changed my mind a hundred times about what I like and what I want to do with my life. I love new things. I love expanding my horizons. I love knowledge in its simplest and purest forms. I've cultivated and developed strong skills around this passion of mine, so much so that I can apply my methods to almost anything. Right now that something is convention research. In 5 years it will most likely be something else. I have been told I am the "Jack of all trades," and that title is completely apt for me. I like being knowledgeable on a whole host of topics. I like crossing them too, finding new ways to interpret things I read and watch. I love to travel. I love to share. A dull life sitting behind a desk is the greatest torture for me, because it means I would have to give these things I hold so dear to me up.
For the time being, though, I know what I plan to do. It doesn't grate on me (though it can be very monotonous), doesn't give me displeasure, but it makes me look at where I am and where I want to be. And it makes me wonder if what I want to be now is what I want to be later on.