A Geek’s Envy

Hi, my name is Aaron, and I have creative-envy. I’m a very technical, analytical, left-brain type person. The extent of my artistic skills lies is writing “beautiful” code. That’s it. I envy those that are gifted with creativity. Not because I want to do the things they do, but because I want to be able to do the things they do. Unfortunately, they seem to be brimming with some sort of magic. Magic of which I am completely devoid. Magic that I wish I had.

I envy the artists, the ones that have the ability to create graphics that you can’t help but love. I enjoy visiting place that provide “design inspiration” just to see people putting this mystical magic to good use. It’s not that I can’t do any of the things, I can use the tools those guys use, I can recreate but can’t create. I even seem to be missing the magic when it comes to color combinations, but I do love to see the beautiful work of others!

While some may think that was enough, I’ve barely gotten started. I also envy those who are creative geniuses with words. The truely eloquent. Don’t get me wrong, I have a perfectly good vocabulary. I’m not lacking the necessary knowledge to write beautifully, I’m missing something else entirely. I’m missing the magic.

I’m not entirely sure that this “magic” can be found. I’m not even sure it can be learned. I think some people just have it. My wife can create amazing color combinations and make a room seem so inviting that you never want to leave. My friend Mike can write comics that I can’t put down, and neither can my 4 year old son. Now that’s an impressively diverse audience. Luckily, I envy these people, I wish I was able to do what they do, but I’m not completely consumed by it. If I was, then I think the thing that made me write this article would have drove me insane! I was browsing through some old data, looking for something from years ago, and I happened across a poem that my friend James wrote in Junior High. Were were studying Edgar Allen Poe, and for his project he re-wrote “The Raven” from the raven’s point of view. I remembered being quite impressed with it in Junior High, so I decided to read it again when I found it. I’m still impressed:

The Raven: As Told by the Raven

By: James Pearson

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I traveled weak and weary,
Over many a long and laborious mile of forgotten shore.
As I flew now nearly falling, suddenly there came a calling,
As of someone gently bawling, somewhat inland from the shore.
“ ‘Tis a lonely heart,” I muttered, “pained and broken to the core,
Only this and nothing more.”

Ah yes now I remember, ‘twas a cold night in December,
And how I’d wished it was September, as icy wind pummeled the shore.
Day and night I had been “running”, from the man that I’d been shunning,
In my mind I kept rerunning memories of him I did abhor.
The one who’d been my wicked master against whom an oath I swore,
To return to nevermore.

Then I felt a sudden burning, and my stomach in me churning,
‘Wakened me to a hunger of the likes never felt before.
It had been hours since I had eaten, and my body I had beaten,
And my last meal but a wheaten piece of cardboard I did deplore.
“I need to eat,” said I, “Perhaps I can find a humble store.”
So I proceeded to explore.

And so inland I set turning, but once again the sound discerning,
I wondered what this man went through that his heart could be so sore.
I turned and headed toward the crier, and quickly (since I was a flyer),
My destination did acquire, and pecked upon the oaken door.
The wailing quickly ceased as my knocking echoed to the shore,
Silence left and nothing more.

Just when I could wait no longer, my soul proceeded to grow stronger,
And I looked and found a window ‘round the corner from the door.
The silence now remained unbroken, as if the man had not yet woken,
From a vision that had spoken of horrors that passed heretofore-
Of unsurpassable horrors that plagued his mind from days of yore-
To be remembered evermore.

Thinking my knocking not perceived, the reason I hadn’t been received,
I reared my head and struck the window somewhat harder than before.
The sound produced was resonating, once again I stood in waiting,
Wond’ring if he’d take my baiting and open up the makeshift door.
Fin’lly I heard foot steps coming and knew that he did not ignore-
My entreaties did not ignore.

Now the boundr’y glass unlocked he, and off my perch nearly knocked me,
When he flung the shutters open (the word flung I underscore.)
Thus all hind’rance put aside me, I stepped inside and stood beside he,
In a room so nice and tidy that I dared not flutter to the floor.
And so I flew onto a statue that perched above the chamber door-
Where I poised and nothing more.

Now here the story I must halt, so in the tale you find no fault,
And inform you of events that’d come to pass some time before.
You see the reason I was fleeing, was a mission based on freeing,
Not a body but a being, from the tyrant nicknamed Thor.
To save myself from the man who had owned me for so long before,
Whose ownership I did deplore.

Why the nickname Thor you wonder? When He spoke his voice would thunder,
As if a storm, through his words, would utter a deafening roar.
He would ask me if food I wanted, and so that I might be taunted,
Would say that I must speak undaunted or taste of dinner “nevermore”.
And so I learned when I hungered to pronounce the word “Nevermore”-
Just this word and nothing more.

Now let us back to the story, he looking frightened as my quarry,
And I balanced on the statue perched above his chamber door.
He then lightened and even smiled, at the sight he found so wild,
The sight of I so calm and mild, perched above his chamber door.
Then he spoke but I unlearned caught but few of his words of lore-
For food I voiced, “Nevermore.”

Then his visage darkened slightly, and looked upon me not so lightly,
As he studied my reply and o’er its meaning he did pore.
Soon all meaning he dismissed and with his speaking did persist,
But sadly I didn’t get the gist and so just as the time before,
I spoke the word that had assured me nourishment under Thor-
The dreadful word, “Nevermore.”

He looked at me now with wonder, thinking that he’d made a blunder,
In surmising my reply to be my only stock and store.
In a state of strange denial, he looked upon for a while,
Deciding whether I was vile, or if my word he should ignore.
Fin’lly he decided that it was just a word and nothing more,
Just the sad word, “Nevermore.”





6 responses to “A Geek’s Envy”

  1. Mike Avatar

    Meanwhile, I can’t understand how you’re able to sit and dig through unending lines of code and turn that into amazing websites, widgets, etc. Or how Ang or Eddie can rattle off accounting information like it was Dr. Suess. TJust thinking about that stuff makes my brain ache…

    And as for James, tell me again why he isn’t published? :/

  2. Aaron D. Campbell Avatar

    Mike: To each their own I suppose. I love what I do, but at the same time I have the desire to be able to do anything. I think it’s the natural instinct to fight against boundaries and limitations.

    As for James, that’s a good question I suppose. He’s too busy gallivanting around Uganda at the moment, but he does have a passion for writing.

    By the way, I’m really looking forward to Timothy and the Transgalactic Towel

  3. Daniel Tyack Avatar

    I hear you my friend! I’m just the flip flop, I try to write beautiful code and I usually end up having a small stroke and calling you 😉 You geeks are the envy of all of us artistic kind.

  4. slimofq Avatar

    Hey now, not every geek is without artistic ability!

  5. Aaron D. Campbell Avatar

    @will: I never said “every” …but I would venture “most” or at least “many”

  6. slimofq Avatar

    🙂 Its relative I would say. Good read though. If I wasn’t so ‘shy’ maybe I would let someone read one of the 1300 or so notepad files that have accumulated over the last 10 years or so o.O Last time someone did that though she wanted to be more then just friends. We all know I want nothing to do with that sort of behavior 🙂

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