Thursday, August 26, 2010

I am Not Mozart

When I think of mediocrity? I immediately think of the movie Amadeus. If you have not seen it, it is essentially composer Antonio Salieri's lament of being a mediocrity compared to Mozart.

Salieri dreamed of nothing more than to be a great composer. He pledged his chastity to God in hopes that he would be blessed with an amazing musical talent. Yet it was Mozart, an irresponsible, overgrown child, who was blessed with the amazing gift of music.

I feel for Salieri. I do. I have dreamed many times of being amazing at something I love - writing, music, art, even psychology - but, like Salieri, I am apparently meant only to recognize and appreciate amazing talent when I see it. I'm not meant to possess the talent.

I don't think I'm as resentful as Salieri, but I didn't go & pledge my chastity for anything, either. If I had been chaste my whole life, I'd probably be a tad more grouchy about the whole situation.

Like Salieri, I'm not bad at most things I do. I'm usually pretty good. Pretty good. Not amazing. He was a court composer...but he was not a Mozart.

Musically? I can carry a tune, I can tell if I'm out of tune, I can occasionally harmonize. When I was a flautist (flute player. This one time at band camp....), I was always near 1st chair. Often 2nd or 3rd (out of like 30). But I was never 1st.

As a writer? I don't suck. Usually what I write makes sense, is spelled correctly, uses the right to/too/two or there/their/they're (altho, I did accidentally use the wrong "their" in a comment the other day & it is still bugging me because I can't go back & fix it....), and occasionally I'm even funny. But I'm mediocre, even at that. I don't make people laugh until they cry like Kris, or craft fabulously amusing posts with a rich vocabulary like Lori, or eloquently get to the heart of things with a sense of humor like Adrienne. I just don't have that gift. I'm readable, but not amazing.

For the most part, I can accept being adequate at a lot of things. I'm glad that when I do things? I almost never completely suck at it.

Not sucking is not the same as being good. No one is amazed at the brain surgeon who doesn't suck. Lots of people don't suck. There's really no "wow" to that.

Mostly I accept my mediocrity and I live with it. Usually it doesn't bug me. I am happy to just not suck.

But like any other unrequited passion? Sometimes the want gets to me.

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This post is part of the Word Up, Yo! Weekly meme hosted by the Nerd Mafia Dons Liz at a belle, a bean, and a chicago dog; Kristin from Taming Insanity; and Natalie from Mommy of a Monster


  1. So my new motto is going to be: "Mostly I accept my mediocrity and I live with it. Usually it doesn't bug me. I am happy to just not suck."

    Seriously! Because what you said is so true! And I like my mediocre, mostly boring life. Hail to mediocrity!

  2. lori's post make me head to free because i feel so dumb.

  3. I am the same type of person - pretty good at a lot of things, not great at anything. But I don't consider that mediocrity. I consider it versatile :)