The Daily Illini

Life is absurd, so have some fun

By Samuel Kottoor, Columnist

The Red Lion. On a Monday night.

Looking around, your senses capture a blur of life. And then the question hits you with crushing weight.

What is the meaning of all of this?

The existentialist’s highest priority is to find the meaning of life. It has, without a doubt, crossed every one of our minds because existence begs the question of why. People can find answers in religion, life coaches and even Wikipedia, but most of the time, we are left unsatisfied with these venues, wanting a more concrete meaning to this life. We’ve spent ages searching for answers and lifetimes analyzing our existence but can never quite come to a fulfilling conclusion.

I am here to tell you — the wait is over. I have figured out the meaning of this life.

My theory, produced by my life’s work so far, is life is about one thing and one thing alone: fun. By fun, I mean an activity or passage of time in which you are highly enjoying yourself or your surroundings. Let me elaborate on this, if that’s alright.

I argue every action you do in this world is rooted in fun, and if it is not, you should change the way you are living.

Why do people go to work? To get money. Why? To support themselves and whomever may depend on them. Why? So hopefully, when they are not eating or working, they can have some fun.

Why workout? To be fit and more confident, so they can be more active and feel a sense of accomplishment, so they can have fun.

Why meet new people? Either to obtain friends, which they will hang out with for fun or to get connections that help them out later, so maybe they can earn more money, so they can support themselves and whomever may depend on them, so when they aren’t doing so, they can have some fun.  

Why volunteer with sick people? So the patients can get back to good health. Why? So the patients can go back to having fun in their lives.

Why get married? It’s so one can love another and share experiences with that person, ultimately spending their lifetimes together. Why? Because they have fun together and want to keep having fun together.

Each and every activity we do is meant to progress or facilitate the fun we have in life.

These claims persist because of the question: What is life without fun? It is a monotonous cycle of eating, working and sleeping, which should be an undesirable outcome for your life to become.

This theory started to become more and more clear to me as I talked to friends who had internships this summer, and more often than not, they said it was boring, uneventful and unadventurous. Even if the job was slightly interesting, they would come home tired, eat some food, go to bed and repeat it again the next day. I was starting to realize this is no way to live, and there was something missing — something big — and that’s fun.

I constantly struggle with this when bogged down in work. I forget to let myself live a little. The school grind can really suck you in. The end goal seems irrelevant. It makes sense to work hard now to have fun later, but at what point does the work become excessive?

If everything is truly centered around fun, you should have the goal of maximizing either your fun or the fun of others at all times. Procrastinate a little, do what makes you smile. No matter the brevity of the situation, no matter the predicament, always try to keep a lighthearted attitude about you. Don’t take anything too seriously — especially not my words to you today.

Samuel is a junior in Engineering.

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