Prompt 2

Slow day today, so time for another prompt! Today’s is:

What are you passionate about?

I HATE this question. At some point in the last five years, everybody started asking this question constantly and talking about what they’re “passionate” about, and expecting to be “passionate” about whatever work they do or whatever. Where did this come from? Why did everyone all of a sudden start expecting to feel passion on a daily basis? I mean, I think feeling contentment on a daily basis is a much more reasonable goal. Feeling passionate is a pretty high bar! I’m not sure I’ve experienced passion even once in my whole life; I sure as shit don’t experience it in my daily work.

The first definition of “passion” is “strong and barely controllable emotion.” So the question at hand is “what makes you so extremely emotional you can hardly control it?”

(Interesting sidenote: the definition of euphoria is “a feeling or state of intense excitement and happiness.” I would have thought euphoria is a more extreme emotional state than passion but the dictionary definitions indicate the opposite — that passion is “barely controllable,” whereas euphoria is intense, but one would assume manageable.)

What a weird question for one’s HR department to be constantly asking! You’d think they’d want you to avoid work that causes this, not seek it out! It’s almost like this is a completely empty watered-down platitude that actually means nothing at all! That when we talk about being “passionate” about something, what we really mean is something like “this is what I’d like to do with my time if I could, that I suspect I could also make a reasonable income at.”

But these days, the Lords of Capital are not longer content with us merely having work ethic. They want us to convince them that we experience transportive and uncontrollable love and desire for our work, that we’re carried away by it, that we fantasize about it in our beds at night.

Anyway, if I take the question at face value, as “what makes you lose control of yourself” I’d have to say…nothing. I’m not an especially emotional person, and I’m pretty in control of myself at all times. I experience depression that I can’t control sometimes, but that’s more the absence of all emotion than strong and uncontrollable emotion. I experience some uncontrollable worry and anxiety, but although this particular definition doesn’t make this explicit, passion is generally understood to indicate a positive emotion.

So. Do I ever experience nearly uncontrollable positive emotions?

No.

So the answer to this prompt is: Nothing.

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