So Much Winning

“So much winning,” is a mantra of an id-driven top-dog. Were they alone in their ravening, it would be sad. As they merely express the desire of every desirer, it is maddening.

There is no antidote and so I write not of a mafioso don, but as one tempted by every breath to store up nine more against an unimaginable time when each breath comes faster and briefer, using up the largest of reserves.

“So much winning,” hooks the fantasies of every lottery play, ladder climber, underling, and outcast—not to mention every middler and reasonably well-off.

What keeps getting missed by “winning” is that its very intent is sabotaged by its premise that winning is self-sustaining—a perpetual boot-strap pulling. Winning cannot continue to claim a central spot in a raison d’être, for it carries an even larger limit of some equal but opposite loss. I cannot win as much if you are also winning some.

This limit means that “so much winning” is false advertising when applied to any group of people or even a whole economy. “Winning” is a corporate lie, for it doesn’t even work in a work-a-day world of an individual. Every advancement requires each previous stage of growth as the ground from which it can spring.

Winning means nothing without a background of loss. A background of loss is a constant threat to a win. The more the drive to win, the larger grows a resistance.

If we are not caught in the machinations of someone else’s yearning for a win, we can’t seem to get out of our own way. How maddening that winning, as a cover of whining, goes on and on. After all these generations, we are back to the beginnings of stories about beginnings without a clue of how to write a story without a motif of winning running through it.

One hint, maybe, is to translate “winning” as “violence.” I expect that seeing something as it is will help. And you?