I got in a weird conversation the other night with a friend of my wife’s. He wanted to know what I was working on next, so I told him: a book about ‘fun.’ Deep fun, work as fun, meaning through fun, etc. And, get this, he said he doesn’t like to have fun. Figure that. So I told him that maybe not having fun was really his way of having fun, and he said no, fun is something for the privileged classes and not of interest to him.
That pretty much bummed me out for half an hour. Here I was, thinking I’d write a book that was nothing like the Jewish book – at least in that it wouldn’t be controversial. I mean, who is against fun? But here I was, telling one of the very first people about it, and already it was divisive and worthy of the rhetoric of class warfare. Hell, read some Marx. He believed in fun, he really did.
Meanwhile, I’m going to have more fun in general, as a way of living true to my beliefs. So, that means less speaking at synagogues (sorry, but I just don’t find it particularly rewarding, or fun) and more at colleges. Less writing articles, and more attention to my graphic novel (Club ZeroG, coming from Disinfo next Spring). I’m worrying less about the economy, and getting more involved in theater again, after seeing an old friend, Todd Graff’s great movie, CAMP, about a theater camp we used to go to. Got me thinking I should start hanging out with the fun freaks, again.
No, fun is not frivolity. Well, it can be, but it’s not a diversion from reality. It’s a way in. It doesn’t ignore the starving people, don’t worry about that. It just means that if you decide to go help the starving people, you’re doing it because it brings you meaning. A certain kind of fun.
Please, don’t anyone else reject the notion of fun until you’ve at least tried it. Because once you do have fun, you’ll want everyone else to have it, too.