#422 Hanging on

We’re all pretty much the same.

Packed tightly in our skintight skin is a bumpy clump of slippery organs and brittle bones. Yes, you’re a pile of bones, I’m a bucket of blood, you’re a slab of muscle, I’m a chunk of chub. And no matter what we got squeezing through our veins, zooming through our brains, and dripping out our drains, one big thing just always remains.

We’re all pretty much the same.

We’re all pretty much the same.

We’re all pretty much the same.

Baby brains buzz and little eardrums pop, baby lungs breathe deep and little eyelids flop, but as we grow up and grow older maybe we start letting differences be our guide, start choosing our own adventures, start carving paths and curving wide. We settle into ourselves, settle into our skin, settle into our lives, and find the comforts within…

We grow up, we grow older, some grow hotter, some grow colder. We focus on our tastes, on our preferences and our choices, we find our kinds of friends, we read our kinds of voices. We might cut deep paths, we may turn others away, we may deepen our divides, we may have nothing nice to say.

But way down deep in our stomachs, way down deep in our hearts, we can always remember that no matter which way we turn, which lessons we learn, which bridges we burn…

We’re all pretty much the same.

We’re all pretty much the same.

No matter what money we earn, what chances we churn, what choices we spurn…

We’re all pretty much the same.

We’re all pretty much the same.

Because we’ve all got cracks and chips, we’ve all got sores and scratches, we’ve all got doubts and dreams, we’ve all got hearts with patches. We laugh and cry, we soar and sink, we go up and down, we stop and think. Behind your favorite things, behind your bestest friends, behind your fears and doubts… we’re all waiting here again.

We’re all in this big show together.

We’re all singing the same song.

We’re all walking into the future.

As we all keep hanging on.

AWESOME!

Check out The Book of Awesome

Photos from: here, here, here, here, here, and here

111 thoughts on “#422 Hanging on

  1. If this one isn’t in the Book of Awesome 2 I will probably cry. Definitely one of the best you’ve ever written. Please, keep doin’ what you’re doin’.

  2. I agree one thousand percent, this is the best one yet! And it came just when I needed it (you have no idea how much I’m hanging on right now) – before I clicked to open it, I said “c’mon baby, make it REALLY awesome”. You sure didn’t disappoint. Thanks so much, you added a beautiful rainbow to my rainy day.

  3. this has to be my favorite blog you have written so far. its amazing and wonderful, and one of the best things i’ve read in a while.

    thank you.

  4. I DID read this today to my class (3rd grade). They were so into it, and they really understood it. One little girl had a thoughtful look on her face and finally said, “Why does everyone have such a problem getting along? We should all love each other because we are the same, even if our hair and stuff’s different. I mean, we all eat and pee and sleep and go to school, we are the same and we should be nice.”

    :)

    1. She needs to run for president when she grows up! haha maybe peace would be within our reach if we all thought this way.

      1. I know! Children have a lot of silly, crazy, funny thoughts, but they often have some very profound ones, too. They usually see things simply and haven’t yet been bombarded with cynicism and negativity.

  5. Thank you for being the first email I open in the morning and for the best start I could ever hope for by reading this as September brings so many changes to so many people’s lives.

    Together, we are all the same, whether you like the post or not.

    Personally, I loved it and will put this in my “Keepers” for “those days.”

  6. This is by FAR the best one yet. So true. In times like we live now, it’s important that people understand we are all the same. We may have developed different hopes and dreams, but when it comes down to it.. we’re all the same.

    Everyone in this world needs to read this. It’s simple and true.

  7. kind of after the fact, but on re-reading this, i’m reminded of the lyrics from one of my favorite songs by The Weepies called “Can’t Go Back Now”:

    Yesterday, when you were young,
    Everything you needed done was done for you.
    Now you do it on your own
    But you find you’re all alone,
    What can you do?

    You and me walk on, walk on, walk on
    Cause you can’t go back now.

    You know there will be days when you’re so tired that you can’t take another step,
    The night will have no stars and you’ll think you’ve gone as far as you will ever get

    But you and me walk on, walk on, walk on
    Cause you can’t go back now

    And yeah, yeah, go where you want to go
    Yeah, yeah, be what you want to be,
    If you ever turn around, you’ll see me.

    I can’t really say why everybody wishes they were somewhere else
    But in the end, the only steps that matter are the ones you take all by yourself

    And you and me walk on
    Yeah you and me walk on
    Cause you can’t go back now
    Walk on, walk on, walk on
    You can’t go back now

  8. Sir, you posted this right before the start of my freshman year in high school. I was really afraid about the change since i didn’t know anyone. I couldn’t get any sleep and i saw that 1000 awesome things had a new post. I read it and it gave me the courage to face school. I’ve been following this website since the beginning after I typed in awesome. The broccoflower entry was really hilarious and I followed your blog to hear instant classics such as, blowing your nose in the shower, and peeling an orange in one shot. It made me feel like i wasn’t the only one who liked those things. You have been giving me laughs throughout my middle school, and now high school years. and i have something i want to say to you. Thank you, and keep being awesome!

    1. I’m starting high school on Monday.
      You took the words right out of my keyboard.

      I also thought I was the only one who enjoyed those things, and as soon as I saw “#763 Scraping all the lint off an overflowing lint trap” I was jumping up and down with joy in my dining room.

  9. do i hear Dr. Seuss
    in what you compose?
    this is awesome
    you are awesome
    we’re pretty much the same
    same as same same.
    if you are awesome
    then we are pretty awesome too
    because we’re pretty much the same same.
    really awesome to see the awesomeness
    in everyone and everything else!
    :)

  10. This Is Amazing It’s Just Taken Me Forever To Write Down So I Can Make It Into A Massive Drawing With Words To Hang On My Wall And Read Every Single Day!! I Did’nt Even Have To Read All Of It Before I Could See It Was A Beautiful Peice!! Cheered Me Up Really Good At Work!! :) Nice Work!!

    Charlie.

  11. I agree with so many other “commenters”–this should definitely be a song! Do YOU sing. Neil? If not, go out and find someone that would do these words justice!

  12. I couldn’t think how to describe this poetic work and turned to a dictionary of odd words. Concinity means that something blends together perfectly.

  13. I found this entry right when I needed it. Thanks. You are Awesome!! By the way, since you watched wrestling, I was wondering if you still do, how high The Miz ranks LOL

  14. The true essence of poetry. Pure feeling and soul, pieced together perfectly to form one idea. And it rhymes.

    It couldn’t be better.

  15. Love this Neil~ well done. Fairly out there, I am a passionate. Once said,
    “To write to an audience of ten year olds, you have captured the heart of the Universe.”

  16. Great stuff from you, man. Ive read your stuff before and youre just too awesome. I love what youve got here, love what youre saying and the way you say it. You make it entertaining and you still manage to keep it smart. I cant wait to read more from you.

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