Here's a strange little reflection I found on page one of a journal I started about two years ago. I avoided writing in it because it wasn't the format I generally prefer for a journal: heavy lined 8.5 by 11 loose leaf notebook paper. But for reasons I explain below, I finally started using this journal as well. I'm currently on page 13.
I have had this little book since before I graduated from high school in 1981. What the hell have I saved it for all these years? Good god, it's now 2004 and this book is still empty, unused-- not quite wasted (because it still has potential) but almost, since it is a thing that has a purpose and that purpose is going unfulfilled. And if that purpose is never fulfilled, well, then the thing is wasted.
Everything has a purpose, but we don't get to decide what those purposes are, necessarily-- only the purposes of the things we make. The purpose of a cow is not to be eaten, but to be a cow. However, the purpose of beef is to be eaten, and it would be wrong to waste beef. Once the sacrifice has been made, once a thing has been killed, then it's wrong to let it go to waste.
I'm thinking about issues of utility and worth-- I don't want to exploit things, and I also don't want to waste resources--
and that's it.