Let­ter from the Editor

Scout - - ADVETORIAL -

I was clean­ing my room when I chanced on an old with Drake on the cover. It was a 2013 is­sue; the rap­per and song­writer was then only 26. The writer wrote, “He vowed he’d bank pain, one most likely caused by a cock­tail of envy, self-doubt, and de­feat. I just turned 25. dol­lars! I did a men­tal cal­cu­la­tion of how much that con­verts to pe­sos. I thought about how I could spend that amount, how many par­ties a week I could throw, that I could now af­ford a proper linen du­vet for my apart­ment, and how hideously bour­geois my idea of money is.

While con­struct­ing my vivid day­dream of new money, I also got to think­ing about our ideas of suc­cess. Apart from his im­pres­sive sav­ings ac­count, I don’t re­ally know any­thing about Drake. I don’t know if he has an av­er­age IQ or if he cries him­self to sleep. But our cul­ture be­lieves that wealth is an achieve­ment. Old CEOs aren’t news but young over­achiev­ers are. We are more fas­ci­nated and tend to quickly ob­sess over emerg­ing ge­niuses, than those who have a track record of be­ing re­li­ably con­sis­tent over a long pe­riod. (To be fair to Drake, he has so far proven to be that, too.)

In his memoir Haruki Mu­rakami com­pares the dis­ci­pline of be­ing a writer to long-dis­tance run­ning. He said that in marathons, those who make an early ea­ger sprint will most likely fall vic­tim to rapid col­lapse mid­way. Sim­i­larly, in writ­ing nov­els, he said he can’t rely on an in­ex­haustible well­spring of tal­ent and churn out a mas­ter­piece in a few sit­tings—or a fab­u­lous eight chap­ters in eight hours and be so burnt out that the novel has to sit un­touched for weeks. Pac­ing is key.

I re­cently came to a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of this when I met Joseph Marco. He ar­rived at our shoot wear­ing all black, a plain T-shirt and sweat­pants. I was told he just came from an all-nighter tap­ing for a TV show. De­spite that, he ex­uded not ex­actly weari­ness but calm. doubt he’d wear a turtle­neck sweater and retro-style high-waist pleated pants while lean­ing pen­sively against a door for a pic­ture. But be­ing the pro­fes­sional that he is, he posed for the shot any­way.

Joseph was never the break­out star of his gen­er­a­tion. That’s just not his thing. From com­mer­cial mod­el­ling to act­ing in TV and movies, Joseph’s achieve­ments are con­sis­tent and not ex­actly few. Those who as­pire to be se­ri­ous ac­tors (or singers or ath­letes or other pro­fes­sions) will have to rely on a lot more than youth to re­main rel­e­vant. Teen su­per­stars have a short shelf-life. Joseph knows this and he’s mov­ing at his pace.

I can imag­ine how one may fal­ter from pres­sure af­ter be­ing deemed the promis­ing, next big thing. When you start com­par­ing your­self to oth­ers, adapt­ing to an un­nat­u­ral pace that’s not yours, you’ll in­evitably stum­ble. But those who are in it for the long haul will take their time.

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