PAGE 39 VOL. 1, NO. 1 ZEITGEIST Another forlorn user expressed, I’m trying to be grateful that I got into some good schools at least, but it’s really hard and I just feel like [crap] rn. I just kinda built up really high expectations for myself subconsciously I think, because for almost my entire life I’ve always been told how smart/gifted I am. Even in my toxic and competitive school, so many people have told me I’m the smartest person they know (please don’t think I’m bragging here, I know it sounds like it but I’m just ranting). One particularly introspective student contemplated, imagine how sad and meaningless ur life has to feel if the only reason u wake up in the morning is in hope of receiving a 40 word email containing ur college admission decision that helps u determine ur self worth for a random 15 minutes of fame from ur stressed friends and random relatives. Here’s a rather appalling glimpse into the psychological consequences of the American college industry - but that’s a discussion for another day. Our main focus right now is exploring how we can apply Camusian philosophy to overcome disappointment. Evidently, these users have faced the incredibly demoralizing reality of unfulfilled expectations, and because all of their efforts seemed to be in vain, they see less reason to continue trudging forward. The world, as it stands, appears infuriatingly irrational and inconsiderate. If that’s the case, then why do anything at all? And beneath that question lies another: why even live if it’s all pointless anyways? We’ve once again stumbled across the Camusian dilemma of suicide. Let’s go about answering it. Recall that revolt is the acceptance of the universe as absurd, frustrating, and incomprehensible while continuing one’s labor in spite of these propositions. This supposedly gives life meaning in the face of overwhelming hopelessness. What we ought to do, then, is to accept that our college decisions are more likely than not going to be unsatisfying. We should also acknowledge that, broadly speaking, even if we did everything perfectly in life, things still might not turn out the way we want them to. However, what’s most important is that we continue doing those things which are important to us even if hope is a mere phantasm. Though our lives are far less tedious, each of us lives like Sisyphus. We’re condemned to push this boulder whether we like it or not, our bodies and minds cordoned into schools soon after birth and later into workplaces until we’re too frail to labor any further. Unfortunately, that's just the way the world works. But we mustn't give in to absurdity. Even if we were in the most desperate and horrible of situations, we can still take pleasure in the monotonies and even miseries of life. Discover the exquisite crevices and bumps on your stone, feel your legs and arms grow toned and powerful, and ingrain the pristine flakes of snow swirling around the distant peak into your mind. Is this not beautiful? Is this not worth living for? Now, Camus’ absolute pessimism is still somewhat confounding to me. Unabashedly hoping while nonetheless acknowledging the possibility of failure hardly seems irresponsible or cowardly to me, even though he insists that any “nostalgia for unity” between the absurd and human hope is “subterfuge”. His preoccupation with the acceptance of truth in its absurdity is a common strand in existentialism but not one I find compelling. I think