When I think about people I admire, whose lives and careers I respect like whoa — and I think about them a lot — I face the unavoidable conclusion that almost all of them are, in some respect, irrational. Worse, the very actions I admire them for taking are irrational. I thought rationality was pretty sweet until I realized that all my heroes, and many of my friends' as well, got famous by being irrational.
It isn't rational to pull a steamship over a hill in the forbidding Peruvian jungle. It isn't rational to write hyper-erudite live theater in the 21st century — or, for that matter, the 20th. It isn't rational to make albums out of just overlapping loops of stuff. It isn't rational to put long-form, black-backgrounded conversation on television. It isn't rational to write a 1079-page novel, 100 of whose pages are footnotes. It isn't rational to travel around the world doing art happenings. It isn't rational to start computer companies in a recession. It isn't rational to simultaneously act, direct, paint, write poetry and host comedy shows. It isn't rational to write poems in DNA. It isn't rational to write insane novels about obese survivalists and men living in cardboard boxes. It isn't rational to simply up and relocate to Japan in 1963. It isn't rational to secretly run a wire between the Twin Towers and walk across it. It isn't rational to walk away from internet tip culture when it's paying you handsomely. It isn't rational to spend six years and pretty much all the little money you have on a surreal 16mm black and white nightmare.
Rationality has done a lot for me. But clearly, if I'm going to take it to the next level, I have to be irrational.