This is the true joy in life, being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one. Being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as I live it is my privilege - my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I love. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me; it is a sort of splendid torch which I've got a hold of for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.
George Bernard Shaw
I read these inspiring words here and they brought to mind the marvelous documentary about Bill Cunningham, whose visual commentary on style has delighted readers of the New York TImes for decades. It's impossible not to be charmed by Cunningham's gleeful (obsessive?) pursuit of the great shot and his almost comic indifference to wealth, fame, and creature comforts. Rarely have I seen someone so passionate and single-minded about his vocation, so consumed by the imperative of work, and so thoroughly convinced of its purpose. This post is for Bill Cunningham, who burns brightly and inspires me to rejoice in life for its own sake.
Image from Bill Cunningham New York.