As my friend Kevin Kelly put it, 2016 is hungry. It just wants more and more childhood icons. And now, it’s taken Carrie Fisher.
For those of you who only know Carrie Fisher’s role as Princess Leia, I’d strongly recommend reading Carrie Fisher’s books. They’re hilarious and they will teach you something important. Carrie Fisher was a human honey badger. She just didn’t give a fuck. If you doubt it, just check out this article where you’ll find such gems as this:
She responded to the controversy over the Slave Leia outfit by explaining: “I think that’s stupid. The father who flipped out about it, ‘What am I going to tell my kid about why she’s in that outfit?’ Tell them that a giant slug captured me and forced me to wear that stupid outfit, and then I killed him because I didn’t like it. And then I took it off. Backstage.”
Even when she’s brought onboard the Death Star, she still doesn’t give a fuck! The Death Star!!!
In real life, Carrie Fisher didn’t give a fuck either because at a certain point when you’re a huge star and everyone is telling you what to do and what to think you get exhausted and then you cope with drugs and alcohol and then after rehab you discover something important: whatever can be very clever.
Working with teenagers, you hear whatever a lot. School doesn’t make them feel good and so they just keep saying whatever.
Whatever is clever. It removes the feelings of shame and anxiety that come from school. It’s a way to cope. In the short term, it solves their stress.
Of course, in the long term. It’s dumb. It makes you dumb. You never get an education and so you’re set up to struggle in the Information Age. The much wiser thing is to not say whatever to school and instead to work through those feelings. Instead of feeling stupid when you make a mistake, learn from it and use it to get better. Instead of being afraid of math, be excited and jump in for the challenge. And then when people call you a nerd because you have straight As, then you say whatever. Because if you want to stand out and be excellent, you just have to go total honey badger sometimes and not give a fuck what anyone thinks. You have to go full Carrie Fisher.
Cultures need totems. They need symbols. And as we’re all sorting through the loss of Carrie Fisher, I can think of no more fitting tribute to her than immortalizing her as the human honey badger she was. Carrie Fisher knew how to selectively not give a fuck.
And that left her with the energy to care about the things that really matter. Like using her celebrity to provide a voice for people with mental illness.
May the Force be With You, Carrie Fisher. And may you inspire another generation of girls and boys to selectively not give a fuck so they can save their energy for the things that matter, you human honey badger you.
What really matters and what doesn’t really matter? To figure that out, embrace your inner Carrie Fisher. And if people are handing you some bullshit then try saying “Who the fuck cares?”
Who the fuck cares about the war on Christmas? Who the fuck cares whether you want me to use one of 70 different gender pronouns? Who the fuck cares about the Kardashians? Who the fuck cares about most of the shit humanity is talking about right now? Why don’t we talk about some real shit? Why don’t we all honor Carrie Fisher by being like her? And if you want to talk about some real shit, then here’s the space to do it. No holds barred. Anything you want to talk about from racism to sexism to why the left won’t talk about culture, it’s here. We’re some Carrie Fisher mother fuckers. So come on down. Let’s honor her. Let’s be like her.
2016 has taken too many people. Let’s make 2017 the year humanity talks it all out. Carrie Fisher is gone. So, how about you and a few million other people take her place?
Broadcast to the world what you just don’t give a fuck about. #WhatWouldCarrieFisherSay?
Or some better hashtag. I’m new to this interweb thing. Have fun, internet.