19
Aug

bitch-slap-your-pain
Bitch slap your pain

I spent some of yesterday doing CEO-type stuff for Intervention and drawing a comic about a farting rabbit. As hilarious as this sounds, the rest of the year is going to be filled with so much teaching, speaking, and book writing. I’m getting significant press for it, too. It’s really exciting. The idea of going to far away places and releasing my books…wow you guys wow.

When I was little, I used to feel like I was broken somehow. Perhaps I am. Somehow along the way, I got this idea that I should stand up for what I believe in, no matter what. A lot of people thought that the things I did were cute or funny, but I never really had much support when it came to becoming the person that I really am. I think some kids have a natural inclination toward certain vocations. The best parenting pushes a child toward discovering who they really are and doesn’t try to make them into something they aren’t under penalty of death. I can’t blame parents, though. It would have been much easier for me if I were like the other little girls in Catholic School. I stood out for 2 reasons – I was really poor, and my mocha skin color didn’t match the pale color of the rest of my family.

I learned really early in life that people are assholes.

“That’s not your Mother.” teachers would tell me. I wasn’t the take-no-shit girl you all know today back then. I’d just put my head down and say, “That IS my Mommy!”. I saw inequality right away, and it pissed me off.

I always had a sense of right and wrong. Even when I really needed food and didn’t have anything, I never once stole anything. I’d be the kid that brought the extra 10 cents that the cashier gave me all the way back to the store or cleaned up the soda that I spilled in the department store. I looked at the world logically, but the world failed to follow logic. Hating things and people that look different from you just isn’t logical. The fact that teachers would encourage other kids to make fun of me because I didn’t “match” the family I lived with was just insane. The fact that the kids that stole things were patted on the head because they matched a certain archetype and I was treated like dirt just didn’t parse.

I think I carry my damage around with me as a way to motivate me to do what’s right. I haven’t been through the worst crap, but I haven’t been through the best, either. The reason I never stop – the reason I always am there for people – the reason I built and am still building this empire – it’s because I have to. When I was really little I had a cough. I got hit in the face every time I coughed because I was allegedly annoying, so I learned to turn the coughs into yawns. As horrible as that sounds, I’ve used the same type of concept to get over all of the bullshit. If I feel sad or depressed, I ask myself what I can do about it and do it. I turn the pain into positive action. Failing that, I drink a coffee and repeat.

It’s doesn’t sound as theatrical as putting on a jaunty crab hat and lighting my ass on fire while running down the street, but I hope the impact is more resonant.

Don’t think that you have to be a perfect person to reach your dreams or make a difference.



Oni Hartstein is a Los Angeles-based entrepreneur that is obsessed with Rock Music, Metal Music, and Marketing. Please direct all business inquiries or review requests to the "Contact" tab on the top nav bar.

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4 Responses to “Bitch slap your pain”

  1. Sara says:

    Great article Oni. Really inspiring. Though I wouldn’t turn my nose up at a jaunty crab hat. :)

  2. MikhailBorg says:

    The reason I never stop – the reason I always am there for people – the reason I built and am still building this empire – it’s because I have to.

    Best reason in the world!

    Things are messed up, Nobody can fix it all alone, but we can all fix the bits we can reach.

    • onezumi says:

      Thanks! :)

      When I told some people at one of my job about what I do they reacted in near horror asking if I were nuts because I don’t sleep very much and essentially work 2-3 jobs. I was surprised, because I can’t imagine getting to be older and looking back on my life seeing only eating, sleeping, working for a paycheck, and not much else. It would depress me so much and give me a mid life crisis. There’s nothing wrong with doing those things, of course, but I know what upsets me and I choose to head it off. :)

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