Why Am I Here?

Duane Gundrum
5 min readFeb 13, 2018

I spent a few hours this weekend paying bills. You know, the usual, where you sit down with your check book and write out checks for all of the bills that have been building up over the last few weeks. The kind that build up not because you can’t afford to pay them, but just because you don’t want to take the time to pay them. I find myself doing that a lot, and have even paid some bills really late because I just didn’t feel like filling out the paper work that is required to fill out in order to pay a simple gas bill. I really hate paying bills, and no matter how many times I pay it, that feeling just doesn’t change.

For me, it feels like my life has very little meaning when it comes down to it, because when I’m sitting there with a handful of utility and credit card bills, one starts to feel that there’s really little purpose in life other than paying bills to people who don’t provide anything for me other than little nuances that one needs to endure in order to live somewhat comfortably. I pay a gas bill because I don’t want to freeze, and sometimes I like to cook food without having to rub two sticks together and hope that millions of years of evolution don’t put me back a couple of thousands years to where I’m still required to provide my own fire. I pay an electricity bill so that I can watch TV, turn on the lights, run the microwave (avoiding that rubbing sticks together thing), fire up my computer to write this blog, and other things that come from Ben Franklin’s kite discovery a couple of centuries ago. I pay my rent bill so I don’t get kicked out on my behind and actually have a place to put my, what George Carlin eloquently referred to as, “stuff”. I pay my car payment so I can avoid having to take the bus to work, and then I get to pay my insurance bill so that I’m legally allowed to drive my car on the road. Add in credit card bills and other little nuanced payments here and there, and honestly, I’m paying a lot of money to maintain a very low level of existence.

But what’s the meaning of it all? I mean, why continue to pay all of this money to entities that don’t care one iota about me in any way just so one can continue to survive? Throughout history, reflective souls have constantly asked the inward-looking questions of “why am I here?” and each generation seems to have one or two philosophers that think they have it all figured out, yet why is it that we still keep having to ask this question? I mean, we can read all sorts of philosophers and think we have it all figured out, but I get the impression that no one has ever…

Duane Gundrum

Author of Innocent Until Proven Guilty and 15 other novels. Writer, college professor and computer game designer.