The Absurdity of Modern Life in a City

Feeling like a Member of the Herd

Matthew David
6 min readSep 18


Photo by Sash Margrie Hunt on Unsplash

You wake up. It’s 6 am. You hit the snooze button a few times. Now it’s 6:20. You turn off your air conditioner. You’re sick of the constant noise it creates but it needs to be on; it gets too hot in your little room in the third floor apartment. You notice the little red light on the unit alerting you the filter needs to be changed.

“Already?” you mutter to yourself, half awake. You changed it only last month, but I suppose the air quality is just that bad.

You’ve had a decent night’s sleep but your legs still hurt from yesterday’s tedious day. 6:30 comes strolling along and you decide to get out of bed and make a cup of coffee, the only sane ritual in a world that’s grown increasingly more absurd and estranged.

You leave your room and are instantly hit with the smell of Indian food. There’s nothing wrong with Indian food of course, but when you’re just a white man who wants to be left alone, the pervasive smell of curry wafting up through the floorboards and the vents is not something you want to be smelling first thing in the morning.

After you’ve made your coffee you retreat back to your room and lay back in bed. It’s about 6:45 now, so you’ve only got an hour and 15 minutes until you need to head out the door to catch the subway.

Your coffee is hot so while it’s cooling down, you open YouTube to watch a little vlog or something. Sometimes it’s a cinematic masterpiece by Nathaniel Drew, and sometimes it’s just life talks by Dewayne at Dry Creek Wrangler School.

Nathaniel Drew offers an optimistic introspective quality in his videos, but lately you find that hard to connect to, so you watch another life talk by Dewayne. He’s an older man with a lot of experience, and seems to embody a philosophy that you’ve been striving towards your whole life: the philosophy of rugged self-reliance.

You watch one of his videos and feel both inspired by his lifestyle and disgusted at your own. Well, not disgusted at yourself for living this life, but more like disgusted at the social situation you find yourself in, disgusted at all of the little things like the bad air quality and the smell of curry in the morning and the noisy air…



Matthew David

Philosopher. Writer. Coffee Addict. I write about Philosophy from the Ancient Greeks to Existentialism. ←Learn more here