One of the great cottage industries of low-rent pop-science and garbage content marketing of the past few years is the lionization of the “creative person.” You know: The messy iconoclast, capable of seeing new patterns and disrupting modes of thought, like Steve Jobs or Leonardo Da Vinci. You’ve probably taken the quizzes and pored over the lists, discovering that creative people “need space to create,” are “occasionally crazier and yet adamantly saner,” they “observe everything” and “daydream,” aren’t seen as leaders because they’re too busy creating, they’re sensitive and “think different,” they “have a ‘yes’ mentality,” and so on. It’s often written in a mixture of the fuzzy language of human resources job-evaluation worksheets and the even fuzzier science of The Secret-style wish fulfillment.
There are many offensive things about this trend, such as the insistence upon “creativity” as this sort of commodified thing that creates an output by a given deadline, but perhaps the most offensive thing is its “us versus them” branding. There are creatives and then normies. Creatives are carried on the wings of angels from project to project—messy beautiful geniuses caught between daydreaming, procrastinating, and making art—while normies pursue day jobs and copulate in pools of their own filth.
One particularly egregious example of this sort of thinking, an animation by the website Bright Side, has been making the rounds lately.
That’s right: Creative people have multicolored hair and wear fedoras and are more fun because they live in a hallucinatory netherworld full of pirates and elves, because they are fucking children. Also they don’t watch TV, because: books! It’s an innocuous example of a risibly elitist way of thinking, which is probably why over the past few days it has taken on a second life as normies the world over band together to shit all over it.
Ordinary people everywhere are chortling away at these and many other variations on the meme; true creatives, meanwhile, are probably daydreaming that a dog drew all of these pictures, or something.