Jason Derulo.

I’ll explain that in a second.

I’m fascinated by confidence, by those who carry themselves as if they know what they’re doing even when they have no clue. People who criticize others, and tell them how to improve while having no expertise in the area in which they criticize. People who think they know plumbing better than a plumber because they once turned the water off in thier house. Those who think they could write a better book than (insert popular author of your choice). Think they can dance better than Michael Jackson (okay, sure, now they probably could but I’m talking about back in the day). The people who honestly believe they can do whatever they set their minds to doing.

You think so?

Prove it.

Often they think that putting their minds to it, wanting it, is enough. And already believe themselves great. That kind of confidence, bordering on arrogance just baffles my mind. They haven’t done anything and yet they believe in their abilities. Abilities they lack.

I walk tall, I smile easily and I project confidence as a matter of course so why am I railing against confidence? I’m not, confidence is great, confidence helps you keep moving while the rest of the crabs are trying to drag you back into the bucket. I’m railing against unearned confidence. Those that are sure they’re the best and think others lie when they are told they are not. I have so many insecurities over my work that if I allowed it to those insecurities would paralyze me. I keep positive and I keep moving forward and I will get better. I’ve got a lot to prove and I haven’t proven anything yet. When I started this comic I promised myself I’d go a year and not miss an update. I’m on track for that, I think I’ll be able to do it, but I’m a lot less confident than I was a few months ago. But I have to prove I can stick to it. That I can put the work in.

I have confidence in myself, in Dodge the Bullet, but I know we can both be better and we both have a lot to prove.

Perhaps it is the nature of the web to bring those with unearned confidence to the forefront, or perhaps it’s just a generation (my generation and the ones that have come after) brought up to believe in their own self esteem as a panacea for the ills of the world. I think self esteem can get in the way of improvement, as some tend to translate thinking well of themselves to thinking well of what they can do. Believe in yourself, absolutely. Believe in your abilities? Believe you’re good? Great? The best? A nascent legend?

Prove it.

So why did I start this out with Jason Derulo? Partly I find it amusing that he says his name at the beginning of a number of his songs but mainly because last week he Proved It. He sang and danced live on American Idol and was great, not good, great. Terrific performance. Terrific vocals. I’d heard his songs on the radio and liked them well enough but hadn’t thought much about him. Why? Honestly I’ve come to realize I’m even more cynical than I had guessed. I assumed that he had good songs, was an adequate singer/performer, and had a lot of studio trickery behind him to create those songs. I had no reason to think that but so many artists are now studio artists (not that they’re not artists, just that they can only really do the songs justice in the studio) that I just assumed that because he was a new, young artist he too was a studio artist. A creation of the record company. An assumption I had shoved in my face when he took to that American Idol stage.

I was wrong.

He Proved it.

I bought his album and I’m glad I did.