Approximately 1 in 100 people are aliens. "Aliens" is perhaps too specific a word.
We don't really know what they are. Perhaps they are avatars of the programmers who created this world. We are like the instagram to their reality and occasionally they deign to visit us, to observe us, to perhaps try us out for awhile.
But perhaps they could be aliens, fattening up our civilization until they can land and do with us what they've done to 1000s of planets (millions!) before us.
Or maybe they are angels, sent down to keep balance to The Force.
Some say they are dead people who have learned through their trials and are ready to take the place of people who no longer want to inhabit their bodies. They barter and trade with us, heaven for you, a human body for them.
These people always succeed. Because they know the rules of the game. They know when people are lying and telling the truth. They know the headlines of tomorrow's newspaper. They give their all when their all is needed and they rest when it's time to sleep.
They look incredibly good. They are having sex constantly with beautiful people. They put a card in an ATM machine and money flies out. Their minds are 3D printers of realities.
To have one of these people look at you, or touch you, or love you, would convey untold blessings on you. But rare is that look, even less so their touch, which is guarded carefully by those they call The Ancient Ones.
The rest of us have to toil and struggle. For me, sometimes there's a monster in my head.
That monster might be from the movie I saw last week. But I wake up in the middle of the night I wonder, "does she really like me?" about my wife.
"Am I going to die young?" "Am I going to go broke?" "Why did these people say this, that, and the other thing about me? Don't they realize how wrong it was to do that. Don't they realize I have FEELINGS?"
The rest of us are only human. And humans shit, and get dirty, and privately think disgusting things 90% of the day. Humans are afraid of each other, afraid to say what they mean, afraid to admit what they've done. Humans want to touch and hold but are afraid of what will happen if touched back.
And we've done stuff. Or perhaps I can't speak for you....I've done stuff. And as open as I am, I'm equally ashamed.
Sometimes ashamed of what I've done. Sometimes ashamed of what I could've done, but didn't.
Those moments when I could've been a hero. Could've done something worthwhile and instead left a negative empty space where greatness would have occupied.
I'll never be as good as the aliens among us. The angels who fly through the air when nobody is looking. The avatars that have come down to show us a glimpse of what a life is like without failure.
Sometimes I see them out of the corner of my eye, like an illusion of water in the desert.
But when I look closely, I find they aren't there. And, even worse, sometimes when people look at me, I feel invisible and worthless. I feel the disconnect between their eyes and who I really am.
Why are some people always a success and people like you and me aren't? It's because the rules aren't fair. It's because we forgot the rules. It's because nobody's even told us the rules.
It's because our judgements of them only reflect what we really think about ourselves. That's the only answer.
When our ashes are thrown into the air, after our bodies have given their last inhale, then you and I will be equal and the aliens will get tired of us and leave this boring planet to all of its failures and violence and disappointments.
There's gold at the end of the rainbow and they know how to find it. But on my last breath I suspect I'll know where to look.
This article was originally published on Quora (link).