Why the Baby Boomers Can Go to Hell (And Why Generation X Can Suck it Too)

The title may seem harsh, unless of course you are a member of my generation- the Millenials. If you’re one of us, this may actually ring with the sweet sound of truth. For you see, even for all it’s harshness I do not believe any argument soon to be presented lacks much in validity. If you disagree, you’re probably too old to really understand what our truly unique situation is. I don’t expect you to understand. That’s always been your biggest problem.

But anyway.

As defined generally by the conglomerated information on Wikipedia, the generation break up is as follows:

Baby Boomers – 1943-ish to the early 60’s

Generation X – Mid-ish 1960’s to the start of the 80’s

Millennials – Mid-ish 80’s to around the start of George W’s 2nd term

Now that we have these terms very loosely defined, the argument can begin proper.

I will begin by outlining the general complaints against my generation by the prior two. They will almost inevitably say that we are lazy and fully incapable of the strength of character that they posses. They will say that we stare at our phones all day and watch too much television and that our music is bad. They’ll say that we have never worked as hard as they have and have had so many more opportunities than they could even imagine. They’ll say that we don’t understand true struggle like they do and that our values are all out of order. This is general of course, and mostly based upon what I have heard said myself about those around my age.

Sound about right? Not wholly incorrect in every way but this is all said while being totally ignorant to any complaints about those parties initiating the primary complaints. Us Millennials have our faults and I am often one of the greatest opponents against many of the behaviors of my peers. The difference is that they are my peers and their faults are mostly a product of the world that you damn boomers have made.

So if you don’t mind- cram it, because I won’t have such ignorance striding around in force on my planet any longer. What follows will be my judgment upon these older generations as a whole, so don’t try and mention individuals who may have done a little bit of something admirable because it wasn’t enough to undo the rest of the damage.

I do believe that the Greatest Generation is justly named, though their faults are present and potent just the same the same as the rest. For better or for worse, they fought and built a might that the world had never seen and created a way of life that had never truly existed before. Those who lived long enough to come back home after what our history remembers as one of our greatest triumphs over societal evil, were able to build the most stable and satisfactory state of life those outside of the elite classes had ever seen. They did this in the hope that life would continue to improve with each passing generation, similarly to those who fought the British Empire on the east coast a few score years prior. They left that terror that only mass destruction men cause each other can have deep in their hearts and minds, and aimed to give their children a life without such burdens and fear.

It really is a shame how fat their children grew off the teat and what rotten greedy brats they’ve turned out to be.

Let’s begin to debunk some of the distasteful opinions of my brothers and sisters made by our collective living elders.

We’re lazy and don’t work as hard-

What a way to start, I mean, where do I begin? How about with this little two word phrase wonder that has plagued all those recently out of or about to go into that fabled and prophesied world of higher education.

Unpaid Internships.

Now a friend of mine who got a Masters in some form of business education had told me of this idea of opportunity cost. The idea, for those of you who don’t know, breaks down to essentially the weight of value of what you choose to labor for. Per essempio, if you are willing to do something without monetary compensation the outcome of that time must hold a high value to you and your future. It can ultimately be simplified to money versus time, and which has more value at that moment. As young people, we are told we have a lot of time and that we should be making money with all of it.

Too bad there’s none to be made. I can’t really say why I brought up opportunity cost, since it does’t really enter in to the discussion of unpaid internships which are easily the most common form of internships. Now I held an unpaid internship for a six month period at a conglomerate national broadcasting company just over a year ago. I worked on two shows simultaneously and was considered among the best in my local intern pool. All in all, it seems to have been worth dick to me other than it’s help in inspiring villains for my novel. Other than that, no one I’ve sent applications to seemed to care very much.

To throw some statistics at it, it looks like unpaid interning works just as well as not interning at all. Those with those fabled paid internships turn out alright, but who wants to be so addicted to a single aspect of their soon-to-be work life that they can spend every waking moment being consumed by it?

To throw some more statistics at it, here’s some youth unemployment in addition to what the cost of all these able young bodies being unemployed might be.

And just from my own experience, I live just outside of the world’s biggest financial metropolis and even there the idea of an entry level job seems a fairy tale. Even with a few good connections, a fairly impressive resume, a fresh haircut and a positive attitude- you’re unlikely to get a call back. And of course there is the paradox of the lowest level jobs that one can find, all require anywhere from 2 to 5 years experience.

So on to the next one.

We stare at our phones and have entertainment addiction- 

Now this one is tough to deny, so tough in fact, that I deem in impossible and won’t argue against it. But that still doesn’t leave us to blame for it.

It’s heard all the time as a damnation of younger generations that they depend on their phones and tablets, just as those before were wasting away in front of television screens and Walkmen.

Here’s the thing though, who buys them that s*#t? The average 16 year old makes no where near enough to afford such technologies, not even considering the subscriptions to cable and telephone companies to make them function and connect with other devices, so it’s clear they aren’t getting them themselves. How could a parent blame their child for using the device that was bought for them? If you really thought it was that bad, you should have never gotten it for them. Or you should have at least trusted that the values and virtues that your parenting had instilled in them led them to the true understanding that despite how much they like their iPhones and Pad and whatever, that these things can never hold the power that the physical world around them will inevitably have. I was taught that much and now I grow so sick of the constant connectivity and the seeming impossibility from escaping it.

Not to say that technology isn’t a tool. It most certainly is and despite the cries of our addiction, my generation is able to wield tech better than anyone thus far, despite all the nonsense that is tied with it.

Which brings me to the saturation of nonsensical entertainment which we should see as a tri-partisan issue, considering we all suffer from it is someway. Be it the Real Housewives of Where Ever or scrolling through whatever social media to find things you don’t really care about about people you sometimes only vaguely know, we all have our vices. Just because the screen is placed in the middle of your living room instead of in your pocket, doesn’t make it any less brain melting. If a growing Millennial became annoying, you could just pop it in front of the TV and let it’s mind become sucked in. And it was the Boomers and Gen Xers who really turned the TV into the advertisement and name brand slinging monster it has now become, so there should be no complaint from them that their kids were always bugging them to buy shit that they didn’t need, or even really want.

As far as our music being bad, I’d agree if you are discussing the corporate pop that is flashed around the TV and whatever is left of the radio. That stuff is formulated nonsense that takes mediocre talent and dresses it up with lights and auto-tune and designer clothes and shot from the many cannons of the media conglomerates of the western world. That stuff is garbage and far too many listen to it but even with all that, our art sneaks through.

The music of so many young artists has reached such experimental heights of genre blending and creation and our ability to wield technology as we do, allows for a bypass right around the conglomerated scheme. We make our music and can distribute it ourselves and despite some clunkers, a lot of this stuff is starting to get really good. Dig the brainchild of a 24 year old Brooklyn based trained composer below featuring my future ex-wife on lead vocals.

Or this 20 year old bloke

For the sake of ending this rambling before it gets out of control, we’ll make one more counterpoint.

We don’t understand true struggle and our values are all out of order

HA!

So we don’t know struggle huh? We don’t have the right kind of values huh?

I believe this deserves a quote from the man I worship like the pious do their prophets.

Dear future generations: Please accept our apologies. We were rolling drunk on petroleum,” once said the great Kurt Vonnegut.

Now there are people who want to be sensitive to the beliefs of others no matter how much they disagree. I am not one of those people. Since the birth of the industrial age in the Western world, humans have been trying to kill this planet and most things on it.

But Mother Nature is trying to kill us right back. Whether you have sense enough to believe it is our fault or not, the whole planet is getting warmer, the seas are getting dangerously high, weather is getting more extreme and the air is more and more unfit to breathe. Now this subject is under debate still for rather idiotic reasons as our clock keeps ticking. These elected officials we have in charge of making the laws that could help to turn this whole thing around can’t seem to get to any sort of progress on this issue, when they even bother to show up to work. I wonder if that has anything to do with the massive amount of Boomers in Congress or how a bunch of elite old coots pay to make sure people keep arguing so their pockets can stay fat until they die. I imagine that there is a connection.

I would figure that connection has a good bit to do with a failing global economy and the inability to abandon the constant increase of profit business model.

I get it though, really, I do. When fossil fuels began being used the world was such bigger place and we seemed so much smaller. They just couldn’t comprehend that what they were doing could actually damage an entire planets. But those were the generations way before the Greatest. I find it harder to forgive the Boomers and Xers. For the better part of their lives, there has always been an awareness of man’s effect on the world around us but their voluntary ignorance always overcame any warning.

So many like to say that there’s no money in renewable energy and although I could disagree, it’s more important to say that maybe, just f@#$ing maybe, it’s not about making money. Maybe for once they could sit there with the limited time they have left in power, they could actually try and do something for the next generation instead of worrying that the way they like things may have to change. Maybe, just f@#$ing maybe, they could actually do something to give the younger generations a better life across the planet.

But I won’t hold my breath. That generation took the American dream and made it into their own little ponzi scheme while trying to pass the blame onto their children. It’s up to us to clean up their mess and I hate to say it gang, but our time to do so is shorter than we think. Our civilization is reaching a make or break point on so many levels and if we don’t start acting now, we’ll all be doomed. I don’t mean to sound grim but it’s just the state of affairs we’ve been left with. I don’t doubt we can do it but I do doubt that all of us realize we now have to. We are left with the task our parents couldn’t be bothered to take care of and if you have any hope of having a family of your own, you’d better do your part.

I’m trying to do mine as best I can but it sure ain’t easy.

Josh was an Alien

One score or so centuries ago, a sentient being sat on a hill. I would say he was a man but that wasn’t technically true, despite all those he knew and those who knew of him believing he was of the same species.

His eyes were fixed upon the stars. His mind was fixed upon existence. Not his own though, he knew he would be fine soon enough.

He was called Josh in the tongue of those living in this particular sector of this particular planet. Josh was not called Josh where he came from but he figured there was no point in ruining the fun now. They wouldn’t be able to pronounce his true name anyway. Their ears couldn’t pick up such a frequency.

Yet even with the astonishing simplicity with which their minds operated, he had grown fond of a good few of them. And those he wasn’t as fond of still triggered a very sincere pity within him. He was concerned for them as a whole for while they were generally capable of passion, potential ability and wonderful heaps of kindness, they all would act incredibly stupid more than once in each of their lives. Some never ceased to be moronic. But even those at the highest mental capacity for their species at that time, could be so unbelievably stupid.

However, their primitive cognition is most likely what made Josh’s parlor tricks such a big hit. Most would listen better after they saw something they couldn’t quite understand. Similar to the effect dog treats have on dogs. The issue that had been becoming more and more prevalent, is that not all of them liked that they didn’t understand things going on in the universe around them. Josh knew they were going to do something about it. Just like how some dogs will bite someone that they don’t care for, or if they’re told to. Sad but it is true, some dogs don’t stand a chance.

Josh called them parlor tricks because that’s all they were to him. Everyone who had seen them thought they were much more miraculous.

Sometimes his parlor tricks were just to cancel the result of something incredibly stupid the locals would do. To give an example, there was the time that a whole mess of people travelled pretty far out of their way to listen to Josh talk and no one thought much about bringing food for the journey. To give another example, a wedding he was at once ran out of wine. In both instances, a few of the gadgets he had salvaged from his wrecked ship were able to rearrange and reproduce atoms to make more food and much more wine. To them it was mind boggling. To him, it was child’s play.

If Josh ever struggled on this planet, it was trying to understand how someone could be so stupid and cheap as to not get enough wine for a wedding. As he saw it, there was no point to weddings besides drinking way too much wine.

Other times, he would do something to prove a point. Josh hoped that they might be inspired enough to seek the answers to their questions and not just hope something happened that made it go away.

To show them how malleable their physical world can be, he once jumped from his friend’s boat and floated above the water. Where Josh came from, everyone could manipulate and concentrate their bodily energy enough to counter a relatively weak source of gravity as was found on this planet. His friends in the boat were thoroughly impressed but he often thought they didn’t understand what he was trying to say with his actions.

But there he was, looking up at the stars towards the closest cluster he could see in the direction of home. He had received the message that his emergency beacon had been picked up by his comrades and they would be on their way. When this would happen he wasn’t exactly sure, as they had to travel a bit through time as well as space to get to him. He had only been stuck for about 30 or so trips around this particular sun, which to him wasn’t much at all.

After he’d gotten caught in a rather testy wormhole, his ship was tossed off course and crashed in an area with a good bit of sand and rock and scattered grass. This sand and rock and scattered grass was on the outskirts of the area conquered by the people from a boot shaped land. With the last bit of his ship’s battery he did two things. First, he sent out a distress signal with his galactic coordinates. After that, he ran a scan of the planet and the dominant life forms. It took so little time for the results to emerge that the ‘ping’ the machine made caught him off guard. When he read what the scan came up with, Josh couldn’t help but laugh. To him, these folks had just barely crawled from the mud.

His species had over the course of several thousand generations developed the ability to alter the size and shape of their physical manifestations to blend in whenever they needed to not be noticed. So Josh made himself look like a baby and found his way to a nice, but rather poor family. He knew that much fewer people would ask where he came from if he was a baby. They adopted him as their own and since they were not able to conceive a child themselves, considered little Josh a gift from the deities they worshipped. Or so they would tell the people who met little Josh.

From his analysis of this planet, he was able to time out his growth to match that of the species he was using as his disguise. Only on a few occasions would Josh slip up and start talking about enlightened ideas with those whom he met. They would never quite understand him but they enjoyed what he would say and knew that there was something very special about him. So he kept it up for a good few years until he had spent enough time feigning development to reach the mature form of the native species. It was around then that he received a response to his distress signal. The message was this:

Apologies for the delay, it took a little bit of time to pinpoint where you had gotten stuck. There is literally nothing out there, so we didn’t believe the signal was coming from such a place at first. We’re looking up directions, grabbing some lunch and then we’ll be by to pick you up.

Since he knew that he would still have some time to kill, especially in the scale of the tiny lives of the tiny people on this tiny planet, Josh thought he might do some good and try to help these homely folk get a little further out of the mud.

So he would walk around and talk to people and do his little parlor tricks. He never went far from his ship, to make sure he could still catch his ride out of here. Josh would tell people to be nicer to each other and to work together to solve problems. He knew they all had so many questions but they weren’t ready for even a fraction of the answers he could give them. So he kept his talk vague but as inspiring as possible. He made sure they knew that ‘creation’ as they liked to call it was vast beyond their imagination but if they worked at it generation after generation after generation, they could explore far beyond this miniscule portion of the universe. There was a good chunk of the local population that listened and tried to follow his advice. But as his popularity started its meager growth, he noticed that certain people in the regional social structure were not too fond of his talk. These folks would make money and power with fear and that fear depended on people never knowing that they truly had nothing to fear.

So Josh took a deep breath and let out an even deeper sigh and stood from the rock he was seated upon on this particular night. He went back down to where his friends said they would stand guard while he was up on the hill. The lot of them had fallen asleep and Josh was a bit peeved.

So he woke them up and raised his voice a bit. He told them that if they wanted to sleep, they should have stayed in their beds. They told Josh that they were worried some people were coming after him and they wanted to stop them. Josh told them that it didn’t matter who was coming for him because they wouldn’t really be able to do much to him anyway. He told them that if they wanted to get better use of their time, they should look up at the sky and wonder about what is out there.

He had told them earlier that evening that he would be leaving them soon. Josh didn’t want them to be afraid and even though some people were going to try and kill him that he wouldn’t die. To explain how his species is able to regenerate would be too much for their delicate minds to handle, so he left that part out. His friends said they would go to war for Josh and he told them they had better not.

These people who wanted Josh dead were never fond of him from their first hearing about him. But as Josh’s talks and parlor tricks began to get bolder, they grew more concerned that he might actually be a real threat to their livelihood. The final straw happened when Josh went into one of their bigger clubhouses and flipped a bunch of tables over and did a whole bunch of yelling. Josh told the people there that they were wasting their time with all this buying and selling and gambling and that they had better start appreciating the beauty and bounty of the world around them. After that, the club that at first had only a mild distaste for Josh had grown to brew murderous intentions.

Josh knew they would be coming to the hill soon because one of his more terrified and confused friends would tell this club where he was. They would come with torches and swords and few members of an even bigger and more powerful club and drag Josh away. From there, he knew they would accuse him of a whole array of things and sentence him to be beaten and strung up on a carved up tree. So he would let them do it and he would pretend to bleed and die. After a few days, his body would regenerate and he would go back out into the world to wait for his ride. He worried whether it was the right thing to go back and see the friends he made on this planet after they believed he died or if it would be best to just disappear. Josh figured he would have to make that decision after all this business with his public execution had settled down for a bit.

He was already concerned that he had gone too far already with all his parlor tricks and talk of the universe. He feared that despite his best intentions, people would skew his ideas and use them to do bad things to each other. He worried that over time, these skewed ideas would be used as a means to control and influence others and how they chose to live. He worried that people would take these skewed ideas and argue and fight and kill other people whose skewed ideas were different from their own. He worried his friends would be too bent on revenge and forget all those things about kindness and compassion he had tried to tell them about. Josh worried if he had done the right thing trying to help these mud people out, or if he had just given them more excuses to be mean to each other.

But while Josh was worrying, the flicker of torches and the sound of arguing and yelling grew at the bottom of the hill. He heard swords being unsheathed and knew he couldn’t stargaze any longer. So Josh got up from his rock and began down the hill picking a few olives from the trees to munch on along the way to the bottom. He thought that maybe if he told them he would be coming back someday they might not lose sight of all he’d been saying all this time.

“Well,” Josh said to himself. “What’s done is done. It’s time I got going anyway. They were on their own before I showed up. If they have it in them, they’ll keep going just fine without me.”

He looked up one more time before the glow of the torches drowned out the stars. Josh was really just glad to be going home.

The Truth (hidden in parenthesis)

I suppose that you could say that I’m jealous and that this is a result of jealousy. But saying such things would be redundant, would it not?

My true self, which is very juvenile in truth, is upset that other people have blogs and get an exponential amount more views than mine ever does. It could be said that such pettiness provokes me now. It could be said that my whole existence is very petty but only because it very much is. It’s not that I thrive on such pettiness. It’s just that when it comes down to it, you consume whatever is available to you. This is what I have, so this is what I’ll end up vomiting out.

This may have to do with my slump which was admitted into existence on a post now a few short ages ago. That post doesn’t have a clever name or any clever tags, so you probably haven’t seen it. If there were any cleverness, it has now worn off as it enters its fourth year of being. It’s tough to shake traditions, just as it is tough to shake habit. Yet then again, those could be seen as the same thing. And there goes me and my redundancy.

Yet my madness has quelled to a point that leaves me with a constant feeling of discomfort. I itch and have been ignoring the obvious reason why. The first step to solving a problem is admitting that you have one. Or so the TV has told me all these years. Just the same, here it is.

I am growing up.

There is no sentence that is more heartbreaking that one and trust me, I’ve tried. Not that I’m changing who I am, I’ve just changed occupations. The days of inconsequence that comes with being a full time student are over. They have been over for a very long time now. It just takes time to adjust. It will take a whole lot more than this, as well. The craving for progress is going to be become entirely insatiable, unless of course, I start doing something about it. This is only an attempt and I would be a liar if I told you that everything was going to start picking up miraculously from here. I’m old enough to know there is no such thing as miracles. There are only stalled tragedies.

But what to be mad about?

There was a pop-scientist who had to debate some moronic individual who swears by a book poorly penned by tribal members of some thousand year old cult and edited by medieval control freaks. My rage builds at the very thought of having to put up with such counter progress but my rage will spark no instant change. A fury could be built by a murderer being promoted to a celebratory status and getting a chance to publicly fist fight over racial in equality for the guise of making a few bucks for some people who don’t have much at all. I could get mad about my government watching my every move on the phone and in cyberspace in order to propel an illusion of freedom. I could get mad about that but I dread being held captive to such specifics.

The trouble with these things (blogs) is the idea that I (we) have the belief that my (our) struggles are unique in some way. I (we) believe that sharing my (our) woes will make things better somehow. I (we) believe that I (we) are alone and that trying to share this loneness will bring about some sort of philosophical revolution.

But.

The truth is, that none of this is true. The truth is, that we (I) are all in this together. The truth is that I (we) may have had a few drinks and not eaten for a few hours.

But.

The truth is that there are those (not me and probably not you) who haven’t eaten in days. Their lives are ravaged by true plagues and not just the fat building around their lower abdomen and a mild discomfort due to the weather. These are things that need fixing and yet so few help without their own gain. Not excluding myself, or most of you for that matter.

Westchester Winter

Sunday Morning Thoughts 1.12.14: In or On Jeopardy

I’m practicing a technique of some writer who wrote this brilliant book that became a pretty good movie that a lot of people liked. The idea, among the many he suggested, was to set a timer for when you sit down to write. I’ve set myself for an hour and have already dawdled through the first few minutes. Still, since I’ve begun this current attempt, the pressure has kept me moving forward.

And if I were to make up some big metaphorical lie, I could tell you that I need to do the same thing with my whole vague life. But perhaps I live without truly feeling all of the pressure that I would or should be placing upon myself and therefore can progress no further. Oh, so many times in the last few weeks have I succumb to my body’s tiredness and slide away to non-specific and slightly terrifying dreams when they can be remembered. They say that your dreams are supposed to be your own unconscious mind attempting to tell you about some injustice it sees in the rest of your waking life. If that were the case, I may have to kindly ask my unconscious mind to lay down the crack pipe and get a little bit of focus. Riddles are not the thing to be had in the effort of problem solving.

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But since I was lying, perhaps the mysterious and ever eluding desire that drive such an individual forward is exact what is needed. I could argue that it is, for a time at least, and say that there is no greater driving force in the history of humanity than that of unraveling mystery and revealing purpose through that which makes no sense. For myself, boredom arrives in force when I am stuck with the same routine for any length of time I deem to be unfit. Normalcy is a dread. I have always grown weary of standing in one place, which is usually and eventually adjusted as it needs to be.

But reflections in the past can be so tainted. Memory is far from perfect. Just ask any crime scene analyst. What is remembered may not have been what had happened. Either way, there is no way to prove what was. We only know what is and fight or flee the impending fulfillment of a single timeline. So there won’t be any more about any of that then.

The struggle is being able to say, or make, or play something that someone else hasn’t quite done yet. You could say that I, as a youth in the farthest point this species has gone in time, that my ability to absorb information scattered across the past would allow for me to hold an idea composed of collaboration but lacking on uniqueness. All the art and knowledge of the world is at the disposal of my finger tips, yet with that I am robbed of the experience of discovering something new.

You could say that, if you were a total dipshit. Nay, for it is I who say, that the ability to experience that of those who came before me left behind is exactly that which creates a perspective that has yet to be had. And to toot my own horn, I have been able to steer clear of a lot of the popular cultural consumption that plagues the youth and aged alike in the saturated market of product placed entertainment.

From here the burden, which I shall carry with me for most of my days, is what to do with all of this. All the things that have inspired hope and jaded my edges helped to sculpt this experience but what is to be done with it. Turning potential energy into kinetic is not as easy as the Science Guy makes it seem sometimes.

Yet I should sell nothing short. In fact, I won’t sell anything at all. It is my aim to not try to profit off of this life, though I do plan to enjoy it. And so I have been trying to again. My health is getting better, simply because I’m trying to pay more mind to it. I’ve been keeping on all of those oh, so important outlets and trying to weed out the negative impact. It is far from going perfectly, which is exactly how I expect it to go. I hold no desire to wish for things to be without making the attempt to make them so myself.

I am nowhere near where I need or want to be in life, which is the truly the greatest thing I have. I still have a vast world of mystery left to trek through and the only thing that keeps me from it is the same thing that keeps me from everything else.

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Um… what is, myself?

Correct, you can now pick the next category.

I’ll take “Where to go from here?” for 200.

The answer: Anything you want.

Um… what are, the possibilities?

Correct.

By the way, I didn’t go past the hour mark. Some would say life is about the little victories. I would say that every victory is great and grand.

Sunday Morning Thoughts 1.5.14: To the Queen of Farting Face Masks

It is true. Life gets harder as you get older. I always suppose I thought they were shitting me but I’ve come to find that with each day, the burden and price of existence build in weight and mass. Our timelines strain and creak from overuse. People fade away and all of us eventually die in this life, despite whatever beliefs in afterlives are held. As they say, on a long enough timeline, everyone’s chance of survival drops to zero.

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Some would call that last paragraph pessimistic. I, on the other hand, would not. Remember friends, there is a line between being pessimistic and just having a proper sense of reality. I would be more wary of too much optimism. It’s a fool’s dope after all and junkies can hardly ever admit that they are junkies. And if they do, they usually cease being junkies soon after.

The struggle is the balance between reality and hope. We can only hope for the future, because it is the only part that we have all yet to see in life. In fact, you are in the future right now, as you read this. It could be minutes (depending on how fast I am able to keep this flow going), or hours, or days. It could be years if you’re a fan (unlikely) or even me from the future. I could easily turn this into a letter to myself through time but I feel that future me would find that terribly clichéd and lazy. I do trust that future me will laugh, if I ever get around to reading this. I always have when I think about when I was younger and doped on fool’s hope I used to be.

But here we are now, in our overlapping version of the present. Me, as I write- and you, as you read. You may know who I am, or at least could get an idea from mulling about these collected ramblings. However, I do not know you. Even if I do know you in this life, I do not know you here and now. I take this quasi-beatnik, supposedly philosophical, emotionally driven dump for you to look at, which is a terrible thing to do. Yet it is what many of my heroes have done for me and I have a wonder and addiction to the idea of it. I wish I could say that I’m addicted to writing but these days it’s almost as though I’ve quit. The desperation is here and all I need to do is trade out some of those many dirty habits and replace them with the proper ones.

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This has made me ponder on the wonder that is writing. Though I adore the art of good conversation, there is nothing I know that is as cathartic as a good vent at the keyboard. But I suppose that balance comes into play again.

Before I get off topic, I want to dance around an idea. Though I can’t say for sure, I am going to go ahead and reckon that when you read something by oh, let’s say your favorite fiction author, that you have a sense of knowing who they are. There is always a voice present and as I’m sure they planted specific things in specific places to best replicate the ideas they held at the time. They create the best replication that they can to express the perspective that they themselves had.

And even if the authors themselves don’t emerge in your mind, that characters must. Even if you don’t like a character and agree with how they think and act and whatnot, you still see how and why they do it. Justification is for those with hindsight.

But I still haven’t gotten to the thought, which is as follows- no matter what you think, most of us will never meet those who write what we read. How I wish I knew Vonnegut and Kerouac, or know Palahniuk and McCarthy, but I do not. They leave whatever ideas they want me to have, and I straggle along behind them picking up what was left behind.

And damn grand about it, I say!

To be able refine ideas to words at a pace that they need to fall from a mind that has been sharpening with each love, hate, mistake, wake,  innovation, heartbreak, loss, gain, sprain, action in vain, drunken stupor, promotion, demotion, commotion, devotion, lack of closure, over-exposure, bar mitzvah, wedding and funeral- what a thing that must be. And is and I know because I’ve done it, just not on any noticeable scale yet. But I’ll be starting my ascent soon. Though future me might stick up for present me and use that hindsight of his to say I’ve been going at it for much long. Such a sucker he is sometimes.

I won’t bore with more details on what my plans are. I’d rather talk about them once they start happening. But I will tell you that my father decided that he wants to be buried in sandals. Jesus wore them and he wants to kick it off right when he meets him. So I’ve got a new bit to punch up one of my old stand up jokes. And that’s a good thing.

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Sunday Morning Thoughts 12.15.13 – 12.22.13

I have a confession to make.

I’ve been in a slump. For how long is hard to tell. I could say weeks, or months. I could say years. Hell, if I worked hard enough at an explanation I’m sure I could argue it’s been going my entire life. It’s not an easy thing to admit, especially with how much effort goes into convincing the rest of the world of the complete opposite.

I had this whole bunch of nonsense written up what seems like ages ago. Preachy stuff, you know, trying to feign some sort of enlightened vision. Don’t get me wrong, there were a few good points. It just lacked its own essence in its own delivery. The words were alright by the usual standards. The problem is that they don’t live up to my standards.

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So dig, I want to declare some sort of intention here. I won’t though, as that would just perpetuate the issue. No, instead there will be dissection, inflection, slight reflection, just a tad bit of analysis with little to no direction. Correction depends on pressing forward. Watch the ripples and the sort.

The echo of your life will bounce around in the caverns of others, just as other echoes exist in your own cave. Good, bad, indifferent or incomprehensible- those whom you meet and those who meet you create impacts in your timeline and each of us has our own way of valuing such things. Sometimes these values overlap but I’d wager that most don’t. If you have ever seen the ‘news’ in any medium, you know most of us don’t see eye to eye. Ipso facto- war, murder, rape, theft, racism, sexism, bullying, religion, nationalism and so on and so on. It seems as though the only thing that everyone can agree on is that there is something wrong. But even then, it’s still not really everyone.

However, this we already knew.

There has been discourse in all known human life. Perhaps it is only a set condition associated with mortality, or maybe not. Perhaps things are worse than they have ever been and they aim to keep getting worse. The impact we have on each other and the physical world around may actually be reaching its flash point. Or maybe not.

That doesn’t have too much to do with my slump, other than it existing in my head all of the time. The slump itself seems to be a demon of habit, lazy and rooted in a lack of confidence. Or something like that.

It may just be the time of the year. High holy days of materialism really get to me, especially when people viciously defend their destructive habits by loosely affiliating them with words of some bloke who was murdered a few hundred dozen years ago.

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The irony is just too beautifully infuriating, considering what they gave that guy the chair for. Or whatever that times equivalent of the chair was. I just hope that this is just some big joke the rest of the species is playing on me.

But I know that it’s not the stupid holidays or the end of the year. It’s not my health or my job or my location, it’s just me. I read something a few days ago that said that the act of telling someone that you are doing something can often insight the same sort of psychological satisfaction as doing the professed deed. Not saying that it is the same thing, it’s just that you would feel as though it is. It feels good to promise something but actually taking on the task appears to be so much more effort.

I haven’t gotten to where I am in my life, wherever that might be, through promises. And even if that was what I thought at certain points in the past (or convince myself to think onward into the future) the promise never has the true impact.

I’ve had this twitch in my right eye for months now, and my back aches like I’ve spent years working in a coal mine. Or so I think. I don’t feel rested when I sleep and my dreams are vague horrors of no specific purpose and void of any meaning. And to top it off, I’ve cut my life short of so many of those vital outlets that kept the whole place from burning down. I’m wasting too much time.

My hiatus from writing may have been the most savage and malevolent thing I have ever done to myself, the effects of which reach out and infect almost every other part of my consciousness that I enjoy. The things I don’t like will magnify and march to the forefront of this mind trapped inside my skull and as a result, total production goes down in both quality and quantity.

But here I sit, a bad taste in my mouth from using the word production, and with no clear way out of such a slump. The only thing that offers itself up is time not obligated to any one or thing, and the supposedly uplifting symbolism of the end of one calendar year and the start of another. Other than that, it will still just be my self and my thoughts. The only reprieve will be from those means which I had made for myself and not yet destroyed, or seeking out new ones.

I would like very much for the answers to emerge after a few hundred words as they used to. Or at least seemed to do. But I am no longer that young, dressed head to toe in naivety, and can no longer be satisfied by the means of college aged millennials. At best, now I wear a very naive pair of socks and because of this, new ways must be forged. If the dreams I have continue to assault me with nonsensical symbolism, they shall be molded and sold with hand crafted meaning made from whatever was there.

Because, you see, after all of this time that I’ve been brooding over who gives a damn, the necessity of such slumps reveal themselves in murky clarity. Ups and downs exist for perspective, or at least they do to me. As a crafter of fictions both near and far, it is important to leech and reach for new depth both noble and superfluous. I am still young, but clearly no prodigy. I have been working at my few humble talents to make something else. There are those who don’t have to do that, and to them I say, how can thou be so boring?

Fresh from my slump, I know how to be boring and I know the illusion of joy that it seems to bring. But despite that, the fury has lived on inside and kept any true comfort wrapped in a healthy dose of paranoia. This, what seems to be insanity, is a very important step in finding the most pure and spectacular version of insanity. The one that fits just right on the first shot and has no need to be hemmed. I am an ape among apes armed only in the belief that this ape, that I call me, is somehow different from the rest of the apes, who all think of themselves as something special as well. The prodigies are already ahead, using up all their juice in the first lap. This ape, the one called me, is just getting ready for the long haul ahead. By the end, my feet may drip with blood. By the end, delirium may twist the everything, even down to the shapes and colors I once called normal. By the end, I may have gone completely off-the-deep-end, batshit bananas.

I just hope that will be the case because if the pop mentality becomes culture, we are all doomed. If me and those who wants something more don’t succeed, I’d rather die than accept my over priced shackles. I don’t even care if they’re designer.

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Sunday Morning Thoughts: 12.8.13

This week we will take a look at the idea of progress. Don’t mind that this posting is falsely advertised in regards to its time stamped title. We are going to get a bit abstract, so if that isn’t your kind of thing, turn away now.

But progress and that ever-eluding human ambition seem to be always on my mind and might even find its way into yours here and there. I couldn’t say, as I have never been in your mind. This is your chance to take a glimpse into mine, though this will be metaphorically similar to an iceberg. I can only let so much out at a time.

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But moving forward- progress. Get it? See what I did there? Anyway, I may be alone in this but despite progress allegedly being something involving the future, it is really only made up of the past. People guess at what futures may hold and despite many of them being rather educated and plausible, they cannot be known. A person can look back at all they’ve done up to the moment in which they stand and claim that progress is inevitable from there on out. Those people are usual idiots or fools, and not the good kind either.

The problem with probabilities as I see them, is that they don’t account for the improbable. Now this may be my madness or just my faint and fuzzy memory but to the best of my recollection, improbability is one of the key factors in any personal progress that I’ve made. Every leap forward was only vaguely planned, at best.

With that being said, I seem to be at a point in my life that I generally approve of.

Now with that being said, I should profess that in no way am I content. I itch and burn for more and more and more, and those loosely defined intentions do not show the exact way onward. They hardly even suggest which way to go and if they do, it seems to be wrapped in some sort of infuriating riddle. There are projects upon which I work and I have a good job and things along that nature, but if there is any wish of mine that were to be fulfilled, that would be to never be defined as something so single minded as an occupation.

Still, I don’t know how I wish to be defined, at least not exactly. I do know that occurrences that are considered likely, I also consider to be boring. If my memory serves me correctly, which it doesn’t always, the steps I’ve taken in life were not predictable.  Many of the great things were unexpected, while many of my tragedies could have been predicted, except for the true tragedies of course. Pop culture has turned that word into a deformed bastard of its former self.

So what does this mean? Are we all powerless to control our fates? Is progress an idea that only exists within the mind and has no play in reality? It is not my place to provide any sort of answers on such things. Ipso facto… that is exactly what I am going to try and do.

You see, I really rather despise the idea of fate. Whether that is just conditioning from my own personal past will have no effect on my argument against it. Fate is for the lazy. I believe firmly, no matter how foolish, that existence is totally moldable. That’s not to say such a task of metaphysical arts and crafts is easily accomplished. Nor do I think such a deed could be conquered by a single perspective. I just think that ultimately, it can be done.

I suppose the entirety of this half-assed essay could be summed into a simple and very common phrase, that being ‘I don’t know’. But I ask you, where is the elegance and sport in that?

You see, I believe, in each moment as it passes, that existence is the smallest of things. If I were to elaborate, I would confirm this by asking what is it that you truly experience? We’d all like to say the past but that is gone as soon as it passes from the present. The only fossils left behind are memories which can and most certainly will be altered based upon the present in accordance with where one would selfishly like the future to go. It is far more common for one to remember what they want to remember than what they need to remember. Further, I will be so bold as to say that what you want and need to remember is still different from what actually happened as each of those moments originally passed.

Then there’s the future. Everyone is talking about it and yet none of those talking are living like they give any kind of damn. From the tiniest deed to the most massively dire of straits, almost everyone around lives each moment based upon some made promise of some made-up history. Every little sheep tightening their own chains around their own ankles, each one chewing away all that is left of their lives.

But I know this because I often live it. Despite the reputation, a hypocrite would know more about what they are criticizing than he who does not participate.

But all of this doesn’t solve the issue, does it? Is there any such thing as progress? Which moments of time would such a thing even be based off? The past is at best a bent moment of the truth. The present is near immeasurable and far beyond capture. The future is bloated off of the illusions of the other two but is always beyond imagination.

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Perhaps it is in that unpredictability that the truth resides. The idea that we will never really know why and that the mystery is that there is no mystery. It can be a terrifying proposal and I’ve spent many a sleepless hour being afraid of such things, even since I was a kid. Trying to grasp how small and insignificant you truly are can cripple anyone with fear. At first.

But.

If you think of all that is that you don’t know and how small and fragile your existence is, you might, with the right amount of madness, see a tremendous amount of freedom.

I do.

And when you begin to grasp such meaninglessness, you understand that if there is a force in the universe that is something like fate, it probably isn’t concerned with you. And that my friends, is freedom beyond imagination and for those with the right kind of madness, that sounds like an opportunity to make yourself into something colossal amongst all that tininess.

So is there such a thing as progress? I would have to say yay but only if thou embraces a good bit of thy insanity.

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