oh, how they profit from your self-loathing.


it's been a while since we've spoken, huh. can you believe i can just say something like "obama" and immediately, this image will pop into your head. i can say "9/11" and that means something, too. we are north american scum. do you know that there are whole shelves of books available at borders, barnes and noble, waldenbooks (does it still exist?) aimed at making people feel bad about themselves? yeah, yeah, overconsumption. yeah, yeah, global warming. yeah, yeah, the corporations own us. what'cha gonna do about it? write a book, obviously.

no doubt, though. supercapitalism, starbucked, they're all there, sitting on the shelves, waiting for you to read. you and your liberal ideas that your friends, your professors (people you've trusted all your life) have been telling you about. here, they say, read nickeled and dimed. there's valuable information in it, you know. you can see how the other half lives, how good you have it. but how's it any different from hearing about a murder/suicide over the radio? what does this information do, where does it get us? how can you avoid tragedy? how can you avoid being a hypocritical liberal.

i don't have answers and i don't go in-depth. i don't even make my paragraphs flow, one into the other. that's why i don't have a paperback edition on sale right now for $12.99. keepin' it real, motherfucker. i hated him, she said. he was such a poser. he pretended he was an artist, a sensitive soul, but it was only to woo the women. that's all any straight male is looking to do. isn't it funny, though, that way. every decision, every dollar spent. it's all a means to an end.

and then there's the whole thing when you descend into the city and it's almost as though you could wrap your arms around those skyscrapers, if you really wanted to. if we took science literally, we should be able to just walk through walls. i think that's what those murderers who hated freedom were after. they wanted to walk through walls. they based their final decisions on a complete and final act of severe penetration. lousy freedom-hating perverts.

it's funny how we all know we're gonna go, but we keep doing the same shit anyway. people find ways to keep themselves entertained. collecting cds had me going for a while. you had to have 'em all, didn't you. yes, yes you did. one record store after another because life wasn't complete until every mogwai record, b-sides and remixes included, was obtained. and it was bending and squatting and breathing in dust and grime to collect 'em all. who taught us to collect 'em all. maybe it was hearing those commercials when we were young. all that stuff we heard growing up just sticks with us, doesn't it.

i don't think most guys know how to be entertained. they can't shop, sew, join a book club, volunteer, or garden without feeling emasculated. what do we get. tits and bars and tittybars. will you have children, people say to each other. when will you get married, they say. when i'm good and ready is the obvious answer. but what is ready. how will you know. people always say you will know when you know, but how can you know if you've never known before. it's like saying, you will understand advanced calculus. you won't know shit. but you'll know when you know.

i don't want children because those liberal books keep talking about carbon footprints and how i can't do anything or have any fun without feeling bad about it first. but sometimes i'll see a young milf with her baby in a little backpack carrier type thing, and i think, that wouldn't be so bad to come home to. it's this idea of family that appeals to most of us. but then the kid will grow up, leave home, and keep in touch just on holidays. and you're left wondering, how does the time pass so? and every sentence begins with, remember when...

it's this neverending cycle of goodbyes and ceremonies. and when it's over we still have to clear up. i don't know how anyone can stay focused in times like these. eyes on the prize, man. work hard and together, we can accomplish anything. grab your double mocha and your copy of starbucked. we're getting there. let's have children, let's get married. let's get a good education and the dream can come true for us. a big house with bay windows and an endless backyard. swimming pool and tennis court and bookshelves full of barbara ehrenreich, naomi klein, noam chomsky books.

let's not be ordinary, or at least say we refuse to be ordinary, and be ordinary anyway, and somehow manage to be okay with it. let's ride the bus but take the car when it snows and we don't wanna wait in the snow. let's upholster the couch and wear crisp, button-down dress shirts. let's go to bed early and not subscribe to the newspaper. who wants news? what's it good for? what do i need to know that i don't know already? what don't i already know? there's a lot. there's untouched shelves of books that no one could possibly read, not even if he spent his whole life doing it.

but we do it anyway. we read and read, trying to make sense of it, trying to find that one sentence we can connect with, even if it's small. and usually it's small.

2 comments:

Jacob said...

That just blew my mind

Emily said...

That makes two of us.