It’s been a right fucker of a decade.

I’m not particularly one to put too much stock in the raw numerology of damp rocks spinning around incandescent balls of hydrogen other than the fact that we’re still unavoidably biologically tied to certain cycles of cold and heat, light and dark — especially in the face of larger trends of general darkening of outlook and impending and ongoing upheavals. Some cycles are longer than others, and, well, less cyclical. Random-seeming.

Despite everything there were amazing high-points in the past ten years. Enough to point out that the incessant grinding of the lows weren’t enough to tank it all and make me wish I could pitch it out of history altogether. Not that that’s ever a wise move. If you forget all the bad stuff, you forget to stick it to the bastards that made it bad. And that’s especially bad if you were personally one of those bastards. And, in this case, I’m certain I was one. To a number of people. And also to myself.

Nothing unforgivable. Eventually. I hope.

Because of the numerology, people put a great store by resolutions for self-improvement, by coming out of the dark of the year with positive momentum, by having someone nearby to kiss for luck on the stroke of midnight. For luck. For a good omen for the next year. I can’t fully deny the raw psychology of omenry, even for myself, but I know firsthand, directly, how plastic and capricious time streams are. I can take a moment and stretch it out over hours. Weeks. Months, even. That’s not really a peculiar talent, but my awareness of it might be. Hard to say.

It’s my resolution to make the moment of the fracture of midnight between New Year’s Eve, 2011, and New Year’s Day, 2012, stretch and dissolve into the bulk of 2012, so that, at any point in linear consensus time, I can experience a facet of that temporal infinitesimal and expend it how I wish, on behalf of myself or anyone else present, up to the start of that very same moment next year, or maybe even beyond. I will carry those facets on me at all times, in a secret place, to be whipped out whenever a stored instant of indulgence or generosity or unbridled whim is required, spare time to be allowed to run alongside but outside of normal time, distilled and spiced and bottled and dispensed however I wish, free of judgment.

You’re free to do the same yourself, if you can figure out how.


December 31, 2011 · Posted in Everything Else  

I know it’s supposedly a symptom of a psychotic break, but I’ll admit it anyway. Nothing seems real anymore.

It’s not that the things I see happening are actually impossible. It’s just that I didn’t think it was possible that things could happen like this, that there would be a causal path from the history of my childhood to here.

I don’t know where the disconnect is for certain. I do blame myself. It’s obvious that I didn’t realize people, in general, in groups large enough (or merely wealthy enough) to be a voting majority, could be so fearful and small-minded and lacking in empathy and short-sighted and greedy and full of a misplaced sense of righteousness as to allow things to come to the way they are. Not just here in the USA, where I live, but worldwide.

This isn’t living. This isn’t a life. It’s an afterlife. It’s Purgatory. It’s Hell.

Even the people seemingly having a good time are obviously smelling the brimstone odor of fear, watching the skies for the immanent rain of hatred and fiery retribution from the massing tides of those who have lost everything.

I look at the world like a ghost would, like a confused and stranded remnant would, trying to figure out how and when I died. As an intellectual exercise, because it would change nothing to know.

I skimmed past a story this morning about a woman who fell overboard from a boat and had to swim and tread water for eighteen hours before she made it to safety. Her dog also went overboard with her, and as things turned out, she was forced to drown her dog to keep it from drowning her accidentally by climbing on her in its desperation to keep its head out of the water.

There are plenty of us floating. There are huge numbers floundering. Fear is what makes us try to climb on top of one another and shove each other under when, if we were calm, we could hold each other up when we get weak and tired.

In the apparently idealistic world of my childhood, that’s what people did. There was always charity, even for people who had different color skin and didn’t believe what we believed — or even didn’t seem to believe anything at all. Or even had been made mean and ungrateful by the pain of circumstance. Maybe it was just my parents and their good choices for friends and associates, and I was just shielded from the bastards. I went to public schools, though, and while there was the usual cliquishness, we’d show that we — any of us, not just the people I got along with — could be actual human beings the instant circumstances required it.

And it didn’t stop with that generation either. I’m good friends with people one decade, two decades younger than  me. Even a fresh crop of kids in their teens. They seem to understand empathy and compassion too.

Who failed? Who failed us? Was it the old folk? Survivors of the previous Depression, or maybe their children, so terrified of losing half of their millions that they’ll drown the rest of us to prevent it, scrabbling and clambering over our choking soon-to-be-corpses to keep from feeling like they’re sinking? How do they justify it to themselves?

I don’t know. Maybe it’s time to drown the dog.


December 16, 2011 · Posted in Everything Else  

Mr. President,

I imagine when you decided to get into politics, it was in an attitude of service — the proverbial “ask what you can do for your country” scenario. I think it’s probably the same way for most elected officials. I think it’s probably the same way that people who decide they want to become police do so at first because they want to help, to intervene, to protect the defenseless and provide some hope for justice for victims. Like for police, however, I expect there is also some amount of jadedness, some amount of confronting the actual realities of how people behave with respect to one another, the realities of needing to fund worthwhile projects, the realities of needing to collect money for campaigns and such, that makes the idealism that propelled you into the arena take a backseat.

Our Bill of Rights concerns rights that do not come from any government document, but rights that we should have, nationless, as human beings. The abuses that people are suffering trying to exercise their rights of assembly, of speech, of confronting their government and demanding redress — these rights should be SUPPORTED by the government, not opposed in some sort of adversarial process designed to back people into a containable box so that administrators can carry on with business as usual. That is completely counter to the purpose of the Bill of Rights, which exists to recognize those rights and make room for their expression.

You, of all people, must be painfully aware of how broken things are right now. The middle class has been eradicated and the powers of government are owned by people and corporations that embrace no ideals beyond increasing their own wealth at everyone else’s expense. It is your duty as one sworn to uphold the constitution to protect the rights of peaceful protesters across the nation so they may assemble and converse and design the next steps forward that the elected government has shown itself to be incapable of contemplating in the legislature.

I beg you to think back to your beginnings and speak up for — and defend — the rights of your fellow idealists who want to bring healing and prosperity back to your nation. They are part of the process, as designed by our constitution. I beg you to do your duty as Chief Executive and as a fellow human being with the same rights as myself.


Me (again)


December 3, 2011 · Posted in Everything Else