Monthly Archives: December 2011

My Own Outer Limits

Standard

It occurs to me that all around me is a quivering mass of opportunity waiting to be exploited. It is so hard to step out of your mind and taste what’s real. So much fear, anxiety, and ennui. What gives? Every once in a while, I feel like I am 10 years old again, and filled with fun, laughter, and wonder. Then a few seconds later, I feel like I’m 65, and contemplating the least painful way to climb out of my chair, and walk into the kitchen. It is so farrrr away!! Help me.
So this is what it’s like after you’ve grown up?

I just posted the above on Facebook, on my Wall. (I don’t like calling it the Wall, reminds me of walls where people get shot to death by firing squad, or the Berlin Wall, maybe Pink Floyd’s Wall, none of them fun places.) Those thoughts got me to thinking about how amazingly flexible our consciousness is. If you really take a look in there, there is more going on that you could ever hope to write about in a thousand years. I mean, if you fully examine it, our consciousness is unbelievably vast and surprisingly impersonal. There is a part of me that could care less about whether I lose my job, whether I feel good or not, if I’ll win the lottery, the list goes on. That part is an ever expanding sea of impressions, audio, video, and even tactile impressions. Go ahead! Just be quiet and take a look inside. At first your thoughts are there, and boy are they loud. They crowd out everything else, but if you can look really closely, you notice other things going on as well., and the interesting thing is that it has nothing to do with you. At least, not the you that you are usually aware of. I’m not sure what all that is about. Maybe it’s just your brain doing it’s thing, or maybe it is the universe doing it’s thing. Maybe it is a portal to a whole other ballgame, not even in this universe at all. Sometimes, when I am starved for inspiration, like now, I can dip in there and pull out something unexpected which allows me to step off the treadmill of my mind for a bit. Otherwise it is the same tired old drone of the anxious mind.

I would like to think that when I die I simply dive deep into that sea of information and make a little home for myself. I might even have a few visitors, In fact, I’m sure of it. It is nice to think about, but it is what it is, not what I wish it could be. But you know what? I think the big unspoken secret is that nobody really knows what the fuck is going on. And for some reason a lot of us think we will know after we die. But it is possible that we might be just as clueless then. Maybe it is up to us to make it all up. Perhaps God depends on us as much as we depend on God. You see how I can create my own Outer Limits? Don’t adjust your computer, it is only one mind infecting another with all kinds of possibilities. For me, that is a lot more exciting than all of the world’s religions and philosophies combined. Who wants an answer when you can have such beautiful questions?

Stay young. Stay aware. There is so much more to share.

(I can hardly believe that I got through this post without being my usual sarcastic self, I guess that part of me was taking a little break, God knows it needs it!)

Joys of Growing Older

Standard

I hate growing older. I have cataracts in my right eye, which makes everything blurry unless I am very close. I am blind in my other eye. So, nobody wants to do surgery on the cataracts because if something went wrong, I would be totally blind. But I hate having blurry vision. It ruins my quality of life (of course, blindness would ruin it considerably more). I would be willing to take the risk. But, I also can’t afford to get it done, and if they were going to do it against their better judgement I am sure I couldn’t get it covered. What a dilemma!

I just trundle along from day to day, as my body and mind begin to give out on me. I make stupid mistakes at work, which could cost me my job. I don’t look forward to homelessness. Now would be a real swell time to win the lottery. These are some of the joys of growing older. But I refuse to let it get me down! (He says fearlessly, while he still has a job). It is hard to get motivated to finish my novel. I am still painstakingly transcribing my hand-written novel, so I can put it online. I keep putting it off. I’d rather just blog.

It is important to develop a support system as you get older. It is not a good idea to just live at home with a cat, nobody to check up on you. The cat is nice, but he can’t call an ambulance. I am still job hunting in spite of having a job, because I need something with benefits. But it does me good to have an outlet for my thoughts and feelings that others can access and comment on, if they so desire.  Hopefully, I will be able to do this thing for many, many, many, more years.

Why Facebook Sucks

Standard

More ranting I’m afraid.

Have you ever noticed how much Facebook sucks? and yet you still use it, or may even be addicted to it? I brought up in my last post about the illusion of intimacy. This is the dangerous allure of Facebook, except for those people that understand that it is all bullshit, and refuse to take any of it seriously. That should be me. I am usually the cynical one. But I had hoped that Facebook and Twitter for that matter, might actually be an opportunity for total strangers to connect with one another about real things. I thought that this could be a chance to make a difference in the world and with each other. Instead, I see a lot of trivial bullshit. I guess trivial bullshit is ok, but it is hard for a total stranger to care about your particular trivial bullshit. That is the sort of thing you reserve for friends, or family. Guess what I ate today? Oh, I can’t believe you ate that! etc. For me anyway, that is a waste of cyberspace. That’s what text messaging or phone calls are for. I am in a profound funk. I am really disappointed in Facebook. If this is an accurate picture of humanity, then we deserve to go extinct. I mean really!!, people, let’s raise the bar a little, elevate the level of discourse so we can save this fucking planet!!, for Christ’s sake! (literally!!) All of my life I have tried to cut to the chase in my communication, let’s get to what really matters. I have found a few kindred spirits along the way. I would like to find more. But, you know what? you wouldn’t believe how many morons, assholes, and absolutely worst of all!, celebrities there are on the internet. All of it is a huge waste of time. If you have nothing to say, if you just want to be cute, or, most of all, you’re  just trying to sell something, get the fuck off of Facebook!! You have other places to pollute, leave Facebook for people who genuinely want to connect with one another. Put your lame ass on Youtube. I am positive you will get a lot of hits. Everybody loves a moron.

Trying to make your presence known on Facebook, or the internet in general is very frustrating. For one thing, you have very little idea of who you are dealing with. People click Like, but they don’t comment, which puzzles me. As far as I’m concerned, if you don’t like something well enough to comment on it, you don’t really like it. I crave genuine communication which contributes to each of our lives. Shouldn’t that be what Facebook is all about? I can’t stand Mark Zuckerberg, although I can acknowledge his genius in creating this drug called Facebook. He is the number one pusher in America today. His vision for Facebook is for it to be a marketers wet dream, a paradise for laissez-faire capitalism. All the communication is scooped up by businesses so they can better target you with their non-stop ads. There is absolutely no real meaning, or spirituality, or anything else to this vision. It is T. S. Eliot’s Wasteland come to life. Empty shells of human beings clicking Like, and buying useless crap, sharing trivial nonsense as a pale imitation of life. Welcome to Facebook.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. I will continue to challenge that fucked-up paradigm. I will continue to offer my views, and share my heart with the faceless population that might see my posts, and the “followers” that express some interest in my rants. I will because I am addicted and because I keep thinking that perhaps I am wrong about humanity. Maybe there are some real human beings out there that I can have genuine communication with.

I just take things far too seriously, don’t I???  Here is a silly cat video to make you feel better.

And the Rant Continues

Standard

This is an expansion upon the theme I began as a post on Facebook, regarding celebrity’s lack of communication with their fans. I think it is a wonderful idea to create a blog relating your life, for your fans to read. I really enjoyed reading Margaret Cho’s blog, for instance. Unlike many other celebrities she really lets you know how she feels and what her life is like. But there is also a problem with that. You create the impression that if a fan comments on your blog, you will respond. The unwritten and unspoken agreement is that being a fan is a one way street.

The internet is a dangerous place, psychologically. It creates some dangerous illusions. The illusion I’m writing about here is the illusion of intimacy. I just gotta tell ya that it isn’t really much fun to comment on someone’s blog over and over, and get no acknowledgement. Not only is it not intimate, it isn’t anything. No communication. Nada! I hate the fact that I allowed myself to get sucked in to this illusion. It is a fact that we live in a world that is starved for love, starved for real communication, and crave an end to the endless bullshit. I know I am not alone in these feelings. So when you think you have found a kindred spirit, you are thrilled, and take an interest in everything about that person. Then you come to the realization that none of it means a damn thing. It is nothing more than a comedian hoping to get some traffic to her site so that she can sell some DVD’s, and get some people to come to her performances, watch her tv show etc etc. Well, maybe that is a little harsh. I suspect she cares about her fans. But it was foolish of me to expect any kind of response to my comments on her blog.

Oh well, enough about that! I tell myself that if I were a celebrity I would be different!!! I would acknowledge every comment, I would value every fan I have. Blah blah blah. Actually I would probably be a lot like Margaret Cho.

San Francisco Morning

Standard

Just a taste of what it’s like being me.

I woke up at 4:30 am this morning, did my usual exercises, and walked out into the chilly air to get the paper. I settled down with coffee, Special K, Cheerios, and Honey Smacks cereals all mixed together, and a banana. I fired up iTunes, leaving it on shuffle, so it becomes my not so little radio station, over 40,000 songs at this point. It always begins with 2120 South Michigan Ave by the Rolling Stones. I worry a bit as I read about Iran being warned not to block the Hormuz Strait. The last thing we need is another war. Buddy stakes out my lap for ten minutes, and then I take off for work. It takes me forty-five minutes to get to work. I walk down Van Ness Ave, and cross over to Polk. The air is thick with fog, and it is cold. The sound of fog horns fill the air. I love that sound. It makes me feel like I’m in the middle of a movie. The lights around me all look big and fuzzy, due to my cataracts. I think about how I can lie down later, after work, and catch up on my sleep. (but I rarely do). I feel pains in my chest occasionally and wonder if it is my heart, or just acid reflux. I think about how short life is, and how I won’t get to do the things I’d like to do, bccause I’m poor. I worry if I will be able to keep my job. I worry about worry.

As soon as I arrive for work, it is non-stop working from 7 am to noon. I lug the magazines in, I check them in. I strip the old magazines, so the covers can be returned for credit. I ring up customers. Finally I go to the bank on my way home, to make a deposit. This morning was far too busy for my usual coffee and bagel, so I grab coffee and a low-fat peach and cranberry muffin at Peet’s before going home, and read in a stripped copy of Foreign Affairs about how America got into the huge disparity in incomes that it is in today. Those rich bastards have really managed to fuck the rest of us over. I hope Newt Gingrich, or whoever the Republicans come up with, goes down to defeat by a very large margin. We need to send a very clear message to the rich. Lest you want to go the way of the Bourbons, give up some of your ridiculous wealth so that the rest of us can survive.

I was very surprised that my niece asked to be my friend, on Facebook. I don’t even know her. I have been out of touch with my family for about thirty years. Well,actually that is an exaggeration. I have talked to my brother for hours on the phone, and there were some rare visits to brothers over the years. but for the most part, there has been no contact. It felt strange hearing from her, because we have almost nothing in common, so far as I know. Of course, I’m her Uncle, I guess that’s a start. Because her father was very conservative, I assume she is as well, but I could be mistaken. But it feels good to hear from family, even if it is family I don’t know. That’s sounds so sad. What a pathetic life I lead. Don’t you feel sorry for me? No? Did I hear you say that you have your own life to cry over? Fair enough. One thing is for sure,. it can always get better, and it can always get worse. That’s the sort of folk wisdom I still carry around from my childhood in the Midwest. Sort of a Midwestern Zen.

I guess the point of this particular post is just to give my followers (provided they are still followers after this boring ass post!) an idea of what I am like, what my day is like. I like to get a sense of what the person is like, when I read their blog. Of course, in the case of Margaret Cho, I already have a clear idea, because she is a big important celebrity. I am so over it!!!  I can understand why she doesn’t ever respond to comments left on her blog. She doesn’t want to encourage us to get all wrapped up in her, after all it isn’t practical for her to be friends with her fans. There must be an impenetrable wall between fan and celebrity. But it still sucks. So, why do I continue to leave comments? Very good question. I guess because I enjoy it, other people see them, and hopefully, enjoy them.  I hope Margaret enjoys her motorcycle. Fucking celebrities, I hate them. That’s right! Enjoy your bread!

On a final note, I am pleased that there are people out there that follow my blog. I do wish they would comment on it, though. Because I’ll tell you what it’s like. Imagine someone waving at you from a distance, not talking to you at all, but acknowledging your existence. It piques your interest, but you never get to meet that person, you never know what they think. How much fun is that?  So, go ahead, be like Margaret Cho and say “Eat Shit and Die”. At least then, I know I have made some sort of contact.

What Me Worry?

Standard

Remember Alfred E. Newman? The guy on the cover of Mad magazine that looks like Ted Koppel? He was one of my childhood heroes. Nothing fazed him, nothing was sacred to him. Of course he was a moron, but still… I worry too damn much. It is like a radio which plays inside my head morning, noon, and night. And it is always the same songs. “Will I keep my job?” “Will my health hold up?” “Will my eyesight get worse?” “Will I ever get laid?” “Will I ever receive any comments on my blog?” Actually I’ve given up on the last two. Those things don’t happen in the real world. Worry pours a dirty gloss over all of our experience, spoiling it. I hate worry. Of course, as I pointed out in an earlier post, you get what you resist. So I may as well embrace it. Savor it. All the subtle flavors of worry. Should I eat this? What does that person think about me? blah blah blah. And when you project this onto the international scene, well, this introduces a whole new level of worry, doesn’t it? I just know something dreadful will happen, and actually a part of me yearns for something, not necessarily dreadful, but something big and powerful to happen. Something awe-inspiring, so we can stop talking about Newt Gingrich, and go on to something truly important. That idiot, excuse me ‘historian’, will not be nominated or elected. That is actually one thing I don’t worry about. I wish the Occupy movement would get it’s shit together, and I also wish Wikileaks would get it’s shit together as well. That thing where they hacked into a security company and used customer’s credit cards to donate money to charities was a bonehead move. While it seems really cool at first, you realize that that only causes problems for the charities. Because you know those yuppies are going to insist on a chargeback for every penny. So, I just worry that some well-meaning anarchist will get hands on an atomic bomb and decide to wipe out New York City, or LA. He may think we would all be better off without those cities, but that is just not a good idea. Ok, guys? But there are guys out there who I think would do that if they had the bomb and the opportunity. But I don’t really worry about that stuff, or any of the end of the world nonsense. I know that I will be facing my own personal end of the world before long, and that is the apocalypse that worries me. I realize it makes no sense. Actually no worry makes sense when you examine it logically. But examining things logically never seems to help when it comes to emotions. But think about it, if you survive death, you could discover that it is better than this is, you might think “Oh Yeah! I remember this place! I hope all my stuff is still where I left it.” or maybe you can review the life you just left just like rewinding a tape, and can relive certain parts so you can do something differently and see how that would have turned out, or maybe it just sucks like this life, if so you got through this one. so….., or maybe there is nothing, or worse yet, Bill Maher is standing there telling you “You see! It’s just like I said. Nothing!”. But if it is nothing, then quid pro quo. you aren’t there either, so you can’t be pissed off about it. OMG I don’t exist! Wait a minute…. These are the things that sometimes go through my head during the down times in my life. Waiting in line at the supermarket, walking to work, waiting for my vegetables to come to a boil. I worry about death. And then I think about Woody Allen and I smile. I worry about death a lot, and about winning the lottery. But when I am on the toilet, I think about Vladimir Putin, I’m not sure why. I’m starting to worry that this post is too long and I’m boring you. Of course, the ‘you’ is probably myself. Hopefully, other people are reading this. If so, leave a comment, damn it! If only to say “You’re not alone.” but don’t include an emoticon. I hate those damn things!

I will leave you with one of the most obnoxious songs of all time. I can remember when “Don’t Worry Be Happy” came out and how almost everyone hated it. And yet the song was a huge hit, so I think a lot of these people secretly loved the song. People who worry a lot tend to hate this song. It is one that you should only listen to when you are feeling happy, unless of course you just want to torture yourself.

Gay Sellouts

Standard

I am not Gay. But I may as well be. Even my own family thinks I’m Gay. It seems I don’t really fit in anywhere, but that isn’t what I wanted to blog about today. Who wants to hear my sob story anyway? (If you do, let me know and I will send you an autographed picture. Not of me, just an autographed picture of some random person). But back to the point I have yet to make. I want to issue a complaint. What has happened to the LGBT community? Are they aspiring to the same bullshit values that straight people have held  on to long after those values have rotted and left a stench that can be detected even in the remotest part of the globe? I think so. Being gay used to mean something. It used to be dangerous. While there may still be isolated cases of outrageousness, being LGBT is rapidly becoming mainstream, but not in a good way. They are selling out. Of course you can say that I have no right to bitch about that, given that I am not gay. I don’t like to be pigeonholed as anything in particular, and I think that sometimes an outsider can see things a bit clearer than an insider. It seems that gays (by gay, I am actually referring to the entire LGBT mix, because ‘gay’ is less cumbersome), but it seems that gays have been yearning to live in that fairy tale world of Aunt Em’s farm, from the Wizard of Oz, or some other fictional Brady Bunch kind of existence. That American Dream never existed, and never will exist. It is a toxic idea. The straight world is nothing to aspire to, I can say from experience. Why would gays want to live a comfortable, conservative, humdrum existence? Are you only interested in kicking back and watching cable tv, and joking about trivial bullshit for the rest of your lives? What triggers this diatribe are all the things I see happening here in San Francisco. The gay pride parade has become a family-friendly, corporate sponsored, unthreatening  middle American affair. If it weren’t for the occasional drag queen and the rainbow flags, I swear it could be a parade in Des Moines. This is not how it should be. ‘Family values’ and ‘Family Friendly’ are code for the oppression of children. We do not need to ‘protect’ our children from sexuality, free-thinking, and outrageous behavior. That teaches kids to be intolerant of unconventional mores, and fearful of sexual expression. We should educate our children, not place them in a protective bubble, with the hope they won’t end up as fucked-up as we are. They will. Too bad. This is a fucked-up world. It is better to teach kids how to deal with the dysfunction which inevitably accompanies reality. The idea isn’t to aspire to some unachievable utopia, in which there are no male genitalia. The idea is to embrace life, warts and all, and learn how to become functional, learn how to be honest, and real. No more fairy tale chimeras to drive us insane. At least, that is my vision.

Wake up! LGBT community lest you become your enemies. And let’s make being gay dangerous once again!