Thursday, October 07, 2010

That cuckold lives in bliss

Every once in a while, one of those trite signs that people tack to the walls of their cubicles actually catch you off guard, and a tiny bubble of futility pops in your brain and for just a second you look around and you think the biggest WHAT THE FUCK? you have ever thought in your life.  And that WHAT THE FUCK encompasses not only what you're doing with your life, and the absurdity of your choices, but also the deeply, deeply confounding nature of this existence that we have crafted for ourselves.  And then the next second, you're thinking again about whether copier repairs can be amortized on the same schedule as the assets.

The sign that I saw, by the way, said "Where am I going, and what am I doing in this handbasket?"

Yeah, I'm aware that it's somewhat anticlimactic to actually tell you what the trite sign said.  I just think it's important for you to understand that for me, at least, my willingness to play along in this crazy-ass Angeleno Californian American Earthling solar system resident of the Milky Way thing is extremely tenuous, and it doesn't exactly require profundity to set that willingness caroming off into the psychological ether.

Because where are we going?  Really.  Where are we going?

How you doing, readers?   I know I've been gone for a while.  I'd like you to know that I don't stop thinking about you, both the real yous out there and the make-believe yous that exist only in my head.  I'm sorry that I haven't written, and it's nice that many of you have let me know that you consider it unacceptable.  I consider it unacceptable as well, and I have nothing to say about it other than that for the last couple of months, I sort of have that feeling all the time like you get when your mouth drops open and you mean to speak, but you are so dumbfounded that you sort of can't?  Like that.

It's not pleasant, that feeling.  Also, it's difficult to look tough, or serious, or even just unmoronic with your mouth always hanging open. 

How else to describe what I've been feeling, watching us, as a city, a state, a country, a planet, continue so deliberately down such a destructive path?

Israel clearly doesn't give a shit about peace with the Palestinians.  We don't give a shit about making Israel give a shit.  There will therefore never be peace, and chalk it up to the endemic corruption of our political system and good, old-fashioned ignorance of the issues, and our supremely arrogant belief that we will, in spite of a 3000-strong evidence to the contrary, never have to pay for what we do.

Americans, in particular, don't seem to think that we will ever have to pay for anything.  We can continue to say and eat and buy and drive and throw away anything, and it will never affect us.  We are a nation of perpetual motion machines, forgetting that less than a decade ago, we were brought screeching to a halt by the simplest and cheapest of enemies.  And what is perhaps the saddest part of it all is that we were set back into our blind motion by our own leader, who chose not to lead, not to examine, not to question, even, but to say to us, as if we were all children, that our enemy was merely jealous.  Jealous of us.

Do mosquitoes bite humans because they're jealous of the blood that flows through our veins?  Did David sling that rock at Goliath because he envied his prowess with a giant spear?  Did all those Japanese military men hurl those missiles at Godzilla because they wished they could crush the city of Tokyo beneath their own feet?

Yes, we have freedoms.  Some of us have more freedoms than others.  Meg Whitman can buy herself 119 million dollars worth of freedom.  That's a lot of freedom.  Enough, it would appear, to rewrite history.  An illegal immigrant can leave work at the end of the day, buy a 40, get drunk and shout obscenities at the sky, or loudly sing songs about a home he probably will never see again.  That kind of freedom is cheap. 

I write this thing that you're reading.  It, too, is a relatively cheap kind of freedom, which is, I suppose, why blogs are so widely reviled.  But I can't help thinking sometimes that it's all I have.


kittens not kids said...

i know that open-mouthed, speechless-with-horror feeling all too well. it's grown and grown in the last year, for me.

frankly, i'm ready to call it quits. America: love it or leave it. If I could find some wingnuts to finance my leaving, I'd be all over that. I think I'd love America a lot more from afar, when I wasn't immersed in the rank stupidity and greed of the people of this country. And the lawmakers! the fact that people like, say, carl paladino, or christine o'donnell, manage to win ANY kind of public support is, literally, terrifying. And it belies all those nice things we used to tell ourselves: it's not the american *people* that the haters hate; it's the government. the SYSTEM is bad, but the people are great.
well, you know what? i'm thinking maybe the people aren't so great after all. they keep making bad, harmful decisions or - at best - they're home ignoring it all and being profoundly apathetic.

not much to stand up and feel proud of, is it?

sorry to mope all over your comments. but your post is just - so smart, as always, and so much how I feel.

Mnmom said...

I've been in a deep existential funk since I realized I just can't LIVE those people! They don't read, they don't examine, they don't know history, they don't know diddley and yet they win elections.

I want THEM to move AWAY.

Larry Jones said...

Brave and beautiful, Vikki.

Marshall Park Slope said...

welcome back vikki! missed you big time...

just another absolute f'ing great post.

thanks again

Dr. MVM said...

I saw where the Gov. of NJ has killed a major infrastructure project because he didn't want to raise the gas tax to pay for it. Ideology uber alles, that's our country now.

Lisa said...


GETkristiLOVE said...

"Well, you're not going to hell honey. Everyone else, but not you."

Anonymous said...

Well said. I've often wondered why I've turned so far inward this past year. I wonder if it's in response to the futility you're describing.

SkylersDad said...

Remember the Japanese proverb, Fall down seven times. Get up eight?

I think as a country we are on fall #4387.

I am tired of getting up once more.

RandyLuvsPaiste said...

Twitter is a drag. Glad you're back in blog form.

involuntaryjerk said...

i dont care how long you are are always wonderful reading. i feel like i cant wait for the next post, and my patience is always rewarded with an intelligent and insightful post. thank you so much.

Mauigirl said...

My sparse posting reflects the same feeling you're having. I react to things but don't have the energy to write down the reactions in my blog because it all seems so hopeless!

dguzman said...

Ditto what Mauigirl said. It's just too much sometimes, the hopelessness, the sense of powerlessness. More and more, I just keep dreaming of getting completely off the grid, building myself a log cabin in the wilderness, and never being heard from again. If only I could convince my sweetheart to come with me. Her solution is not to think about politics; she just votes straight-ticket democrat and hopes for the best.