Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

The other day I was at a stop sign, waiting to turn right onto a well-traveled street in Los Angeles, and a young man on a bicycle rode towards my car on the sidewalk, and then dramatically stopped just short of my passenger door and performed an elaborate dumb-show, the point of which appeared to be that it was outrageous that he, a young man well-appointed in expensive kicks and elaborately stitched jeans, and no doubt on his way from one of the more socially relevant offerings of the local community college, and sporting a hair cut that I would know looked nothing like Justin Bieber's if I weren't so fucking uncool, yes, it was outrageous that he had to interrupt his illegal sidewalk odyssey to allow for the normal driving activities of some stupid fucking old bitch.

Readers, it is times like this when I frequently admonish myself for not being more, ah, ZEN I think they call it.  Who cares if the little twerp made gestures at you that he copied from some rapper who probably had real problems that were much more deserving of such emphatic miming?  Why do you care?  Let it go.  Breathe.  Signal your lane change.  Breathe some more.

But then I always remember that I fucking HATE Zen.  Zen sucks.  Zen is for people too self-involved to give a shit.  What I really need, is better punchlines.  For instance, when the aforementioned helmet baby was all up in my Volvo wagon grille, I should have rolled my window down and said "Why yes, it IS a '96.  Jealous?"

Instead I screamed at him in a manner that no doubt exactly fulfilled his expectations of me, and he rode away the morally triumphant one, and I imagine laid his aggressively styled head on his pillow that night and dreamed of vanquishing all the haters with the righteousness of his gesticulations.

A lot has been made of us haters recently.  We've been a busy bunch, all wrapped up in our efforts to keep Bristol Palin off the celebrity dance competition throne.  If I were a Zen-type person, I might muse for a moment on Bristol's surprisingly ill-informed beliefs of how the voting system on Dancing With the Stars works, and that it is, in fact, impossible to vote against any contestant -- it's only possible to vote for them.  And then I would remind myself that in the grand scheme of things, none of this matters.  As Gandhi once said, all tyrants will fall in the end.  And besides, what if all of us, what if our entire universe were merely a speck of dust underneath the fingernail of a giant...something.  A giant...tuba, I don't know, I suck at this, clearly.  And I'm not Zen, and so I just want to tell Sarah's jackass-in-training that the definition of a hater is one who harbors malevolence without justification, and who broadcasts her resentment with self-satisfaction and a sense of superiority.  Just a little something to think about, dear.

Look, I had no intention at all of thinking, much less writing, about That Stupid Dance Show, even though both my parents were dance instructors and I LOVE dancing.  But when I'm watching my show, I don't want to be called a hater just because I want someone with talent to win over someone without talent.  And goddammit it bothers me when people say I don't live in the real America, because I do.  I live in the real America.  United lost my luggage last week.  My old dog is dying and it makes me sad.  I don't know what my company is going to do for revenue in six months.  I need to lose weight.  I'll probably get screwed out of my Social Security by those goddamn Baby Boomers.  My last haircut was disappointing.  There are so many homeless on the streets it feels like the '80s.  I can't afford to replace my brakes right now.  And I worry that it is already too late to reverse my country's slow circling of the global drain. 

I secretly think we may all be fucked.