The summer between high school and college presents a beautiful, uniquely modern, netherworld- the intersection of hope and accomplishment. A short pause between childhood and everything else, like the blank space between comic book panels, where reflection meets expectation.
I had a conversation with friend at the time about our idea of what college would be like. We had both felt severely burned by our Catholic high school education- that the limitations of Catholic doctrine had somehow obscured Truth. The Truth, we had both agreed, was the ultimate end-game of any education; the absolute highest priority.
And not that we were necessarily wrong on either account, however this belief in “Truth as God” without the components of wisdom and social acuity will only lead to misery and self-destruction.
This is where, if this were a perfect story, future-me would appear in the back lot of Donny’s Adventure Kingdom- behind the pirate ship- and tell past-me how Truth must be tempered with rhetoric. People aren’t looking for Truth; people are looking for identity.
And the clove cigarettes have got to go too, for fuck’s sake.
Sexual strategy is like that scene at the end of Wargames where Joshua the computer tries to launch nuclear weapons and start World War 3; the computer cycles-through launch codes quickly while keeping the bits of code that are a positive match. Most people unconsciously allow their brain to do this work, matching behaviors with their positive outcomes, and bookmarking those behaviors while discarding the ineffective.
The conversation almost always goes like this when you tell someone that everything a person does stems from a foundation of sexual strategy: they listen patiently, provide the socially customary nods of understanding, and then say something like, “well, okay, but not everything…”
This certainly seems like it could be the case; it almost feels reductionist on some level to think that men and women are constantly being guided through their choices and actions by some invisible force emanating from their genitalia, silently screaming at them to just get it the fuck in like a pack of dogs in heat. That there must be a special designation, or a degree of intellectual sophistication , which separates the human animal from his more primitive underlings.
And this is certainly true; the human animal is civilized. We are conscious of a wider-span of potential emotions, and are gifted with the ability to fulfill more significant goals than simply eating and fucking. We can shape our consciousness with language, and vocabulary, and with language comes access to higher level thinking.
It’s a lot like when you were a kid in kindergarten, at the beginning of the school year, with all your little school supplies. You mom could have gotten you the boring eight pack of Crayolas, but you wanted the big box of sixty-four; you know, the kind that comes with the crayon sharpener. So instead of just “red” and “blue,” you had a whole variety of different shades of the same color to pick from, and lucky you, right?
There was never another time historically where having a conversation about the basic nature of reality- what we encounter in our lived experiences- would have made much sense. Rather, it would have come off as insanity, but here we are in our horrifying alternate-1985 wasteland engaged in a perpetual argument over what should be the prologue of the story.
Reality should be our starting point, the toolkit and blueprint for human greatness, not a prolonged debate.
But what the fuck is reality? Tough to know in a world of misinformation and unreality, served by people raised on the same deliberate bullshit. Modernity is a nice sounding hypothesis playing out in real time, but without an end-date to honestly access the damn thing. The people who drew it up are long dead, and what’s left are loudmouth idiots and unreality profiteers.
While pacing an empty classroom after hours, door shut and blinds drawn, dictating a clumsy outline for why the movie “Overboard” (1987)- yes, “Overboard”- provides sufficient evidence for the success of a Trump/Sanders dream ticket, I can’t help but feel like I’m sneaking pop-rocks after brushing my teeth. I’m in too deep and I’m clapping wildly at show ponies. Dogs jumping through flaming hoops. Hot dogs and Easter candy. Junk food. Bullshit.
None of this means anything, but I can’t quit Donald Trump.
I’ve become a political junkie cheering for a puppet show. I want to see Ravishing Rick Rude with the WWF gold- taunting the fat, out of shape, low-T, liberal sweat hogs. I want the mere words “President Trump” to be a passive aggressive trigger striking rotten disdain into the hearts of all who oppose.
When I was an adolescent I had two different Playboy magazines under my bed. At the time I felt like a nudie magazine millionaire. Well, maybe not a millionaire, but a very wealthy man. It felt like I was dating those centerfolds with the regularity that I saw them naked. At night, before bed, I’d crack one open and with my imagination racing I’d enjoy a hot-and-wild fifteen minutes before falling asleep as a highly satisfied thirteen year old.
Then you end up in High School and there are post-pubescent girls all over. Large breasts in tight white button-downs and plaid skirts. You want to be a wild animal. You want to fuck them all. You’re in bed at night and you’re thinking of Lynette with her long dark hair, and her perfect skin, and her full breasts, and suddenly Miss October seems a little less appealing. Lynette had the depth of reality; Lynette represented possibility. Read More
Duty is not something a person will choose when given the option to make their own decisions; by-definition “duty” is an imposition and a responsibility- duty is about limiting personal freedom for the best interest of civilization.
A dutiful citizen is necessary for a functional civilization- this includes duty to family, duty to community, and duty to country. Although duty isn’t necessarily enjoyable by the modern understanding of the term- flashing lights and lines of cocaine- it must be prioritized above personal pleasure. Duty must be foremost, and whatever enjoyment gleaned from life beyond duty becomes secondary.
Like getting all your homework done on a Friday night before hunkering down and playing Ikari Warriors; a life well-lived, and a little bit of fun too.
The sexy appearance of modernity has made the dutiful life seem boring by comparison. The modern Progressive will view humility as a kind of self-imposed naivety– the dutiful experience has become synonymous with missing out on life; life as defined by escalating consumption.
When Dorothy clicks her heels at the end of The Wizard of Oz (1939) repeating “there’s no place like home,”she is acknowledging that happiness isn’t something that must be found in extreme individualism and a highly stimulating landscape; happiness isn’t about consumption. There is beauty in humility.
Dorothy learns the value in calm stability, and a life with family.
Thematically,The Wizard of Ozwould be lost on the modern Progressive, confused as to why Dorothy didn’t stay in Oz, find a solid drug dealer, and a few dozen Alpha males to party with.
The very same modern Progressive is staunchly in favor of abortion.