I decided everything that had happened here (and some of it was great) had happened enough.
So I’ll just leave it like it is. I sort of like the narrative of it. Where it starts and where it ends.
Anyway, I have a new but rarely updated place over at http://anthropodysmorphia.wordpress.com/
I’ve been giving the dead a lot of room in my thoughts the last few days. Probably too much, but they’re dead, so I figure cutting them a break on mental real estate can’t hurt anybody but the suburban developers trying to turn cranial farm land into Oak Place Terraces and Deer Meadow Glen Towne Place Courts. And fuck those guys. And fuck suburbs in general. They make me murdery.
Though making me murdery lately has taken little. There is a mile wide current of black hate up past flood stage washing away the topsoil of my goddamn troubled mind. I don’t know what that even means. Probably something bad. I assume it’s bad. Generally flood stage hate is bad. It might add valuable nutrients into downstream overbank deposits, though, which may not be bad.
I hate the gray rainy days. I hate when they correspond to hatefulness already established and/or flooding.
The EPA defines pollution as “any resource out of place.” That seems like a good way to drum up some job security if your job is pollution. That would be like me having a government mandate to octify the holdiquars. My first job would be to define octifying and my second job would be to identify holdiquars. Of course, I would be retarded not to find a holdiquar needing octification behind every nullruth. I’d be like that chick that wrote ‘Harry Potter.’ With a badge. And a gun. And a helicopter. Correction: helicopters. Aerial Octification is the best octification. Obviously.
And a decade later, sitting in my goddamn living room after too long a night where I had nightmares about my dead holdiquar octifying friends (octification is dangerous), the ones who never made it back, or the ones who made it back from That Goddamned Place, saw the rest of their lives on Deer Meadow Glen Place Court flash before their eyes, put their M9 holdiquar octificators in their mouth and left their brainstem all over the wall of their garage in a crimson and clover splayed out Rorschach lithograph, like the final stamp of holdiquarino approval prior to Relocation Efforts in the capital of Choloidistan. The history books never got around to that one.
Jesus Christ, there isn’t enough whiskey on this goddamn earth to make all that go away. When Octification first started, the whole damn country was behind us. The media embedded their best journalists to bring Octification home to Oak Place Terrace Run Quail Acres. Then people saw too much. Octification is dirty business. Holdiquars look a whole lot like us when they’ve been octified roughly (is there any other way?). Then everybody just wanted it over. Unless they were those sycophantic fucksticks who root for the home team, even when the home team is composed entirely of the people they would not invite to attend the First Fellowship Church Congregation of Deer Meadow Quail Run Excitement Christian Center. It’s tough being a lamb when your only communion is the blood of Holdiquarino. But holdiquar blood tastes good. Obviously.
And so those dead, holy saints called above in their white robes washed clean in the blood of the martyrs or some such nonsense get a prime zoned multifamily tract of previously flood damaged real estate right there on the banks of The Hate River. And they dug in quick. Like the goddamn suburban pieces of shit the dead always are.
Because I refuse to let even one half semester of my GI Bill big government money check go to waste, I am in a sculpture class. Besides growing some new appreciation of the incredible musculature of the walrus, it has been a little bit of an eye opening adventure. I had no idea it was that much damn work to put together a fucking walrus. Not just physical work, though my forearms have never felt this level of pain, but mental work. You have to realize a creature you have never really been close to and then for it into something abstract, and then bring it somewhere closer to reality where things have “conceptual value.”
It’s like writing a letter to God. No, it’s harder. I actually know walrus(es) exist.
An abstraction, though, does offer a decent look into the way your brain works. I am somewhat convinced most people have no idea how the consciousness machine cranking out experiential day to day even works. I say somewhat, because I have no idea exactly how it works, but I have a decent set of ideas.
And so, to drive home a point I don’t need to make, telling a bunch of people to make an abstract version of something out of clay is really damn weird. One girl in the glass asked me what that even meant. In reply I held up a ball of gooey plasticine clay with tusks and said, “Like this, only not really a walrus, but capturing what a walrus is.”
Just call me Jesus.
I have all these damn walruses (it is walruses not “walri”) all over my coffee table, probably driving my girlfriend toward some sort of stroke. They have different levels of walrusness vs. blobs of clayness, but they’re all a goddamn walrus. A walrus is hard to fucking make abstract, but sort of easy to make conceptual.
I once constructed a gargoyle out of the Missouri mud I dug out of my army boots when we had a lull in training. It was actually pretty good, and I wish I had not given it away, but a kid there really wanted it. It nailed a sort of oafish, semi-demonic, sad monster which does not exist. It was damn good.
That was abstract. It had all kinds of gargoyleness, but was not a gargoyle. Because there are no gargoyles (as far as living things). It could not be conceptual, because what the fuck is a gargoyle? I could have given it six legs and eight penises. It would be just as accurate a representation as the original. An accurate representation of what is not is actually easy.
Again, I understand how religion works. It is the abstraction of what has never really been, i.e. an order that we can understand in the universe or whatever. You can abstract the shit out of a spirit realm with dieties and shit, but you can’t bring it into the realm of the conceptual. Not to say people don’t try. I have seen some interesting attempts to drag the unreal through that portal into our state. But it’s always an abstraction. Even people who believe mightily in their God can’t really explain a god concept. Or, for that matter, realize a god for you.
Clay is an interesting medium.
I have mentioned previously being in a band.
I went through a serious bout of musically related depression not long back when all of my gear was stolen, with the exception of one lone Maxon OD pedal that had been dropped in the snow by the thieves. That pedal now picks up AM radio stations.
The gear lost, while cheap, did have some serious sentimental value. I got the Global you see in the video from my Grandpa when he died and that strat has more deployments under its belt than most first enlistment Army guys I know. The amp is a pawnshop Peavey 5150, which is a horrible choice for most types of music not related to Spandex, but it added a real gravel and blood note to our sound. I guess it doesn’t really matter, since everything is impermanent, but I miss that stuff. I also miss the thousands of dollars I spent trying to get that sound back.
That strat is, without a doubt, the best guitar I have ever owned. In my hands, it beats out any of the Gibsons or Gretsches easily and trounces any Fender, even the Americans, I have played. And it’s just a cheapo Mexican strat I bought with lawn mowing money when I was a kid and started modding. But it had some sort of strange power. Maybe just because I knew where everything on it was. Harmonics don’t translate exactly from guitar to guitar, even exact replicas from the same production run. So, it had somewhere around 12 years of experience or so that went with it.
Now I have two guitars trying to fill that sonic void. I guess I shouldn’t complain, but I miss all the gear, especially that strat, greatly. It still makes me well up and seethe thinking about some asshole kid not understanding my Grandpa’s Global or that guitar I babied for years and years. Buddha never faced the challenge of forgetting a good guitar.
Anyway, this is from one of our first shows last summer. We picked up a drummer the night before and the singer is singing this song literally for the first time. Most importantly, it shows off that amazing sound from that collection of (honestly) crap.
“Why did you quit? Was it your girlfriend?”
No. My girlfriend has been very inspirational in many creative outlets, maybe not as much in writing, but she’s not the reason I stopped. I read through the archives and saw in them, at least at the supertextual level, a narrative of great conflict. The best writing plumbed it fairly well, the worst is immersed in it.
The conflict, simplified, is a real need I must have had to reconcile who I was, am, to a larger theme of conscious creation that was not allowing me to enter. That sort of melodramatic sounding sentence is exactly what I hate most in bloggers.
It sounds like a great over-supposing of the importance of who I am to myself and others. It’s that sort of narcissistic bullshit that I hated. But it is valid to the question I had to answer from several people, and sometimes the truth, like sex, is embarrassingly affected. That is the nature of both acts, obviously.
The conflict was with violence. Not anger, as anger is lauded, generally. Not with passion or zeal, as both of those are also lauded, therefore of no real consequence. It was the violence. Violence has defined the greatest moments of my life, but I hated violence.
I can think of the times my parents, both loving and beautiful people, beat me down. I can think of the times me and my brothers fought and bullied each other. Being the youngest, I had a distinct size disadvantage, but I had ruthlessness. I won a lot of those fights. The defining moments of a short and somewhat legendary attempt at marriage were explosive and angry and physical. And that physical violence was so detestable to me that the fights took on an aspect of spiritual battle, a somewhat vaporous concept.
There were times in my life I loved causing death and harm to other human beings and the creations of their hands. Then I spent years feeling guilt over my complicity. I spent years getting in fights in bars, at random public events, a couple of times in sanctioned arenas, and in a lot of alleys. And I hated that moment when the fight is over and all you can see and feel and know is the great pain and guilt and a misplaced helplessness.
I was struggling so hard for peace, when I was writing all sorts of polemics about the value of natural people and natural places. I surrounded myself, physically and intellectually, with peaceful, harmless people who wear natural fibers. I detested anything dishonest and forced upon nature, like guilty chastity or teflon coated cookware, which to me was a disavowal of a person’s humanity, and thus Nature, the final greatest deity.
Last summer, on a sort of relationship drama fueled whim, I joined the Army, what for I could go to Afghanistan with a deploying unit. So far in my life, the only thing I’m any good at is war. I can be a warhorse, and I understand the environment of the militant. I don’t understand scholastics, I am terrible at most jobs, but I get the military. I get that feeling.
And somewhere around the fifth time I wrote her off forever and gave her away to the whims of hers I could never control, I was knocking down anthropomorphic targets in a field with links of 7,62 flowing out of a M240B machine gun and I felt peace. There I felt at peace with myself, surrounded by warriors who never needed me to explain why I trained to destroy. I never had to explain how slogging through mud a foot deep and learning the finer points of killing someone with a bayonet was fulfilling.
And I have rectified* nature with violence. If I am being honest, I am acknowledging my desire to enforce my dominance onto others, and to back my opinions with lightning and blood and the absolute rush of anger powering movement. The honesty killed the conflict. And I slowly quit feeling any sort of need to write.
I still write, but it’s songs about shooting people and irresponsible drinking. Usually in the same song. I’m in an Electric Hillbilly band. I play guitar to people that want to hear, and we are achieving, slowly, more success than words would ever gain me. And so, I quit writing words.
But: I drive my girlfriend slightly insane with just the sorts of questions the former readers hear would love to read. I realize what a piece of crap this whole rambling, inconcise spill of words is, and I hate it. I hate that I am so far out of practice.
And all I can do is miss it. And I miss it. As surely as blood.
*Rectified can be taken many ways, in this case I mean it in more of the mathematical/engineering sense than the crass and assumptive literal definition.
People who believe in angels bother me. That they find invisible spirits lurking along with them in moments of the most undivine. It’s a form of voyeur fetish, possibly. Or more accurately a safer type of exhibitionism. Exhibitionism in that there would be, in these instances of angelic watchers, a presence so doggedly concerned with the individuals goings on as to follow them through all manner of banal carnal taking and leaving.
Further, there is the belief that these angels are following everyone. The angelic host is hinted at in the Bible fairly often, but hardly numbered and never individually assigned. That is probably the exotic influence of a bunch of goddamn heathen wood fairy loving Celts and Barbarians as Christianity adapted to live as it went from the sparse, hot, and civilized Mediterranean and into the densely wooded heathen frontier of Europe. And in that, I thank the goddamn wood fairy believing savages. At least it adds a little creepy personal flair to the idea of angels. Previously they were assigned the more clerical positions in the Roman pantheon. The fairy principle gave them enormous numbers and diverse occupation.
These hypotheses are, of course, unresearched but fairly reasonable.
I did not sit here at my computer, caffeinated, irritated, and generally just needing the internet (which does not live at my house) for a minute or two, with the intention of writing about angels. Angels occupy about five seconds of my thought every other month or so. The real purpose of all this ramble is a need to discuss my personal future. This is, after all, a blog. An ongoing act of narcissism so ridiculous it could only have been conceived in the decades following Nirvana’s unplugged album. Here, short of possible angelic motherfuckers and wood fairies, I reign as some sort of supreme being. At least until the coffee shop girl gets over her nerves and comes over to tell me to buy more Sumatra or leave. She caught me glaring at her. I believe strongly that I have bought an extra hour.
So, the idea of writer’s block is a fairly ancient one dating at least as far back as the Ordovician. That’s why I had to go all Hadean on some motherfucking words. I was like, “Bitch, I was writing about stupid shit or making readers horny about fluvial sandstone back when the moon was still in Theia’s cisted ovary(ies).”
The words, of course and obviously, did not care. They are not ones to bully. And I have figured that my creativity has went a somewhat different route lately anyway. Notes are making themselves friends. Musical notes. I am, and have always been, taken places by music that logic cannot dictate, which is not true of words. If there were ever a truly rational and spaded in human activity, it would be the rationalization of the Blues scale. Take every damn word and sentence you’ve loved and it would not rationalize the way the 7th falls totally and madly in love with the greater Satan of the Pentatonic scale.
And so in that, maybe I am totally lost, as I knew would one day happen, to the frills and fluffy bullshit necessary to write words anybody cares about.
These hypotheses are, of course, unresearched but fairly reasonable.
Maybe I should start a themed blog. About kittens.
I try to find reasons to understand. And I watch the embers rise up and away from me in a funerary practice I just won’t ever understand. The death of something dead and its baptism into a world of further refined death.
He died, finally.
And it hurt me.
It was a passage into some greater death. And in that, he joined the greater life.
This is not some Disney inspired, Phil Collins narrated take. It is true. A majority mind-bogglingly vast of all life is no longer individually alive. But it has joined in the nonindividuated morass of greater life. It’s a powerful and teeming force on this planet and probably others. A force that changes the very scape of the planet, visible from lightyears away (in our case).
And in that greater heaven, we all live forever. It’s a moving and holy passion.
By virtue of who I am and the lives I have lived, death was never far away from me. I have visited it upon others. I have seen it in the same intimate way you know the smells and moles of your chosen love. Death is a fucking bummer, primarily, but only to the living. To the passed on and perfected, it is a mountain building event.
But I only saw the death of the young. I saw the death of a generation of friends. I saw the death of other men my age and children and women, but all young and in their prime. And so there was rage. There was a growling and disgusting and forever morphing anger about the injustice/immorality/etc.
And I was wrong. If you can possibly say anything is a deserved trait of the living, it is their eventual death. They do, afterall, feed off of other dead things. They got it coming.
But he was old. I should not have felt that rage crop up. I should not have felt the same anger at everything in the whole goddamn world the way I felt over the deaths of my 20 something friends for policies none of us understood.
He was 94. He deserved to die. It was over and he was happy to go to his believed in after-life.
I don’t know how it works. I know I had a friend there for me. Many friends, but one great friend and love who listened to me and listened to all my circuitous emotional dross.
Like you are now.
And in that moment, when I was destructing into something like that old and ancient rage that makes genocide seem almost reasonable, I gave more than I planned. And it wasn’t so bad.
It wasn’t the end of me. The way I always thought it would be.
And now my life is peaceful. I balk at the peaceful ease and the lack of murderous anger I feel. There is something about me that died when I met her and another part that languished and one that held fast until it could no longer.
It is interesting to me that only a close death could show me all the parts of me that were no longer alive.
But that’s the way it always works, here in the temporal fallacy of the living.