A scarlet, blood-red font to begin...
And then things take a turn.
I watch as our mad world continues to spin, and realize that not much has changed. One of the reasons for that, of course, is our innate fear of change, doing anything different, and being different in any way but for the norm.
As we move into the "Holiday" season, I am not detecting as much of the annual madness this year. Mostly I think because I am trying to ignore it.
My family and I stopped the gift-giving madness in the early 80s, because of cost. Even then, in the money-money-money 80s, we saw before others what was coming. I am not opposed to the give, or the get, but some things just lose their whatever.
This month is one that I get through, rather than experience. I do not feel the Christmas spirit, partly because of the ongoing argument.
We bitch and complain about the consumerist excess, but queue up at Black Friday and trample people to get "deals."
We talk about the religious reasons/aspects of the holiday, and how differently it was celebrated (not at all, really), and forget that entirely, forgetting conveniently that the holidays are Pagan ones.
I see no reason to not be kind to yourself this time of year, or at any time. I'm usually working most holidays, but I've also been fortunate to have friends willing to make space for one of those outlanders at their table or in their home for a bit. It's always cool.
I do find myself pretty often realizing my disgust for people who continue to live in a delusional fantasy that usually involves spewing hatred like blasts of birdshot, typically from behind a computer keyboard and a fake screen name. Or if they are really narcissistic, they put their name on it.
Look at me!
Nah, I'll pass.
This is an exciting comment, and there's a backstory to it, and it has to do with a mother asking Gandhi's counsel about her son's sugar habit.
Gandhi reportedly said, come back in two weeks, and I'll have a talk with him.
Perplexed, the lady did as asked. He then spoke with the child, who said he'd work on it.
The mother asked, why did you wait two weeks?
Gandhi reportedly replied he had the same bad habit, and took the two weeks to work on it himself.
I'd heard that before, only it was a father asking for his son. Apocryphal or not, it is an example of not doing, "Do as I say, not as I do."
I, for example, cannot tell someone to stop drinking coffee. Nor would I ever.
Not sure why I'm writing about this, but change is a thing that is so frightening.
The reason we see the backlash against progress, and this is progress of any kind, is because those who think they have something to lose, actually think they're going to lose it.
Their guns, their marriage, their privilege, their...whatever.
We have a sad sense of nostalgia, as evidenced by our love affair with old things. Old music, which we have some connection to (I can't deny it), old TV shows, old cars, old movies, all leading up to the "Way Things Used to Be."
I once wrote in a lyric, "Don't look back at the past, because it might just catch up to you."
Too many just remember the good things; they don't remember the trauma. They don't remember the violence. They don't remember the hate. They don't remember what hurt them.
And yet they still go back there, don't they?
It is fine to listen to great sounds from the past, whatever ones you love because there's great inspiration there. Authors, too, although as one myself I've felt rather disappointed in some of them.
Certain books I thought were great books, weren't so great in my mind. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov, is hardly erotic or even sexual. It is an attack on the paper it's printed on, by a fiddling, obsessive-compulsive character, who began by writing a fascinating, descriptive tale...and the last half of it was a repeat that served zero purposes.
E.M. Forster's A Passage to India I'm trying to get through. The story is one that takes you there, and you are immersed in the colonialism, the racism, the outright arrogance of Britain. The Indian characters are willingly subjugated, foolish, stereotypical, even the doctors and lawyers who have somehow managed an education, lucky to avoid the lower castes.
It just does not translate into a story, but meanders in and out of places, and while it makes some sense, it does not tell me a good story.
There's a lot of great writers, many more good ones, and a lot of awful ones.
That's fucking that.
I don't think most writers are born great, nor are they recognized for it. I do cringe when certain people are hailed as the next great American author, or the next great whatever. What makes them great?
Somehow they fall into it, tell a story that grabs people, and it just works. But it needs to be in the hands of those who can get it into other hands, just as people put things on top of other things.
I'm going through another cycle of cynicism, but thankfully my old habits are largely gone, apart from the afore-mentioned caffeine.
So yeah...the change.
Tag, we're it!
If we want change, we have to make it. How do we do it?
You decide for yourself.
This is the thing...I write...for ME.
I had to get that through my head. These are stories I want to write, am inspired to write, and enjoy writing. This is how I discharge all of the madness from inside my head, in order to figure out what's going to show up next.
Now, a shameless plug:
Live from the Cafe, available at http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Live-from-the-Cafe-9781620067147.htm
...and Amazon.com if you like.
Live is kind of a go back home story because I drew on growing up in Vermont, near Quebec, and the things I recalled (what I can, anyway) formed the basis of that story.
The mythical town of Harlandsville is a place that could be anywhere, but it also changes with the times.
Change is the big C in that town...they talk about it, think about it, experience it, and don't always like it.
But they DO IT.
The residents of the town, lifers, transplants, regular passers through? They know it's happening, and they can't stop it. But they carry one because their lives depend on that change.
It may seem that weird little cafe is the place where time stops, but it's only for a little while. Where the Smartphones are put away, and people have nothing to do but drink coffee, and talk to each other.
Not a bad thing, now and again.
I think if I did run a cafe, I'd be out of business in six months w/o no wifi...but it'd be kinda different, don't you think?
Okay to live in the time when you didn't have hotspots, but again you're not living there.
And you know, Luc and Emily are Millennials, but their clientele goes across the spectrum. There, NO ONE gives a shit whether you're an old far, a Boomer, a Yuppie, a Gen X-er, or a Millennials, or what the fuck you are.
Step inside, you're welcome.
Make that every damn place we go.
I don't give a fuck who or what you are. Respect is a two-way street. Don't give me shit, I won't give you shit.
Figure out how to straighten things out, and not just in a wardroom coffee clatch, but actually get out and do it.
I do it through work, by being fair, straight-up, and our employer is that way. You know when you hear us, you hear it fairly and correctly.
If you like it, good. If you don't, that's fine, but you have to decide what to do with what you heard and learned.
The writing? I write for ME, but I hope to write for you. I hope you find my stories interesting, compelling, fun, whatever it does for you I hope is good.
I write what I want to see. The world I hope for, usually in everyday life. It may not be what you see, or want to see but it's a world that is attainable.
Do we want it enough?
Do we want the change enough?
I know what I do.
Think about yours.
Peace, Dafuq Out.