The Whale Fall

Image result for whale fallhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whale_fall

A Whale Fall is when a whale nears the end of his life and decides to commit his body to an abyssal zone, which is a relatively deep area within the ocean, where he collapses and rots into the floor. The amazing thing is the life that comes about because of his death. Scavengers feed and multiply and thus, a cycle evolves and, as follows, an ecosystem. It comes from the husk of this beautiful creature, which commits itself to this place upon sensing its own demise.

I walked into my friend, Milky G’s, ancestral home. It was a place that he’d grown up, raised as a boy, well after his father left. He’d never known his father, although his mother had a few partners. None of her partners stuck around and he was left with her to care for him. She would die from a drug overdose when he was around the age of ten. After that, his grandmother took care of him, along with a few other members of his family. His uncle and grandfather also died in this house. I don’t know how much death it takes for a house to be considered haunted, but certainly, if there were ghosts to infect the city it would be here.

It was his grandmother who, being the only one to survive, after seeing two of her children die, not to mention a third who died years ago in childbirth, decided to raise him. Unfortunately, she was one of the great enablers of her time and thus, spoiled a young Milky G. He found out long ago that he could get away with murder, at least in her eyes, and when other family members would try to punish him she would intervene. She did the best she could for him, but the world and everything in it was rotting around them. We couldn’t see it then, but the chipped paint and gnarled corners with nails jutting out that tore open our arms and shoulders as careless young men who ran down the halls should’ve served as warnings.

The utter lack of interest in the twelve people who lived there should’ve been a dead giveaway. Nobody wanted to work on it, because it would’ve cost more than the house was worth. Towards what would be the end of his family’s time in this house, Milky G would be the last one in the house. The thing is that Milky G wasn’t handy. Within a few weeks, the plumbing seeped into the basement and after hours of trying to fix it, he finally had to call an expert. The second floor bathroom leaked into his first floor apartment and the water damage was everywhere. Tiles had to be removed and it left empty spaces in his ceiling. The floor of the bathroom mutated a putrid yellow and brown, which came out much clearer against the white ceramic tiles, which chipped and left the grey floor showing underneath.

Milky G wasn’t set on saving the house, but he didn’t have anywhere else to go. He had to make it work, because he had no idea what to do with himself. He never bothered with college, which was probably a fair assessment of his skills. He’d never been a good student. He never put the effort into studying, reading, understanding for him to be successful. It was much easier for him to be the clown. Becoming a clown for everyone was a mode of self-preservation, which claimed his entire life. He wasn’t good at telling jokes or making people laugh. He just… was a trickster. He manipulated and conned and, although people should’ve been mad, it never worked and usually ended in a catastrophic blunder. It’s terrible to think about it, but his life was a long-running, much more depressing episode of ‘The Three Stooges’.

He thought he was tough. He thought he was a force to be reckoned with, but none of that was true. He knew it, but refused to accept it. Several times, he was forced to acknowledge who he was and, although he surrendered every time, deep down it tore him apart. Deep down, Milky G wanted to be something so much more. I don’t know what he wanted to be… maybe he didn’t know either, but he understood that although he was this person, it isn’t who he should be.

Although it shouldn’t it most certainly was and he would never escape it. When I returned to his ancestral home years down the road, Milky G greeted me at the front porch. The porch is made of three concrete steps that are cracked and falling apart. Someone painted over them without sealing the cracks, so now the paint oozes into the slivers of broken ground. Milky G smokes a cigarette and stares at the other side of the road. The problem is there’s nowhere to stare. You can’t look down the road, across the street, a few blocks away, because you’ll be staring into someone’s apartment or right in their face and that’s just god damn rude.

He’s staring at his neighbors sitting on their porch. They don’t seem to notice his gaze, but he stares for most of the time that he’s talking. This entire block used to be full of people our age. They got old. They moved away. They found bigger and better things. Milky G let his cigarette burn out, before tossing it into a can next to the stairs. He led me into his home. The front hall light doesn’t work, but there’s enough light that we can make our way to his apartment. The scent of stale cigarettes and trash bombard my nostrils. The room is tossed, destroyed beyond all repair, as if it’d been raided. I don’t even notice at first that there’s a baby on a bed that’s just placed in the center of the room, amidst trash and rubble and filth and depravity and utter, ugly vulgarity that, although we claim we’re decent creatures, does exist and never, ever should. It’s one of the most horrifying sights I’ve seen and, for the life of me, I can’t believe the tranquility of this innocent baby boy. He’s far too young to understand. Ma and Pa needed an accomplice in life, so they decided to yank him out of that ethereal slumber beyond time and space. It’s not fair, but that’s the god damn cycle.

His girlfriend, Slinky Nostrils, was one of the most annoying creatures I’d ever known. When you’re young and you’re annoying people expect it, but when you’re old or have a child and you’re still this person it’s just infuriating. I know you can’t be expected to grow up in a matter of minutes. Logically, these are things I understand, but seeing the child nestled snugly in filth and debris… I’m glad I didn’t take a picture.I’m glad I can’t show you, although it’s an image I’ll remember for the rest of my life.

Milky G tried opening a door into one of the rooms, but there was too much junk on the other side. He put his shoulder into it, before it budged and he could reach in and grab a clean shirt. Clean is not a word for anything in this place. He walks me out to the kitchen, where I see a large pit-bull in a cage. He owed someone money, as was often the case, and now had to care for his dog. That explained some of the smell at least, although I hadn’t noticed the smell of piss until we walked into the kitchen. The dog had apparently grown tired of waiting to be taken out and instead peed in his cage. Milky G threw down a few old newspapers to soak it up, but there were no windows to let out the smell, so here it would stay.

He opened the back door and let the dog run down the stairs. We could hear it barking and then another dog joined, as they ran along the fence, knocking it back and forth to get at each other. Milky G walked onto the back porch and lit another cigarette, as he watched his friend’s dog running along the chain-link fence. It had only about ten feet of fence to work with, so had to go back and forth. The neighbor’s dog did the same and it went on like that for a few minutes, before he turned back to me.

Milky G. The weight of his eyes is something I’d never want to measure. He thought he’d be great. He believed with all his heart. The lights on the back porch don’t work. I remember when we were young that one of his uncles got electrocuted trying to turn it on. Several of the lights don’t work and the sockets are frayed, broken and eager to ignite in a magnanimous fire that would get rid of this building once and for all. The only thing standing in its way is Milky G. The only one keeping this building from certain doom is a man who could barely pass gym class.

I’ll be honest, I don’t remember a word that was said between us and, now that I look back, I don’t think any of it mattered. I have no idea how long I stayed. This place has a power about it, like one of many kingdoms of the Underworld. When I left, the sun was still out. The baby was still on the bed lined with garbage, but his mother was changing his diaper. I’m not rude enough to leave without saying goodbye, so I must’ve done that. I remember noticing on my way out that the ceiling was leaking outside the bathroom, at least enough that I could see the brown spot growing in the hall. I can’t think about that spot without imagining a biblical flood.

Milky G thought himself a great man, but that never came into being. His success was one of mass production. Countless Milky G’s roam the streets of, not just our town, but cities nationwide. They’re men who believe they’re greater than they actually are and have never given a proper assessment of their abilities. It’s a dangerous world that they create, because it has always sustained itself without a question. They worship the whale fall, because it gives meaning to this cycle. It promises that in death they will find meaning. It promises that their lives aren’t pointless. While I can’t deny this, I couldn’t see the point to Milky G. I don’t know why life seemed to take a particular appreciation in tormenting him every step of the way, but we all like to think that life enjoys kicking our asses more than the other. I mean… what about the whale?

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Tom – Middle Manager

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This is a story dedicated to… not just a manager… but a person of interest in a world that is evolving every second that we’re a part of it. Whether it changes for good or evil… well… who’s to say for sure?

 

Tom.

Tom –

Middle management

Sweaty, heavy breather, pained eyes hidden in cordiality, fragility, manager’s forced smile, talks in company slogans, insignificant, only a danger to those beneath him, only a danger to himself, has no self, none of significance, yet the duality of his corporate self and that dark creature within create such volatility, his presence is revolting, the duality creates a horrifying fragility to

Middle Manager Tom.

Thinning strands of hair on Tom’s head – shiny red skin – bald – vacation in Bermuda, one week off, fifty-one on, wife and kids smile – Tom the Dad on the right, them on the left

Murder – Tom sacrifices wife and children to dark gods, bathes in their blood, dances in ritual in honor of the moon – economic slave, to sacrifice and break the shackles

Fat gut – deprecations

Of body and spirit

Helter Skelter

Chronic masturbator

It Snowed and I Survived

I thought this picture framed the weekend with a certain perfection. It was a long struggle with Netflix and junk food the likes of which I’m thinking many did not survive. My thoughts go out to those with family members who didn’t make it or are reliving some form of ‘shell-shock’ from having endured hours upon hours of ‘Family Guy’ or ‘Walking Dead’ reruns.

This is a view of the city from across the river. You see traffic and then a building that overlooks the riverfront property of Albany. Across from that is Rensselaer, which is my hometown. I’d like to say it looks much more welcoming without the snow, but really it’s always grey. I don’t mean that to sound as depressing as it does, but I don’t know how else to describe a city with very little to it. If anyone from the city was asked the same question, I’d bet it all on them either saying it exactly as I have or resorting to stories from their youth. They could call back ‘the good ole days’ or suggest you look at photos of their grandchildren, which, to me, is missing the point.

The point is… I’m out of shit to do in this damn town, so I’m taking pictures from undisclosed locations to make it seem greater than it is… so, here we are. I’m thinking that it’s only me who wants more, because the city’s been this boring for as long as I can remember. You get used to nothing changing. I’m sure it’ll settle into my bones with a few more years, but does anyone really want that? Shouldn’t there be something greater, some wisdom we reveal from years of experience with this or that? I’ve been trying to understand what deeper understanding of the self I might’ve come across from all my years in this town, on this earth, somewhere in the ether of creation and chaos… nope, still nothing.

Maybe some day I’ll get to that one post that brings it all together. Maybe some day this’ll all make sense. Until then…

The Drug Guy of Tartarus

Related imageNobody talks about ‘the underworld’ these days. I find that disturbing. I love the pictures drawn out of ancient mythology of new worlds that you can pass through only by making some chilling sacrifice to prove that you belong. I’ve been considering the sacrifices we make every day to belong. We get a little older, sacrificing our youth so that we might stay a little longer. We get comfortable with loss and learning what to lose. You sacrifice a little bit of that youthful energy and hopefulness so that you might exist in this realm for a while longer.

Ask yourself, “What have I done to prove that I belong?”

It’s the same for when you want to buy drugs. It’s never an easy endeavor. Sure, we could legalize it and all this underground tom-foolery would dissipate within a matter of months… but we don’t have time for rational suggestions. Instead, we have to preserve the underground. It’s an environment unlike any other, with its own set of rules that have to be followed. It can be dark, mysterious, mischievous and down-right shady, but it has to exist. There are demands that the world of the living cannot meet. For that, you have the underground.

My dealer is a relatively normal guy. He just talks a damn lot about shit that I don’t care about. The price you pay for entering the underworld is having to listen for hours on end. Your sacrifice is made ever-so much more difficult by the fact that he won’t give you any drugs while you’re listening. You have to sit there stone-sober, as he rattles off trivial minutiae that he notices on a daily basis. It’s like meeting a character out of a children’s fable: you can’t cross the bridge without answering a few riddles. He just seems like a lonely guy living out a riddle of his own. He has dozens of friends and yet he has no friends. Plenty of people come to see him, yet nobody stays. Every creature within the underworld must live by the laws that govern. He follows a curse, for although he provides for the underworld a source of great power, he, in himself, possesses none.

I listen for a while. He believes in ancient aliens. He believes they built up mankind as a sort of cattle. He thinks we’re being moved in place and the earth is one great big farm. It’s weird that these theories always find some bearing on our souls, something familiar to embed in our psyches, like a god damn tick. I can’t forget the idea of the ancient aliens. Part of me would really love to relax and believe whatever. It settles into you. Doesn’t anyone else notice the parasitic nature of belief? A tick doesn’t rest. It bites down and chews. It’s chomping through you with all its might. You might feel it as an itch, but on the part of the tick its intent is malicious. It wants to survive. It HAS to survive.

Once he runs out of steam you’ve passed the test presented by the underworld. You’re free to escape. He works through the conversation and reveals vast treasures of the underworld. He gathers them up in sandwich bags, ties them up and presents them to you without a riddle. I don’t even know the question. I take what I’ve come for and leave, like any businessman, I offer a proper handshake and goodbye. He never seems to care that you go, as he folds over onto his couch and continues watching whatever is on the television. It’s usually cartoons or the History channel.

We Built the Pyramids

Image result for cool drawing of the pyramids

I was high when I wrote this…

Where I compose my scriptures can define this town, like Jesus’s sermon on a mount in a place that I can’t really comprehend. I know nothing of that time. Even in reading something out of a history book… reading and being are not one in the same. You have to feel it. I felt hell the other day. Hell is a karmic flow of energy when it tilts towards the negative. I’ve been tilting towards the negative all my life. I thought it was the worst, but it gets even better. The nightmare of life is what I’m talking about. If you don’t know, I’ll try to describe it as best I can.

For starters, we built the pyramids. It wasn’t ancient aliens. It wasn’t God. It was us. Skilled artisans crafted it with meticulous precision. A man with an intimate knowledge of how this should look drew up the plans. The plans were followed by workers who knew how to give instructions, while going along with the plans of the person above them. The workers followed in point. Laborers stacked the damn stones on top of each other based on what their bosses told them to do. It seems like such a simple explanation, but there’s really not that much to it. We built the pyramids.

Karmic justice is based on this same principle. Every nightmare is an inevitability, as well as every fantasy. We can’t comprehend in this life the consequences of the next, because we only know this life. Knowledge, no matter how powerful, has limitations. Those limitations expire when you die. When you die, you move to another wisdom. Some might say it’s a ‘greater wisdom’, but really it’s just another step along the path of something we’ll probably never, ever understand.

It’s not wisdom in the sense of knowing. Knowing attaches limitations. In this life, I refuse to believe in God. I refuse to follow a religion, because people have yet to relinquish the atavistic sense of the self. We’ve not reached that point of perfection that allows us to judge one another for what we consider a sin. Even in sharing what I’ve seen, it’s limited by senses that my mind views from a time that has such a limited, narrow scope. I mean… why the fuck would any of you listen to me?

Capitol in Albany. We built this shit too…

The Vision: I lived out such a short life that it had to be lived over and over again. This was hell. I was dropped into a terrarium with glass walls, roughly two feet wide, although space and time seemed irrelevant at this point. All that mattered was survival. We fell into a terrarium and our sole purpose was to die. A massive lizard came to ensure the price of our sin was paid. Heaven for the lizard meant hell for the cricket. Hundreds of us… imagine that… and N-O-N-E of us would survive. The creature tore one man apart. If you could see the horror on the man’s face and understand the true nature of anguish. The lizard was so damn happy, as he roamed the confines of this prison. This was paradise to him.

A young boy is God to the lizard. He’s so happy when he feeds him, but the lizard looks to him with veneration and terror. How can you not? The boy is massive.. roughly four feet tall. He grabs the lizard from the terrarium and lifts him to the boy’s heart. The poor lizard hovers in the air. Four feet off the ground is a mighty fall for such a minute figure. In this case, when you see the lizard between the tiny fingers of the young boy, you think that… our scale for all that we know is off. The boy is massive. The lizard is small in comparison. I’m at the bottom. I’m a cricket waiting to die in a terrarium full of sinners like me.

What is my sin? How do I prove to God that I don’t deserve to be here?

Proof… it’s not what we think. You don’t bow down and pray and make everything better. I learned that the hard way, as I waited for the young man… who seemed eternal, indomitable… at least as I lived as a cricket, to return the lizard. Proof that you deserve to live is in living. Fight for survival. I have nowhere to run. This is hell. This is to suffer. My mission is whatever I god damn feel. I feel terror. The lizard returned. He was bored for now. He shit out a few of my friends, as most of us cowered in the corner. I found the remains of some unlucky cricket resting at my feet. It was half an abdomen and a bit of a leg. He died without a name. It shows you what’s really worth a damn in this world. All your names and disappear with death.

Vision: I’m a worm. You’re never warm as a worm. Nobody understands that worms rule the earth. There are massive worms deep within the crest of the earth. The core itself is made up of one giant worm that has rolled himself into a knot. One day, he took a bite out of his tail and, in struggling to break free, made the knot even worse. He tried to eat himself and couldn’t stop. He wrapped himself around in one great big knot and this became our core. The friction of his body creates the super-heated essence, the delicate ether that has supported life for countless millennia.

The core is the mind. It moves everything. We think we have free will and absolute control of our destiny, but this is one great big lie. The core has control. It’s responsible for global catastrophes. It’s responsible for great works of art. You can look to any painting, any scripture, anything vital, anything destructive… you have the core to thank. It moves us based on a whim within itself… this is survival. The core wants to survive, just like I did when I was a cricket. The worms move with the seasons, which depend on the position for which they belong within the levels of the earth. There are entire ecosystems within the planet that we’ve yet to understand. There are black holes, which I can’t explain right now, just because I don’t have the time. There’s just so damn much to this universe and I’m just a god damn worm.

I’m a worm. I move through the earth blind, because I have no need to see. All I feel and know is cold. I’m moving along with the rhythm of the earths core, when I feel that jolt of energy, the essence, prana, ether, rippling through the earth. The delicate vibration can’t be explained, because it doesn’t belong to the core. It belongs to me. It’s within me. I’m moved by my own vibration. It’s a confusing feeling to be in control, especially when I have no mind. I have no face, but I believe I understand how I look. I have an image of myself and for the first time I see it. I’m ugly. I’m hideous. Years of chewing away at the earth has made my face a rounded off nub with no features. I’m featureless, because I decide to eat on an endless path, shitting along the way, trailing my mess behind me, as I carry out my quest.

I have no sense of direction. I break free of the earth and reach that other strata. A worm, if he had a basic understanding of a ‘religious experience’, would believe that he reached heaven. The sky opens in a light blue above me. I feel warmth for the first time. I’m blind, but I feel the sun. I don’t know it’s the sun. I feel it and know it all the same. In this context the sun is God, but what is the dagger?. The next phase is me squirming along the ground, because I can’t find the point of entry for me to escape into the ground. A crow jabs its sharp beak, which pierces our rubbery flesh like a dagger and picks up several worms and keeps them in his mouth. I can’t see him. I feel his sharp beak prodding. He tears me in half and two broken pieces of my self litter the ground. I feel nothing. The crow abandons me and steals more of my friends. I hear their moans of unremitting torment.

“This is the eternal torment of the Lord”… so sayeth the worm.

A sun shower is something altogether nightmarish, but for some reason we carry a sense of relief and hope when it comes. I’m brought to the surface, watching several other worms with faces, as their plucked free of the earth and swallowed by the crow. It flies off. We’re left alone. The crow is not God. I have a deeper understanding, for what I feel is beyond all that I’ve known. I feel the sun. I can’t see it, but I feel. It feels so great on my rubbery skin, until that vital essence inside me runs dry and I feel the truth. My body withers. The sun eats me alive. This is God. It isn’t the core. It isn’t the sun. It’s the constant movement of karmic justice. The core will wither away. So will the sun. So will the worm and crow and cricket and lizard.

Where is God? The pulse. The trigger. The heart-beat. It pumps blood from one second to the next. When it stops, when the flow is severed and we bleed out from an irreparable laceration… where is God. When everything goes silent. When everything ends. When we don’t have the capacity to question.

I return. Eternal return. I’m the pharaoh. I built the pyramid. I preached a bunch of bullshit, not because I knew it, but because this is the wisdom I’ve inherited. Pharaoh after pharaoh claimed the rank of God. Now, I return. Eternal return. I walk the steps shaped at such an odd angle, because, at this time, people believed that maintaining a direct link to certain stars and constellations allowed a man to possess some greater power than he deserves. I believe this, because this is the wisdom we’ve inherited. We’ve passed it on, generation to generation. As to what the generation that follows will believe, I have no say. I won’t make it. I can’t see beyond this point. This is the end. Eternal Return.

Duality Point – The Blinding Stargate

Image result for sunlight forming a gatewayThere’s plenty of wonder in the world and for that which exists, for the most part, it can only be seen if one is to achieve even a slight understanding of its complexity. If you can, however, I would truly recommend that in that precious moment of time when you are in the midst of certain chaos and have seen something beyond our comprehension, allow it to invade all of the senses.

I found one just a few days ago in my town, for which I’ve lived for well over thirty years. It exists at the point where Partition street loops around, as one big hill, to which Third street then intersects.If you were to look down from this point on either side of Partition, you would be reminded of Sisyphus from Greek lore pushing a boulder up a hill only for it to drop down moments later. If that isn’t a fitting metaphor for this city I don’t know what is.

If you approach this point at the right time, you’ll witness an amazing sight, as a rift out of some unreality forms a mesmerizing stargate. Partition street becomes the horizon and captures at this most perfect moment the full majesty of the sun. The sun manages to shine down the entire length of Partition to a point where if you’re at the bottom coming up you’ll be blinded. You won’t be able to move, utterly humbled by the radiance of this blinding light. Many bow in reverence, while others flock to bear witness to its brilliance. It reminds one of the ‘Trial of Sysiphus’, in which he is forced to roll a boulder up a hill only for it to fall back down, repeating this over and over for all eternity. If you force yourself to the top of the hill, fighting the brilliance, deciding not to wait for it to pass, you will see the cataclysm that waits between worlds. You’ll enter the stargate and be taught every secret there is to know.

It only takes a moment for the gate to close. You’ll look down on the other side of Partition. There’s the Stewart’s Shop and the Broadway Bridge, as well as the empty field of rubble that used to be my high school. There’s also a laundromat that’s been closed since I was born. You’ll sit at the top of the hill and think maybe the stargate will return, but time and wonder are passing fads. You’ll learn just like Sisyphus and roll your ass back down the hill.

Song of the Hill People

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Look like crows to me…

Stretching around Partition St and going for miles, passed Central Park and out to Herkimer St is what historians have labeled ‘Land of the Hill People’. Starting at Partition, the streets become narrow and slanted, as this half of the city is constructed on a hill… well, a mountain. In the early seventies, a group of nomads conquered this section of the city, known as the ‘Comanchi Hill Squatters’. They took the south side of Partition by force, invading the Stewarts and forcing out indigenous people that had lived there for generations. From there, they sped along the hill, gathering a brute army that slaughtered hundreds, before the city evacuated to the south. An army had to be called in to monitor the growing strength of this invasion, which amassed so swiftly it could hardly continue with such energy. Military experts could do nothing to save those within the area of Partition to Herkimer St, and thus the hill people either murdered those left behind, enslaved them or used them as a type of broodmare for their rotten genes. Since that fateful time, the hill people have become a staple of this fair city, with their genes being so inter-spliced amidst one another that their DNA can hardly be differentiated between one another. They’ve made this central point of our town their kingdom, which slants at an awkward right angle and forces all who park here to use their emergency brake.

There is a great hymn that these people have preserved over the years, sometimes editing to make their heroes sound that much greater to the ears of their children. It’s an important piece of their history, protecting it from invaders, as the Hill People are oft to do. They don’t take to outsiders with affection. They’ve always been xenophobic to a point where even their neighbors become enemies, if only for a while, before they’re friends again. History is their bond and theirs is full of myth and superstition. There’s this song that has escaped their secrecy, for which plenty have heard. I will share it now. This is the ‘Song of the Hill People’:

Many deeds have bested belly Bibby Bobby Maroo

Who tied together both his strings and gave the world his shoe

Not one to bother ever more to see between his sneakers

and belly slim amidst the mass of unrepentent tweekers

To cringe a toss so delicate betwixt his bloody fingers

That wrapped around those blackened cords with not a twinge of singer

And Billy Bobby broke it down to dance before his rivals

as they cringed with crimson rage and tossed their shoes in piles

For victory had been denied, because of Bobby Maroo

Who tossed, just one, but plenty more, his bloody, busted shoe.

Going through the land of the Hill People, one will see these decorations, shoes tied at the laces, strewn about the power-lines, as a show of respect to Bobby Maroo. Outsiders aren’t welcome for good reason. We can’t possibly understand the complexity of their culture. It would take anthropologists decades to infiltrate and understand the superstitions and religious hierarchies of the Hill People. This seems an impossibility, since the core belief among all Hill People is that if they can’t trust you they can have nothing to do with you. Still, one has to wonder what occurs at night, when they sing these songs, howling at the moon and honoring their dark gods.

Where The Buffalo Roam

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Photo of me, circa 1995. I enjoy hay most times, but there’s just something about grass… Oh give me a home… where the buffalo roam…

Over time, I’ve grown accustomed to my cynical interpretations of the world, although I will admit for honesty’s sake that I don’t think it’s the proper way to view the world. Being a cynic is the same as being an optimist, is the same as being a broken clock… you’re likely to be right at least twice in a day. Still, when you see the amount of stupidity and arrogance and brutality it’s just impossible not to cling to your ideals. Most of us need them for comfort. I see the future in blips that my mind tries to decipher. I see a little bit of what I remember from history classes. Repetition is the way of the world. You’ll see a glorious Fourth Reich emerge under the guise of the ‘American Dream’ and that’ll be the end of it. Rome prospered as a Republic. It floundered as an Empire. The era of the Christian empire… we refer to that these days as the ‘Dark Ages’. And, for all my cynicism, I can’t shake the bitter truth that’s chewing on my insides… you know, that vital point where the gut calls out to those who refuse to accept it.

I woke up during a generation that wasn’t accustomed to such harsh realities. We knew the world around us from a twenty-inch television screen. We saw the horror appear between cartoons, when our fathers would flip the channels for a moment, and in this way we were exposed to the densely packed chicanery of the outside world. If anything separated us or made us unique when compared to the generations before it’s that our parents and various consignment of adults seemed to inspire the apathy that would cement our legacy. They wanted us to be less inspired. They wanted us to be comfortable, because they weren’t when they were at our age. We weren’t hippies, although we enjoyed the drug use. We weren’t our harsh conservative counterparts leading impetuous, vulgar crusades against any other forms of reality that might coincide with our belief structures. Simply put… we just were. We saw the worst of both worlds. We saw Columbine, when two teenage boys brought in assault rifles and made their school into a war-zone. We saw Bill Clinton and the amorality that accompanied him, although the macabre demeanor of the entire circus was something all the more vulgar, as those who persecuted him were outed as pederasts and conmen. This is the world that my generation knew. We heard the words of our doom and devastation, but none of it seemed so real as to shake us out of this spell, for which I have no words.

I’ll admit that all the dangers seemed far away. We were a generation that grew up playing as pirates and soldiers, while not knowing that children are age in worlds far away were playing these games for real. Child soldiers, child slaves, child abduction. There was no such thing as ‘a childhood’ in other worlds, where kids our same age were forced to grow up much too fast, while we were allowed to hold onto ours up to the age of… well… I’m thirty-one… so… I think I have a few more years.

If it was one issue… and only one… which is a stretch, as I’m sure you could pick several issues with how our society operates… I think that our culture developed some form of impenetrable, narcissistic wall around us. Our parents, along with various corporate sponsors and conservative, amoral senators, took special care in protecting their children, protecting us, although the harsh realities of the outside world still remained. We maintained a delicate, oblivious nature that continued into adulthood. That’s what I blame. Every generation has a struggle of self, something that would’ve been labeled a ‘spiritual dilemma’ in days of old. Our generation has no spirit. We have no struggle. This is the dilemma. We’ve never been challenged or at least, whenever we’ve been challenged, someone else comes to our aid in miraculous fashion.

The real price of our narcissism is a willingness to allow everything to fall apart, because we think it will illicit a response from a yet to be determined messiah. We’ll let the world fall apart, because we expect a winged figure, not an angel, but superman, batman, whoever, to put all our fears to rest. The problem with this belief is that the rest of the world isn’t in on the joke. Our parents let us believe in monsters for too long, while the rest of the world already knew. We have a lot of catching up to do, but I don’t see it happening. We’re far too cynical. Most likely, we’ll let it all fall apart, because the comfort of our situation has yet to be compromised.

Overcoming this era in our lives, when we’ve been set to such a moderate standard, for which the challenge was never necessary is, in itself, the greatest challenge of our generation. We have plenty of goals, we just have to accept them. We have far more goals than we do limits. We have far more opportunities than we’d like to admit. We have far more chances for greatness than we do possibilities to hide when the nightmare finally asserts control.

Rensselaer Little League

Image result for funny baseballDuality principle is allowed to work even when you don’t take the time to consider it. You don’t have to think about belonging, becoming, existing with the world around you. Every once in a while, the cosmos create a certain blending of delicate harmonies and the world functions as one. It doesn’t have to be made into anything spiritual. It’s just a perfect moment when time, place and opportunity unfold before your eyes to allow a certain unknown reality to unfold.

One of the worst things about revelation is that it can fold back into unreality in a moment’s notice. If you don’t understand it or take the time to think about it, the moment disperses and you’re left with nothing. You might maintain certain illusions about the moment and how it made you feel, but unless you examine and learn from it, you’ll never manifest it in your everyday life… unless luck allows for it, if only one last time.

When I was a kid, I remember having such a moment. It’s amazing and unforgettable, because it’s not just happening to you. It happens to everyone around you. They sense it in some way, but for some it doesn’t register as anything significant. It’s duality principle taking effect, although, it can happen in a flash, and often manifests in the form of chaos. Nobody notices that it’s an organized chaos. We just see the bomb going off, the aftermath, the devastation, but we never catch the essence of what occurred.

The forms that it takes can be the ugliest thing you’ve ever seen. For me and for several of us who signed up… it occurred at the Rensselaer Little League. There aren’t as many ‘city-lines’ that divide us… which is to say, people from one part of town don’t hate those on another part of town. Our hatred is individualized. This is what gives it its power. A man can hate another man for any damn reason that he pleases. We’ve all heard horror stories about parents acting more like children during these games. It happened more than I care to remember during my time playing at the Rensselaer Little League. Parents didn’t seem to understand that this was a pointless endeavor. We played in a field that ended a cul de sac, with a crick just behind the outfield fences. Somehow, the parents thought we were playing at Yankee Stadium. They’d bicker among one another, argue with umpires or even manage to call-out other people’s children. Usually when the last thing happened, the parent of the child would get involved and a fight would have to be broken up.

I’m relatively certain that this ‘Parents Behaving Badly’ occurs enough that it could be made into its own reality show. I can’t even begin to try and understand what’s going on in their minds. The point is that instead of bringing us together for an enjoyable time, it was made into something that seemed to bring out the worst in people. It wasn’t every time, but once in a while, some underlying psychosis got the better of them all and just… POOF… our fun time was taken away. Baseball provides for many a scapegoat for the excitement one finds in life, capsulizing it to brief moments, where children steal home or hits his first home run. The Little League that hides within a cul de sac off of Partition provides a place for children of all walks of life to meet, to see that they have something in common with one another, while their parents maintain their cultural bias.

How duality principle presented itself to me can be explained by the clever adage, ‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend’. The hatred in this town performed two amazing feats of mental gymnastics when the summer came on and a few of us made the ‘All-Star League’, which brought other teams to our field at the end of a cul de sac. The first amazing feat of our hatred was to bring us together. Our hatred became infectious, spreading throughout the parents and bringing them together in order to form a united front against the parents and children of the opposing teams. It wasn’t a good things. I know this, but it happened. You could see people who always hated one another working together to act like fools and bicker about how the other teams were getting all the good breaks, good calls, good things overall. In this respect, the second mental gymnastic that formed this day out of duality principle is that our people understood the necessity of a decent scapegoat. The parents and people who came to enjoy the game found something special in berating the outsiders that came to the end of our cul de sac. There was a real feeling that we lived in a place close to ‘Thunderdome’, where two teams enter and just one could leave. We never put together the reality… THEY were the ones that get to leave. It didn’t matter. We were full of a sense of pride for where we were, brought on by these foreign invaders with nicer uniforms. That never mattered. We didn’t want to be them. We wanted… well… who the hell knows.

Duality principle didn’t last too long in those trying times and god knows nobody learned anything from the moment that we had. I was too young to understand the significance and even now, several years down the road, all I can see is the blurry memories of losing a summer because baseball felt like the sport that would never end. The duality of it is this… we can walk around or bump into each other. We can bump into each other and pick each other up or knock ourselves out into space. We can crash and put each other together or pull one another apart. That’s what I learned in between watching parents act worse than kids and trying to figure out why the god damn summer league would never, ever end.

Embrace of Calliope

Image result for love jokeOur town isn’t known for much. It’s rare for us to get in the papers and when we do, it’s more likely for something terrible that will bring us great shame. After a while, you just sort of become numb to it. You laugh it off, not to laugh at yourself, but laugh at the regular humiliation of your people. It’s kinda like being a Cleveland Browns fan… for which I offer my deepest sympathies.

On the day in question, when we received our deepest veneration from the world, it took the death of two of our greatest patrons, Calliope the Immortal and Eseferon the Great. Their story was something that brought hope to the world, but their ending was what caught people’s attention. They died in each other’s arms. It was a beautiful moment, so much so that someone even took a picture and, someone even more morbid had it framed. It stood in our local library for a few days, before it appeared distasteful to some and had to be removed.

Now, what came as an even greater surprise and helped create a mythology about their love was that Eseferon the Great somewhat predicted their deaths. I don’t think he predicted it as much as hoped. He wanted nothing more than to fall asleep forever in her arms. Eseferon the Great told the world that he had cancer, stricken limbs with rigor before his death, pulsing pains here and there, but, so it goes, when Calliope moved her hands over his body he felt nothing more. He claimed to have a sore on his neck, but when she touched it the pain dispersed. He believed himself to have something terrible lurking in his sides, but with a gentle caress she made the pain go away. He claimed that her touch held mystical powers. He claimed that when he was around her he felt no more pain.

This was something he said over and over again. For years, he’d admit to believing that she had something special that he couldn’t put his finger on, although it was her love that truly drove him to feel better. Calliope the Immortal I never saw a picture of in her younger days, although she maintained an undeniable beauty in her declining years. She appeared above the fatigue of death, doom and old age. People thought they were both crazy, because Calliope never had a job and all she ever seemed to do was walk around. It was something to see, however, as if we had a guardian angel roaming the streets without concern. It almost seemed as if we should also live without concern. She’d walk through our Riverfront Park and disappear under the bridge, only to return, same upright stance, same graceful walk, as if above water.

The coroners said there was nothing wrong with Eseferon, although he was always the hypochondriac, but I’m sure he’d assume his lack of distress on his loving partner. Calliope called them back. Her gift must’ve run out. Either way, I believe they knew their time was running out. She’d held him together for so long. What do you do when you have no time left? They returned to what brought them here in the first place. They did what they loved to do.