2003-06-12 - 1:09 a.m.
Oh what I wouldn't give to hear that phrase yelled aloud, reverberating Vonnegut-style across the hills, calling me out of my hiding place with the assurance that it's all been a crazy mix-up of the brain, that my senses screamed BLACK VOID instead of GOD during some key "meaning of life" moment and that my interpretation of life is all based on a simple misconception due to faulty wiring.
Oh to be a broken telephone!
(A metaphor of this calibur? My God I need to write an Ode! I'll call it: Ode To A Broken Telephone. I'll riddle it with emotion! With unparalleled parallels! I'll make The Grecian Urn look like a souped-up punch bowl! Kool-Aid, anyone?)
And so it is tonight.
To say the least, I have been on a down cycle. Another period of BLAH. Reluctant to accept the lack of Ultimate Meaning, I've been looking for meaning in all the wrong places. I've become a bad eighties cliche (apparently without the HTML accent mark). Fear and Self-Loathing Las Vegas style (sans dancing girls and $3.99 buffets). Grin. At times I feel like happiness is unattainable, because it only exists in the acceptance of the moment and in order to fully be present in the moment you must accept the reality of who you are (and are not).
Unfortunately, society (especially American society) makes this acceptance difficult. From the very beginning we eat the illusionary apples. Corporations invent flaws and magnify them to sell their products and turn us into obedient consumers. It's estimated that something like 16,000 ads flicker across a person's consciousness daily (I did a groovy-cool research paper thank you very much). These illusions are thus deeply ingrained and hard to overcome even when they are recognized. Who doesn't want to curl up inside a pristine image every now and then? It's safer. To just simply be yourself, unafraid? An endless battle, I fear, but endlessly worth it in the end (or in the Now).
So come. Let us unmask one societal illusion Scooby-Doo style and stare Old Man Winters in the face.
ONE ILLUSION TO BE VOMITED IMMEDIATELY:
The idea of "normal".
Perhaps the most damaging of all, this illusion allows for the marketing of drugs like XANAX, PAXIL, PROZAC, KLONOPIN, and all sorts of other brightly colored pills that promise to make you feel happy-slash-normal. Because "normal people" don't have existential despair. Because "normal people" are satsified with corporate soul-sucking jobs. Because "normal people" are always pretty and fabulous and spend lots of time wearing rolled-up khakis (HELLO GAP SWING) and walking their Golden Retrievers on the beach Empty Nest-style. It's not normal to question. So take a pill and stop your pesky questioning. And if you see George Orwell, give him a thumbs-up sign from the pharmaceutical companies. Thanks.
And now, in closing, a quote from Salinger:
"...I wouldn't start with the things schools usually start with. I think I'd first just assemble all the children together and show them how to meditate. I'd try to show them how to find out who they are, not just what their names are and things like that...I'd get them to empty out everything their parents and everybody ever told them...I wouldn't even tell them grass is green. Colors are only names. I mean if you tell them the grass is green, it makes them start expecting the grass to look a certain way. Your way, instead of some other way that may be just as good, and maybe much better..."
Beautiful short story. A must read and re-read. Salinger gets it, lock, stock and barrel, and "Teddy" pretty much highlights the Holden outlook from a peaceful perspective.
And now my darling invisibles, I must sleep.
-The Fanged Faerie is an orange peel sinking out of sight.