Faux Pas

Bajillion Peregrinus started his day off right today–with a succulent cobb salad and a couple of margaritas. Slippery slope, margaritas, but as a denizen of the night, Baj has always managed to avoid that whole “too early in the day to imbibe” faux pas. However, considering the depth of his late-night cavorting, he often finds himself breaking that rule by pulling all-nighters and keeping the party rolling well past dawn.

This particular day wouldn’t normally prove to serve Baj’s personal agenda, seeing as how he needs to knock out some domestic drudgery and then immediately tuck into a full-blown work shift. Not very much time to himself at all. Just another one of those days. It’s not like he’s not used to this kind of treatment; he’s become quite accustomed to it at this point. Bills and impulsive expenditures (food delivery and designer headphones) necessitate his daily drudgery–for the most part. The remaining part of the pie chart (as far as he could figure): his intense, immense sense of self-loathing, which he quietly carries around on his shoulders like a hobo’s bindle–not too heavy, considering the unbearable lightness of being, but always noticeably uncomfortable.

As far as he sees it, he figures that the self-deception is a byproduct of his unfulfilled human potential. Well, not his own perception of failing, but the societal norm facilitating the “us vs. them” mentality that sends the vast majority of rat racers into skill corners, where they’ll proceed to bang their foreheads against brick walls for the rest of their lives, restricting whatever semblance of freedom to a 15-minute meditation session sometime between breakfast and work (otherwise known as their morning commute). The mental elasticity of previous generations is systematically eroding.

Baj is rather sensitive and internalizes most everything he comes across; most of the time he has no idea how it will surface, since the nature of the universe is that of uncertainty and chaos. In the case of human devolution, however, Baj knows for a fact that people are losing their sheen at a rapid clip.

Because of all this, Baj understands that, no matter what he does, he will always come up short in a financial sense. Just as his mother and father had, and their mothers and fathers before that, and so on and so forth. He’s recently begun to trace back his lineage on one of those newfangled ancestor websites, all the way back to a point in medieval Europe where some sort of town fool or drunk owed a debt to the local magistrate, and the interest is still accruing to this day.

Fun Things

The more senior members of the corn-fed trophy mounting union (local 1776) always manage to find opportunities to regale their greener counterparts with talk of a simpler time–when common salmonella held a place in all of our hearts and opinion-dominated politics held sway in the public arena.

The information age was still in its infancy and the shady web traffickers used all their powers of persuasion to convince the good ol’ god-fearing people that doom was just around the corner for all non-believers (when a quick search would reveal that the sedentary nature of these chosen-by-default disciples was actually the exact behavior leading us all to armageddon).

The billionaire false prophets for social normativity laughed all the way to the bank, just the way they always had (and always would, assuming the government they’d purchased would continue to carry out their various people-crushing biddings). Nobody with enough influence could get the gears of social justice turning, due to their lack of tenure as stock market manipulators and robber barons; the folks who figured they could inspire a positive change in discourse were all too late to the party.

Or that would be the narrative that Joe and Stu want to perpetuate at social gatherings (sock hops, ball games, charity galas, what have you), usually after a beer or two. I wish they would talk about fun things instead.

Dips and Dives

Exaggerating one’s influence should be among those acts reserved for the dolomite entrepreneurs out there with more margarine than non-dairy coffee creamer at their regular disposal.

If we allow these blowhards to navigate the kitchen table’s width and fail to uncover the tangential ne’er-do-wells we’ve been warned about, then what was it all for?

All we can say is that protesting such an alteration of manifest destiny (density?) comes with the price of freedom (and a bag of chips in some circumstances), and nothing short of Ozzy the Philistine could resurrect the embattled intentions of those labor organizers mainly concerned with seizing the means of production.

We must remain ever-vigilant, for you never know when pediatric charlie horse tendencies will rear their ugly heads in the recesses of adolescent America. We (the Americanses) once sat atop the global jungle gym, our ingenuity and general cuteness inspiring power-seekers a world around to blush with envy at the amenities they could only imagine (until that coal train came a rolling down the bend with the promise of sooty modernity), filling their heads with unrequited lust for widgets and modules and bells and whistles that could fill their modest spaces—digital and otherwise.

And, of course, once even a modicum of that prosperity had begun evening the materialistic score, we flat out lost our lease on the planet. As our Gaia gathers the foreclosure paperwork, we scramble like the varmints we really are, pushing and shoving, blaming all but ourselves and projecting our greed onto unrealistic scapegoats for just long enough to lose any chance of saving what had once been humanity’s little slice of paradise that, against all odds, had once been a serviceable milieu.

Ah well, the sloughing-off period is just gonna have to start a little early this time around, with a tad more english on the dips and dives.

Running Low

Albacore dreams float soundless,
drop to sediment, petrify
and wash up:
broken empty shells
pulverized underfoot,
inflicting wounds at will.

All the lost blood
won’t collect
on the beach,
the sand gulps it and dives
into froth.

Burrowed in muck,
all the ‘O’s and ‘AB’s
reaffirm their common lineages,
summoning up a plume of sanguinary vitality
(luring jerky lurker sharks
near the shore to nip some ‘A+’
from a lazing boogie boarder–
that type’s always running low
for some reason).

———-

Original draft posted to WHARVED on 3/2/12,
entitled #130

Mindfulness

Presented to my field of vision
on the perilous eve of Hitler’s birthday:
one brilliant cardinal couple,
ruby red, vermilion.

I remember the story of eagles,
mythical thunderbirds
who hunted the lightning snakes
to protect oblivious humanity–
floating where they don’t belong–
from their own untimely end.

Nature allows us to gather
and worship at her feet–if only
we scrape together enough respect
through meditation and mindfulness.

Again

A younger tree stands pert and upright
against the setting sun
on an April afternoon of little consequence–

to anyone other than perhaps
the octahedral chainsmokers out there, but that’s
a conversation for another time and place, m’friend.

The bud-tipped nerve endings are raw,
eager for a consistent warmth to figure itself out.

The trees all know
what they’ve gotten themselves into these days,
after noticing all the human affectations
popping up around them

again.

The existential rigamarole isn’t lost on them,
believe me. They know
that we only keep them around
for their oxygen supply, isn’t that obvious?

If we could find a cheaper or more efficient way
to convert a global supply of carbon dioxide
into breathable oxygen,
we would drop everything
and jettison all those woody worriers
into space, where they could become
petrified ornaments, immaculate baubles
showcased in an ever-expanding curio cabinet.

The details on such a plan
have never been made clear, since
it’s likely never to happen.
Lucky bastard trees.
You too, shrubs. I’m watching you.

Subsequent Scientists

Ukulele tragedies beget other instances of monstrous buttress shattering, save the few modern conventions we [the contemporary sample-chompers of northwest Indodelphia] have been taking for granted lo these past several weeks.

But fret not, a squalid interpretation of the Menomenina Walk of Fame will never sully the legacy set forth by the downtrodden experts who sought the anthropological understanding previously granted by theologians–and subsequent scientists–throughout the generations, only to come up short when confronted with the fickle nature of exaggerated Middle American townsfolk, their collective backs up against their respective walls and in no position to exercise caution anymore.