Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Paradigm Shift...

I get the words, and then I get to thinkin'
I don't wanna think, I wanna feel
How do I feel?
Well fuckin' how do I...?

—Pearl Jam, "Hail, Hail"


This is the darkening down of my mind
We could be making it, oiling like crime
We could be making it, staking last dimes
If you want to sieze the sound, you don't need a reservation
The torch is passed, it's yours to return
Lay at their feet now, use it to burn
For marketing the use of the word "generation"
A false alliance of money persuading
Forcing silence, sucking sound
Forced into this conversation
Now if you want to sieze the sound, you don't need a reservation
So open, so young, so target, I can smell your heart
You're a target, I can smell your heart
You're a target, you're a target, you're a target

—Fugazi, "Target"

We watched the tragedy unfold
We did as we were told
We bought and sold
It was the greatest show on earth
But now it's over
We oohed and aahed
We drove our racing cars
We ate our last few jars of caviar
And somewhere out there in the stars
A keen-eyed lookout
Spied a flickering light
Our last hurrah
And when they found our shadows
Grouped 'round the TV sets
They ran down every lead
They repeated every test
They checked out all the data in their lists
And then the alien anthropologists
Admitted they were still perplexed
But on eliminating every other reason
For our sad demise
They logged the only explanation left:
This species has amused itself to death

—Roger Waters, "Amused to Death"

You go on and on and on and on and just keep doing what you've been doing, in some form or another, for years and years and years, playing out the scenario, that tired old meme (now there's a four-letter word for you), the legacy of your father and his father and his father, playing it out over and over again like some degenerate slot junkie, hoping the luck holds, programmed and praying for it, staying with it as if you didn't have a choice, waiting for the payout, the bells and whistles and flashing lights (oh my!), conditioned until it almost feels natural, not daring to question it, even feeling up to speaking positively of it, to justifying it 'cause you're too juiced into it all to step back and take a fresh look, because you've poured everything you have into it as if the weight of your undying, unflinching, unquestioning support, your belief, the sum of your sweat and hope and fear and sacrifice, might just be enough to tip the scales toward legitimacy, toward validation, toward redemption. Everything you ever availed yourself of to "get ahead" makes damn sure you stick with the system and follow its rules until the denouement—good or bad or just plain average—unfolds.

But time ain't on your side; it has its own system.

The years and years and years slip silently into decades, huge hunks of time spent—no, wasted—just spinning wheels, coasting onward, or reaching proudly and confidently for the brass ring, moving right along according to schedule, into some vague future that may or may not unfold as you expect it, unwilling to put everything on black, to roll the dice, to spin the wheel, to let McFate have his way, win or lose or break-the-fuck even, as they say at my church.

And then one day, if you're lucky, you wake up in that same old bed but with a new head, a new mind, a new perspective that rejects all the horseshit you've been letting in, the slick, sticky stuff that oozes in through your ears and eyes and makes you soft where the matter is grey, makes you buy into it all, accept it, become it, promote it, fight for it, "live" and die for it. Something clicks some sunny day when you're pedaling home, maybe, and suddenly you begin to reject it all for what it is and isn't. You decide to lift the curtain and have an ugly look at a beautiful world that is quickly disappearing, that's being covered up with the artificial and the superficial and the virtual, that's being supplanted with plastic, every goddamn day, to understand that this, this artifice, isn't the real world, but only a construct, a house of cards, a fiction, but with very real consequences, held up by belief, by faith, by self-interest and a handful of bad lures. While everyone stands by and salutes like good little citizens, hands on sclerotic hearts...

What is gained? What is lost?

A different route. Yeah. Time to make or break, baby.

7 comments:

Shawn said...

Whoa! Go man, go! I wanna know more- and take me with you...

Todd said...

Damn!

brett said...

pithy truth.

Blue-eyed Devil said...

Bret, I hope that's not a lisp, ha.

brett said...

interpret it as you wish. once written, it is no longer mine! amusing interpretation, tho...

Cycle Jerk said...

feeling it.

Long you live and high you fly
smiles you'll give and tears you'll cry
all you touch and all you see
Is all your life will ever be.

YoungW21087 said...

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