Midnights Descent

It came to me two mornings ago, maybe it was three. To believe that the Sun would rise, that the earth would spin blindly upon it's side, took more faith than I could muster. I sat next to the window, peering out at the horizon where I supposed the orb would appear. Birds sang out, cars cut through the dusk, headlights ablaze illuminating an asphalt wasteland.

And I sat, watching, pensive, not quite persuaded that the light would come. Streetlights, with their sickly pale glow, flickered as if to announce the forthcoming arrival of what I could not yet see.

Oh sparkling horizon, do not tempt these wanting eyes. Either burst into flames or altogether disappear!


The Accidental, Existential Crisis

Ok maybe it wasn’t an accident. Perhaps some deity, some movement of the cosmos, some alien race from a billion years back planned it all out and I'm just playing my part in the big puppet show called Existence starring humanity (well, at least we like to think we are the stars).

For me, it all happened very simply. I grew up as an introspective child with a love for (and deep appreciation of) the natural world around me. I spent my younger years camping, hiking, exploring and learning about the forests, hills, mountains and fields around me. I was a member of the Boy Scouts and had a subscription to Ranger Rick. I wanted to be a Forest Ranger when I “grew up”, when the time was right.

At 28, it appears the time still isn’t right.

By my early twenties I was in need of some serious direction. I lived in a small town with my parents and had the typical small town conundrum of “find something to do with your life before you “accidentally” get someone pregnant”. So, I applied at the local technical college and enrolled in the Photography department. It went well and I soon discovered a natural ability to turn the lens on subjects in a way that was not only interesting to me but apparently interesting to others as well.

I enjoyed photography.

Then came a very intense phase of Christianity. I was a freak, somewhat brainwashed and very into what I believed “god” was wanting me to do. This phase led me to become a missionary for some years. I lived in various parts of the world volunteering my energy to help humanity and teach others about the “god” I believed could change their life. In all of this religious fervor I never lost that introspective part of me, that part of me that still would wander into the woods, fields and mountains of whatever city, town or village I found myself in to ask the deeper questions of life and what my purpose in it was.

Fast forward. Fast forward past the collapse of my religious belief system (it happened slowly and consistently, like a mountain being eroded by wind and rain), past the spiritual crisis I suddenly found myself in, past years of lonely wandering (an ongoing part of the story) and deep disappointment of the world around me. Much of my disappointment stemmed from the fact that I grew up in a somewhat sheltered environment. I was taught many things about the world that held less and less water the further I journeyed out into the world. Expectations met reality and, well, reality won.

I don’t pick up the camera much these days. I'm just not that enamored by what I see around me. This is a sad realization to come too, especially for one who was once so enthralled by the world around him. Writing was once a safe place I could retreat to, a place I could write down all that was consuming me. Now writing seems more like an act of great mental duress then a calm harbor to shelter in. My thoughts come out sounding boring and redundant. I sometimes want to write but most often don’t due to the fact that I find myself unable to express what I need to say in any kind of creative or interesting way. Simply put, I don’t want to subject others to my drivel (and by writing this entry I am doing exactly that!).

I can almost visualize the kind of life I think I want (or more appropriately put, “the kind of fantasy I want to be living within”) but have no energy left to try and make it happen.

This is a severely tough spot to be along the river that is my life.


Biggie Fries


"Most of them were from middle-class backgrounds, but not upper bourgeois, more petit bourgeois...homes with Culture but no money or money but no Culture."

~The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test

The last two months have found me slowly chipping away at this book, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Not slowly because it’s boring, slowly because of my lack of discipline, my lack of “quiet time”, my lack of you fill in the blank.

If you haven’t read this book, perhaps you should. It’s really hard to say since I really don’t know who I am “speaking” to on this blog. Speaking at might be a more appropriate way of saying it. Speaking into the great cyber space void.

But here is this little book, a crazy piece of hippie memorabilia from the late 60’s. A loose chronicling of the early days of the acid movement, the be-here-now movement, the giant social upheaval that spawned from the psychedelic experience movement (a movement that still continues to this day).

The author, Tom Wolfe, takes the audience (which at the time of publishing was mostly a straight, middle class, “silent majority” readership) on a fantastic journey into the day-glo world of Ken Kesey and his band of merry pranksters. They paint a bus, take lots of acid, drive around America and basically help to ignite what eventually becomes the hippie movement.

So that’s the basic rundown. And throughout this strange tale of strange people doing strange things Wolfe asserts, or more likely stumbles upon, some very interesting observations about the American culture as a whole.

I opened this entry with a quote from a paragraph I read just today. Today being the second day of June in the year two thousand and nine. Today finding me in a country that has little culture to speak of, and what little culture there is isn’t even worth mentioning.

And this is perhaps one of the greatest tragedies of my generation: we are inheriting from our parents generation not only an unheard of amount of debt (60 Trillion and counting!) but also a culture that has been so exploited, so wrung dry of any uniqueness, any semblance of authenticity that we literally find ourselves standing amongst the ruins (in our case they are sheet metal strip malls instead of the large stone Pyramids) of an utterly mind numbing landscape devoid of anything worthwhile.

We are the generation of no money and no culture. Welcome to the future, would you like biggie fries with that?