spreading the good news

So I was taking a shit at work while reading the Bible (I’m a devout Jehovah’s Witness btw) when I ran out of toilet paper.

“Can you get me a roll, Bill?” I asked

“Sure thing buddy!”

Instead of throwing the roll into the stall, he sat it on the bathroom counter. So I had waddle up to the counter with my pants around my ankles and shit in my butt.

The End

penisball

So I was tossing and turning over night, agonizing over a specific question: is pop culture dead?

Of course, “pop culture” can never really “die” so long as there’s entertainment, fashion, etc. But has it fundamentally shifted in a way that requires new methods of critique?

Guys like Theodore Adorno were critiquing “pop culture” way back in the 1940s, claiming things like movies, music, etc. were massed produced commodities and were therefore not genuine (or whatever). But maybe the pandemic and the prolific use of the internet has changed the game.

Obviously these things have changed the way we interact with pop culture, but the question I’m concerned with is: “has the pandemic, and specifically the internet, changed the very nature of pop culture itself.”

(This is all from my dementia-driven perspective, btw)

Anyways, what made me agonize over this question is that everything feels a little passé. When people talk about reading tweets, I’m thinking “you’re still using Twitter?”. Even at 106 years old, I feel like I’m more “in the know” than most 20 year olds. It’s not because I’m “cooler” than them, it’s because they don’t give a shit. So how can “pop culture” be pop culture if it’s not popular?

Please help me. I haven’t slept in 27 days.

we’ll always be together in electric dreams

Ever had a dream that made you wake up laughing?

So I was at a writer’s workshop where some dude was trying to get under my skin. Then we became best friends. Tom Brady also showed up because he was trying to get his acting career started. Why he was at a writer’s workshop was never explained.

Then, like a ghost from the past, appeared an old friend. In real life I haven’t spoken to him in nearly 15 years. His brother was actually my best friend and our friendship ended in the worst possible way: in a courtroom (we both lost btw). It’s one of my biggest regrets, and in truth, I dream about him often.

But his brother shows up, and I confide in him that I think highly of his sibling and I miss them both. In fact, I tell him that I am at this workshop because I am writing a fictionalized version of our friendship.

The Brother tells me that I can’t do that. I ask why and he disappears into a bookstore. I go looking for him and I find him with three small children. I ask him again why I can’t write the book. He tells me that his brother’s dead and that one of these children is his son.

It was a poignant moment in the dream. It reminded me of the passage of time, how we were once small children, and how we are now creating the next generation. I tell the Son of my best friend that I too have a son, how fortunate he is to have his uncle, and that his father was a good man.

The Brother disappears once again, and I help the Child find his uncle. As I walk with the Child, he tells me to not have regrets, and that he hopes to meet my son. I tell him that “that’s a very nice thing to say,” and that I hope they meet someday too.

Finally, we find his uncle standing outside. He’s with two men in suits. I tell the Brother that per his wishes, I won’t write the book. One of the men in suits spoke up and said “that’s a wise decision.”

“Are you an attorney?” I ask.

He nodded.

“What if I changed all the names and events? Can you sue me then?” I said.

“Well clearly he (my best friend) is everything that he’s not,” the lawyer replied. Whatever that meant.

I look over to the Brother. “Did you invite these guys here?” I ask.

He did.

“Well fuck it,” I said. “I’m writing the book.”

I then pointed at the lawyer’s shirt like he had a stain. When he looked down, I lifted my finger up to his face.

“Fuckin loser,” I said.

Then the dream ended.

roboCop 2: greatest sequel ever made

First off, thank you to those who continually read this blog. I love all of you like a bastard child I never knew I had. But if we did have a child together, then I don’t know you and please don’t reach out to me.

Now on to the subject at hand:

RoboCop 2

The first RoboCop is one of my favorite movies. Paul Verhoeven really knows how to tell a story from the perspective of the film’s ideology while simultaneously letting you in on the joke.

It’s a tough act to follow, and most claim that RoboCop 2 failed to live up to its predecessor. But I disagree. The reviews on IMDB are all over the place. Many say that it’s not a great movie, but there’s no consensus on why it’s not a great movie.

Yes, certain plot details go nowhere. This is probably the result of studio interference, which is typical for highly anticipated sequels. But my question is: who gives a shit? RoboCop 2 was made in the same vein as another infamous sequel released a week earlier: Gremlins 2: The New Batch and it should be viewed in that light.

Is it a GREAT film? Lol, no. It’s not supposed to be. When you make a sequel, you have two options: do something entirely different or double up on the same shit that was done before. The filmmakers chose the latter (which was the right choice).

Now Verhoeven definitely handled the gratuitous violence much more effectively in the first film, but that’s his specialty. At its heart, RoboCop is a satire on consumerism and corporate culture. The horrific violence and sci-fi aspects, which most people remember it for, was just the vessel to tell the story. RoboCop 2 threw up its arms and said “fuck it, we’re just gonna be satire”.

The villains are much more over-the-top, the commercials are much less subtle, and even RoboCop himself is more exaggerated. Many praised RoboCop for its self-awareness, well the same is true for RoboCop 2. In fact, it’s straight up mocking itself.

I’d say that RoboCop 2, along with Gremlins 2, might be the two most self-aware films ever made.

Does it deserve the 5.8 rating it currently has on IMDB? No.

A 6.8 seems more fitting.

sublimate well

Sorry, I was high on gas fumes and aerosols when I wrote my last post. It kinda went off the rails there towards the end.

So allow me to muddy the waters a bit more.

Fundamentally, I think that “everything is ideology“ (a lot of people have thought about this long before me). And I mean EVERYTHING: objects, sex, relationships, beauty, art…everything. To break these things down to their smaller components would reveal true horror: your food is dead animals and vegetables, sex is exchanging of gross bodily fluids, etc. So we have to sublimate these objects into ideas…hence “everything is ideology”.

Which is perfectly acceptable! Humans are both blessed and cursed by logic and reasoning because these functions often reveal the nothingness behind everything. Thus, REAL truth is terrifying and ultimately meaningless, so the “mask” of ideology is the only “reality” that matters. Sometimes existential dread ensues because of this. Therefore sublimation, in the Freudian sense, is helpful in constructing a healthy view of the world.

Which is why I sometimes praise religion and SOME politics, provided they promote peaceful coexistence and openness. Clearly sublimating into certain ideologies can lead to straight up derangement. So, therefore,“sublimate well”.

poop

😀 Hate mail! 👍

I never thought anyone would take my shit posting seriously enough to write out an entire comment longer than the initial post itself. But I forget, “the internet ruined everything”.

Btw, this comment was made on my “your damn right ignorance is bliss!” post.

I don’t know if this person was real or some bot trying to spread some article around (about COVID, a subject that I don’t recall discussing on this blog), but my response was “the post was a joke”.

But then I got to thinking: was I joking?

Sure, the intent was to post some stupid thought that crossed my mind. But the more I think about it: hell yeah an existence void of desire and knowledge of good and evil sounds pretty damn good!

Of course, that’s not how my hater saw it. He/she thought I was embracing “keeping the masses ignorant”, or “listening to establishment propaganda”, or blah blah blah.

I get it. I got lost down that road of political ideology too. I’ve spent all of 2021 trying to get over it. That’s why I created this blog for fuck’s sake.

But there is no truth in ideology. That’s why it’s ideology. We have to form these ideologies. You know why? Because the truth is too terrifying to handle.

That’s why I always thought that Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, the shit in The Matrix, “the truth shall set you free”, etc. kinda miss the point. To get the gist of what I’m trying to say, Slavoj Zizek, whatever you think about him, once said about the shitty film The Joker (paraphrase): “it’s through the mask that we can be our true selves.”

Because there is nothing underneath the mask.

So you want the truth?

Here it is:

The “establishment”, however you want to define that, doesn’t give a shit about you. They don’t even give enough of a shit to form a conspiracy to fuck with you. They don’t think about you. They don’t fear you.

You are nothing.

You were born from standard biological processes and one day you will return to nothing. Most people you know do not think about you. When you die, only 3 or 4 people will truly mourn for you. After a few weeks, you will be forgotten.

This has been the story of billions of people throughout history. Statistically speaking, you will be totally, utterly forgotten.

Beyond this life lies nothing.

So in this life, there is absolutely nothing stopping you from doing the most heinous crime you can think of. Absolutely nothing. You can do it right now.

So what are you gonna do with that freedom?

You think there’s someone pulling the strings? Well guess what buddy, it’s worse than that: NO ONE’S pulling the strings.

The universe is just there. It’s infinite. YOU’RE NOT. You will never make sense of it.

I hope everyone reading laughs at this, because that’s the only sane response.

So now you can understand why I want to be “ignorant”. We should admire the Christians, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Hindus, etc etc. Hell, I’ll even admire Conservatives, libs, leftists, rightists, libertarians, etc. At least they believe something.

There nothing wrong with sublimating our beliefs and desires into ideologies, but, taking from Sigmund Freud, the aim of this life should be to “sublimate well”.

Anyways, gotta go. Left my wallet at Hardee’s. Bye ✋

jesus the cynic?

It’s interesting to view Jesus scholarship over the last 50 years. Most of it seems to reflect more on the political climate of the era it was written rather than on the actual historical Jesus, i.e. by turning Jesus into “Jesus the Revolutionary”, “Jesus the Mystic”, “Jesus the Philosopher”,etc.

It’s an easy mistake to make. Arguably I make it when I refer to Jesus as a “populist” figure of the time (I don’t mean that as a compliment. I mean that in its most literal sense: Jesus was addressing working class problems in a religious/political context.) It’s very difficult to separate our biases from the subject being analyzed, especially one as controversial as the historicity of Jesus.

I think there’s a (growing) minority consensus that Jesus took some influence from the Cynics. Some quack scholars might even say he was an outright Cynic.

I think this is an interesting question. In my view, the majority of mainstream scholars, both Christian and secular, wish to paint Jesus as a figure that almost emerged from a vacuum. It makes sense actually. All of the earliest, independently attested documents (The hypothetical Q…which survives almost in its entirety between the Gospels of Matthew and Luke…the epistles of Paul, Gospel of Mark, and Josephus) make no mention of Jesus’s origins (Q and Mark both start with the Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist). So an attempt to say anything about Jesus’s influences, other than that of John the Baptist, would be pure conjecture. But there are some interesting parallels between Jesus and the Cynics: Mark 6:8, the location of Nazareth and its proximity to an apparent hotbed of Cynicism, Jesus’s confrontational style and eschewing of fame and fortune, embracing of poverty, etc. etc.

But read the Cynic texts. To the Cynics, Diogenes was their “Christ figure”. They all tried to emulate him. And to be honest, he was a disgusting asshole. While Diogenes definitely had his influence, I doubt he would have accumulated very many personal followers. I mean, many might have tried to ACT like him, but there’s no way anyone could have spent more than 10 minutes around him. Jesus, meanwhile, was probably trying to do something entirely different and would have certainly disapproved of things like…I dunno…MASTURBATING and SHITTING in public.

In my humble view, the Cynic modus operandi was likely something that was in the air at the time which some itinerant and apocalyptic preachers might have adopted. But just because that aesthetic was in vogue at the moment doesn’t mean that they were practicing Cynics.

While it’s fun to speculate, the simplest explanation is probably the correct one: Jesus was an apocalyptic Jewish preacher preaching to a mostly Jewish audience.

your damn right ignorance is bliss!

Ever wonder how nice it would be to not know how to read?

Or how about being a eunuch? You never have to have sex again. Sounds like a good deal to me.

What about being a monk? You know, never having to talk, being separated from society, and you get to read all day.

Or better yet, how about being a eunuch monk that doesn’t know how to read?

Sounds like my ideal existence.