I umm… I didn’t know this was an actual song…one with a video and production value. I maybe late to the party, butt we all up in here now. Okay, I’m sorry – I CAN’T do this… there is no copy to be written for this. This song speaks for itself… no need for reBUTTals. What What?
“America is the greatest country in the world… could be the greatest country EVER… if we just (faced some of our ugliness with bravery)”
-Dave Chappelle on Inside The Actor’s Studio
Drafted, deleted, rewrote, and undid the first line countless times before realizing the truth – the ridiculous truth that we as the United States have come to accept in our collective moral stalemate and ineptitude on the elephant in the room.
With one swipe scrollin on my timeline, I landed on “Shooter Reported on College Campus In Oregon, 15 Dead...” and was annoyed. Annoyed that I opened this app in the first place. Annoyed that I didn’t have to open the article to read and know the predictable story line. Mostly, annoyed that this has become an ANNOYANCE… Not even the mass shootings themselves, THE REPORTING on them. WHAT are we shedding light on that we don’t all know and feel strongly one way or the other about already?
This is no longer news. Same $hit different day:
We know exactly how the reactions roll out:
So, THERE! It has happened, finally. Actually, it’s BEEN happening since Columbine…and Virginia Tech… and Newtown…A LOT. Mass Shootings are the new norm now. Despite the annoyance, I imagine a future where this is NOT an issue any longer and wonder. I wonder what will we say for ourselves. What will future generations say about that idiotic problem the supposedly most civilized and advanced nation in the world had after countless hints, shots, and bodies pointed at the problem while everyone pointed fingers at each other and did NOTHING?
For the record this marks the 45th School Shooting of 2015. It also marks the 145th school shooting since Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown.
In cynical celebration of our favorite death celebrating season, we’re going all out on fear based topics this month. Every day, Ben will present one thing that scares him, ranging from the anxious and annoying to the deadly and doomed. This is… Things That Scare Me.
Using the telephone is fucking terrifying and if you disagree with me you’re either an old person or a telemarketer. Fact. Now grandma, before you get all “dag-nabbed millenials with their texting and snappy pics” on me, hear me out. I’ve used the phone. I grew up with the phone. I’ve put coins in a payphone before. I remember having to take messages from strangers when my mom wasn’t home. I remember calling friend’s houses to ask if they could talk. I remember the sheer terror of calling a crush only to be met by the voice of their dad. I’m of the last generation that experienced the pre-texting/personal cell phone era of communication. So I know firsthand: using the telephone is fucking scary!
Right off, I’ll concede phones aren’t all bad. It’s fine to schedule time to chat to distant friends and relatives. That makes sense. Whatever. But unexpected calls? Unexpected calls are some horrifying bullshit, piercing sirens through your encapsulated moments of tranquil peace.
You get unexpected phone calls for two reasons:
1.) Someone wants to sell you something.
2.) Everything and everyone you love is dead.
That’s it! That’s the entire list. I refuse to listen to rebuttals. So when that sickening ringing starts, I know I’ll either have to awkwardly deal with a sales pitch, deflecting in-ear corporate beggars away from my personal information, or get to feel the stomach dropping churn of loss. THAT’S GREAT. Fuck telephones.
And making calls? FORGET about it. You don’t know who’s going to answer the phone or what mood they’re rocking. Hell, they probably assume you’re calling to tell them all their childhood pets are dead, answering your call through choked back sobbing heaves. Nothing good comes from making unannounced phone calls. There’s a 95% chance the person on the other end doesn’t want to be bothered by a phone call right now, and a 5% chance the person on the other end is crazy person who does want to be bothered by a phone call right now. I don’t know which is worse! You’re either ruining a day, or stuck talking about weather for 45 minutes. Regardless, you’re screwed.
In April, my office relocated to a new a building. I just found out LAST WEEK that my phone has been set to divert calls directly to voicemail the ENTIRE time I’ve been in the new building. And you know what’s happened? Nothing. Nothing has happened. People email me when they have questions and respond to them on my own time and it all works out okay. I never have to jump at the sudden sound of a phone. I never have to feel the looming dread of answering a call. I never have to deal with awkwardly making mouth sounds when I’m unprepared. Life without the telephone has been a life a little less scary.
Did you feel that cold sting this morning, that sudden blast of chill scraping against your cheek? The black hand of fall is officially here, driven forth in a sleigh named October. Great. Look, I don’t care if you’re a fall person, that’s dope, whatever, enjoy your cinnamon tinted cider and display worthy Speckled Swan Gourds, but even you, the biggest fanatical fall loving, sweater seasoning rocking, disciple of painted leaves, can cop to fall’s dirty secret: it’s a harbinger of death.
I’m not just talking total life death either, the collapse of the living green we call nature. I’m talking depicted death, the pinnacle of bloodletting movie season. I’m talking costumed death, the macabre celebrations of masked men parading as monsters. I’m talking commercial death, the condescending crapshoot of politico propamercials and forced holiday consumerism. Winter might be the bleakest of deathly moments, but Black Friday is its flirty cousin. And October marks the start of all of that bullshit.
In cynical celebration of our favorite death celebrating season, we’re going all out on fear based topics this month. Call it Halloween homage if you will, but recognize that we’re just trying to get by, sticking our heads deep down in the pile of decaying leaves blowing up against your front door, hiding away from the truth: warm weather is gone, everything is dying, winter is knocking, we’re all fucking doomed. Stay tuned.