Sunday, March 01, 2009
Life begins as an instinctual pursuit of pleasure and the satisfacion of curiosity. As soon on the heels of birth as civilization can manage, this freeborn adventure must struggle against unpleasant limits on where its pursuits lead it. The limits are justified by being for the child’s own good.
As an infant, “their own good,” means for the convenience of the parent; sleeping all night and tiny, tidy rabbit pellets in the assbag, please.
As a toddler, “their own good,” means safety from the dangers inherent in the artificial prosthetic devices their parents cannot live without; seat belts for trips to the mall.
As a precocious preschooler, “for their own good,” means getting ready to enter the world of the big people; not aping parents’ language and behavior; the initiation of the public persona’s façade replacing self-reliance and self-respect by maintenance of favor and accumulation of rewarded toys.
During public education, “for their own good,” means preparing to succeed in the world of the big people; maintaining favor and buying your own accumulation of toys as status.
At all stages of life the individual is inundated with demands for behavior not only acceptable to but supportive of a civilization that mutates human babies and environments into fitting its myth as deeply as it has yet learned to do. All sense of right and wrong is based on benefit to the system being enforced regardless of the effect on the natural world to which it insanely refuses to adapt, making enemies, criminals and victims of not only its opposers, but of indifferent nonparticipating indigenous people assumed to be within its jurisdiction as well.
It was into such a culture our hero, Steve Adore, was born. As an infant the only comfort through the night was a diaper full of nice warm shit. As a toddler he shot his father with his unattended, loaded pistol. As a preschooler he entertained friends with stand up comedy mocking grownups. In school he was called "Sissy" and "Pussy" because he was interested in neither the debate nor football teams, but rather in collecting various wasp, bee and hornet’s nests that seemed to fit a pattern he'd detected. In college his nickname became "Sissy-Puss" until a mythology major redubbed him Sisyphus, which stuck with him through graduation and five years into a life waged from a cubicle.
At which point, Sisyphus finally caught on. He and everyone he knew labored every day on projects that abetted civilization’s war on nature by either conquering, taming and exploiting it or repairing the faulty armor of culture's myth of human exceptionality by sealing its gaping loopholes by demonizing nature's viciousness, euphemistically referred to as "progress" against the anarchy of entropy. There was no way Sisyphus or any quantity of men would ever be able to roll that boulder far enough up the hill against the gravity of nature’s constant change to establish civilization permanently as master of all it surveyed. So he shrugged.
He walked off the job, into the woods and began eating the weeds and grubs he’d noted all the other earthlings always have. After overcoming withdrawal from TV, air conditioning and automobiles, his diet developed into the healthiest it could ever have been back in the city, his beer gut and manicured nails became things of the past and he settled in for a life of daily ecstasy in the dance of life offered freely by his rediscovered host, his mother, nature. Steve Adore reverted from pointless laborer against his better instincts back to the lover of the symbiosis they led him to share with the other parts of the body Earth is.