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July 27, 2011


I feel that the title for this blog needs a bit of explanation and a bit of background so here it goes. My childhood mostly consisted of being shuttered in and closed off from the big bad scary world. I lived in a mostly white middle class suburb in the most boring part of Sacramento (henceforth referred to as Sac because cmon, it's pretty apt) and it wasn't until my friends started turning 16 that I was actually able to go out and experience the world.

A good friend of mine at the time named April Tipton was the first to open my eyes to this new adult world. There are a combination of reasons for this but the main one is that she drove a black 90's volvo and her parents paid for her gas. So essentially we would just go get lost in the "big city" of Sacramento. We would just drive around aimlessly playing all kinds of music, talking about whatever came up, serious or otherwise. No responsibilities, no jobs, no pressure it was all just fun and it was fantastic just to leave reality behind even for just a few hours.

This blog aims to be that same escape. It's just a place where I can vent about what is happening in my life. It's somewhere where I can espouse all of my radical political philosophies and I can shout out the words to every single one of my favorite songs that seem just perfect for my life right now. But hey, it's just you and I, dear reader. We are locked in this unbreakable volvo of a car so if you want to call me out, want to challenge my opinion, call me an asshole do whatever you'd like. Just know that I will respond in kind, we both have nowhere to go, just a whole lot of time to kill. Sometimes we may have to talk about heavy things, life, love, God, politics, relationships but hey I may just want to put a few songs on and talk about some silly times with friends that I love and miss. I guess I just hope that you enjoy the ride.

July 25, 2011

Amy Winehouse is Dead, Almost a Hundred Children Murdered and the World is Indifferent

So if somehow you have managed to escape the barrage of facebook statuses, twitter updates, and every news website saying it, Amy Winehouse is in fact, dead. And you and I killed her.

In other, even more horrible news, a psychotic sociopathic terrorist in Norway massacred at least 92 people, many of whom were children. And I hate to say it, but we killed them too. I realize this is a quite a heavy accusation to make but it’s about damn time that someone said it. Read on and see if you agree with me.

Before writing this I posted a very angry facebook post about Winehouse in all caps with naughty words screaming at every single heartless bastard on it who used some combination or variation of the expression “It was bound to happen eventually.” I disagree on several different accounts, but my main reason is that it implicitly relies on judgement. Saying “it was going to happen eventually” implies that one witnessed a struggling artist (she was an artist, her “Back to Black” album is absolutely brilliant, she won 5 grammys for godssakes) as she slowly fell from Grammy winning artist to drug addled train wreck and at the end of it decided that she was beyond redemption.

As I was once Christian I feel I have to bring up the stereotypical perspective coming from the people using this revolting statement. Christians believe there are two people in the world good people and bad people. Black and white, either you go to heaven or hell, the white house or the prison system to rot for eternity. But this schema is completely outdated, there are too many shades of grey in our modern society, people are too knowledgeable to just be written off as brainwashed. People now are just comfortable, they live in a Huxleyian utopia where they don’t do anything significant in their lives but they don’t have to worry about feeling upset as there are drugs for that. They don’t have to worry about starving because there are inhumane capitalist slaughterhouses designed to bring the cheapest and most cancer-laden food to the masses as possible, and they don’t have to worry about being judged for their pathetic existence because that has become a bit too politically incorrect.

I’m sorry. I can’t do it anymore. The stereotypical American listed above is every single thing that is wrong with society in America as well as the world as a whole. This is the nation of the free, this is the nation where you can think, say and do pretty much anything you want (in theory). So if you are truly free to become an astronaut, a revolutionary, a rock star, a politician, the president, why the fuck do you work at Jack in the Box and dream of some day becoming the night shift manager? People waste their lives because they are too afraid to go out and actually live them, Winehouse was one of the few people that gave it a shot. She poured her heart out on a brilliant album and then was vilified for writing a song questioning the societal institution of rehab. Hounded by media, hounded by people judging her as a talentless crackhead she turned to the chemicals that gave her a few moments of peace and can you really vilify someone like that? You and I have made all kinds of mistakes in our lives, we have to hope and believe that some day we can make up for them. We have to hope our second album is on the way and once its out we will be just as on top as we once were.

This brings me to the Norway massacre. I realize on the outset that such a comparison is ridiculous. Over 90 people (most of them children) have been killed how does that compare to one artist dying at the fateful age of 27? It compares because the same thing killed all of those people and that is a society that has forever been mired in societal niceties. Of hearing psychotic sociopaths ramble about their flawed and stupid political philosophies and never having the *ahem* cajones to stand up and go “No you are completely wrong. Defend your philosophy right now if you really believe something as stupid as that.” No one was able to say that to either of the obviously troubled individuals. The terrorist’s political philosophies were being fed by networks much like FOX. Obviously more extreme but the same amount of disregard for facts are likely prevalent and we have been trained to sit down, be quiet, and wait for our turn in line.

No one or not enough people told Ms. Winehouse that she was a brilliant artist and slapped her in the face and told her to get her shit together so she could make another album and pull herself out of whatever hole she dug. Instead we watched as tabloid magazines and paparazzi followed her around until she completely lost it. The tabloids and photographers are not responsible. We are. We bought into it, we gave them our money so we could get the opportunity to judge another human being without first putting ourselves into her shoes and asking what it would be like for us. We killed her, we killed all those people in Norway with our lack of compassion. I am speaking from a “we” not as an American but as a citizen on this Earth. Regardless of what creed, nationality, religion, or philosophy someone holds, if they respect you as a person it is your responsibility as a human to love them unconditionally, violently if need be.

I posted my facebook status and was then lectured by a coworker about how the best way to get a point across is to be polite and try to reason but I’m tired of pretending like I am reasonable, that other people’s minds can be changed without slapping them in the face and shaking them up to view reality. So consider yourself shook dear reader, I hope this pisses you off and you shoot an angry email at me. I want to hear it, I want to understand your position so I can change your mind and get you to side with mine. That has and will always be what I am trying to do, I have no tricks, no slights of hands, only an unapologetic passionate demeanor and you my dear reader now have to deal with it.

Here are two videos of the artist, one to make you appreciate the talent the artist possessed and another to make you appreciate her struggle as a person living on this Earth with people as close-minded and just how judgmental we really are.