Feren (feren) wrote,

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Failure, emptiness, surprise and patriotism...

Tonight's journal entry is not what I was planning by any means. It has been a strange, almost surreal week for me and I'm left wondering if what I know about the world is, in fact, even close to what reality is. The phrase is, I believe, "we all make our own realities," and I know that I am no exception to this. It is, perhaps, a human defense mechanism. We all bend reality, bend the way we see the world around us to fit our needs and desires. It helps us deal with some of the mundane aspects of our day to day lives, it helps us deal with some of the horrible things that occur in our universe, the things that we struggle to explain and understand the same way our ancestors of a thousand years ago struggled to explain lightning and gravity. With each forward step that we take as a society -- as a race -- we seem to have another setback placed in our way, another obstacle to face, another roadblock to circumnavigate. In some cases this has help us to grow in ways we might never have gone, develop skills and technologies we might never have created otherwise. One needs only look at today's medical sciences to see the very palpable and beneficial advances that have been made in the last twenty years alone. I myself am a living example of this progression: my cancer was put down in the span of six months, thanks in part to medicine derived from the rosy perriwinkle, a plant found with surprising frequency in the rain forests of the world. Yet, just as we start to get a grasp on one of the major hardships, one of the major illnesses that claim hundreds of thousands of lives each year, we're presented with something new. It's not so new anymore, and it certainly isn't the hot topic it was even five years ago, but it's still out there; it continues to spread, to maim and claim lives. I'm speaking, in this case, of HIV, the virus that leads to the development of AIDS. There are hundreds of other harmful, even fatal diseases out there. But we've gotten a bit of a handle on some of them. Others have research well underway. AIDS is the one of the three diseases I want to see stricken from this planet within my lifetime. I want it with more than anything else I've wanted in my life. I want it gone for my own selfish reasons, I admit, but I don't think that matters overall. If there is a possibility we can eradicate it, I want to see it persued as far as humanly possible.

So, since I'm on the topic of disease, and loss, and heartache, I want to take a moment to quote from Dan Savage's column this week:

Confidential to all folks who are mad at me for doubting the existence of
a loving God who hears our prayers and gets off His ass every once in a while
and helps us out down here: Did you see the picture of the sobbing eight-year-old
boy bent over his mother's casket in the Tuesday, September 18, 2001, issue
of The New York Times? The boy's mother was a single parent, and he's
an only child. I challenge everyone who wrote in to tell me that "God doesn't
give us anything we can't handle" (especially the dozens of you who sent me
that infuriating one-set-of-footprints story) to sit and stare at that picture
for an hour and then tell me there's a loving God up there somewhere.
Oh, I'll grant you that there might be a God or a higher power or something.
But a loving God/higher power/something? Don't make me puke.

End quote.

I'm with Dan on this one. We've seen some fucking horrible atrocities this year, and it doesn't stop there. I am not a person who closely follows world events, but I can quite easily pluck things like this and this from my memory. That's only going back two or three years. We go back further and we see things like the Holocaust. You tell me what sort of loving deity does this to its followers, or to anybody for that matter. Ineffable plan my ass -- our history is filled with misery, hate and spite. Anybody who tells me that their god does this to test the faith of its followers is entitled to that opinion, but if they try to spew it like so much sickening vomit I'm going to shut them up with a two by four, I swear. Religion alone has caused so much anguish I have little to no respect for it, even with the good things that it can do. Fear, hate, religion... it all falls together so easily.

I was talking with Captain on #WT a little earlier tonight. He had introduced me to a great new comic and was chatting idly with me about it. He pointed out a particular story arc that got me to thinking about the incredible amount of injustice in the world. We talked for a while about it, comparing thoughts and observations. At one point I remarked, "Why do we as a race have to keep coming back to this sort of thing? Why do we have to have comics and articles and TV shows that center around why hate is bad? It's so blatantly fucking obvious that by the age of four most children have grasped it, but somewhere along the line things become ... tainted." My faith in humanity as a whole is all but completely shattered at this point. I have no honest belief that there can be reconciliation for the things we do as a whole to one another. In some ways, I'm delighted by that, because some of these people are getting exactly what they deserve. On the other hand, innocents are suffering for things they have no control over, and I loathe that. Either way, it's a losing proposition.

So what's the point?

To move on to another topic... I opted tonight to log briefly onto FurryMUCK. Yes, I renounced the fandom, but I absolutely dislike the notion of somebody getting my name because I got idle-purged from one of the biggest repository of aliases on the Internet. So I guess it's my little way of saying "Eff you" to the fandom. Regardless of the precise reasoning, I logged in. I had a few page #mails -- two from Saurian, wondering where I was. I haven't talked to him in ages, so that was a bit of a surprise. I was also surprised to see an email from Lynx, who has evidentally been lurking and reading my LJ entries now and again. That was quite a pleasant surprise, actually.

This weekend, Jen procured a pair of US flags for me. The smaller of the pair I am going to hang in my cube when I go back to work next week (I have this week off for training). The other, larger one I have hung in the rear window of my pickup, so that it may be displayed wherever I drive. Yes, I know that some of you can (and will) make smartass remarks all you like about my purchases. You can take your patronizing, condescending attitude and shove it up your asses along with a pile of sand and a clue, and then proceed to blow me, you smallminded, cynical bastards. If it makes you feel educated, or sophisticated, or trendy, that's great. I just want you to know that those feelings are nothing more than hollow echoes of your own inability to allow people to act how they see fit in terms of worship and mourning, something you can't stand to see no matter how much you prattle on about supporting such things. You yourselves are cynical, two-faced hypocrites who deserve little better than to suck pus from a festering wound. I am not hurting anybody by buying and displaying these flags. You are the ones attributing meaning and motivation without even bothering to consult with me. You are the ones over-reacting and making wild assumptions about my beliefs and thoughts, giving my actions value that even I don't give them. You have no idea of how I work or think, so putting words in my mouth and attributing whatever motivations you will to my actions just proves your staggering ignorance. To quote Jay Naylor, I don't mind being called extremist 'cause it reminds me that I have nothing in common with you.

On a lighter, but still somewhat depressing note, I also had a brief conversation over ICQ with geloe, whom I affectionately refer to as Qitten. She and I discussed some of my current emotions... I've felt very separated from people as of late. I was distant from Rebecca when she spoke with me on the MUSH right before her trip as an exchange worker to Ireland. I regret my distance. I regret how things worked out with her -- I caused an innocent a great deal of pain that she didn't deserve, which makes me a pretty fucking horrible person in my book. I am very happy with Jen, do not get me wrong. But I don't know what could have been. Oh well, the road not taken, I guess.

This entry is quickly degenerating. I'm going to finish my drink, slip off to bed and read for a while before sleeping. A week of training awaits, and I for one am looking forward to it -- it's a form of mini-vacation from work.

I left my body laying somewhere in the sands of time

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