The news sells fear: buy one, get one free

For years I’ve felt like I was running out of time, as if something, maybe my whole life, was coming to an abrupt end. Now it seems to me that what has been happening is I’m running out of things to observe. Every direction I turn, no matter what is in view I only see a desert, a long stretch of nothing interesting. With that absence of stimuli comes a tragedy, some unconscious notion there is no need for the vocabulary to describe it; I feel like my mind is gradually erasing useful and unique adjectives and nouns from its own hippocampus, like turning off the lights in rooms you’re not going to use anymore that night. But maybe that is my hamartia (right, Joey?): a failure to see beyond a blaring light of banality, to find a measureable quality in my common surrounds and experiences.

Some people work best under pressure. I think I work best in disarray. I can’t seem to focus when even my apartment is in order, much less the environment around me. Most people would say – and in most ways they are probably right – that to not consider the world currently in an active state of disarray is naïve. I believe a significant portion of that though is media hype, selling fear for reasons even the most paranoid conspiracy theorist can only speculate on. You read the news and at least half of the articles of the day are on some variety of violence; especially the Chicago or major chain news outlets. That violence is undeniably real, and unfortunate, but the thickness of it is floated by omitting other interesting stories about new businesses, community events, local heroes, and anything else immediate or good. Reading independent news sites is the way to go: you get the violence juxtaposed with the kids art fair happening around the corner. … …Well, what started as a stanza about my personal necessity for mess has become a bitch about mainstream media. Not all mainstream things are bad, but the news definitely falls down that pit. My ultimate point was going to be that the world isn’t fucked up enough to be interesting, just upsetting.

However, let’s end on a positive note. Let’s all find our own reason to get up in the morning, keep pushing forward through the day. Life is not black & white, where we all have the same causes to stay positive and good. There are a panoply of reasons to keep on living and smile. To say family or friends is too easy though, in my opinion, because those are things we all have. We can’t all have the same reasons; that’s counteractive to individuality. We need individuality, if for nothing else than to keep life interesting. So, why do I get up in the morning? What keeps me from sleeping in until noon and eating a bullet for lunch? It’s the lingering hope that I’m wrong, that there is something interesting still over the horizon, and if I just keep walking forward I’m going to see it. If that’s true…well, who wants to miss that?

 

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No compass needed

(Complaints about life here)

There is a chance that I just feel in a rut from focusing on rewrites, rather than generating new work. When you want to write something new, you tend to push yourself to find inspiration somewhere, old or new. Rewriting old stuff feels like walking circles around a dying horse. At least that is how it is starting to feel for me.

Work, real job: sucks, to be primal about it. When my time is done at (where I work now), it’s going to make a fun writing projects, and I hope it proves enlightening for outsiders. However, that does no good to me now while in the thick of it. (Where I work) is a constant nightmare that plays out while I’m awake. To you reading this now, that comes off like hyperbole – Just you wait. The close friends who are privy to hearing the stories in real time could affirm the claim. I spend 8 hours a day hopelessly depressed, and another 8 hours reaching for any rope that’ll pull me back.

We need to rename Chicago “Lost City.” Everyone always mistakes what neighborhood they are in. I was standing in line for coffee the other day, in what is most certainly the Lakeview area. Someone got behind me, taking on their cell phone. They told whomever they were speaking to that they just got off the train in Roscoe Village. We were not even close to Roscoe Village, whereas it might be an understandable mistake; we simply were not in Roscoe Village. This is not the first time in recent weeks when I have overheard someone clearly mis-identify their surroundings, by a degree inexcusable apart from ignorance. DNAinfo did an article on this recently too, so don’t take my word for it alone. When given a map of Chicago and asked to outline Ravenswood (or maybe it was Lincoln Square), residence incorrectly did so repeatedly. My solution: the aforementioned “Lost City,” where every neighborhood is what you think it is. The new title would also be applicable to how far gone everyone seems to be lately, concerning their consideration for others. They are lost inside themselves.