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Fixing a Hole Where the Rain Comes In

The grackles moved out while I was having my three-day lie-down. The last I saw them, one of the chicks was straddling a twig, getting ready to try flying. I'm worried all their airborne assaults were for nothing. That maybe a raccoon came through on Sunday. No evidence one way or another. I haven't looked in the nest yet to see if it was simply a disease passing through.

Went looking for a cause for this illness of mine. MIL was sick at the same time, and since we met up for family things on Wednesday and Thursday (and ate out—I did have seafood in various states of cooked despite the heat), the timing is about right. Cara Sposa is just fine, so it's not likely something in the fridge (the duck eggs were a concern; I've been eating a lot more salad and greens than she, however, and it only takes a missed speck of dirt). And I was overdoing it all, à la Victor Hugo: Too much creation, too much exercise, too much drink, too much late-night, and too much juggling paid, volunteer, and prospective work demands while stressing about rejectomancy and concentrating on interpersonal relationships of the business and romantic nature.

So... Maintenance dreams all this time. I've put down short stories for a while and getting back to Lukka's story, so the dreams were very telling. Back in high school, a similar time for me, with half my studies un-sanctioned, the other half suffering from neglect, then late nights with the poetry and writings, the various substances to abuse, and the alternating triumph and rejection of feminine company. And then, coming out of that normal what-am-I-doing-in-class-naked themonology, an invitation to change house. Some sort of viral marketing campaign. A crumbling and ugly congregation of concrete and chain-link fence being touted as the newest thing in social-community living. With intensely interesting and innovative rooms, designed by consensus. All being hawked by unenthusiastic young people in costumes reminiscent of 18th century automata. Think "Baron Munchausen" style theatrical garb combined with a pep rally. I'm sure my state of nausea was a factor. I decided that this experimental sort of life was not for me.

When I was a budding young geek in the early days of Linux and the Open Source Movement turned on its little light in my head, I started thinking of OSS as coral reefs: Under the right conditions, and for their own reasons, coral starts to build up a raft of land, pushing up towards the surface, until there's space to stand on.

But I saw a phrase yesterday posted by peadarog: Eating the future. That's the other side of what we can do now with all this instant communication, from day-trading to bittorrent. There IS a tie-in somewhere on what I was writing earlier about that minimum plateau of needs. Certainly, the top fifty recording artists and top ten TV shows can afford a little sharing and piracy. And perhaps if there was more of an even way of distributing the wealth between shows, rather than running the entire entertainment industry on popularity contests, there could be more room for a broader range of tastes and intentions. Especially in this fifteen-to-twenty year coprophagous feast that has seen everything from Dick Tracy to Thor re-re-re-realized.

How odd that. A faster exchange of less and less has a certain centrifugal the-centre-cannot-hold quality, doesn't it?

But for now, the collision of big business communication and big media communication means the same as the collision of big business investment and big media communications: more efficient capitalism, which means the poor getting poorer and the rich getting richer. Take a gander at this rant from Harlan Ellison (being himself, i.e. NSFW), if you haven't yet.

And this has bearing on my paid work. The collision of big business and private sponsorship of NGOs means that more funding and more attention to to a thinner and thinner segment of humanity more quickly. We focus on a straight guy in Scotland because we so want to believe in and root for a gay girl in Damascus, while the real victims are usually, some fourteen year old guy with a macho streak and a bad haircut, or some fat and bigoted father of four who just wants a better job. I remember when 9/11 meant all the money in the humanitarian world was briefly sucked up by the Red Cross, who had nothing to do with it because there were few survivors of the catastrophe.

Eating the future. Excellent way of summing up what's happening with new conservatism, new capitalism, new activism, and new media, all under the influence of speeded-up communications.

Well, nature has an answer for organisms that eat the future. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of time after the collapse before interesting things start to happen again.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
peadarog
Jun. 22nd, 2011 02:15 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the mention. I endorse all the rest of it and love the expression "coprophagous feast". Not that I'd want to join in -- unless it was vegan shit.

And I do love the Ellison rant. I've been rereading him lately.
barry_king
Jun. 22nd, 2011 02:23 pm (UTC)
I do believe the day of the triffids has been redun, yes.

Amazing the things you get used to seeing when you own a dog. Oh, and that goes for Ellison, too.

Now, off to do some linear accounting and data-entry before my right-brain takes over completely.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )