A Big, Happy Downward Spiral
As the sun bore down and boiled the pavement of the parking lot outside Publix for the last time before Fall was to truly take over, I watched a black man in overalls walking around with a goat. I think I saw him put it inside a Honda. These are the days of our lives in the American dystopia. Since nothing makes sense, it all kinda makes a certain sense.
My mask to keep away Covid-19 lies over the mask I always put on in public, it’s the hottest look out! No city in America is gonna make it out of this the same, and in classic America style, we’ve chosen denial about it. Atlanta specifically is going to party its way into oblivion, proof we might be living in one of the Matrix movies. If you’re gonna go out why not have a good time, right?
We don’t have money. We don’t have healthcare. We don’t have a democracy. But at least we have football. The American obsession. The gladiator bloodsport that will go on no matter the circumstances. The players don’t care about a little disease, they’re warriors! And this is a warrior nation. America desperately needs to be entertained like an unruly toddler, and we will die before we let sports stop.
I write because I can’t take the words with me when I’m dead. I don’t particularly want to either, I’d rather excise it from my very being. Maybe no one actually dies though, we just keep traveling. Through the skies, and the moons, and the stars. Unable to fuck up the world any longer but still able to play a part. Someone needs to tell the stories while there’s time. Stories of weathered farmers, failed businessmen, tuned out addicts, social drop outs, psychedelic wanderers, perverted miscreants, and desperate loudmouths shouting into the wind. Like Simon & Garfunkel, I went out to look for America and its gross. A nation of car salesmen taking part in the grand pyramid scheme of the USA. I found more virtue in a dirty toilet on the side of a gas station in the backwoods of the Carolinas.
The thing about dystopia in movies is that the characters all know they’re living in one. The buildings are bombed out and the skies are covered by the skyscrapers everyone is forced to live in. It’s way worse not realizing that America already died and sold its corpse for a corner office and a midtown condo overlooking downtown. No one listened when we might’ve had the chance at something different. People hope for something like the 60s again every decade but that won’t happen: the 60s already took place and the people lost. Capitalism never lets you go and you convince yourself you love the warmth of its embrace, as it chokes the life out of you.
My sick opinion is that coronavirus hasn’t tanked the economy enough. All I wanted was for this travesty to be the great equalizer for this country. One last chance at a reset. In typical American fashion the poor suffered, forced to keep going to work, while the rich hid out in their vacation homes. The wealth gap is rising even higher and everyone else has to convince their family members to wear a mask before going to pick up dinner.
Do parents hug their children anymore under Covid? Do they wear hazmat suits first? Me personally, I just want to kiss someone again.
By the looks of things, when you read this we’ll probably have a new president. Maybe you’re excited about that and I certainly hate bursting bubbles, but there’s much more reason for pessimism after all that’s unfolded. Despite a pandemic, despite racist and sexist policy and statements, besides stoking his cult of followers into fits of rabid rage directed at anyone or thing he finds disagreeable, including—checks notes—science, Joe Biden struggled mightily beating him. It is a safe bet if the pandemic doesn’t happen, Trump is re-elected. It’s not looking too good for democrats getting a senate majority and actually lost a bit of their house majority. We are “a nation divided” as people say. The Trump symbology isn’t going anywhere, and while progressives are continuing to make strides, their policies aren’t except when it comes to drugs, which is nice at least. The next four years will likely be a wash. Even if you believed Biden meant the things he promised, without a senate majority nothing is getting accomplished. Republicans are bad-faith actors and care more about vengeance than bipartisanship. Although all bipartisanship has ever meant are dems and reps coming together to vote in favor of conservative policies. At least if there’s another pandemic, Biden will listen to scientists and doctors.
We’re all gonna work till we die. There’s really no other way it could be. The capitalist machine has won and people are too invested in the slick ad campaign of The American Dream™️ to ever change or even seek empathy for their fellow countrymen. It’s hard to achieve the state of nirvana you can feel seeing a black man with a goat walking around the Publix parking lot. He is the most American thing and I’ll likely never know that he’s ok. I wish him the best. Whether it’s a crisis or a boring change, things are weird in the US and just the very idea that it could live up to its potential is enough to keep you waking up while rotting away in quarantine.