When you grow older it is almost arduous trying to remember what once was. I was trying to remember when it all happened—when did the world I understand disappear? What were the small things that should have clued me in more to expect what we’re in now?
One day I was watching a live YouTube video and they introduced some people called monitors. I remember at the time wondering who on earth would volunteer (and that means unpaid) to police their fellow citizens in a chat room? What kind of human? We had all pretty much become used to the morons, idiots, psychopaths and pontificators in chat rooms by then. It was part of the experience.
The argument could have been that it made the arena more pleasant and less aggravating. Eventually the argument was to abide by the rules of the purveyor of the platform. The platform itself to eventually dictate what those rules would be.
Eventually it was an accepted thing. Gone were those who created a ruckus, brought up politically incorrect ideas, used four letter words and/or went on the attack. Gone was the spice of life.
Not that I’m saying these things are pleasant and should be allowed but really… I’ve always thought it is better the devil you know. Devils will go underground if you attack them. Doesn’t mean they’re still not being devils. They’re just harder to find.
Even still, it bothered me to see other fellows accepting the police role and for no money no less. Was it the holier-than-thou presumption or the power over others that enticed? I noticed this but then decided to ignore it because well, it was the way it was. But that was the harbinger of a world we all would have to get used to. The world where hiring police wouldn’t be necessary, making laws wouldn’t be necessary as long as our fellow humans would police each other so well. And who gave them that right? I don’t know. It was the psychosis of the age.
Then one day I went to a party at a neighbours. Oh it was long ago and far away but still it was odd. In the front room the baby boomers were raising hell, laughing and drinking and being raucous and in the back room the 50s and under were being deeply quiet and polite and speaking softly in a strange dance of socially acceptable civility. You would see a few on their cell-phones. They were so damn quiet, it was almost as if they weren’t even there. I mean, in comparison.
Then one day a friend of mine and I went shopping at the local big retail store and he decided to introduce me to these things where you could check out yourself. I didn’t like it. It was a machine. It was not a clerk with a surly smiling face who talked about the weather. It was a bloody machine.
Then one day we didn’t have to go rent movies at the video store. We could get them on-line. And I was just getting used to the idea that we could even see movies other than on television in the comfort of our own homes. Gone were the special days of theatres really. We didn’t “really” need them.
Then there was the young’uns. They stopped looking at faces. We couldn’t meet their eyes if we tried. It was almost as if they were afraid of that. Afraid of eye-to-eye contact. How on earth, as a human being, was that possible? As if living in the actual real world was like being a fish out of water for them. And so, I guess it was. They would perish if confronted with real world things. They were swimming in the internet. It was their reality.
Then there was the time I moved and the mover was appalling. Late, all over the place, disorganized and just all round bad about things. And when it was done and he was leaving he wanted a hug. He wanted a hug? Really? I was completely taken aback by the question. This was his way of saying don’t give me a bad review. It was hardly something two complete strangers would do.
So I hugged him. And I didn’t give him a bad review. You gotta be desperate to hug someone for a good review. And that happened too with a handyman. Hug me and you’re forgiven for incompetence. I dunno. I don’t understand the world now. As long as we hug each other we can forgive ineptitude? I dunno. Really. I really really dunno.
We are a strange thing we humans. We really don’t know what the hell we’re doing and the pace of change is now just foolishness on steroids. Oh well, give us a hug.
Earworm for the week:
And to repeat my favourite quote of all times:
“It is no achievement to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” Krishnamurti
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