Sunday, April 25, 2010

my MO manifesto



so i've finally reached my mission in life. i knew it was going to be something big, hence why it took so fucking long, but here i am with my story and not the abridged version:

i'm going to start a new race of human being.

it's simple. due to a slew of recent occurrences that left happy bryanambition subdued, hostile and rather bitter, he took his new found negativity and put it through the mental sifter calcified by five years of therapy and honed in on the main problem...the common denominator...the glob of plaque that took up residency in your grandfather's coronary artery causing him an agonizing myocardial infarction and/or subsequent death is, was, and always will be: LOVE.

i'm not going to get all bitter gay on your asses, because the epidemic known as love affects the breeders just as much as it does the gays, and it's not my style to be classified as any one thing for any long period of time anyway, but i'll say this past month has been filled with a shit ton of unnecessary pain, heartache and general hassle that i can all trace back to love. if love weren't present, i'd still be shiny happy bryanambition sucking on a candy cane.
april usually brings showers that inevitably, and with little influence from punxsutawney phil, bring may flowers, but for me, someone who's professed love and positivity as being scions of true life with the ceaseless enthusiasm of the fat yearbook girl in high school, it brought death, disappointment and moral destruction. my favorite aunt just up and died. i lost a wonderful human being i called my boyfriend, and love, ultimately, bore its vicious, serrated and quite snaggle-flawed teeth at me.

well, love, you've smiled your last snaggletooth grin at me. it's time for some invisalign, and by the way--i'm killing you.

so this is what i thought i'd do to save the rest of the world from the nefarious force love is, always has been, and will continue to disguise as such feelings as virtue, happiness, euphoria, pleasantness and validation. i'm going to pretend i don't hate every multiplying cell in the body of every child existent on this planet and get a few of my own. real young ones. young, soft--baby soft--and formative. who don't know life-giving water from runny turtle shit. and i'm going to raise them on the most wonderful organic food there is. i will coddle them, feed their every whim, support them with all the pleasant virtue there is, imbue morals and polished ethics, but i will not, for one second, love them. i will hug and kiss and be sweet as pie. i will provide them with everything that will make them happy. but i refuse to infect them with the worst virus of all, the one for which there is no cure or treatment, and that is, unfortunately, congenitally transmitted in basically 100% of modern births. that virus, of course, is love.

they don't need love. they don't need that awful butterfly feeling bobby anderson causes them to feel before dumping them in front of sandra peters on the playground and making their first crush at age 6 something that will set them up for exponential future disasters. humans don't need to love to live, and if you don't know it to begin with, then you're not deprived of anything. it's the same logic everyone who argues with my pricey philosophy on buying cage-free eggs, that if hens don't know a liberated life that exists outside of a cage, they won't mind spending their life in one. so let's take that ignorance up to the human level, shall we, and see it for the enlightenment it really is.

humans aren't naturally loving creatures. they're social and they're feeling: that's scientifically proven. love is just a superfluous feeling that's bred into them, like the hormones passed from one hen to another that results in increased egg volume, without which they'd live completely fulfilling lives and, as i can attest to, healthier ones. a mother holding her baby so intimately can be displaying love as much as she can be administering tender nurturing. and while a mother can say "i love my children," i've no doubt she does, but does she need to love them? is procreation not, but its very basal existence, simply to ensure proliferation of the human race? love was just stuck in there to keep them coming back for more, and now we suffer worldwide famine and disease because of overpopulation. see where love got us there?

and there's no denying that love causes stress--too fucking much, if you ask me. with love comes a whole set of perfunctory rules that face drastic alterations on a case-by-case basis. if your boyfriend, whom you love doesn't call you when he says he will, you freak out and, obedient to these rules established by the disease, further expand the problem by not calling him OR answering his numerous phone calls. this leads both of you to experience great amounts of unnecessary stress, wasting precious moments of both of your lives and undoubtedly causing early deaths.
then there's the aftermath of a breakup. who the fuck invented this and why? i'll tell you who--LOVE. that's who. the same thing that made you feel like you can't live without that person because they made you feel oh so wonderful about yourself suddenly leaves you feeling like you've lost your reason for living. and questioning yourself, your validity, your worth. and we all know how this shitshow can end up. so why bother loving in the first place?
and marriage?! what the fuck is marriage about. so it's in the Bible. so is stoning, walking on water and parting the red sea, and we don't have any of that today, do we? aside from being the chief biblical text of many a faith today, it's also wonderfully accurate historical record and while some people today still think it's necessary to "put a ring on it" to ensure one's security with another, because that's what love is all about, isn't it--a fucking ring--it's time we moved on like the rest of the world did in the, oh, 3,000 years that's passed since the old testament made its way on papyrus.
people will still procreate because sex feels good, although at a much lesser rate, saving the world from the destructive overpopulation it now faces.

in her guidebook to all things amorous, all about love, author bell hooks cites m. scott peck's definition of love as her most palatable, "the will to extend one's self for the purpose of nurturing one's own or another's spiritual growth." sure. you can call that love. and because i don't think the same force behind that will would cause the excruciating heartache and cruel self-flagellation that exists after a breakup, i don't think it should be called love because love is, after, all, responsible for both. i'd rather we identify the word the above definition embodies consideration. if you didn't love to begin with, you wouldn't be the one crying now. and i wouldn't be the one seething with the bitterness of overcooked garlic.

did you ever notice that "begin" and "being" are anagrammatic? cute, since you really can't go into being without beginning. and after you've begun, you are, which is a participle of being. wow.
(see, i haven't completely lost my sparkling touch)

but back to my tirade. i'm going to get a whole bunch of kids, completely unrelated, of course, for we wouldn't want an extra chromosome taking the place of the love i plan to remove. that would be a whole other exorcism in itself. but i digress.
i'm going to raise these children with the unrelenting care, attendance and nurturing they deserve. i want them to have the best of everything. i will raise them to their fullest potential NOT because i love them, but because i care for them. i want them to be happy--fully, genuinely happy. one simply can't be happy with love in their lives.
crazy, right?
here's why: because even if you have met the "person of your dreams," you only think of them as perfect for you because they check off every box on your personal eVALUEation form. get it? they have what you want. they have what you desire. they have what you think must be present in your life to ensure your happiness, and if you really find yourself complete because of another person, good therapy ain't that far away (even with an HMO).

and of course there's friends. "oh i loooove my friends!" that's what we all say and, judging from what love has always done to me in the positive sense, i sure as shit love my friends. they're the most loyal, attentive, considerate and thoughtful people that ever lived. because of the way my friends treat me, i appreciate, revere, respect, will care for, nurture, and support them to ensure their lives are as wonderfully fulfilling as can be. now did we really need to use the word "love" up there? it's not like love is the ultimate feeling.
the rules society has preached to us since the beginning of time have made us think so but love is NOT, in fact, the ultimate feeling. nirvana. the superior euphoria. if it were, it wouldn't be used as casually and freely as it is, to describe such ephemeral things as gum and nailpolish colors, and most importantly, it wouldn't make us feel like slitting a wrist when things go wrong with those we appoint as "loved ones."
i'm so right i stink.

my children will grow up to excel in every activity in which they engage. they'll have the same challenges every other child faces except the invisible, unfair crippling distraction love can cause, from the moment it first occupies the tenderest areas of your heart until it hardens it as you breathe your last breath, unsurprisingly sooner than your body planned but undoubtedly due to unnecessary stress.
and these children will walk the earth spreading cheer, wisdom and compassion everywhere they go. they'll wear the latest fashions and sport the trendiest haircuts. i'm hoping several of them are gay. they'll no doubt couple up with other humans to fulfill the naturally social inclinations bred into our pathetically vulnerable race, and inevitably raise their children with the same caring, nurturing values devoid of the despicably gangrenous virus called love. they'll live every second of their lives on a level of enlightenment. they'll feel all the natural feelings life must experience in order to successfully move from one moral plane to another, but they won't find themselves hapless victims fighting a futile war against something so horribly vicious, yet deceitfully invisible.
stress will, inevitably, fade to something felt only on the most extreme occasions, and lose its casual presence.

and those who still hear themselves asking, "but bryanambition, why would you want to rid the world of something so wonderful?" i say, "look up and read those words this time" and then read this:
wonderful? why is love wonderful? because we're told it is? if your parents raised you to walk sideways on St. Patrick's day, justifying this new direction with the same logic behind not touching a hot stove, you wouldn't question it. that is, you wouldn't dare question its existence until that brisk march holiday found you the laughing stock of the entire first grade class, teacher included, mockingly asking, "why are you walking sideways? we don't do that."
as that poor child who suffered needless persecution as he proudly strutted in his classroom wearing green but devoid of exactly one half of his peripheral vision, i've never been more awake, alive and alert. now you're that kid and i'm the class. i'm your wake up call. just because the rest of the world says it's right doesn't mean it is. like spitting your gum on the ground. it makes you a litterbug no matter how you look at it. listen to me and don't be a litterbug. stop shitting on your life.

so join the carpenters and me as we joyously bid adieu to that horribly caustic disease we call love with the same champagne bubbly skip that find its way into your step after receiving great results at the doctor's office.

xo
b.a.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

the gilded edges on that rule are tarnished, sweetie

...reckless is eschewing rent and using your first paycheck to finance something in patent leather from prada that measures approximately 13" x 9".



so yesterday i got to thinking, and as history has shown, that can be a dangerous engagement. i realized something crazy about our little society that, despite the occasional flaws of corruptness or disparity, prides its virtuous existence on being founded and governed by the basic morals and ethics of humanity.

right.
because even cavemen galavanted up and down madison avenue ignoring the conditionally destitute but intrinsically equal homeless cavemen begging for rocks and sticks.

my crazy socioloical discovery goes something like this: we all live the golden rule without even realizing it. no childhood, no matter how traumatic or unusual the method of rearing, escaped regular infusion of the golden rule. "do unto others as you would have them do unto you." for many of us, it was the first time we heard the word "unto," intriguing for a first grader. it's a value. a code. a rule, and although anybody who's made it past the age of three knows that rules are meant to be broken, the golden rule is not one of them because we exercise and follow it every day, all day, and in every moment of our lives.

just think of how you normally treat others--if you're a kind person, you give without expected reciprocity, always doing favors and maintaining a somewhat regular sunny, positive disposition. you probably have a photograph of a flower on your computer desktop and if you pass a bakery you find yourself inclined to buy a "just because" cupcake for a friend. if you're a rotten person, you constantly judge others, acting from an invisible pedestal of entitlement. you make fun of homeless people. you don't give your roommate a quarter for laundry even though you have seven in your pocket right now. you operate your evil empire by some nefarious list of commandments kept valid by some equally arcane strength of contempt. and if someone walks into the office with their mentally disabled sibling in tow, you're the audacious one who actually laughs.

the "others" i refer to includes every other human being with whom you come into contact on a daily basis--individuals as random and unknown as fellow subway riders or as intimate as your sister. coworkers and wholefoods employees alike. the guy who bumped you while crossing the street and the lady who told you your shoe was untied. the only person i left out isn't the most obvious, but clearly the most important: yourself.
you have a chance to communicate with all of these people but you won't end up talking to most of them. you will, however, hold constant communion with yourself, from the moment you wake until your eyes start shaking with REM sleep, and as the day goes on, you deal with yourself just as you deal with other people. you contemplate decisions with yourself just as you do with a coworker. you discuss the sadness of a loved one's death with yourself just as you do with your sister. you love yourself just as you love your boyfriend and you hate yourself just as you hate your enemy. just because you can't hear the conversations that pass between you and yourself doesn't mean they don't occur.

i suddenly thought, "that makes a shit ton of sense. why wouldn't i extend to myself the same treatment and regard as i do others?"

i think we tend to overlook ourselves as the same weighty individuals as those we coexist with because that existence doesn't register with the same logic as someone separate from us who we can see and hear and interact with. strip the skin off us and we'd look the same as sally mae heathers across the aisle wearing those hideous purple mary janes. if we were computers, our systems would run on only one operating system just like the mac that brings you this very important message--there's not one OS to run your life and a separate OS to process everybody else. there's just one, and the set of instructions it contains that tells us how to act influences our behavior toward ourselves in the same way it directs our behavior toward others.

where it gets really crazy, though is when you consider the amount of harm you do to yourself compared with that you dole out to others. say today you are rotten to five different people: lydia at the duane reade, jamal at the whole foods, your mother, candace at your credit card company and some anonymous guy who caught your headphones cord on his mad dash out of the subway. motive aside, you judged lydia for being too slow, you laughed at jamal because he was wearing an eye patch, you told your mother to shut the fuck up because she was harassing you about finances, you told candace at bank of america to shove your overdraft fees up her ass after she's done fucking herself and the headphone cord guy escaped with his life and both testicles by the grace of the subway door that closed just in time. you splattered five people with negativity on five separate instances. your motivation for being mean isn't what's important here, it's simple mathematics. even though five completely unrelated people fell victim to your negativity, each one only suffered one hit.
and then there's you: every time you viewed yourself, asked yourself a question, weighed the options, caught a glimpse of yourself in a mirror, or reviewed something you had written, your perception was tainted with the same negativity you extended to everybody else, and you were just as rotten. this time, however, it's you taking all the hits, and considering how active the human brain is on a daily basis, there may have been thousands of them.
no wonder you're such a bitch.

we treat ourselves just as we treat others. it's the golden rule sans the one asset that forms the very core that deems it a virtue: free will.

then i realized how cyclic human behavior can be. when you're nice to others, you're nice to yourself which makes you happy which makes you nice to others which makes you nice to yourself which makes you happy...yeah. i get it.
but when you're rotten to others, you're rotten to yourself which only makes you feel even more rotten which makes you rotten to others again and back to being rotten to yourself and even though this insidious pattern keeps therapists in business, maybe it's time you planted a nice ficus tree in the junkyard of your mind and broke the cycle. my mama always said, "you'll catch more flies with honey than you will with vinegar," but that rule only holds true when you take to heart the bedazzled tenets rupaul extended at the conclusion of her short-lived but no less iconic vh1 show, "love yourself because if you can't love yourself, how the hayll you gonna love somebody else?" thanks.

xo
b.a.

Monday, April 12, 2010

the death knell ringeth again


saturday, april 10th, 2010.
while most of us were awoken by the realization we wasted most of the day in bed, delta burke, no doubt, saw the first light of day shining from her ringing phone. a scratchy answer set off a trumpet blare on the other end, her manager, that probably went something like, "dixie's dead! get out of bed, glue on those falsies and make up some memories, sister, because you're a eulogy away from a new career!"
ya'll loved designing women so don't deny it.

but, seriously, what is with this sudden onset of pop culture mortality? this recent article really cemented the fact that everyone who is anyone has met their demise, and it's befitting a rather morose trend.
last year lost bea arthur, michael jackson, farrah fawcett and patrick swayze. and my grandmother. this year dixie carter, corey haim, john forsythe, and the munchkin coroner from the wizard of oz added a second date to their IMDB profiles. and my aunt.

i'm not sure if any of this has a point, but there is the point where one has to stop and smell the formaldehyde and say, "people, stop dying!"
there also has to be that point where people stop wearing shirts that billow out like mushroom clouds. there's nothing cute about extra room except when it's on an airplane.

later, gators.
xo
b.a.