Words from a Recently Diagnosed Introvert

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Oh, Canada

What's not to like about that country?

As I yearn to take a mini-vacation, I was thinking fondly back to the solo vacation I took to Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia last year. It's true. Canadians are supremely nice people. And, despite the "aw shucks" personae, I think they're actually quite intelligent to boot.

They take great pains to make sure that we know they don't hate us, they hate Bush. Unless you voted for Bush, then they just think you know not what you do and act saddened that the whole thing is so coercive and your too ignorant to recognize it.
Condescending, yes. But Canadian condescension stings so much less than, say, French.

I think they also take some discrete pleasure in seeing the US crumble under its own sick obesity. But I'm sure they express it in a very nice way.

They stake claim to Neil Young, Paul Robeson, and David Suzuki to name a few fine Kanuks. Quality individuals - all.

And, the birds! Oh, the birds! British Columbia boasts the highest concentration of nesting bald eagles in the winter, in the world. It's a source of pride because, you know, the bald eagle is the US national symbol and all.

Even the birds have flown the coop.
Why haven't I moved there yet?

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Feeling Fatalistic

Hunter Thompson killed himself on Sunday. On Monday, I was glancing through a book on Industrial Ecology and unwittingly opened up to a chapter that begins with a quote from Hunter Thompson. The essence of the quote is basically that we're slowing killing ourselves.

Is Hunter Thompson's suicide a canary in the coalmine?

When the most sophisticated subversive voices of our time brutally waste themselves it makes you wonder if they can predict something the rest of us can't.

Or, maybe he was just a paranoid drug addict who for a long time had a threadbare hold on life and with a little rehab, therapy, and yoga would have lived and written for another 20 years.

Whatever it is, it's sad. I think I can confidently say that these days journalism schools aren't churning out that quality of muckraker.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Tweedy or Farar?

Up until recently ever since Uncle Tupelo broke up, I've struggled with this question.

You'll notice that I'm not framing it with the wholesale question, "Wilco or Son Volt?" because I really think it comes down to which individual you like better. While I've been partial to Son Volt's power-to-the people anthems and Jay Farar's sexy voice, I can't say I dislike Wilco. Who can dislike a band that collaborates with Billy Bragg to resurrect Woody Guthrie's never before recorded work?

Similarly, I adored the David and Goliath story as presented to us in film made about Wilco during the recording of their best-loved album.

However, in that film, I couldn't stand Jeff Tweedy. He was such a quintessential spoiled boy-brat, playing the innocent and pure victim who's head and heart have been sullied by "the man." Thus, he had to cleanse himself and while the rest of the band stayed back and did real work, he took off on a few-city acoustic tour to get his soul back. During the tour, reporters and other fans would try to get a piece of him and he played the untouchable artist diva, who would say completely incomprehensible things and then walk away before the interview was done.

Oh gag me. Jeff, you're no new kid on the block. You know the business and you know it well. You've used it to your advantage for years. You were playing a role for this documentary further branding your image to suit what will sell.

So, Grammys be damned. Jay Farar has my loyalty from now on.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

There will be wrong and there will be right

As the great poet and well-known introvert, Jay Farrar once mused:

"Guard your optimism, but never become cynical."

This is how I feel about turning 35.

And to further support the theme, I give you Medicine Hat by Son Volt:


There will be droughts and days inundated
unveilings free from saturation
departures raised with no masquerading.
There will be teachers that die by their own hand
pundits that push headlong for atonement
friends and followers devoted to living.
There will be watchers that plot from in confines
and those committed to society's circles
unwary cogs with no cadence or virtue.
There will be right, there will be wrong.

Drop of the hat and it's already started
Just like that and the deed is done
What I'd give for the hat to be medicine
The time is now to be on the run.

There will be machinations unforeseen
sleepwalking sense from a bad dream
no promenade walk in the parkway.
There will be catchwords filled with infection
circulars to prop up occasion
a golden mean to guide the footsteps.
There will be levels on high hills that appraise
there will be unchanging certainties
barometers that follow the stampede.
There will be right, there will be wrong.

Drop of the hat and it's already started
Just like that and the deed is done
What I'd give for the hat to be medicine
The time is now to be on the run.

There will be signposts of indication
semaphore ghost signs and warnings
hailstone halos and country-blues wailings.
There will be strains that break out of straight time
but paid with grace, taking roads to the same place
with consequence to repay what's been given.
There will be layers of means to an end
drawn-out days before resolution
dregs will rain down from all directions.
There will be right, there will be wrong.

Drop of the hat and it's already started
Just like that and the deed is done
What I'd give for the hat to be medicine
The time is now to be on the run.

Friday, February 04, 2005


I'm 35 today, February 4th.
I guess this number is some sort of milestone.

I'm not sure how I feel about that, yet.
Check back later and maybe I'll have landed on something.?

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Huh? Priorities?

So, I recently learned that the $8 billion Bush just requested from Congress to continue killing Iraquis, American soldiers, and any of the good will our allies may still be able to muster for us, is 17 times higher than the EPA's entire annual budget.

Didn't we just discover that it was all a ruse; there were no WMDs, Saddam really wasn't a threat, and there was absolutely no justification for the pre-emptive strike whatsoever?

I don't get it.

In psychotherapy terms I think we would be considered enablers. I'm pretty sure there are twelve step programs for our problem.