I don’t know about you, but since Trump was elected to the White House, I feel like the world has hit peak absurdity. From the inane headlines hitting my phone every morning — or as some would call it, the “WTF did Trump do now?” notification — to the rise of $9 avocado toast in gentrified cities worldwide, I can’t help but think humanity needs to hit the reset button STAT.
I’m sure if I ask any historian, they’d say the world has always been absurd and this upside down reality I think we’re living in is relatively “better” in comparison to the time before vaccinations, labor laws and airplanes existed. But when capitalism, reality TV, and uninhibited bravado become the shit sandwich that represents our modern democracy, it’s hard not to feel like America has reached the end of its time. And with the threat of nuclear warfare in the hands of two unstable numbnuts, the world feels like it, too, is in a fragile predicament.
Rest assured, “All of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again” as they said in the most accurate depiction of humanity’s failings to appear on our TV (or laptop) screens. Greece, Rome, the Ming Dynasty — they all fell eventually because humans just can’t seem to get it together and learn from their past mistakes.
But there is something about this fact – that humanity keeps screwing itself over and over – that feels oddly comforting. I’m not sure if it’s the hope that this current reality will not last forever, or the realization that humans themselves are complex, neither black nor white, good or evil, that gives me some peace about being alive in these trying times. With all our political, social and cultural divisions, the one thing I’ve come to believe is that we all kind of suck, collectively speaking. Some, certainly far more than others – Richard Spencer, Milo Yiannopoulos, and the Kardashians come to mind – but as a whole, humans exist somewhere between being kind, compassionate and cooperative to bitter, selfish and cruel. Even Gandhi, who many consider to be the ultimate symbol for peace and nonviolence, held deeply racist views about South Africans and allegedly bought into ideas of racial superiority. I’m starting to believe there are no real heroes, simple stories or absolute truths. Just huge swaths of gray area.
So I’m starting this blog to delve into those grays, the sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic absurdities humans create and exist in. My hope is that there’s something to learn from all of this. If you’ve been depressed since November 8th, 2016 (as I have), observing how incredibly strange and contradictory we are as a species might help give some perspective. Or not. Either way, we’re stuck with each other on this planet for the foreseeable future. We might as well try to learn something about ourselves.
I look forward to exploring humanity’s insanities with you all.