Once again, it’s either wing it or not write at all. Will this post be an irrelevant self-indulgent shitfest or accidental gold?
From the period of time I was a teenager into my very early 20’s, I was a bit of a slacker & a wretch & a weirdo.
I roamed the streets of Greenwich Village with inexplicably always just enough money to buy burritos, pizza, donuts, comic books, and art supplies. I really didn’t drink a lot of alcohol at that point, because of course that would come later with my official installment within the American corporate office structure & subsequent constant subconscious desire for numbness & a painless death.
I lived with a somewhat older fellow who was a massive comic book collector, cult movie buff, and conspiracy theorist. Yes, he hit all three of the major categories.
The situation was incredibly like that of the movie Ghost World, though considerably less overall movie-ready retro-cool & with the questionable ethics of the entire affair far more in the immediate foreground.
But in a probably somewhat not wholly satisfactory defense of the moral parameters of the situation, I should note that before that point my young life was surrounded by a constant cesspool of abusers, alcoholics, and general degenerates. In fact, it seemed that many of the young people I knew back then also were surrounded and preyed upon by general degenerates (including, apparently, some of our local priests).
So moving out of my family’s house at the age of 16 (a decision finally made after my “stepdad” pushed me down a flight of stairs) was actually one of the best decisions I ever made, all things considered.
Now, once on my own and out of family/neighborhood/“tribal” jurisdiction, I was still preyed upon by various general degenerates. However, I like to think (in order to preserve my sanity) that it was more on my own terms.
But having the freedom to build and discover one’s unique personal identity is no small potatoes, in my humble opinion.
In fact, if you asked me what, looking back on my life, was I most grateful for: it was the time and opportunity to be as near my true self as possible.
Now, once I officially entered the mainstream American corporate office structure, this sense of relative comfort within my own skin largely went to shit. But in my defense: I put up a valiant effort for over two decades to stay afloat within that pool of scum & villainy.
I often landed in the sweet spot of being massively hated by some of my female bosses & coworkers for being both relatively attractive AND disconcertingly a bit inadvertently masculine. And so: jealousy + primal disgust.
On the other hand, any masculinity—or, perhaps more specifically, androgyny—I possessed never really seemed to matter to horny dudes. I mean, unless I actually brought up the androgyny, in which case most of the horny dudes were immediately like “Not The Gay, No, I Am Not!”
More interestingly, I used to attract a number of “out” gay/bisexual/asexual men; whose culture & company, to be honest, I felt the most comfortable in.
I felt comfortable pretty much in any “liminal” space unbounded by a strict binary: sexually, politically, ideologically. And it’s crazy to me that the 1990s felt so much more accepting of those types of ambiguities than in 2020. Presently, it feels considerably more & more like “all or nothing,” “my way or the highway,” and “pick a side or eat shit & die.”
Well. I don’t think that was terrible. Certainly: self-indulgent, but how could it not be? I mean…it’s therapy, basically.
The writing is therapy. It’s just another method to assert one’s true self within the growing gnawing void of perceived reality. It’s either this or watching the same old Monkees episodes again, know what I mean?
When you stare into the abyss, Peter Tork stares back at you.
Have a good day.