Monday, January 26, 2009

I think that there are way too many people throwing around the word "change" right now. I get that our new president was elected based off of a campaign rife with promises of "change", as if anything really changes in the long run. Sure, there might be less torture, less taking away of civil liberties, maybe even a shred of diplomatic and domestic decency...for a time.

But let's not kid ourselves; lines were crossed over the past eight years. For every step behind the line we've taken as a country we've taken two past it over a very long period of time. And as long as there continues to be a wishy-washy, less-than-transparent government I don't think we're ever going to make it back to the line in the sand. We'll just keep drawing new ones and saying "this will be the line we never cross". And then when the line is too far behind us to see it even when we turn around and peer into the darkness, we'll draw another one. This will be the line we never cross. And then this one. And then this one.

Politics won't change because too many people are rich off of its teat. Elected officials make millions in donations and fundraisers. Lobbyist groups make millions for their specific causes, not caring from where the money is taken. Cures for life-threatening diseases and conditions are slowed to a crawl, not because we can't fix all of it but because of inane religious beliefs and the fact that there's no money in the cure, only in the medicines manufactured solely to surpress the illnesses but not enough to make you independent of the drugs.

Change takes sacrifice from everyone. And right now, not enough people are willing to sacrifice. Politicians don't want to give up the donations they get from pharmaceutical companies, so they won't push for universal healthcare or tie government funding to measurable goals. Without these mandated goals, those same companies have no reason to strive for cures; they make too much money off of making a drug to treat every illness you didn't know you had.

People whine about taxes while their schools and roads are falling apart. Parents talk a lot of bullshit when it comes to giving their children the opportunities that they never had themselves. They'll rail on about the poor conditions of their childrens' gymnasium, the lack of computers in the writing lab, the outdated textbooks...right until you ask them to do their civic duty and shell out some cash to pay for all of this publically-funded knowledge. And then those same parents will bury their heads in the sand right next to the line we crossed eight years ago and tell us that they pay enough already and to get someone else to do it. There are TVs to buy, boats, cars, vacations to pay for. They'll say they don't owe anything towards education because their kids already graduated, and they'll wonder why their grandchildren dropped out of school because they can't get the attention they need in a class of fifty for geometry.

The idea of "we're all in this together" went to hell the minute Gordon Gecko told people that greed is good. The minute somebody told the wealthy CEOs of companies that if they piss excellence that it will trickle down and enrich the lives of all the little people below them, the ant drones who serve their food, cook their books, teach their children. And rich people swallowed that tripe hand over fist; they couldn't get it all into their gaping maws fast enough.

You want change? Real change?

Too bad; that ship has sailed. The government gave change a boatload of money and it sailed away as fast as it could.

There are two things that will never change: greed and people.


People don't change. Sure, they get fatter or skinnier; there's always an ugly duckling who turns into a beautiful swan. There's the homecoming queen who turns into the town whore. But those people never really change; they only got what was eventually coming to them. Deep down, people are who they are. They're raised a certain way; their life experiences shape their behaviors.

Doctors can try and walk you through your experiences. They can tell you that none of it is your fault and that you can learn from your mistakes. Sometimes, they're even right; that's not the point. You can learn anything and everything you've ever wanted to know about yourself, but you're still you. You're still the person who made those mistakes and lived those experiences.

They are as much a part of you as your eyes, your hair, your skin. You can't just decide that you're not "that person" anymore and start over because every time you look in that mirror it's still the same person looking back at you no matter how many hours you've spent on a couch shelling out $100 an hour to cry about the time you told your parents you hated them. Or when you watched a life-long friend cry his eyes out because you just had to loudly make fun of him in a crowded cafeteria just so that other kids would think you were cool.

You are who you are, and no amount of self-awareness is going to turn you into someone else. The only thing that seems to ever work in changing one's perception (for a little while, anyway) is tragedy. Two things about that disturb me: one, that a person's only change to better themselves comes after something terrible; and two, that even doesn't last.

Eventually, everyone ends up where they always were. You really do want to draw a new line in the sand, only you'll find that the old one is just where you left it: right in front of you. And if you squint hard and look out into the desert, you might just see something scratching new lines into the sand ahead, a trail of money swirling around in its wake.

"Plus de choses changent, plus qu'ils restent les mêmes."

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Well. Hmm. Fuck.

Note: this is one of those "woe is me" entries that I usually just think to myself in my head until it builds and builds and I get even more pissed off at the world than I am right now. I'm not looking for pity or a "you're great, Andy!" I just need to get this down on something before it makes my head explode.

For fuck's sake, what is wrong with me?

I like to think I'm a pretty good guy. I wouldn't say "nice", because at times I'm too sarcastic. I make off-color jokes because I think they're hilarious and my close friends do, too. I tend to fake going off the deep end for a laugh. But I'm pretty sure I'm a good goddamn person.

I keep hitting these obstacles, man. I'm not athletic enough for you. I'm not nice enough for you. I'm not rich enough for you. I'm too loyal to you. I'm too in love with you. You're not ready for marriage even though you said yes (my personal favorite, by the way).

Well fuck, and here I thought we were doing well. Which leads me to the question: am I completely fucking wrong about my perception of me?

Maybe I'm not as funny as I thought, or as smart, or as sarcastic, or as (shudder) nice as I thought. Maybe I really am just some smug asshole with an inferiority complex about his superiority complex who no one will ever truly accept and who brings nothing else to the table.

And by "no one", of course, I'm talking about women.

For all the bullshit I hear about women needing a man who first and foremost makes her laugh, it seems like I'm the comic relief who ends up in a perpetual month-long tango rife with dinner dates, an activity or two, and a "you're a great guy, but I just don't see it happening" know, just to drive the point home that either a) I am funny, nice, and whatnot but just not attractive; or b) I'm none of those things mentioned in part "A" in addition to being unattractive.

Fuck, it's not like I'm trying to be the way I am; it just is what it is. I don't want to have to change my sense of humor, or my level of intelligence. I don't even want to pretend they aren't what they are. I want someone who accepts me for me. Now I'm almost 28 fucking years old and I'm right back where I started when I was 21. Even worse, I only drink good booze so I can't even drown my sorrows for less than $30 on a good night without eating dinner.

I want to be with someone; I hate being alone. I'm just not willing to sacrifice who I am to get there.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is, fuck you all. I change for no one. If you can't accept it, die. Seriously. I'm going to bed.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Should old aquaintance be forgot...

So, another year has come and gone. Not a great year, not a terrible year. It was the first year I spent New Year's Eve as a single man in a very long time. It's a very bizarre feeling, when the clock strikes midnight, the cheers go up, and there's no one to kiss. Or, should I say, no one I wanted to kiss; there were plenty of women at the Grand Canal but I was just there to have a good time and bask in the glow of my friends. I actually wasn't as let down at midnight as I thought I would be; the night went so well that the New Year's kiss was almost an afterthought. I was supposed to head down to the Cape, where I would have been guaranteed a New Year's kiss. The weather decided to kick me in the ass and make that trip impossible at 6pm. No big would have been a miserable trip and I wouldn't have gotten there until well past 9pm.

There are several things I've learned about myself and the world in the short time since work ended last night:

1) As down as I might be sometimes during special events when I realize that I really am single, I think about why I'm newly-single and it brightens my spirits.

2) Women will wear the skimpiest clothing possible on New Year's Eve no matter what the temperature is outside. It must've been way below freezing with the wind last night and there were women EVERYWHERE clad in nothing but a short-as-hell cocktail dress, nylons, and heels. Which instantly makes New Year's Eve my favorite holiday. Ever.

3) I truly am a sucker for a woman in a skirt, nylons, and heels. Every time. I ended up talking to two different women for about 15 minutes each who were clearly morons, but I continued to talk to them because they looked like Barbie dolls. Unfortunately, the women who go out to bars on NYE are either taken or part of a "mother hen" group; I wasn't with anyone I wanted to subject to chatting with the mother hen for me. Which knocks NYE down a couple of pegs to just below my birthday (yes, it's a holiday), Memorial Day, and MathiSlam.

I also ended up helping a girl who had slipped in the snow but was literally too drunk to get herself upright again. She almost pulled me down with her twice. Why did I help her? You guessed it: skirt, nylons, heels. Done and done. Her request to give me her number was refused, however, based on the fact that she took three steps after I helped her up and puked.

4) A person walking through Boston at 2am has a better chance of finding, subduing, and collecting the reward for catching Whitey Bulger than getting a cab. I ended up walking for the Grand Canal to my the Hancock Tower in Back Bay. It took me nearly an hour and I'm pretty sure one of my ears may have fallen off. I don't remember reattaching it but perhaps my brain had been numbed as well.

5) There may be something to this new-fangled idea of NOT getting completely hammered in order to have a good time. I only had a couple of drinks and I had a blast. The fact that Bearfight rocks my cock probably had something to do with that.

So, you've probably gotten this far and have decided that this was a waste of your time. Why did you read all of this boring BS about me? Well, if you read carefully then you've figured out the way to get me to do whatever you want. Women, just put on the trifecta of hotness before you ask anything of me. Men...provide me with women who wear the trifecta of hotness before you ask anything of me.

But in all seriousness, I hope 2009 is a better year for you and me. Here's hoping. Cheers.