My Thoughts Are Pollution

Coming-of-age ramblings that don't mean much in the long run

Month: August, 2015

A Prayer

I
read in a book
that there was something more to all of this
but I
looked
and there was nothing but the nothingness of death
there is nothing ever after, there is nothing coming next
and I’m so scared to die
And I wonder why
’cause when I live my life
I do not feel alive.
So help me god,
“are you really there?
and do you hear and answer
every child’s prayer?
some say that heaven
is far away”
I don’t think I’ll make it there
I don’t know if I’ll even stay
So help me god,
I remember now
the feeling of the fires
raging all around
I know that heaven
is far away
from the place
where I lay.
And I
read in a book
that I would pay for every
step off the path I took
But heaven
is so far away
That I know you
don’t hear me pray

[Lyrics in quotations taken from the Mormon children’s song, A Child’s Prayer.]

My Favorite… Tropes?

Whenever I’m reading, watching or playing something, there are certain specific types of stories or story beats that always, always stir up my emotions. It’s so common for me to react to these things, that for a while, I almost felt cheated whenever some piece of media would use those plot points. It felt like it was such an easy way to get at my emotions; I felt manipulated. I’m kind of over that sensation now, though. Nowadays I kind of just let myself feel the things I’m going to feel and know that it’s kind of on me for being so easily swayed by such simple tropes.

One of the biggest story beats that causes me to get all out of sorts is when the hero of the story triumphs. I know it sounds vague, and maybe it is, but I’m talking about that turning point that happens in every good fantasy tale; the point when the hero proves himself, and he earns the respect of everyone who used to look down on him. I’m talking about moments like when Hercules slays the Hydra. He was a joke to everyone before; but he proved himself. He was incredible all along, and now everyone can finally see.

I suppose a variation on that particular story beat that does similar things to me is the moment of self-sacrifice. I feel such a sense of pride when I experience these scenes; it’s almost as though I were doing them myself. I wish I could. I wish I had confidence that I would. Im just scared, you know? In the real world, people who rush into burning buildings to save a stranger don’t really come out of that alive. In media, the hero always almost dies, but proves that the willingness to make the sacrifice was enough to get them through it. And I fawn over that stuff. I can’t sit still or shut up when Hercules dives into depths of the Underworld to save Meg. It’s incredible. And then… And then he turns down godhood to be with her! Its just so incredible and beautiful and I bawl my goddamn eyes out during those scenes.

The other trope that really just does me in emotionally is when a love interest dies. There are very few instances of this where I haven’t ended up in a mess of tears. In fact, I can only think of one time that it didn’t and that was [spoilers for The Maze Runner trilogy until next bracketed text] when whatsername from The Maze Runner series dies near the end. Man, they really fucked up that last book. I was glad when she died. I guess the spoiler tag itself is just as much of a spoiler as what I actually said, since I can’t remember her name anyway. Whatever. Don’t bother with those books. The first one is the only one worth reading, and the reveals of the second and third books are so lame and terrible that they make the first book worse. [spoilers over] But anyways, I don’t even have to be that invested in a story to become a mess because of this beat. I was casually watching a movie on TV in the background, and then found out the girlfriend character in the movie had died and I was bawling for forty-five minutes and was seriously emotionally fucked-up for the next three or four days afterwards. I can’t deal with that shit. I don’t really know why. My best guess is that I start reliving all of my breakups in my head. Because every time I’ve had a breakup, they’ve left my life entirely. It’s kind of like they’ve died. Maybe that’s why I can’t handle this stuff, but it still seems like an extreme reaction for me to have, especially when its not written all that well.

I wish I could be a hero. And I wish I wasn’t such a goddamn baby. But I have to deal with reality, and maybe the fact that I’m stuck here in reality is why those tropes affect me so much.

[As a side note, as I was watching those clips from Disney’s Hercules to link here, I was just fucking giddy. I love that movie so much. It’s so good. It’s so good.]

Ow

Today, after work, I pulled something in my back. Now I am literally bedridden with pain; I can’t stand up, let alone walk around. Even sitting up to write this short blog post is causing me extreme pain. I’ve apparently taken enough medicine to knock out a horse, but the pain has just kept on truckin’, as have my senses. I’m not even, like, loopy from the medicine. I’m just here, and it just hurts. Dammit.

1/5 Stars: Your Music Sucks, Says Some Shitty Reviewer!

If you ever need reassurance that Rolling Stone s a godawful publication that needs to fucking die already and that music reviews in general are disgusting and misguided in concept, spend some time on Wikipedia reading about some of your favorite albums. As long as they aren’t fucking classic rock albums, of course. Rolling Stone gave all of those perfect scores. Ugh. Gross. Somebody help me wash the disgust off. Not that you’re not allowed to like classic rock or anything, but you have to be capable of liking more than just classic rock, man. Anyways.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_the_Aeroplane_over_the_Sea#Reception

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinkerton_(album)#Initial

Ah, oh god, music reviews are the worst fucking thing. It’s okay to go in depth and talk about an album, and even to discuss why you did or didn’t like it, but to assign a score and speak in such definitive terms about something that is so goddamn abstract and subjective is fucking nonsense. Ugh. Burn it all the fuck down. Its like if I looked at a painting that someone else broke down in tears at and just shrugged my shoulders and moved on. That’s a fine thing for me to do. What is not fine is to then write an lengthy piece about why it’s bad. The painting clearly didn’t move me, but to say that it’s bad… based on what? Did I not like the brushwork or something? There’s literally nothing in a painting that one can look at objectively. The same goes for music. I’ve heard numerous people who hate the voices of artists like Andrew Jackson Jihad. I personally find the voices on those songs to be incredibly endearing, with the wobblyness and off-putting sound contributing greatly to the messages they attempt to get across. Am I right? No. Are they? No. Obviously.

I need to take a shower now. Ugh.

Ambience

They say I look
so sad and lonely
But I’ve got my
one and only
love
They say I feel
the way feel
because I love
the way I feel
drugged
and you can
stand right in my way
‘but no matter what
these thirty days
will end
and I will find
my way to sleep
and I will never
have to think
again

I don’t dream without you
don’t want to be without you

You’re the reason that I feel alive
every moment asleep with you feels so right
You’re the reason that I feel alive
Stay with me, every starless night

Ambien Nights

Apparently after taking my sleeping medicine last night, I had a nonsensical imaginary adventure in and around my bedroom. In my chaotic state of mind, I wrote down a description of what had happened that night. I’m going to post it here. I’m leaving in all of the typos, and I’m not correcting it at all. This reads terribly and it makes no sense at all whatsoever, but this is what I saw upon opening my laptop the next morning. Enjoy.

Last night, I came to, my face drenched in water. A moment later, my face was shoved back downwards, and my senses were dulled by water pouring everywhere. At one point, I felt free. There was no one behind me. Someone urged me on and through some doors; I was met with bright light and a place I couldn’t recognize short of a vague sense that this was something I used to know. A few stumbly steps later (I was blinded by the light, it seems to have been to much for me) and I was in a bathroom. My bathroom. What was going on? Where was I, and what were these people doing here? I couldn’t tell you, but I could tell you that making it back to the previous room from the bathroom tooko a considerable nnumber of tries. As my lives counter neared zero, I opened the door, fell onto what appeared to be my own bed and let blackness fill my vision. I don’t know if I was posoned, or if I was just exaughsted, but my body clearly couldn’t take another step. someone would explain to me what was happening, eventually right? When vision filled my eyes again, I was surrounded by small fluffy animals. there was music playing; I was dressed in red. Everything seemed to be going spectacularly. Considering the disaster that I had felt just prior to this, this was dowbright incredible. I turned to ask a question of the fluffy beings beside me, and they immedately scurry away. They scurry far, far away, and when they’re gone, I can’t even recall an image of them any longer, let alone what they looked like. My bed is covered in nothing but pillows now. But that should satisfy. It satisfys me, It shuld satisfy the king. I am the king passes through my head as a close my eyes again. I was recieiving letters from my suppoters at all hours of the day. It was incredible. I had never felt true confidencelike this before, knowing that I was doing the right thing… whatever that was. What eactly have I accomplished since then? And as that thought passed through my head, I was overcome. Had I been poisoned? the coughs would not stop coming out. My subjects acted as though nothing was going on. Treasonous bastards! I coughed and coughed until I realized the severity of the situation, making it for the door to my kingdom and diving for the wrld outside. That was wasn’t eactly in great shape, but I didn”t have time to dwell on it. I made it to the one room that truly stood out from every other part of this night, and coughed until a relentless torrent of vomit gushed out of my mouth into the toilet below. I wasn’t missing, at least. The subjects around me were nodding in approval. I don’t know why. I felt like I was losing something, so sort of attachemnt to this world. The next one didn’t come as easily. I gagged on it’s way up, giving me a small window of time where I couldn’t breathe at all. Then when I could, the burning sensation was instense and extreme. ALl of my subjects had left, there seemed to be only one other person with me. He helped me get the rest of it out, then he was gone too. I was in my bathroom. The one four steps down the hallway from my room. I was half wearing a blanket over myself, but in an attempt to look regal, I wasn’t even really covering the essentials, there. It was okay, though, no one was awake. I got up, left the bathroom, realizing that this stumbling was not the result of poisoning, but probably the result of my sleeping medication. I was in a dirty halway that really needed to clean up. So yeah, not a place that was in great shape, I guess. I opened to dorr to my room. nothing weird here, which was the weirdest thing of all. My pillows were scattered around my bed in a strage way, but otherwise, it was almoost ready for me to try again. Maybe this time I’d stay asleep.

I did manage to seee everyone one last time as I drifted off. They were… having a barbeque, I think.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.rbjlhrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr                                  wzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZa”

I fell asleep at the keyboard, apparently. I must have woken up again and put it away, because it wasn’t open when I woke up for the day. I have no idea if I actually threw up or not. Knowing myself, I probably did.

By the way, I normally don’t get side effects like this on Ambien. Normally I sleep soundly through the night. This was a freak occurrence, so if you’re worried about my safety in regards to this medication, don’t. Ambien and I go very well together, and I am oddly responsible with it, considering my drug history an its potential for abuse.

Anyways, here is my observation of the events of that night, as told by a sane and sober person.

“I woke up, and I was drenched with sweat. I was wobbly from my medication, so I fell back onto my pillow, which was also drenched. Gross. I wish I could do something about that. I had to pee, and that knowledge was accompanied by a vague inclination that I should leave my room anyway. I did, and stumbled down the hallway, nearly slamming myself into all sorts of walls and counters in the process. I may have also been stark naked throughout all of this. I peed, and then tried to make it back to my bedroom, but it was much, much harder this time. I was having so much difficulty walking that I eventually began to crawl. When I made it to my door, I pulled myself up by the handle and let myself in, and immediately lost my balance and fell onto the bed. At this point, I may have fallen back asleep for a small period of time. When I awoke again, I was surrounded by my pillows and covered by my brown, not red, blanket. I felt an intense amount of confidence in my delirium, a well-known side effect of taking Ambien. I then started having one of my coughing fits. I’ve been having them for months now, and I really need to see a doctor, but I keep putting it off. This coughing fit was particularly bad, and it triggered my overly-sensitive gag reflex, causing me to rush to the bathroom where I let out huge amounts of half-digested microwavable meals. Gross. Since I was already vomiting, I figured I might as well go all the way with it instead half-assing it and leaving myself with a vague sick feeling for the rest of the night. I forced out some more, but it didn’t come all the way out, so instead I started choking on the burning air of acid-reflux. That sucked. Eventually I did finish puking, though. I slowly become more conscious of reality at this point, and realized that while I was covered up by my blanket, I hadn’t really bothered to actually cover up. I was essentially tripping all over myself and puking whilst completely naked in the upstairs of my house. Weird. I went back to my room and laid down and went back to sleep, waking up another time to attempt to document these events, but failing in a hilarious manner.”

I Wrote This Post While Barely Conscious At Five In The Morning But The Point Still Stands

I’m an atheist, but I come from a Mormon household. Before you ask any inappropriately-ignorant questions about it, just… don’t. It’s not that fucking weird of a religion. Magic underwear? Sure, it’s a light layer of clothing they wear that is supposed to be a representation of modesty. You don’t wear clothing that shows off this layer, meaning no overly revealing or tight clothing. It’s literally just a physical manifestation of a rule that every other Christian religion has. Oh, yeah, and before you object about that, Mormons are totally, 100% Christian. I’ve run into a number of Christians who were disgusted at the idea of referring to them as such. First of all, fuck those people; holy shit. Second of all, I grew up believing in Jesus Christ. Mormons absolutely believe in the New Testament. In fact, I’ve found them to be more Christ-centric than a lot of other Christian religions. The Old Testament is a thing, and it’s important to them, but it’s kind of glossed-over relative to the New Testament and their own book. The reason “old-school” Christians don’t think Mormons count is because Mormons have a less insane idea of the Holy Trinity than they do. Most Christian religions have this weird, nebulous idea about God, Jesus and the Holy Ghost, that they’re somehow the same person but different people all at once. Mormons believe they’re separate entities. They read the term “Son of God” as it’s written, instead of making him both the son of god and god, meaning that he’s his own dad. It’s like The Stupids or something in other Christian religions.

Let’s get even deeper into this. This isn’t even what this post was really supposed to be about, but I am so sick of the creepy stigma that my family (and me, just by association) has had to put up with since moving to the East Coast. Mormons aren’t any weirder than any other religion. As a kid, I went to church every Sunday, had arbitrary values that I followed, and prayed at night. We didn’t even do anything creepy like drink the blood of Christ, which is what I’m told Catholics do. Mormons have a sacrament, but it is in no way supposed to be taken literally. It is representative, and it is explicitly stated that it is a metaphor every time it is done.

There is no polygamy.

I’ll say it again. There is no polygamy, and there hasn’t been for around a century. Considering the fact that this religion isn’t even two centuries old, Mormons have been polygamists for less of a percentage of their existence than Catholics have been putting non-believers to death in first-world countries. So don’t fucking ask about that. It’s incredibly ignorant. There are small, fringe groups who call themselves Mormon who still practice it, but they aren’t affiliated with the actual church in any way. They all kind of live off in the countryside by themselves. And they aren’t Mormons. They’re people who give Mormons a bad name. I wouldn’t decide that every religion is filled with hateful funeral-picketers just because the Westboro Baptist Church exists. Don’t do the equivalent thing to Mormons.

There’s that musical that I’ve never seen by the South Park guys. I don’t know how I feel about it. I’ve never seen it. I’ve met Mormons who thought it was funny, but most of them don’t think it is. I’ve met far more non-Mormons who claim that they have a Mormon fried who saw it and liked it as a means to justify laughing at a bigoted portrayal of a religion. I’ve laughed at the jokes in South Park about it before. (For the record, while that clip is hysterical, Mormons don’t even really believe there is a hell; everybody does in fact make it to heaven eventually, according to Mormonism.) They somehow didn’t come off as nearly as mean-spirited, in spite of the fact that South Park is a mean-spirited show at heart. I just don’t know how comfortable I am with the entire world pointing and laughing at my family… at my brother, who is away on a mission and I won’t get to see for another year and a half. I don’t like the whole world laughing at them, and then seeing the medium through which people are making fun of them get incredibly high praise from critics and comedians I respect. So, here’s the deal. I’ve read interviews with the South Park guys. Those guys fucking hate Mormons. You wouldn’t watch a hilarious play about Buddhists written by two non-Buddhists who are notorious for hating Buddhists and feel, like, okay about it, would you? That’s kind of how I feel about The Book of Mormon musical. Again, I’ve never seen it. I could be all wrong. It could be the kindest portrayal of Mormons in the whole world, but I just don’t have confidence in that particular duo to do something like that. Those guys are absolute geniuses; that doesn’t mean they can’t also be terrible people. I think they’re aware of that fact; they just don’t care. And more power to them, or whatever, but I don’t have to like or even watch their musical.

I was actually going to write a blog post about something completely different, using the “growing up Mormon” thing as a jumping-off point for the discussion, but I think I’m done for now. It’d be a little weird to write four large paragraphs about one topic, only to dive into another, spend less time on it, and call it the main topic. So I’ll save that for later, and hopefully you guys will have enough context that I can talk about it without having to make this long-winded aside.

To end this, I’ll mention something kind of nice. I know the Mormons church is notorious for promoting anti-homosexual measures in government, but those maneuvers were not really loved by most of the members. My family had long been pro-gay-marriage, and that period of time when the church was making those moves was straining. It was straining for a lot of people. The nice thing I mentioned earlier is that since then, things have changed a little. The church has taken a step back on that stance to focus on acceptance. They’ve made a public statement saying that the church’s opinion is that gay is not a choice. (There are some downright heartwarming quotes in that article from my perspective, it’s worth reading.) They’re not exactly progressive, but they’re trying.

Anyway, I hope some of the points on this post have enlightened you, and that you can be a little more informed in the future. I probably made some relatively sweeping statements about Catholicism in this post that are maybe not cool, but as far as I’m aware, Catholics haven’t exactly been tarred and feathered in this country just for being Catholic, so maybe I have a little less sympathy for that religion as a whole. It’s also a whole lot more well-understood than Mormonism is, and people don’t call Catholics weird unless they think all religion is weird. I think all religion is weird. My point is that Mormonism isn’t any weirder.

You Are the Poison I Need

‘I’m always focusing in on the wrong things,

and then the wrong things become everything.”

-Help, The Front Bottoms

Irresponsible

And so you move on

’cause you have to move on.

But just because you’ve moved on

doesn’t mean that it’s gone

But still you move on

’cause you can only move on

but the things you’ve moved on from

still need to move on

but you’ve already gone.

I Need This

There’s a new Front Bottoms record coming out next month.

Maybe you didn’t read that correctly.

THERE’S A NEW FUCKING FRONT BOTTOMS ALBUM COMING OUT NEXT GODDAMN MONTH HOLY SHIT.

I’m fucking excited. I’m excited and I really, desperately want to get high. I’ll probably figure something out. I will break these two years of sobriety before this next record comes out.

I know. I know that doesn’t make any sense. If something awesome is happening, why would I need that? It’s hard to explain. I just have to experience these feelings that I’m having in a different light. I have to experience this fucking rush in every way possible. I have to melt. Don’t judge me. It’ll just be once or twice. And probably alone. Holy fuck though.

Anyways. Did you hear?

THERES A NEW FRONT BOTTOMS RECORD COMING OUT AND I AM FIGURATIVELY SHITTING MY PANTS.

Every track they’ve released leading up to it has been fucking excellent. They still have it, and you know what? They’re some the only guys who have it. They’re on the level, man. They’re the Front Bottoms. They’re the only ones who are. And there a new album coming out. Holy shit.

Fucking holy goddamn shit yes.