Sunday, July 16, 2006


I am a simple man. When I watch, courtesy of the BBC news, the horrors unfolding in the Middle East I keep thinking: why don't they just stop killing each other and talk? Violence has never achieved anything~ "there's no such thing as a winnable war". All that happens is more and more people die in an upward spiral of violence that won't stop until EVERYBODY dies. And I don't want to die, thanks. Not because of someone else's disagreement anyway. I'd rather die of loneliness for a beautiful woman on a warm night under brilliant stars, with a Mexican cancion on my lips...
All this "nationhood"'s nice being part of something-I like being able to identify myself as English-but I know it doesn't mean anything. A nation's just a territory created by old wars! And personhood. What's a person? I've been looking for my person for the last five minutes and I can't find me anywhere. All I can find is the borders of my person, like these outstretched arms with fingers attached typing messages into the keyboard. They look remarkably like everybody else's borders too, albeit some are darker in colour, some have more or less hair, some don't need washing as much as mine.
People disagree with my person, but since my person doesn't seem to exist other than in some delusional hoodwink sense, why should I get too worked up about it? I do sometimes, same as everybody else, but why should I? Threaten my non-existent castle if you like, you can't throw hot oil down the walls of something that isn't there...
But even if you don't buy non-existence, isn't there room enough for everybody on this big planet? You think what you want and I'll go over there and think what I want. I like your spot, but that spot looks okay too. Maybe sometimes we can even phone each other and exchange ideas...
Like I said, I am a simple man.
I saw people getting into each other's faces and spit-shouting to settle disagreements on the work holiday I've just returned from...I heard one person threatening to firebomb another person's house with them in it, their statement perfectly sincere in that moment of fulminating anger--and though people tell me anger is a positive thing and my own efforts at emotional self-control the sign of some disorder, I have to tell you, dear reader, I thought the behaviour of those work colleagues a disgrace, and an embarrassment to a species that included Buddha, Leonardo Da Vinci, Shakespeare, Gandhi. Violence is the resort of crazy dogs. We have a choice.
It begins by getting your head out of your own ass and learning some respect for other people and this beautiful planet we occupy so temporarily, in our turn.

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