Private Pleasures, Social Nihilism

Running against the tide is not a winning form of exercise, but anything active is better than lying down with the leg trap attached.

The Information Age has made social communication a deeply unpleasurable world, where omniscience ( the word is a portmanteau combining the “Omni,” where the lowly Atlanta Hawks once played, since demolished, with “science,” which is what Radio Shack sold in unworkable kits) is the prerequisite for blogging, writing, journalisming, journaling, J-streeting, or just staying alive. However, to the deep embarrassment of the entire global staff of Fun Social Nihilism, entire regions of reference and allusion and historical debate are “unaddressed” here.

  1. No Roman or Greek background here. No one in FSN’s vast global staff reads in in the original Greek of Latin. Who, really, was Sophocles?  What kind of schooling, did he have? Um, not sure. don’t know. Never studied him, because the educational establishment at the time of our schooling was scared away from indoctrinating the post-60s kids with the casuistry of the classics. And they were right – oceans of scholastic boredom were avoided by having us sit in circles to talk about feelings. But now, to give a properly nuanced, authoritative essay on the current political malaise, the author must pretend to have studied reams and papyruses of ancient documents – when Leave it To Beaver was on?
  2. No Shakespeare necessary, nor any classical music, nor Adam Smith nor any of the formative giants of the educational canon. Why? Because no one with the education necessary to become a Big Talking Head is a person to emulate, in the slightest. Knowledge is best acquired through great and wide superficial reading, not the suicidal  dive into the deep, dark well of monastic obsessiveness that generates the monkey drummers of the literary/professional writer sort.
  3. Folks have so many demands on their leisure-time inquisitiveness. FSN has no wind-up key in its back to produce the monkey cymbal-smashing that gets views, followers, acolytes, so it just bangs away .

Who, really, knows what to say anymore? No one can properly be called an “expert” on any matter, if they are of normal sanity, since for any assertion, there are armies of opponents, or instant dismissers, who can just click away from some crapola they think substandard for boring the hell out of them. Give us the monkey drummers, they clamor, where we readers can shit our pants in ecstatic favor at the antic parade of the familiar toy primates.

The world of our intimate social reality is far more the region  where life’s verities reveal their pleasures. Ever had to euthanize a beloved cat? To the outside world, anyone wanting to describe a genuine, positive association between cat and human is a gibbering fool, yet human cross-species affiliation is more valuable than the modern human’s desire to updraft on anti-human sarcasm.  To accompany a cat, or a dog,  on his or last  last moments as a domestic special being,  is more a form of “reward” about the reality of death amid life  than any amount of public acclaim  – but there should still be some room in the day for a few minutes of public cymbal assault.

Now, click off. Happy clicking!

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