Things All Over The Place

Things all over the place. Someday, some yet unknown civilization will study us and think that we had things all over the place. We are consumed by our things and few things ever remain in their right place.

I love some of my things, but does this mean I need to have things all over the place? Has humanity really evolved to have this many things all over the place? Can our brains really handle all these things all over the place? Just about all of our homes have things all over the place. There are things everywhere, too many to name.

Some of us are lucky enough to have the time, energy and/or money to have things continually kept in their right place. Few of us are disciplined enough to keep everything right where it needs to be, at all times. After all, this is the only way that most of us could maintain sanity and stability with things.

We have built our lives in order to have things all over the place. This is what we do. This is where human ingenuity has landed us. We labor away and then we collect things. It is fun buying things with our hard earned cash. If we did not do this what would be the point of our labor? We certainly don’t love the things we do for cash so we better enjoy the spending of it.

We end up with things all over the place.

What we did for fun becomes an excess of things all over the place. Memories materialized into things.

And now our lives become about keeping things in their right place. Learning how to not get so angry when things are all over the place. Figuring out how to keep things from getting all over the place. Straining our relationships because of the stress of having things all over the place. Not spending our time more meaningfully because we are too tired after dealing with things all over the place. Wishing we could just be comfortable with things all over the place but never being able to achieve this ideal.

Those who are perfectly at home and relaxed with things all over the place are the enlightened beings in our day and age of too many things all over the place.

Our world is surrounded by things all over the place. The inside of our homes is a reflection of the clutter all around. Everything is out of place. There is clutter everywhere, unless you are fortunate enough to live where no one else or only a few are around. But chances are you still live in a home with things all over the place. We live in a world of things all over the place and our homes become microcosmic portraitures of this macrocosmic crisis.

It is inevitable. When we live with things all over the place our inner worlds become filled with things all over the place. Everything is out of place on the outside because everything is out of place on the inside. Or is everything out of place on the inside because everything is out of place on the outside?

Thoughts all over the place. An endless number of things to get done. Different feelings running into one another. Continually trying to get things organized on the inside but never feeling able to. Looking towards drugs and alcohol to help us straighten things out, if only for a minute. Meditating, doing yoga, going to therapists, reading self-help books, going on retreat- all in the hope of effectively dealing with these things all over the place.

No scientific research is needed to tell us we live in a world, inside and out, with too many things all over the place. We are buried beneath these things, always struggling to find a way to get things in order. We struggle to remain organized inside and out. We try as hard as we can to deal with things all over the place. But more often than not, our only shot at survival is to say fuck it and accept that this is now a world with things all over the place.

This Blog Is Now Blocked!

This blog is now blocked.

WORDPRESS has blocked my blog from the general public.

Now this blog is rated CENSORED, DEVIANT MATERIAL INSIDE.

Make no mistake about it- WORDPRESS IS A RELIGIOUS AND RESTRICTIVE INSTITUTION. ONLY CERTAIN APPROPRIATE THINGS CAN BE SAID HERE.

If you use the word MOTHERFUCKER in the title of a post you run the risk of being blocked.

Very said that a writing platform like WORDPRESS oppresses authentic expression and is so threatened by words like MOTHERFUCKER.

NO authentic/good writing can happen on a platform that will block and restrict your mode of expression if it feels like you are becoming inappropriate.

This is why WORDPRESS had become a main perpetuator of crapy writing in the world. WORDPRESS supports CENSORING writer’s voices if that writer’s voice expresses sentiments that are not in alignment with what they believe is right.

I will no longer have anything to do with WORDPRESS obviously. How could I? How could any real writing ever happen here?

WORDPRESS is like the TARGET for writing. It sells cheaply made products, for lower prices, that look kind of like the real thing but are far from it.

I am grateful to WORDPRESS for giving me a platform to write on. I am grateful that I was able to slide by under THE WORDPRESS BIG BROTHER CENSORING APPARATUS for as long as I did. It was my way of saying FUCK THE MAN while I still could.

WORDPRESS is now telling me I have said ENOUGH on their public platform. Ok.

I have been caught by the religious institution known as WORDPRESS, probably turned in by some religious WORDPRESSIAN disciple who can not handle a few bad words in their daily on-line reading.

There are a lot of very controlling and fascistic people out there who operate under the title of PEOPLE OF FAITH. Sad that a platform like WORDPRESS has lost the courage to stand out from the masses and has instead become an INSTITUTION FOR PEOPLE OF FAITH.

-Randall

These Motherfucking Machines

These motherfucking machines. I am not happy about them one bit. Now, I use my iPhone just as much as anyone. I check my emails and text messages too much. I look on-line when I don’t want to do anything else (which is most of the time). I, like you, have given in to these motherfucking machines.

But I don’t like it.

I think they are bad, real bad for any depth or interestingness our personalities could have once had. I think they are ruining our ability to connect with others in meaningful ways. I think these motherfucking machines are turning us all into even more superficial and unsatisfied monkeys than we were before.

I wish I could fully give in. I wish I could love these motherfucking machines. I really try. But as a result of trying my attention span has been hacked into tiny little pieces. My creative output has dwindled. My sexual relationship with my wife has gone flat. My interest in engaging with others in person is gone. My capacity for handling solitude has been shot. My shopping addiction has gone through the fucking roof. My ability to be engaged while reading a book has disappeared. I love reading books and I can’t even do that anymore because of these mother fucking machines.

What a person does while they are alone determines the amount of depth that they have when with other people. If when a person is alone they are continually checking their phones, what kind of person are they going to be when around other human beings? Frightening thought, but let me tell you. They are going to be boring! There is going to be the absence of any legitimate substance.

Sorry, I wish there was some way around this.

I try and ignore it with my wife. I love her (a bunch) and I want everything to be fine but my wife checks her iPhone all the time. She is always on the fucking thing. She works on the thing. Socializes on the thing. Makes art on the thing. Entertains herself on the thing.  Talks to me and then is right back on the thing. Watches something on TV and is right back on the thing. Takes a shower and is right back on the thing. It is constant but I try to just accept it. It is the way the world is going so you better get in line Randall. But sometimes I pop. Sometimes I lose my shit and say things like:

Is this what we want to become? This couple who is always on their phones? Really? Is this what we want to turn ourselves into? Bored when it is just you and I unless we have a phone to check? Always pulled by this desire or compulsion to check our phones. To refer to our phones for every bit of info we need or interest we have? Is this what we really want to do with our valuable time? I mean we don’t even fuck much anymore. Shouldn’t we be more focused on that than always caught up in digital worlds inside our phones? You have so much potential. So do I but do we really want to be giving it all away just so we can be more in touch with other people? Just so we can check what pic is newest and latest on-line? We are becoming people without depth. You think Father John Misty could check his phone a hundred times a day and do the kind of work he does? Why are we letting oyrselves become like this? I am sick of it. It pisses me off. I know I am just as bad but really you are worse. You are fucking addicted. You need help. I need help. It is going to ruin our entire lives. These fucking machines are turning us into superficial idiots glued to a screen. I just don’t like it no matter how hard I try.

And then I feel bad, even though I meant everything I said. I try and go back to just accepting these motherfucking machines in to my life. I tell myself this is just the way things are now. So I can’t really read a book anymore? Who cares. At least I am in touch and on-line. These motherfucking machines fill the space created by my loneliness, emptiness and laziness but what bothers me is that before these motherfucing machines that space was filled with books, films, creativity, music, solitude, long afternoons wondering around with my head in the clouds and other people. Now its just a continual digital screen.

Again and again.

 

Does Anyone Else Give A Shit?

This is bullshit.

I know we all want to keep our heads buried in the sand but the United States of America just dropped the largest bomb, next to a Nuclear bomb, on another sovereign country. What the hell? As if things were already not bad enough.

Maybe I am naïve but I believe if we just put on our wisdom caps, stepped back and left other people alone, they would leave us alone as well. No one wants to die, not even those we in the terrified West have been conditioned to see as bad guys.

Just like how I am now the bigger person and no longer start fights when my father tries to poke at me, things between us have mellowed out. If the United States could just be the bigger person, things would improve! But no, we have these angry, defensive and non-self actualized higher ups making all the moves.

Militants who attack people in the West use trucks, homemade bombs, powerful guns and other desperate inventions that can bring about their boiling desire for revenge. Militants who attack people in the Middle East use massive, high tech bombs and the wealthiest military in the world. Who is bullying who here?

Now I don’t know about you, but as a member of the general public, I am concerned. You see, when the United States of America does something like drop a massive bomb on another sovereign country, there is going to be repercussions in the West. It is a given. But those who make the decision to drop the bombs don’t care. Higher up officials are not nearly as vulnerable to attacks from militants because they do not shop in middle-class shopping malls. It is all of us who are greatly at risk.

You, me and everyone you know and love. All your friends on Facebook. Thanks American Military and the American Government. Thanks a lot. Way to be wise.

Now, because of decisions made by higher ups, we have all been made much more vulnerable to being harmed by those who are pissed off by America’s recent actions. To officials who are higher up, no matter what they say, we are all collateral damage for their agendas. The fact that those who make these decisions are higher up, implies that they are removed from all of us lower downs. This creates a separation that is necessary for the higher ups to make the kind of decisions they do. If they were also shopping in the mall down the street, they might not make the decisions they do.

So we have been put in harms way by them. Again.

I like my life. I like all the others around me to enjoy their lives. Life is a very precious resource. The moment it is lost, it is extinct. This is why I think those who make decisions that put other people’s lives in harms way are jerks, no matter how much justice and righteous they think they have on their side. Every militant, on any side, is fueled by the same sense of justice and righteousness. This is what makes them a militant!

And make no mistake about it, those who drop expensive bombs on sovereign countries, are militants, no matter how much they look like you.

I am fueled by wanting all people to just enjoy living their lives and this is what makes me not a militant.

Donald Trump and the American Military just made all of us lower down people, much more unsafe. We are all much more at risk now than last week. Actions speak louder than words. Donald Trump and the American Military may say they care about you and your family but if they did they would be the bigger person and stop dropping bombs. Just like with my father, I care about his health and mine so I have pulled back. In the end this is the only way to end conflict.

Everything else is just unevolved, hurt, defensive, egotistical, childish bullshit.

Casey Neistat, YouTube and The Decline of Art

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Casey Neistat.

Have you heard of this guy?

If not, you should check him out for a few reasons.

First reason, because he is a creative genius. The independently created, daily video blogs he made (and still makes) for several years are genius.

Second reason, because he is revolutionizing (innovating) the technological landscape in which all of us live now, single handily. It would not be a far stretch to call him the second coming of Steve Jobs.

Third, because he is a very inspiring human being.

And finally, because he could be contributing to the decline of art (unintentionally of course).

A few weeks ago, I did not know who Casey Neistat was. How is it that I am so behind on what is really contemporary and what is shaping the world in which I live? How is it that I am so asleep at the wheel with regards to what is cutting edge? I will try and answer these questions in a moment. But first….

Someone whom I respect told me that I should check out this guy by the name of Casey Neistat’s Youtube channel. So I did and thus began a week of being completely immersed in most of the video blogs Casey has created. My wife started to addictively watch as well and suddenly we were happily immersed in Casey Neistat’s world.

Now, I don’t want this to come off as a negative critique of Casey Neistat. I don’t know him personally but I really like the guy. He is someone whom I would want to be friends with. He is a freak, with a brilliant and kind mind and I respect that. But as an artist, I am concerned about how an inspiring person like Casey Neistat, who reaches a tremendous number of young people, could cause the state of art to really take a nose dive.

Casey has a tremendous amount of energy. As an older man (45 years old) I envy his immense and unstoppable energy. Who knows what I could accomplish if I had twenty five percent, hell ten percent of the energy he has. Ever since my wife and I started watching his videos, we have felt more motivated to do things. We have been getting off our lazy asses more. We have been accomplishing more. We have been busier, healthier and have taken care of many of the things we procrastinated on for years. But we have also read less, listened to music less and just hung out in our lives less. As artists, is this a good thing?

 

You see, there is an art to lingering. Doing nothing is a very important part of being an artist. Without doing nothing for long periods of time, the quality of the work will suffer. I know that Casey Neistat thinks it is a good thing to stay busy all the fucking time. I know that he thinks free time and relaxation are detrimental to a productive life, but these things are essential for the creation of a work of art which has depth and quality.

Being busy all the time works for Casey because he is a creative genius, not an artist. I fear what will happen to the quality of art if too many artists think that staying busy is a good thing. I fear that art will lose depth.

Artists linger and dwell in moments. Artists procrastinate on getting things done so they can spend more time dwelling in moments. This is an essential ingredient in any work of art that has depth. What was it that Gertrud Stein said? Something like an artist must spend ninety percent of their time doing nothing so that ten percent of their time can be spent making good art (I am paraphrasing).

Artists absorb experience and let these experiences percolate just under the surface. Their experiences often need a long period of gestation in order to turn into a work of art which stands on its own and has depth.

Steve Jobs was a creative genius but he was not an artist. In the same way Casey Neistat is a creative genius but he is not an artist. Casey has these daily bursts of inspiration that get pumped out and put into the world (as creative geniuses often do) rather than deep, lingering acts of creation (which, is what art is). Maybe all of Casey Neistat’s work as a whole can be looked at as a single art piece. Maybe the collected life of Casey Neistat will ultimately be his work of art.

Art makes us feel something on a very deep level. It reminds us of the historical aspects of ourselves. Casey Neistat is a genius but there is a difference between Casey Neistat and say artists like Joan Miro, Duchamp, Richard Brautigan, Stanley Kubrick, Kafka, Rothko and on and on and on.

 

There is no doubt that Casey Neistat’s legacy will be himself as a person. What will live beyond his death is the video blog and businesses that he created. But not one of his works (say an individual video blog) will stand out on its own. His work as a whole is genius but he will not be remembered in the same way we remember the individual works of artists.

An artist is known for the work itself. Half of the works of art that I love, I have no idea about their creator. With art, the work stands on its own. The work of art unto itself is enough. Casey Neistat will be remembered for his character, as the person he is and as a brilliant entrepreneur. His video blog is very much about the person. It is a part of his business or businesses. He basically runs a self-made video, entertainment business empire. But it is not art.

Art should not always be boring but it should not always seek to be entertaining also. Reading Infinite Jest, the reader is coming in direct contact with a very deep work of art. But at many points in the book it is hard work to keep reading. It is not entertaining at all. It is often tedious. If art is entertaining all the time, I don’t think we could call it art.

After watching a lot of Casey’s videos, I am left with the memory of him. His energy, his philosophy and his fervor for work have really inspired my wife and I. We both love the guy. But I really do not remember any individual pieces of work (videos). Casey Neistat’s work exists in my mind as a whole rather than as individual parts. And as an artist it is the parts or the induvial works that are important, not the artist’s life as a whole (this is secondary, not primary).

I worry that too many artists will be inspired by someone like Casey Neistat and other brilliant productivity video bloggers. They might feel bad that they have been lingering around, spending too much time lost in their minds and not getting anything done. Nooooooooooooooooooo! Please don’t let this happen. As artists, you are doing exactly what you should be doing. Keep sitting around!

Artists need to be good at doing nothing. Artists need to be expert lingerers. Creative geniuses on the other hand need to be good at getting shit done. But for a great novel or painting to be created, that artist needs to spend a lot of time doing nothing. They need to swim down to the depths of their beings, down where it is often dark, murky and filled with existential pain. There is no way an artist can do this if they keep busy and are always being entertained.

To answer my two questions at the beginning of this essay, this is probably why I never heard of Casey Neistat up until a few weeks ago. I spend a lot of time outside of time and just sitting around. I may not be aware of what is cutting edge and contemporary but I think I have made a lot of art that has depth.

I am glad that there are brilliant, creative and energetic entrepreneurs like Casey Neistat out there in the world. We need them to counteract all the boring crap non-creative business people make. My hope is that business people like Casey Neistat will inspire other business people to stop making crap. This is a very positive thing and I am grateful to Casey for this. But if you are an artist please don’t get depressed and feel bad that you are not up at five in the morning running and then on the go all day, every day, everywhere. This would be detrimental to you and your work as an artist. If you were always busy, if you had no free time, you would not have the time to go deep within yourself and pull from these depths works of art that in the end, if good enough, inspire people like Casey to do what they do.

For all you artists out there, please- don’t just do something. Instead, sit there and settle down.

Incognito Libido

There are people who send other people text messages.

These are not the kind of text messages that you would want other people who know you to find out about.

There are people who send text messages with pictures of themselves naked in hot tubs sucking another man’s cock.

There are people who send text messages that ask: How many inches are you? There are people who respond by saying: I am Jewish. Have you ever met a Jewish man with a small cock?

There are people who send text messages with pictures of themselves bent over in the nude showing off their ass and other parts. It is the fruit of a lot of hard labor and they enjoy getting to share. These text messages are often responded to with comments like: Wow- that is wonderful! or You are so hot!

It gets addicting sometimes.

There are people who send text messages asking: Is it a must that you use condoms or not? Sometimes, if you respond to these people by saying it would be wise to use condoms, you will not hear from these people anymore.

These same people also ask: Do you like watching or getting fucked? Are you okay with cumming on the face? Tell me something kinky that you do? What is the biggest sized cock you have ever had? Does your husband like to watch you take it in the mouth?

These kind of text messages go on and on. People send pornographic pictures of themselves like it was running water.

These people are your mom and dad. Your aunt and uncle. These people are your doctor, your therapist, your teacher, your accountant, your real estate agent, the taxman. These are people who are students and these are middle-class people who live in the suburban house right next to you.

There are people who send these kinds of text messages maybe not every day, but a lot. Sometimes these people meet up and do all kinds of pornographic things with one another. They think of it as fun. A fantastic high that helps them forget about every single one of their human condition problems for awhile. They get off by getting it on, if you know what I mean.

These people may be me. They may be you. I know that most people would be beyond shocked if they really found out who these people really were. But in today’s world of modern technology these people are almost everyone. Really, you would be surprised. Humans are first and foremost sexual creatures. It makes perfect sense that we would create technology mainly to advance our sexual aspirations.

I don’t understand why everyone seems so surprised about this. These are obviously people who have become terribly sexually repressed.

These are people who do not send pornographic text messages like this.

Maybe like you. Maybe like me.

Smartphone Etiquette For Public Places (0r How To Look Smarter, Happier and Wiser Than Everyone Else).

(My apology if you are reading this while on a smartphone in a public place.)

I know. I know. You don’t want to hear it. But please, just allow me a few minutes of your valuable, electronically stimulated time and then you can throw all of this away.

At this point in human history, all of us have probably been in a restaurant or bar and noticed that almost everyone is on their smartphone. It seems to be a social phenomenon, the likes of which we have not seen since the popularity of cigarettes over a half century ago. Keep in mind that we are still at the very beginning of the integration of this smartphone technology into our daily lives. We are canaries in the proverbial coal mine and no one really understands how these smartphones will affect us down the line. So let me offer you this insight- currently almost everyone is addicted to what is known as electronic stimulation. This is why people can not stay off their phone. It is difficult for almost anyone these days to go ten minutes without a hit of electronic stimulation. Currently this addiction is wide spread, all pervasive and completely socially acceptable just like cigarettes were a half century ago. This will all change in time but for now if you want to avoid the unfulfilling and unhealthy direction your life is heading in it is good to exercise some kind of smartphone etiquette.

If you are on social media or on-line on your smartphone while you are with other people- you are an addict. You might really want to work on curbing this behavior right away. Even though most people might not be saying anything about it, you are a boring person to spend time with. Your attention is fractured. You have become dulled. More about this later.

If you are talking with another person and you are feeling bored or underwhelmed and you need to check your smartphone for a hit of electronic stimulation during the conversation- you are an idiot. Literally, you have been made dumb. Exercise your brain. Make a deliberate effort to stimulate the conversation or take it in directions that you want it to go. Don’t give up or give in. If all people do this we will end up with a zoned out, electronically stimulated, very dull human race.

If first thing in the morning you need to check your smartphone, you are seriously addicted. If you need a hit of electronic stimulation before you even wake up and have coffee- this is a sign of a hardcore addiction. Like a junkie, you are enslaved by your need for electronic stimulation. Checking your smartphone first thing in the morning sets up a precedent. As a result you will probably end up checking your smartphone all throughout the day and night. This is not a wise way to live a fulfilling human life. You will probably end up on some kind of anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication. Or you will look to alcohol and/or your smartphone to calm your electronically stimulated mind. Please try and get some control over this before it is too late for you. Even though you want to see what is going on on Facebook or Instagram first thing in the morning, give it some time. Breathe. Feed your dogs. Make your bed. Meditate. Go exercise. Read. Get your life back on track first.

Do you check your smartphone at least fifty times a day? Probably more since most people check their smartphones at least a hundred and fifty times a day. This is one of the most destructive aspects of the electronic stimulation addiction. This single aspect of smartphone use probably destroys more people’s mental health, creativity and relationships than anyone is yet aware. It is not healthy to check anything fifty times or more a day let alone a smartphone. Needing to check something so much gives a person chronic anxiety, a deep feeling of never having enough and as a result, a dependency. This deep feeling of never enough is the cause of most forms of despair. I know it is cool to check your phone and see what is going on in the digital world, but continually checking up on all those updates, text messages, likes and comments is emptying you out inside. Not to mention the possibly irreparable damage it is doing to your attention span. Tried focusing for long periods of extended time on anything other than your smartphone recently? Please, stop checking your smartphone so much when in public places. It can wait.

Do you go on-line while you are outside of your home or office? If you do you are without a doubt addicted to electronic stimulation. You need it like a junkie needs her fix. Feel good about yourself? Research shows that a dependency on something greatly reduces self-esteem. Don’t believe the research just look at your own life. How much are you thriving in life? How much are you mastering? Going out and having engaging interactions much? Doing what you want with your life? Feel confident in your interesting sexual explorations? Chances are that if you are addicted to electronic stimulation you are not have many sexual experiences at all. Continual electronic stimulation can leave the libido underwhelmed. When you are outside of your home or office please try and abstain from going on-line. It’s not a good look. This may be why you are not getting laid much.

When someone tells you about something and you find this something interesting, do you need to go on-line and check it out right away? This is a fundamental way that people who are addicted to electronic stimulation justify getting a hit of electronic stimulation when hanging out with other people. It is often a manipulative way of saying they are bored and need a quick fix. More, more, more is what their brain is saying as they sit there not really hearing what you are saying. The main problem with this aspect of the addiction is that it is conditioning the brain to need continual, immediate, electronic stimulation. The result of this is that a person loses the ability to sustain focused and hard effort towards something they are interested in. We all know that most of the rewarding things in life require sustained, focused, hard effort but the addiction to continual, immediate, electronic stimulation is denying people the ability to engage in this kind of focused effort. Any real potential a person has is sacrificed for their need for quick, electronic stimulation hits. Next time you want to check something you think is interesting on your phone (especially when with other people) please try and stay focused on what you are doing in the present moment. That interesting thing on-line can wait.

Finally, next time you are at a bar or restaurant notice how almost everyone is on their smartphone or has their smartphone right beside them (just waiting for the next electronic stimulation hit). Even though humans have an innate tendency to want to be a part of the tribe, see if you can deny the temptation to check your smartphone. It will be short term pain for long term gain. Even though you are surrounded by droned out, electronic stimulation addicts- please know that this behavior is not normal and will one day be seen as seriously harmful. But by then many lives, careers, talents, attention spans and relationships will have been ruined. By refusing that desire for a hit of electronic stimulation when in public places you may be saving your future life. And you will look smarter, happier and wiser than everyone else.