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Tuesday, July 01, 2003

I was in the grocery store today trying to decide if I really needed the extra large nutmeg, or if the regular sized nutmeg would do, when I realized something monumental. The thing which struck me wasn't the fickle nature of my life or the fact that it seems devoid of all but the most superficial meaning, no. It was that I really should be depressed about recent events. Really, given everything that's happened, along with the potential disaster in the short to mid-term future, I know for a fact that some emotion ought to be oozing out of me, forcing me to take care of whatever is the matter.

The fact is that these emotions don't come. The worst feeling in the world isn't anger or depression or apathy or sadness, it's the cognition which allows one to percieve the human element which should be there, but isn't. One's humanity is made all the more striking in contrast to the gaping hole where some reaction ought to be. Yet, I cannot bring myself to care that much about anything important. I can summon forth a wellspring of intensity if someone wants to try and tell me that Voltron is better than Power Rangers, or that animals have rights - but when it comes to the vital organs of a healthy life, my reactions are all what I think should be, not what I actually want to do.

As anyone who knows me is aware by this point, my long term girlfriend and I are no longer a couple. The absurdity of the end and my situation in general makes it impossible, however, to really take the whole thing seriously. Reaction only comes at a visceral level if you take things as important, take them as something which is not ridiculous. When you reduce life to its constituent parts, however, it's impossible not to see it as an elaborately designed sideshow exhibit. We spend a majority of our time worrying about the most idiotic little things - whether the girl who glances at you really likes you, or if she just happened to scan the room, whether or not the Nikes you want will be on sale in a week anyway and whether it's worth the money. And so on and so forth. We are a culture of people who have more loyalty to the brand of soda we drink than any sort of ideal in the world.

I can't see this, somehow, as problematic. As I stood in the aisle, dodging people who seemed to believe that their cart having wheels entitled them to go as fast as possible, kids running their hands along the catsup bottles lining the second shelf and causing a huge mess, I decided that the extra nutmeg just wasn't worth it, picked up the smaller size, walked to the check out stand. It's questions of nutmeg which really are what my life is about. Let other people worry about love and loss. It's all a cheap ripoff of Shakespeare anyway.

cranked out at 5:07 AM | |

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