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Occupy Reality

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your favorite mod's soapbox and megaphone

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A short (relatively speaking, compared to an essay, anyway) critique of how "millennials" are stereotyped:

We do not think we are "special snowflakes." We may indeed be a generation that has realized from the onset how not special we are. Conventional wisdom would assert that many young folks' approach to social media is "like farming" and getting attention. You know what 100 likes on Facebook is worth? Nothing. And we know that. All the way back to the MySpace days, I saw me and everyone else decorate our pages with the same HTML codes and post the same songs and copypaste the same bulletins.

I don't think my facial piercings and shaggy hair are symbols of noncomformity, because a million other people have them too. I just like how they look. Maybe there is a little subconscious influence in my head telling me it amounts to "making a statement", but that's an easily recognized delusion. And by pointing out that dressing weird or getting pierced or doing something against the grain doesn't amount to individuality, I'm not "special" for saying that either, because everyone else has already come to that realization too.

When I first learned about the 1960's hippie culture and the anti-Vietnam protest and groups like Students for a Democratic Society, I kept thinking "why is there no counterculture anymore?" The truth is that there is a mainstream culture and a counterculture that has been so blended that everyone walks the line between both. And here on social media, that blending is on display in full force.

The next time you see a stranger on the internet expressing an identity of gender noncomformity or some abstract political or spiritual ideas that don't flow well in the mainstream, don't assume that person is trying to be special. Instead, consider that person may be wanting to find others just like them. Cliche as it as, it rings true that the more connected we get, the lonelier we get. I truly believe the internet is still a net positive thing, because it's very cool to find out when none of your neighbors or your classmates or peers or family quite get you, there is someone on the other side of the world who does, who you are free to talk to any time - instantly.

You see, we know we aren't special. We know originality, real originality, is so fleeting that you always miss it. Because when an original, revolutionary idea is conceived, it catches like wildfire and spreads. The rest of us are just hoping to set off the next spark, but we know the odds and we know how it is. We're saturated in the finer details of every day life. Going down your Facebook feed is much like walking down the street - you see a lot of things: most of them scarcely matter to you, fewer things still that even help you grow as a person. But all of it together is the unfolding and unending story of all of us.

Some have said my generation is uniquely sensitive. I say we have the thickest skins yet. You say "we didn't have this disorder and this dysphoria and this condition back in the day." You sure as hell did. Some of those people whose feelings and conditions were invisible are dead now. Some of them are homeless or in prison. And some of them made successes of themselves. They have a nice car and a big house and a meaningful career. But some of those same successful people are hanging on by a thread every damn day, feeling the weight of the world on their chest that presses and presses but never stops their breath.

Every life has adversity. But the point of adversity is to face it down, conquer it and grow. Life is not settling for feeling shitty. Saying "I'm miserable and I have no way out of it, but I'll just go on" and settling for that - no. You're supposed to fight. And the people around my age are the ones who are realizing these battles shouldn't be fought alone. So if you want to make fun of these support networks we make for people who feel the pain of bigotry and misunderstanding, consider that those people are healing and working in unity to overcome what they're facing.

Let me tell you something about "trigger warnings" and "safe spaces" I've heard some folks laugh at. Those were around long before I was born. What the hell is "viewer discretion advised" on TV? Someone is going to say "fuck" on TV and you felt the need to warn us. That's just the status quo. A parental advisory sticker on a CD, or every time the news anchor warns the viewers that they're about to show "graphic content" - you accept that. So there is nothing unacceptable about saying "hey, we're going to be talking about racism or rape or something horrible here, and we know some of you have been personally affected by that and may not want to have to think about that right now." A courteous heads up.

You all have safe spaces. If you have a group of friends who you know you can just talk openly with without fear of being judged, that's a safe space. If you go to an AA meeting, would you want someone to come in and plaster the walls in ads for liquor? Would you want a group from the nearest bar marching in uninvited and ranting about how trashed they are and what a crazy night they're having? No, you don't want that. And that doesn't mean if you've quit alcohol that you can't a handle a world where alcohol exists and people like drinking. If you go to church, do you want someone to come up next to the priest or pastor and argue that God doesn't exist? Again - indulge me. Can you not handle realizing there is a world with atheists? Are you incapable of defending your beliefs in an intelligent debate? Of course you can handle it and you're capable, but your church wasn't the time or the place. That's a "safe space." Ours are just as valid.

You say my generation doesn't tolerate dissenting opinions. I've yet to hear a single millennial say that if you disagree with something like marriage equality that you should be put in prison or pay a fine. That's ridiculous, and precisely why that's not what any of us believe. You say university students shouldn't protest speakers with a "different worldview." Everyone draws a line somewhere with who and what is unacceptable. If Westboro Baptist Church was going to come to a conservative, Christian university, many of those conservative, Christian students would protest and say "hell no, we don't want them here." Because they, like liberal students, see a degree of hatred and intolerance that is unacceptable and they emphatically say no. Any reasonable person would understand students saying "we won't let David Duke speak here." And some of you will argue "but they protested people who aren't anything like David Duke or Westboro Bapist Church, they protested reasonable people." It's a matter of differing perspectives. But unless we're jailing these people or inviting political repression, no one's first amendment rights are being violated.

We are not sensitive, we do not think we're special. We didn't invent safe spaces and trigger warnings and we aren't the only ones who make use of them. We are definitely not threatening anyone's right to free speech. And we're not lazy either. We're doing what we can with what we have, and a lot of us are making a difference. Every day.


Western Star

A tarnished badge and the grip of steel,
To save us from our fear
The oathbreakers feel safe and warm
Inside their riot gear
A hero's acclamation
Will await them all the same
This is how to rig a hopeless game

Oh, the Western star is shining on
May it show us what the great new cause is
While the city on the hill is looking ever more
Like an orchard made of rotting crosses

The eagle feasts on roadkill,
Still its wings unfurl with pride
Should nothing seem so perfect
As a wall from our side
And walls within, a fortress land
So sacred this divide
No, you can't climb the tower, but you tried

Oh, the Western star weeps for the lost
Such a price for what we have defended
The legacy of conquerors who have in turn bestowed
Freedom to the in-crowd as intended

Drink up the living waters
From the lead and methane wells
And rise now for the anthem
Since you stand for nothing else
Surely you'll walk free
Within this hive city of cells
Maintained by the benevolent cartels

Oh, the Western star is shining on
Glory never suffers short supply
And beneath the Western star you'll find a place of rest
A landfill for sterile bones bleached dry



This is the silence of a thousand insecurities,
This is forgiveness, this is the end of guilt
It seems that nothing could have been so unlikely,
But this life is mine for what it is – it’s what I have built

This is a vision that regrets can be irrelevant,
This is a declaration of the conquest of fear
I’ve heard from my worst critics and most persistent cynics
But those were voices I created – they’re no longer here

I spent so much energy listing all that’s wrong with me
Now it’s time to shred it with the boxes uncrossed
I won’t worry about falling short or dying in anonymity
This is growth and not another perfect moment lost



I know you all here on GDC expect nothing less from me than to be the trendy motherfucker who vapes and drinks exotic tea. I also know I have a problem with wanting to talk about shit that most of you don't care about. But I would kindly ask you to give me a few minutes of your time, because the US government is about to literally kill people and I hope that concerns some of you.

Kratom is a leaf very closely related to coffee which has psychoactive effects, including stimulation, mood boosting and pain relief. I have used it often for more than two years. For me, it helps me focus and diminishes my anxiety significantly. For others, kratom is so much more. Many heroin addicts have been able to permanently kick their habit thanks to kratom, I know some of them personally - they're my friends and I know their story. Kratom also has provided significant pain relief to people with fibromyalgia, Lyme disease, chronic muscle pain and other conditions. And the DEA is about to ban it. On September 30th it will be Schedule I in the US - the same category as heroin.

The DEA has stated that all use of kratom is abuse. They allege kratom has caused 15 deaths, despite the fact that toxicology reports have shown all people involved were on multiple drugs at the time including dangerous research chemicals from China. The fact is that kratom has not directly killed anyone and it is scientifically doubtful it is even possible for that to happen. It's very hard to even overdose on it because taking too much causes you to vomit. I have taken a lot of kratom quite a few times, and I was still perfectly able to drive, read, talk or do whatever I need to do because kratom doesn't impair you. It doesn't cause you to hallucinate and it doesn't make you think anything you wouldn't think while sober. If kratom is comparable to anything, it's probably how you would feel after having a very strong coffee - minus the racing heart. It's a very subtle feeling of well-being.

So what is going to happen when kratom is scheduled? Many people who quit heroin and opioids will relapse. We know this because it happened in Alabama. That state banned kratom and the year after, the number of heroin overdose deaths doubled. Chronic pain sufferers who have been able to take their kids to the park, have a job, go the gym, travel... they'll be left without their only effective medicine and have their lives ripped away from them. And anyone who is caught with kratom after this ban could face a felony charge and years in prison. Kratom saves lives, but it's a threat to the pharmaceutical companies who own the government. If you're not hooked on opioids then you aren't buying them, and that's bad for their bottom line. The DEA wants this ban in place because they can no longer justify their own existence. More Americans are recognizing that drug use should be seen as a health issue rather than a crime. 

If the petition reaches 100,000 signatures, then the White House will be made aware and have to respond. It's a start. Please sign if you value liberty and think recovering drug addicts, chronic pain sufferers, and depressed and anxious people who have been helped by kratom have a right to life. 


Free Flowing Libertarian Rant

I support the right of a person to breastfeed in public. I support the right of a person's breasts to be out in public. In fact, I think if a person wants to be fully nude in public, they ought to have a legal right to do so. Now, I don't mean someone can't say "you can't come into my restaurant/workplace/school/university/grocery store nude." A business or organization can make those rules. But as for walking down the street, the beach... nudity shouldn't be an issue. Don't give me that "what about the children" shit, the only way a child would be bothered by nudity is if they're socialized to be bothered by nudity. Being naked in public is a victimless crime, and I don't believe in victimless crimes.

A person should never, ever be prosecuted for possessing a drug for personal use. I don't care what the drug is. If it's heroin, if it's meth, it shouldn't be a crime to do it. Now, I don't think a person necessarily should be able to sell any drug. But personal possession and use is victimless. And on that subject, marijuana should be fully legalized. So should psilocybin mushrooms, LSD and DMT. These substances are exponentially safer than alcohol and many legal prescription drugs. It is physically impossible to overdose and die from any of them, and any indirect consequences such as dangerous psychotic behavior or even suicide happen far, far more often while under the influence of alcohol. Yes, there are numerous risks to all these substances. It's not the government's job to deal with them. Their drug policies have killed hundred times the people as drugs themselves have killed. 

Radio stations and TV channels should not be forced to be censored. They can censor themselves willingly if they wish. It is the responsibility of parents to control the media their children consume. I want to hear songs as they are, unaltered.

Sex workers are not criminals and should not be charged with crimes. Sex toys are still banned in Alabama, what the actual fuck? Further, I say if adult siblings consent to have sex with each other, that shouldn't be a crime either. I think it's really fucking weird but that is also a victimless crime. First cousins shouldn't be denied the right to marry. Again, not my thing but I don't believe in taking away rights I personally don't approve of. The government should not be able to ban any porn that was done by consenting adults regardless of the subject matter.

Enough with persecuting smokers. Fucking seriously. If someone is smoking in a public park 50 meters away from everyone else, you are not getting a single molecule of secondhand smoke. The cars on the streets are filling your lungs with more toxins every day. Don't you dare fucking tell me I can't have gummy bear flavored e-cig liquids because you're deluded into thinking vape shops are trying to hook children on nicotine. It is their responsibility to refuse sale or entrance to minors, it is your responsibility to educate your child about smoking, vaping and nicotine use how you see fit. Why is chewing tobacco banned on airplanes? You can't get secondhand chew. And don't say it's because they might spit it out on the floor like an asshole because then gum would be banned too.

Americans talking about "banning" Sharia Law have no idea what the fuck they're talking about. There is no Sharia Law in the US, no government of a Muslim majority community is telling everyone what to do. The only way Muslims in the US are using Sharia is for mediation of personal disputes, and that is their fucking right, people can resolve their disputes however they wish.

And don't tell a sick person they don't have a right to physician assisted suicide, they certainly fucking do. Why the fuck are chocolate eggs with toys inside them still illegal in the US? Jesus Christ. Or if a person wants to drink unpasteurized milk, let them. That's their risk to take.

No more victimless crimes, I'm sick of this shit. 


I don't want to write about the weather. Doing so makes me feel like an abject failure. I mean, fucking seriously? Out of all the cliche, trite and uninspired shit - casual observations about the weather are like the very fucking bottom of prose. But I must, so let's get this out of the way. There's a heatwave this week. Not just in Germany, of course. In fact, this last July was the hottest month ever recorded, so I invite anyone who still denies climate change to suck me off outside in August without sunscreen while wearing a North Face jacket.

Air conditioning is not in every building in Germany, and that's a hard thing to adjust to. Floridians take for granted that you can always just go inside and be fine. Even people who live in trailers have AC units. I feel the need to take a shower twice a day lately. After four hours of sitting in my language class, I fear I will stand up and expose a visible streak of ball sweat to my international acquaintances. But rather than blame everyone else for failing to install an AC unit, I must accept this problem as a personal flaw of my own making. Because one of my teachers is originally from Russia and even he seems to be doing just fine with the summer. If someone grows up on air conditioning, that's all they know. But the ones who never had this cushion adapt seamlessly. So maybe the solution isn't every building in Germany having air conditioning - maybe it's that I build a time machine and deprive myself of AC throughout my entire childhood. It's like skating. When I learned to skate, I fell on my ass and scraped my skin off so many times that it just became a part of my day. But a kid whose parents keep pads and pillows on them every day, who is never allowed to get on a skateboard, the first time that kids falls they will think they're dying. And in terms of air conditioning, I'm the kid who has been wearing pads and pillows his whole life.

On to other things. I now have enough German to conduct most of my transactions only in the German language. I felt quite proud of myself the first time I bought some e-cig juice and coils all on my own without any English. Of course, so many Germans are fluent in English that any moment of uncertainty on my part invites them to shift the conversation. If I hear a word I don't know, I usually will say "entschuldigung?" or "bitte?" in hopes that a person will repeat and it will click for me, but usually my obvious American accent prompts the person to clarify for me in English. And I appreciate that, but I certainly need the practice. Last week, I also successfully procured ibuprofen from the apotheke (pharmacy) on a day when I had a raging headache. I got everything right except for the fact that I pronounced "ibuprofen" like an American.

The apotheke is quite an interesting thing for an American who isn't familiar with Germany. In the United States, over-the-counter medicine can be purchased in a pharmacy, grocery store, Walmart or gas station and it's a simple matter of bringing it up to the register to be scanned. In Germany though, all meds are "behind the counter." You don't need a prescription, you can ask for some ibuprofen and get it, but the pharmacist makes sure it won't interact with any meds you're on and lets you know how many to take. So every headache pill, bottle of cough syrup and laxative you need requires interacting with another human being. I don't have strong feelings about it either way. I suppose it's for the best though, it's not like most people bother to read the label on their meds.

If any American expat ever misses the enthralling experience of waiting at the Department of Motor Vehicles, they will be happy to know they can have that experience in Germany too. I had to talk to the Auslanderamt (immigration) and Anna and I woke up at the ass crack of dawn to get there right when it opened. We took a number. And we waited. And waited. And waited. A big screen displays what numbers have been called and what room to go to - and just like the DMV, it makes that same "ding!" sound every time a new number is called. 

Anyway, I'm off to my class. If I survive the heat, then you all can expect this blog to continue. 


I've been living in Germany for more than six weeks now, and will remain here for the foreseeable future. As an amateur writer and self-styled internet intellectual virtually unknown to the world, I have no choice but to blog about my experiences (from the local Starbucks). Okay, I'm not actually in Starbucks. I'm at home. There are Starbucks, though. They're overpriced and crowded just like in the US. I'm going to start with listing off a few differences between Germany and the US which don't merit a detailed analysis. 


- The plastic bags at the grocery store here aren't free. They're cheap though, only 15 cents. Still, you have to pick up the bag from under the cash register and put in on the belt to be scanned like everything else.

- I make up for this new plastic bag expense by saving on tipping. Minimal 15% gratuities aren't a thing here. If you pay a €46 restaurant check with a fifty note and don't ask for your change back, that's actually considered generous rather than an insult.

- The Autobahn usually only has two lanes on each side, even in unlimited speed sections. Any self-respecting American highway has at least 3 each way. On the other hand, the speed limit signs or lack there of are often digital which allows for more effective management of traffic and for speed limits to be changed based on weather conditions.

- Tschüß, the casual German word for "goodbye" sounded for a long time to me like "Cheers!" with a German accent. I didn't even realize I didn't even know how to spell the word until a few weeks ago, but at least I was sort of probably saying it right. 

- Pokemon Go attracts huge crowds to lure parties almost daily. This I'm sure is the same in the US, though the Pokemon's names are often different. Weedle auf Deutsch? Hornliu. Pidgey - Taubsi. Charmander - Glumanda. 

- There is an awesome German energy drink called Relentless. It kind of tastes like a 50/50 Redbull/Rockstar mix. Very nice (Whenever I say "very nice", read it with Borat's voice). 

- Crosswalks are a more serious matter here. In America, you can jaywalk like an asshole and cars will stop for you anyway. Here, I'm not so sure. I wait for green.


Now I'd like to address the German language. I'm a novice, I got some basic shit down though. Ich heiße John, ich komme aus den USA. Some parts of German are easy. Numbers? I got 1-1000 all figured out with minimal effort. Nouns are often similar to English. Verb conjugation isn't terrible, but it's only second week in the language course so we haven't moved past present tense yet.

Some things are weird for me to get used to as a native English speaker. There is a formal and informal "you", kind of like how Spanish has "tu" and "usted." In German, it's Sie, which is also the pronoun for "she" but with a capital "s." When you use Sie, the verb conjugates differently. Figuring out when to use it is another matter. I addressed Anna's parents like that until they told me I didn't have to. Would definitely use it in an encounter with a cop, which thankfully I haven't had since I've been a law-abiding foreigner since my arrival. The food delivery guy? "Du", I guess. 

The worst part of the German language I've dealt with so far is learning articles. In English, articles are very simple. "A" for "some thing", "An" for "some thing that starts with a vowel", "the" for some specific thing singular or plural. German has der (masculine), die (feminine), and das (neutral). How do you learn what noun has what articles? You memorize 100 new ones every day until you die. The weird thing is that German doesn't just have gendered articles. I'll demonstrate with a simple translation: 

Where is that pen from? It's from Germany.

Woher kommt der kugelschreiber? Er kommt aus Deutschland.

See, I'm calling a pen "he" - er. Trippy. Even saying years is awkward. My birth year, 1991. In German neunzehnhundert einundneunzig. See, in American English, while saying "nineteen-hundred ninety-one" would be technically correct, it sounds really, really dumb. "Nineteen ninety-one." I had to ask Anna if Germans just say the years colloquially like that, but no, apparently people actually say the "hundred." If I'm referring to the current year in German, I really want to say "zwanzig sechzehn" because that's how normal people talk. Apparently it's wrong though. Oh well.

One last thing I'd like to note is a conclusion I've come to: Aachen is the Seattle of Europe. It's a really cool, charming diverse city but it pisses down rain way too often. We'll continue this series soon as I continue to stumble through culture shock and master the pouring of a Weißbier without creating an ocean of foam. 



What does it take to make a country great?

How much war, how much fear, and how much hate?

Some long lost former glory that was never there

You never knew the story or you never cared

Though the truth was refused, the nation stands accused

And our chickens have come home to roost

Manifest destiny, renewed white power

The name of the enemy is written on Drumpf Tower,

The White House as the next great real estate conquest

A monster wearing human skin seeks the Oval Office

The words are emphatic but not merely dramatic

I will speak clearly through the piercing static

Fascism knocking on the door, I answer

With a blade in my hand to excise this cancer

Mr. Drumpf, Mr. Law and Order

Stands on the wrong side of his precious border

This terrorist deserves a Guantanamo cell,

If you think the term doesn't fit, do tell

What do you call a man who wants to kill civilians

And drop bombs on women and children

And tear apart immigrant families by millions?

Terrorist, racist, hatemonger, thief

On the path to be killer-in-chief

May I never shed my blood for a warlord to sell

My faith is freedom; I see through the infidel

May I always raise my voice for the innocent

Insurrection - my most holy sacrament

May I always speak out for the powerless

And spit in the face of fascist cowardice

May this state of decay by given to fire

Sic semper tyrannis and the same to this liar



Do any of you remember this story about a reporter, who in the aftermath of a plane crash starting going through the luggage of the deceased passengers? Body parts likely weren't more than a few meters away from him. All these people had died right there, and here is this reporter unzipping the bag and casually remarking on the possessions of all these dead people. He got a lot of shit for doing that. It was disrespectful, inconsiderate, and in incredibly poor taste. I do have to wonder though what the reaction may have been if that journalist had picked up a charred, severed leg and proceeded to eat it right there on camera.

What the fuck am I talking about? I'm not talking about people literally eating the flesh of the dead, no. But the way politicians respond to acts of mass murder and terrorism amounts to the same. They're like vultures eating roadkill. At the Republican National Convention, Trump had a big appetite and he ate up the corpses of those dead cops in Dallas and Baton Rouge. Those were fresh, weren't they? Even a scavenger prefers fresh carrion if given the choice. Fresh casualties serve the politician's purpose especially well - wait too long and they just don't have as much potential.

Murder is the greatest gift an authoritarian tyrant can ask for. The more bodies, the better - the tyrant can consume them all. A woman in California murdered by an undocumented immigrant - politicians fed off her for months, growing stronger as they did. To them, she wasn't a victim, she wasn't a human being with a family and her own story - she was nothing more than food. The thousands who perished on 9/11 gave the vultures and crows a feast for years. The feast was so abundant that the American people surrendered their civil liberties to the Patriot Act and consented to an endless war in the Middle East. Thousands of soldiers died in those wars and they were consumed too. Every dead soldier gave an empty suit a chance to pay lip service to a sacrifice and win some votes.

This summer has seen awful acts of mass murder. An attempted coup in Turkey cost hundreds of lives. Erdogan, one of the foulest vultures of them all, is still gorging himself. The aftermath has given him leave to eliminate every last dissident down to a person who merely changes the channel every time Turkey's dictator is on TV. The NRA loved how the victims of Orlando's Pulse Club tasted - every massacre strikes fear into the ignorant that this will finally be the tragedy that motivates the government to confiscate everyone's guns. The NRA and their gun manufacturer sponsors make a fortune as people hoard guns and ammo. Meanwhile, the government isn't feasting for the sake of gun control - they're looking for the kind of meat that tastes like scapegoating an entire ethnic group. Innocent Japanese Americans were put into internment camps just over 70 years ago, and some of you were born before our government apologized for it. You think that can't happen to Arab Americans in the 21st century? This country may elect a man who can make it happen. All Trump needs is a few more attacks. More bodies to feed off. Stupid as he can be, he's shrewd and cunning enough to pick those bones clean. 

In Europe, there are bodies and there are also vultures. In France, the vultures are called the National Front. In Germany, they're PEGIDA. There are many who are feeding on the victims of Nice and Munich. They hope they can eat enough to turn public sentiment to their favor. Every refugee, every Muslim, every foreigner will be guilty until proven innocent. And on the waves of fear, right-wing vultures will ride into power and reshape the liberal democracies of Europe into their twisted image.

If you want to honor the victims of terrorism and mass murder, rise up against the vultures eating their flesh. 


The Shadows

Flashpoint, triggerfinger,
Patient zero, catalyst, dusk.
The shell stripped bare
To the Earth, it falls
As the soul departs from the husk.

Alpha fantasy,
Soar above the canopy
How the talons shine!
The prey was born
To a spider’s web,
And arranged in a most perfect line.

Innumerable prayers
For a bountiful harvest,
But for a legacy ask so few.
The arsonist seeks
To cast a shadow,
As the first men knew.

To be not an entity
But an event,
To lock and load
As a sacrament,
Yet no shadow is



Nothing More

Are we nothing more than...? 

Items on the line, dead on arrival

Fuck-ups by design

With a will for survival

Are we so easily defined?


Two-dimensional outlines

Life on this surface

Born, bred and bled

Then force fed a purpose

One that somehow

Left us feeling worthless


Designation: degradation

No debate, no conversation

Shrug off your ideals

Or you'll never make it

If you feel too real

They'll show you how to fake it!


I was right when I was young

Caustic bite but no forked tongue

I was right when I was young

Now let the air

Rush out my lungs

I'll scream out insurrection!


Are we nothing more?

Who are we at the core?

We were right

When we were young

We were right before


Disaster Kid (Lyrics)

I've been a flag burning, punk rock Catholic excommunicate,

Eleven: Who can I impress lighting up a cigarette?

Fourteen downing cheap wine, puking in my backyard

Fifteen always out of line, don't know why life's that hard


I've been an anarchist, communist, a who-the-fuck-cares nihilist

Was on the record saying "fuck the world", go on and file this

Uninterrupted existential crisis, for awhile this

Shit drove me so insane, my brain fired off a missile blitz


Acne-ridden face, felt like my skin deserved an acid bath

First boy I went to bed with turned out to be a sociopath

First girl I kissed in high school hated me in just three weeks

Bisexual-atheist-skater-goth teenager, just some kind of freak


Realized at age sixteen high school was a waste of time to me

Didn't study for a minute, still hit the high score on my GED

Proud? No. Ashamed? No. Bad trip with an afterglow,

I moved on and learned a lot, some shit forgot - that's how it goes

I've been a smart kid, dumb kid, aspired to be a bum kid

Cut myself, popped pills or wrote my songs to get me numb, shit

Got my ass beat down more than once, but always got off at least one hit

Changed my clothes, my words, my masks - searching for that one fit


Cliche as all hell, I'll admit, but I shit you not - got no regrets

Sum of all I've been through, seen and done not like I could reset

RIP disaster kid, you're gone but not forgotten, bro

You're in my heart, my mind and you'll be riding on some wicked flows






Won't be restrained, 

Can't be sustained, 

Found shelter in daydreams;

Sweet shade.

Relief from the sun,

And life under a gun

Who listened the last time

You prayed?


The best of all worlds is a fantasy, 

Clarity born from insanity,

Accept my ideals and my vanity,

Defiant, I'll stay how I am. 


With joy in disorder, 

With pride in my scars, 

I admire the people

Who have gone way too far.


Harmony blesses the ashes, 

Debris, the wreckage,

The storm surge

Of infinite seas.

Walk away, drift away

And be free. 



I’m a radical
Never apologetic
Wear the anarchist aesthetic
I will not grow apathetic
I’m a nonbeliever
In the gods of the elite
Faith is not my crutch
And it does not make me complete
I ask nothing from the state,
I will protect myself
Consumerist plague will spread
You’ll be decaying on the shelf
But I refuse the designation
Human resource or commodity
Won’t stand for degradation
Yes, I do see how things ought to be
But I’m more than an idealist
Human nature at its realest
Begs for freedom unrelenting
It’s in these words; I hope you feel this
Without fail I am dissenting
I am questioning, not repenting
My words turn vitriolic
When the time has come for venting
Our lives are not for sale
But so much time we do spend renting
And for our tireless labor
All the laws they’re implementing
Show so much disrespect
See, the state syndrome infects
The virus subdues your will
Soon you’re glad to break your neck
For elites who won’t care less
Matters not if they’re impressed
Status quo: their throne secure
Their towers rise over the mess
So I’m a radical
Revolutionary spirit
If a voice can shatter windows
Hope the ruling class can hear it



The number of the day is zero. 

Zero people have died from an overdose of marijuana, LSD, psilocybin mushrooms or kratom. Despite this, prohibition continues. The millions of deaths caused each year by alcohol don't seem to motivate anyone to try to ban that.

Zero cases of transgender people going in the bathroom corresponding with their gender identity to commit sexual assault have been documented. Despite this, persecution of transgender people continues. Countless assaults, rapes, murders and suicides have occurred where transgender people are the victims and bigots are the perpetrators. 

Zero paid speeches to Wall Street criminals have been released by Hillary Clinton, who made hundreds of thousands of dollars off them. Despite this, she still wants your vote. Bernie Sanders has scarcely made a few thousand dollars off paid speeches to regular citizens and has donated those payments to charity. 

Zero Christians have been persecuted by the United States government. Despite this, the 75% Christian majority of the USA still insists they are the victims. When was the last time secular people have ever tried to legislate who a Christian could marry or what they could do with their own bodies?

Zero scientific evidence exists that vaping is even remotely as harmful as smoking. Despite this, the FDA passed oppressive regulations which will devastate small businesses and cause many people to go back to cigarettes. Because of the Master Settlement Agreement with tobacco companies, the United States government has a vested interest in people continuing to smoke. 

Zero civilians in Pakistan, Yemen, and Afghanistan whose families were murdered by US drone strikes have been paid reparations by the American government. Despite this, drone warfare continues, killing far more innocent people than enemy combatants. Neither President Obama nor Congress have been held accountable for the bombing of a hospital last year. 

Zero officers of the NYPD have been prosecuted for the murder of Eric Garner. Despite this, his family continues to fight for justice. How can any person with a conscience think summary execution by strangulation is an appropriate penalty for selling loose cigarettes?

Zero bankers and hedge fund managers in the US have been prosecuted for bringing the economy to the brink of ruin in 2008. Despite this, countless Americans are jailed for victimless crimes like possession of marijuana or peaceful civil disobedience. Our tax dollars funded their undeserved bonuses under Bush and Obama, and the people have not seen repayment by these billionaire pigs. 


Zero justice happens until the people fight for it. Stand and fight. 



"Explain yourself, explain yourself"

The chorus of the empty minds

"Restrain yourself, restrain yourself"

An inquisition's all you find


Since when is a person's life

Anyone's but their own

Why should somebody different

Ever have to feel alone


Someone's scapegoat,

Someone's problem

Someone's fear

They can go to hell

There is nothing wrong with you

Know that,

You owe that to yourself


And you owe nothing to the government,

You owe nothing to the preachers

The judgment of mass media,

Police, doctors and teachers.

Who you are and what's your name

And for what you wear, have no shame

In the starless night, you'll be a glowing flame.


There are friends you don't know,

And we'll fight for you

We have no judgment to pass

On what's right for you

We have your back

But you're strong on your own, too

You will see

You have the power to set yourself free


I want to thank everyone who has read my poetry and lyrics. I write for myself, but being able to share it means a lot to me. So I want to share the full collection of my self-published writing. Most of it, you guys have already seen. But it is organized into two nice little word docs which you can share anywhere you want (something I definitely appreciate!)

Now, I hate to sound like I'm e-begging, but I am an unrecognized writer with a low paying day job about to get married and move to another country. So if anyone appreciates my writing and wants to make a contribution, I have a PayPal set up. If you don't want to or can't contribute, sharing this with your friends would also be cool! :) 

Recursions, Volume I: https://www.docdroid.net/h04tyfb/recursions.docx.html

Recursions, Volume II: https://www.docdroid.net/mxtIn3r/recursionsvol2.docx.html

Contribute: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=7X3MU56NYRQDW



Here and Away (Lyrics)

Could I come inside for just a few?
Missed my last chance to talk with you
Seems like the months are rushing by these days
And other days, they’re dragging on
And all of us, we’re dragged along
Eleventh hour bell tolls, find your place

Can you see the wishes unfulfilled?
Behind my eyes
Racing heart and body holding still
Do you wonder why?

Did the old neighborhood decay?
And when those paint chips fell away
Did you catch yourself feeling like sand?
I think the winds are picking up
And everything they’re lifting up
Might rearrange ways we don’t understand

Can you see the wishes unfulfilled?
Behind my eyes
Racing heart and body holding still
Do you wonder why?

Now I see the wishes unfulfilled 
Behind your eyes
You won’t tell me what it means to you
I wonder why… 


Half a Century Too Late

I was born in the wrong decade,

Half a century too late

There's still of piece of me that's lost

Somewhere in '68


And I feel like a relic

'Cause the left is all but dead

The fires of change are cinders now

The protesters have fled


I belong with the revolutionary

Millions untold, unsung

I belong in San Francisco

With a blotter on my tongue


And in the swirling psychedelia

I'd know those who came before

Who swore on their humanity

To never go to war


I wouldn't just burn my draft card

I'd torch the recruitment office too

SDS and Weather Underground

To my comrades, I'd stay true


But I was born in the wrong decade

Where it seems the left is dead

I could sit and wish it weren't so

But I'll stand up and fight instead


Enemy of the Week

Soft targets everywhere you walk

Airports, night clubs, city streets

Tolerance might get you killed

Don't you fall for their deceit


What's going on inside the mosque?

Do they pray there or conspire?

Barbarians are at the gates

They want to set our land on fire


This enemy of the week broadcast

Brought to you by cable news

Don't trust your Muslim neighbors

They may hold radical views


So forget, forget that your wage is shit

That you're uninsured and poor

Forget that Wall Street owns you

Cause we're marching off to war


Who's going in your bathroom? 

Following your kid inside

Are these people transgender

Or some predators who lied?


If you don't bake a cake for gays

They want to send you off to prison

You used to have religious freedom

But now they're persecuting Christians


This enemy of the week broadcast

Brought to you by the corporate press

The sodomites say they want rights

But you're the one who is oppressed


So forget, forget your kid's school is shit

And that table-scraps are all you get

Forget that you can never win

And blame the ones who live in sin


Cut the cable

Change the channel

It's all lies,

There is no substance to their panel


Latinos, Muslims, gay and trans

Whatever convenient scapegoat

They're not your enemy - they're your comrades

So unite, you're in the same boat

Slaves to the ruling class pigs! 


So, you've started a post-hardcore band but have no idea what to name it. Fortunately, I'm here to help. 

Let me start with the most obvious question. Do you want your band to sound brutal, yet emo? 

Yes: Your band's name is Suicidal Scream

No: Okay, so do you want your band to sound purely brutal without also sounding emo?

Yes: Your band's name is Homicidal Scream

No: Hmmm. You think an ancient and ominous sounding yet totally made up word might be the way to go instead?

Yes: Your band's name is Acronophlaxis

No: Would you rather a band name with unnecessary punctuation? 

Yes: Your band's name is We. The Exiled.

No: Do you want your band's name to look unreadable on a cool t-shirt? 

Yes: Your band's name is Suicidal Scream

No: Find a new genre. 


This is a parody of the bleak and depressing nature of popular TV shows. I would have included some Breaking Bad references but this wasn't a serious writing endeavor and I put this together in about 15 minutes. 


An original series by HBAMC:

Westeros has fallen to the White Walkers. These icy abominations roam the cold, gray and desolate land. They feast on the flesh of the starving few survivors who remain. No one is safe.

The producers have promised tonight’s episode will be the darkest yet, and that fans will be so disturbed by the final scene that it will make the time when baby Judith was crucified outside the gates of Mereen look like the scene where Brienne was forced to euthanize Sophia by strangulation after she contracted Greyscale by comparison.

We now return to No Hope.


Snow flakes and the smell of burning horses battered Rick of House Grimes as he staggered on up the mountains of the Vale. Cradled in his arms was a pregnant direwolf, the last of its kind.

“Pity that you have to give up that poor creature to Lord Negan” said Abraham. “He’s probably going to make those pups fight to the death once they’re born.” Abraham coughed into his glove and looked at his hand to reveal drops of blood there. His cancer was worsening.

“I can’t care about a few goddamn puppies!” Rick growled. “Negan has Michonne and is going to sell her to the pleasure house of Myr if I don’t bring him the direwolf. There isn’t a choice!”

Arya Stark, following behind Rick and Abraham, felt her feet going numb with every step. Black, necrotic frostbite had already set in on her toes. She continued the journey despite the maester’s warning that amputation would be required. The words she wanted to say were getting caught in her sore throat, but finally, with much pain, she made her voice heard.

“Rick, you need to listen to me.”

A white walker emerged from the dead trees to their left. Abraham drew his M16 and approached it. Once it got close enough, he bashed it over the head until it collapsed, for he had long run out of ammo.

That distraction taken care of, Rick glanced back, shrugged his shoulders and told Arya “I’m listening.”

“I was on the road for a long time with the Hound after my family died. I hated him. When he was dying, I didn’t even have the sympathy enough to put him down. See, I was convinced that this world was an awful place. But I was wrong. We don’t have to live like this. We don’t have to kill people. Let’s go into Negan’s holdfast at night when everyone is asleep and rescue Michonne. We can keep Fluffy and take her somewhere safe to have her puppies. No one else has to die. Do you hear me? No one else has to- “

Arya’s words were cut short by a crossbow bolt through her neck. She fell to her knees, choking. Every spasm of her throat made more blood gush out until the snow all around her was crimson and she fell face down into it. Rick and Abraham reacted with muscle memory, drawing their swords; they knew it was too late to save Arya.

A chubby faced man with a shit-eating grin on his face emerged as if from nowhere.

“Sorry about having to shut up that little wench. Just wanted your attention. Still, what a pity. I bet that girl would have been a warm sheath for my sword on a winter night. Allow me to introduce myself. I am Ramsay Bolton, the trueborn Lord of Winterfell. Littlefinger told me you have a direwolf I very much would like to have.”

Abraham stared Ramsay down and then bellowed out a question.


“Oh shit. This ginger just had to ask a question. Bad idea” said Ramsay. He snapped his fingers and an army under his command came forth from every direction. Also present was a battered man, emaciated and missing most of his fingers.

“Reek, I want you to take the direwolf. I’m going to cut her womb open and feast on the pups before they take their first breath.”

Reek nodded his head in obedience, though he had tears in his eyes. Ramsay turned his attention back to Rick and Abraham.

“I’d fancy killing you both, though I’ll leave one of you alive to go tell Negan that House Bolton rules the Vale now and that I’ll cut off his stones if he chooses to defy me. I guess all that’s left is the decision of which of you two will be flayed living.”



Alphabet Acrobatics

Awake and alliterating, actively anticipating
Attacks from actors actually non-factors all are aggravating
Back off bro, the bullshit bores me
Been there, seen that shit before, g
Crawl out of your crap-hole,
Crown me king you’re shaken to the core, g
Devastate and drag you downward,
Don’t even try, you’re drowning coward
Elevate the evil East of Eden with electric power
Found my fire, fit to fly, fuck with me not
Get going, guys, Schrödinger’s God dead and alive
Hell is hungry like a hippo smokin’ hash and way too high
I am illuminated with the illest instincts
Jaded, just a joke the jabs I’m making
Killer karma, kraken waiting, kids I ain’t kidding
Lose a liver, lucky to be living
Maybe I’ll be more than a mercenary
Makin’ dollars all the way to the mortuary
Never need no more you think now, not so down on
Overrated, old outdated options, oligarchy orchestrated
Pricks in power press their chances
Please, no need to punctuate it
Quit this quick or get a quote
Ravaged, ragged on, plan revoked
Sit down for this one, some bars I spit
Set fires and send out some smoke
Time out guys, I need to take a break or take a toke
Understand, it’s ugly how I’m so damn underrated, still
Vicious as V with a vendetta, haters turf is now invaded
Violent as my voice can be, 
Wake up to the words I’m working and see
Why ever in the fucking world would
“X” as a letter be so annoying, X-tremely
X-tend my creativity, don’t call that cheating
X-pect that shit from me
You can just get back now to
Your yammering, yakking, yelping and yapping
Zone out, my last line’s thrown out
Zig-zag to the zeitgeist of rap that I’m zapping. 


Letter to Hillary

Dear Hillary,

Please accept this open letter

From someone who knows the country's ill

And wants it to get better

Believe me when I say

That I'd want to believe in you

You say you could inspire people

I think that could be true

A woman in the White House

The day would be historical

But there are things you need to tell me first

Straight questions, not rhetorical

I'm still waiting for you to release your Wall Street speech transcripts

The Republicans will never, that truth is known across the planet

Don't hold out for your rivals in the GOP, that's no excuse

The banks have them on a leash, we know, it chokes them like a noose

I want the Democratic party to differentiate

Solid progressive action is needed to delineate

Lately, can I even see the contrast? Hardly.

Dems and Reps two factions of the Capitalist Party

What will you do to rein in our debtors and creditors?

What exactly did you mean you called black teens super-predators?

Can't you see the consequence of alienation, degradation?

Bill's owed most of the blame for the mass incarceration

Now as for your foreign policy

Libya is worse off now, that's a fact

Why shouldn't I bothered

How you voted on Iraq?

I want to see good judgment and restraint

In a time of crisis

You fell in line with Bush

The man who caused the rise of ISIS

Please tell me, if you're strong enough

To rise up for a fight

Why can't that fight be in Congress

For healthcare as a human right

I don't see you tell the truth these days

All I see you do is pander

And I don't think that will change

So now and always I'm #StillSanders 


The Gas Mask

To this face, 
The gas mask is a most permanent fixture. 
Does it not serve to intimidate?
Pay no wind to that wanderer – 
It has kept pace in a predictable pattern;
It will never harm another.

Respiration is taken for granted,
But there remain those thankful for breath.
Such a potent cocktail worth its allure…
May the floodwaters stay with us
Once the storm has passed.
Settle in. 

The afternoon had slipped under shadows
At just one particular angle;
Winds that gave the kiss of summer.
Deconstruct it down to the molecule
And know the pieces were still in place,
As is the gas mask now.