Singin along with the Stones

on Saturday, April 26, 2014

"Really Satisfies!".. It's a great line. A mainstay of the commercial catch-phrase conjurers. But it's a lie, obviously. I've tested it myself. I bought the chocolate bar that Really Satisfies and five minutes later I wanted another one. Even the fizzed can of liquid that was all set to satisfy my thirst really actually only made me thirstier as the salt and sugar in it sent my body into a rush. ..I didn't read the fine print? ..the rider which advises that the satisfaction won't last? Where!? ..That's taken as read? Oh. I gave out my Moolah for food and drink and didn't get no satisfaction. Poor me.

You know what else? I buy the clothes they tell me to, but still my wardrobe doesn't contain a darn thing when I'm looking for something to put on. I'm just glad we don't have to think for ourselves. They've got it covered! The fashion industry knows what we have to wear, the fast food industry knows what we have to eat, and the porn industry knows what we gotta lust after. And.. wait a sec. Do I detect a hint of sarcasm? Tsk. We aren't stupid, right? Just desperately unsatisfiable. Poor us.

Really, who are the poor?
Michael Hutchence, drippingly wealthy lead singer of wildly popular band INXS, universally proclaimed sex god, dies in the misadventurous pursuit of satisfaction. That's poor. Poor Michael.

Do we even know what we truly need? Those who are poor in resources die of the subsequent lack. Are they any more poor than those of us who live in excessive abundance and die of the subsequent abuse? Are we any happier? We are both unsatisfiable.

Poverty is relative, and is as much psychological as it is physical.
Freedom from poverty must begin in the mind with a recognition of what is truly needed. And what is not.


U is for un-satisfiable.

T is for ...

on Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Sometimes the road travelled comes to an abrupt end, and if you still have a pulse, then it’s not a dead end, just a T-junction. Now you’re faced with two choices, in opposite directions. Unlike a fork in the road, neither choice in this case is a continuation of what you’ve done before; both are new directions.. mutually exclusive ones. Will one lead to heaven and the other to hell? That’s what I’m asking myself.

I wish there were sign posts. Even something like “Road Less Travelled” would give me some clue as to the merits of either direction.
I consult my Better Drivers Guide. T junction: stop and give way to traffic. Proceed with care.. I’d be grateful for some traffic. A fellow traveller drawing alongside right now would be greeted with cordial relief.

I look around for any shady trees under which may sit a wise old guru ready to point out the way, but I am a lone grasshopper and must make up my own mind it seems. Why isn’t real life more like the movies? If I was the winsome starlet, the screenwriter would lend me some clever words, and the director would produce a smiling monk doodling in the sand stage right..
Who am I kidding? I’d be likely to view any advice at this point with suspicion, and probably stubbornly go in the opposite direction to the one suggested. It’s tough being contrary. I’m glad actually, that there are no pesky, well-meaning on-lookers poised with unsolicited advice. Yes, it’s tough being contrary. Sometimes I feel like I am the human version of that horse which is led to water but wont drink.

But back to the junction. How appropriate that it is called T. T for think, T for trust your instincts, T for time to decide. Okay. So let’s say I hang a right turn. For the sake of argument, we’ll assume I don’t look back. We’ll assume I head out on my new direction without regrets. Because.. how will I keep my eyes on the new road if I keep trying to remember the scenery from all the previous streets and alleyways? Isn’t it better to be decisive and make the turn, rather than sit idling at the T?
I took a wrong turn once. Even with the GPS directing me, I took a left when I should have taken right. Then, every thirty seconds, that machine kept telling me to perform a U-turn when safe to do so! And if I think about it.. in life, when I go the wrong route, some little voice sounds off and keeps telling me to make a you turn and get back on track..
I prefer forks. At least with a fork in the road you can opt to just merrily continue doing a similar thing. Forks are so pleasantly gradual. None of this coming to an abrupt halt out of the blue. T-junctions that pop up right after a corner are the worst. You just come out of a satisfyingly executed turn on a tricky curve at speeds way over the recommended mph and suddenly BAM! A stop sign. A T-junction. Make up your mind. Do you know the way or not?

I’ll confess right here and now. No, I don’t know the way. That’s bad news considering I’m not willing to ask for directions. Time to trust the inner compass. It points true North, and if I follow that instinct I must eventually end up on top of the world. I’ll likely get cold feet the closer I get, and quite likely encounter a number of T-junctions, but this grasshopper is on the move, and that’s a step in the right direction.