Not Okay. Not in the Least.

No, I’m not okay. I’m not. I keep thinking that I am, or that I will be, but I’m not. I’m not.

I’m sitting here, typing these words, thinking that this might help, but it doesn’t. I can’t pretend that this is an alternate universe or that I can find a rewind button. This is where we are. This is it. IMG_3488This man was elected. 60,000 million people did that. There is no sense to it, no way to frame it, no story to be told, no moral, no aspiration. Justifications and rationalizations are worth shit. It’s only a question of what happens next, who will be targeted, sacrificed, and then the next group after that, until this zeitgeist – or whatever the hell you call the communal will to send us all straight to hell is called – ends. Cape Breton 029Until then, I’m not okay. Not in the least.

“Fire at Sea” & “Le Pointe Courte”

Gianfranco Rosi’s Fire at Sea documents the parallel worlds of refugees and residents on the South Mediterranean island of Lampedusa; the takes are long, giving the viewer time to meditate on the unfolding refugee disaster. fireatseaLike Agnes Varda’s 1964 film La Pointe Courte, the director employs local residents to be themselves, providing a context for a world beyond our comprehension. lepointecourteFishermen, it seems, understand the fragility of life. And yet, for all its powerful imagery – foil blankets electric at night, a perfectly made bed – there is something missing. 08fireatsea3-master675The images are not what they could be, still and empty perhaps as intended, but also missing the chance to engage and draw the viewer in. That said, it’s still the best film of the year.

Ice Friday: James Jones “Thin Red Line”

The stark World War II prose of James Jones in The Thin Red Line remind us of what happens to the psyche when everything else is stripped away:

He heard the soft “shu-u-” of the mortar shell for perhaps half a second. There was not even time to connect it with himself or frighten him, before there was a huge sunburst roaring of an explosion almost on top of him, then black blank darkness. He had a vague impression that someone screamed but did not know it was himself. As if seeing dark film shown with insufficient illumination, he had a misty picture of someone other than himself  half-scrambling, rolling down the slope. Then nothing. Dead? Are we, that other one is I? am he? img_4553“Am I hit? Am I hit?”

“Yes,” Train mumbled. “Y-you are.” He also stuttered. “In the head.”

“Am I?” Fife looked at his hands and found them completely covered with the wet red. He understood now that peculiar red haze. Then terror blossomed all through him like ballooning great fungus, making his heart kick and his eyes go faint.

Donald Trump: Doom’s Harbinger

That so many people supported Trump’s hateful message is horrifying, a reminder that we are no further than the Germans a hundred years ago.

Hitler: In the course of my life I have very often been a prophet, and have usually been ridiculed for it. Today I will once more be a prophet.

TrumpThey laughed at me when I said to bomb the ISIS controlled oil fields. Now they are not laughing and doing what I said.trump1HitlerAs Fuehrer of the German people and Chancellor of the Reich, I can thank God at this moment that he has so wonderfully blessed us in our hard struggle for what is our right.

TrumpWe need somebody that can take the brand of the United States and make it great again. We need — we need somebody — we need somebody that literally will take this country and make it great again. We can do that.Hitler2Hitler: The war against Russia will be such that it cannot be conducted in a knightly fashion. This struggle is one of ideologies and racial differences and will have to be conducted with unprecedented, unmerciful, and unrelenting harshness.

TrumpAnd the other thing is with the terrorists, you have to take out their families. When you get these terrorists, you have to take out their families. They care about their lives; don’t kid yourself. But they say they don’t care about their lives. You have to take out their families. trump2HitlerLet the nation know that its existence—which depends on its internal order and security—cannot be threatened with impunity by anyone!

Trump (To security staff, regarding protesters): Throw them out! Throw them out into the cold! No coats! Confiscate their coats!TrumpBrownShirts

This populist wave of ignorance demonstrates that, like everything, humanity is doomed to sink inevitably back into the abyss.

(*Reblogged from mcphedranbadside.com, February 1, 2016)

Why are you always on your phone?

Why are you always on your phone?

(No response)

Why are you always on your phone?

What?

Why are you always on your phone?

I’m not.

emilo-perezYou’re on your phone right now.

You’re the one who’s always on your phone.

You’re on your phone right now.

Not like you.

Like me?

Like you.

Always on your phone.

Have you seen this?

What?

This post?

Which one?

It’s funny.20150325_183719

What?

So true.

What?

I don’t believe it.

This story about those girls.

Oh, that.

Incredible.

I posted about that.

Ice Friday: Lightfoot’s “The Watchman’s Gone”

Gordon Lightfoot, Canada’s singer-songwriter laureate, conveys the weight of mortality in a few lines from The Watchman’s Gone:
There’s a train down at the station
It’s come to carry my bones awayimg_4624
If I wait for the right moment
You can bet I’ll climb aboard unseen
I’ve done it before
I know I can do it in my sleep