do you ever have a sudden realisation that futuristic apocalyptic visions in movies are unnecessary - we're already living in a synthetic concrete grimy life-destroying world? this morning, i was walking up sydney rd (not the most lushly vegetated street in melbourne), going to get money out of the atm. the sky above me was grey and there was a low-flying aeroplane that was suddenly seemed a terrifying, mechanical bird. all around me were rows of concrete boxes ("shops"), asphalt underfoot where there should have been dirt and things growing, everything was covered with a layer of of toxic filth, scraps of synthetic trash floated along various surfaces, and then there were the cars ... do cars ever suddenly appear to you (like they probably do all the time to non-civilised animals) as terrifying, sliding smoothly but so quickly in their mechanical linear motion? in my hand was a piece of plastic, plastic that i needed so i could get food, by sticking it in a big metal machine that gave me bits of plastic that i could exchange for plastic food (coffee and croissants).
lately, i've been reading R.D. Laing (anti-psychiatrist, "The politics of experience"). he argues that being "normal" in this world means assimilating into a crazy world. the radical environmentalist Derrick Jensen argues similarly, that we must all be mad to keep on pretending that the levels of environmental and other abuse that we depend on to maintain our way of life is somehow "normal". ... maybe this was an experiential expression of
these intellectual engagements, but i suspect it was the animal me, barely awake from sleep and not yet fully in "civilised human" mode.
i really need to move to the country some time ...