Saturday, November 27, 2010
I need to start writing, anything, again. I've been "working" on a novel for 6 months now and have done fuck all outside a few scribbles about the setting. Shit or get off the pot you say? Fuck you.... however, you're spot on with that.
In lieu of my grand opus of Nebula Prize quality, I bring you a few pseudo-intellectual ramblings of a failed sci-fi writer.
An old university roommate of mine once commented how the Internet has actually made people less intelligent. His position was that the dissemination of data along the information highway has created two camps - the Cynics (everything is bullshit - no skeptical analysis, just universal dismissal of everything) and the Lemmings (I know stuff because I saw it on the computer).
It's a compelling argument and one I will not debate in this article (because I tend to agree). However, web or no web, humanity sure is a gullible lot.
For the sake of writing something, anything, here is a list a several "truths" that are complete bullshit:
1. Organic Food: There is one indisputable fact regarding organic farming - it cannot sustain the needs of the Earth's population - it's too slow, the yields too low and the costs too high. So unless you want the 3rd world to rise up and murder our ass (we deserve it), shut the fuck up already.
As for "chemicals" its simple, don't buy out of season produce. A locally farmed yet non-organic Tomato is just as good as the one you bought for $4/lb at Whole Foods. You'll just have to do without the strawberries and avocado for a few months.
Also (Fun Fact Alert!!!), there is significantly more cyanide in a single almond than there is pesticide in 10 delicious Ontario apples (non-organic). True Story.
2. The Two Year Black belt: Penn and Teller did a piece on something similar during the past season. However, as usual they Michael Moore-a-fied it and turned that episode of Bullshit into, well, bullshit.
However, they did get one part right - the strip mall dojo.
Earning a blackbelt in any Martial Art is the pinnacle achievement of that discipline. It takes years, if not DECADES of dedicated training to reach that goal. Once or twice a week for an hour after work at Jimmy's Karate School does not make you an unstoppable killing machine. Sure, you get in shape, improve your cardio and generally feel better about yourself. But you are not a Karate, or Tae Kwon Do, or Judo, or Fuk Yu (its a Scottish Martial art that mostly involves head buts and kicking you when you're down) Master.
Far from it. What you are is a dupe who got suckered by a sales pitch. And that's OK because we've all been duped at least once. My ire is not directed at the students as I'm sure you all signed up thinking your Sensai's, or instructor's, were the real deal. Well, they are not. They are fucking charlatans who've sold you an ideal, a concept, a legend. They promised you could be in "two short years"
what you fantasized about as a kid watching Bruce Lee or Van Damme movies.
Sound familiar? You're not alone. Now that you have your fake black belt, don't pick a fight. You won't like the result.
3. We Only Use 10% of Our Brain: Who the fuck started this horseshit? We couldn't even blink without assistance from a caregiver if this were true. Why does humanity swallow these idioms so readily... with relish and without question?
I was 9 or 10 when I first questioned this crap. Not because I'm a genius.. ahem.. rather, its the reality of an only child to get lost in thought for hours on end. I was just lucky to have a Mom who encouraged my inquisitorial spirit and allow me the freedom of contemplative solitude.
My Charlie Brown Encyclopedia (great gift for those of you with young kids, relatives) said an adult brain weighed between 2.5 - 3 pounds. So, if we use only ten percent that would mean roughly two pounds, nine ounces are useless flesh. That just did not make any sense to me.
Alas, Charlie Brown and the rest of Schulz's gang didn't have any answers for me. So where did this bullshit start?
This myth actually began with Einstein. The irony is rich but what AE was referring to was a waste of mental capacity in the existential sense, not biological. Unfortunately the media got a hold of this and the rest is ignorant history.
What's the point of all this? Do not be afraid to ask questions, don't assume, be skeptical (but not cynical) and for Allah's sake, don't trust the fucking Internet (unless you read my blog - I'm an Oasis of truth, trust me).