Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Meta-blog at the bar the other night...

...Took me out for some drinks and left me hanging. Think I'm pregnant.

I have been fairly busy. Which is relative for me. I'm not the type of person who schedules his life by the minute. Hour. Day, so much. I burn out easily. I went to a high school of overachievers and nearly flunked out. Don't tell my students. I also lose focus fairly easy. But that's something else for another day. But when I actually had time for writing, blah came out. So, in regards to trying to keep up with relationships (including my roommates, who may or may not be waiting for me at home, worried sick in their bunny slippers), work, physical activities, the new Deepspace 5 that I'm swallowing and taking care of my whole person (spirit, soul, the social and the physical that I already alluded to, of course), I want to get a few words in about what I'm thinking in regards to this activity, my little corner of the blogocosmos.

I'm discovering that I am a slave to the things that I say I hate. That's nothing new. Certainly, it's an old idea in the Christian worldview. But I constantly discover new areas of conceit. Take, for instance, consumerism. Consumerism works its head against community. It forces its way through society to say that each and every is more important than the whole and all. That not only are the sums of the parts greater than the whole, but the parts each individually are greater than the whole. Consumerism has become our all; choice is a freedom that is worthy of dying and killing for. A complex issue of freedom and justice is broken down into a choice of pro- or anti-. War. Poverty. Abortion. Euthanasia.

A liberal democracy runs on the power of the choices with the most powerful voices pitted against those with less powerful voices. The argument can be made that, in all actuality, the choices are more alike than different, especially in an imperialist nation (Capitalist or Marxist). Which makes the whole idea of choice almost superfluous, at least in the marketplace. Crest or Colgate? With baking powder and/or teeth whitening and/or fluoride and/or mint? In paste or gel? Who needs all this? Who gives a rat's cheek? And, in all reality, are Capitalism and Marxism that different? Well, yeah... But someone - very few someones - is in power. And will do what is possible to retain that power, regardless of truth and justice.

But consumerism isn't just about choice, it's about consumption. About the fact that something that we don't truly need becomes the be-all, end-all - becomes something essential. I've seen a million movies. I've read a jillion comic books (mostly in my childhood and early teenage years, but some within the last decade, more if I could afford them). Yet I cannot get my fill. I must see Batman Begins tomorrow. Or soon. Very soon. How essential is it?

Consumerism is a way-of-life that speaks and operates strictly in currency. It follows the rules of economy. Every time something is chosen (bought, or consumed), something else cannot be afforded.

So far, I'm not saying anything nobody who has taken a cursory poli-sci in high school doesn't know. If you've even made it this far, your question may be, "So what?" The question is important to me largely because I want you to read this. To continue reading this and leave comments in this section telling me how you're reading my blog and you think it's good. That, of all the blogs you've read, this site ranks among the best. And that you'll be around tomorrow. And read all my stuff. And, eventually, you're hooked and this site is your meth. You need a shot of LeftCheek. That is honestly my vision.

It's scary when I put it in that language. I want you to want me. To choose to read this rather than something else. Rather than talking to your wife, your husband, your sons and daughters, your roommate(s), you're reading this. Rather than praying for your friends and confessing your sins. Rather than attending Mass or worship service, or attending to your Sabbath duties. Because every time we choose to partake in consumerism, we decide that something is greater than something else.

I do want to put my best foot forward, again. Always. But, at what price? Maybe I should examine my motives and work toward the best (to practice my writing and strengthen my thinking while working in a community) rather than settling for my norm (To satiate my ego - which I'll never do. Especially not with the traveling going on in this blog.).

Say hi to yours for me.

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