So, cyberspace. Dude, it's me, Leonard. [pause] Um, how's it going, bro?
Yeah. [pause] Um, so.
Um, [little nod] me too.
I am now official participant E_B's final countdown. Play the clip if you haven't already. Feel it.
In the future, I will try to talk about events in the real world. But before I do, I want to share something: sometimes, in bad moments, I feel extremely pessimistic about the internet. I am not just talking about the fiery abyss from whence come pop-ups, banner ads, spam, identity theft, and fake addresses. Nor also do I mean the massive layer of hard-core porn, which apparently constitutes about 1/4 of internet content, which--although less than some think--is still a lot. I just mean the videos, still images, and text posted by the non-computer-person, the common man. Judging by the internet, it turns out the common man is boring, obscene, homophobic, ugly, lecherous, stupid, pretentious, and racist.
To illustrate the lameness, I considered making each of those words into youtube links ("lecherous" would link to something lecherous, etc.). I also considered google image-searches: looking at the words "sober," "nice," "chaste," and "good" and finding images of weapons, wreckage, and trashy poses of women in bikinis, among other unedifying wastes of time. But my sucess in rooting around for disappointments was too, well, too sucessful (and, hence, too disappointing [=serious bummer]).
Beyond our categories for experience, Schopenhauer posited an insatiable will causing all the suffering in the world. Schopenhauer here was veering off from Kant, who held that the world beyond our categories was unknowable. In an illustrated intro philosophy book I read called Looking at Philosophy, the author illustrated the difference between Schopenhauer and Kant's views by two pictures of a man opening a curtain. In the Kantian picture, the man opens the curtains to see total darkness; in the Schopenhaurian picture, the man opens the curtains to find a huge monster peering over him. Having spent enough time on the net now, I know that there is something much worse out there: the "googlist" picture of the world, where the man would open the curtain to find a picture of a middle-aged woman in a bikini, fishing, storing a 16oz beer in the front of her briefs.
To find it, google image-search the word "nice". I refuse to link it.
The worst are comment and message boards.
This is Norman Mailer. He wrote:
"What none of the editorial writers ever mentioned was that that noble common man was obscene as an old goat."--The Armies of the Night
Mailer then goes on to say that obscenity is what saves the common American man, and that obscenity is deeply American in a good way. This nonsense just makes me think of 1) torture in Abu Ghraib, and 2) commenters on youtube calling each other "gay" and "nigger". Mailer is right that the "common man" is obscene. But what is redeeming about this? That is, when finally given a chance to say his bit, the common man, says something like:
"motherfucking nigger-sucking shit-cunt-balls faggot hole."
Well, whatever. I have been playing some chess. This is the easiest version I could find. Everything else whipped me. Alan Siegler, besides being the best mini-ramp skater I have seen in person, told me once how he was on the chess team in college. I think chess is good for you. I hope it is. I think if you play chess, it will make you feel good about humanity. Or least yourself. It's a gentleman's sport, like mini ramp skating.
Skateboarding--aside from persons, companies, and internets--is also almost always wonderful. My name is Leonard and I believe in skateboarding. I believe in it for me. Basically, I am like the reformed jews at JTS I used talk to: I don't need (or even want) the whole world to follow in my footsteps; I mostly want to be left alone. (But I still believe that my way is the best way!)
In any case, watch this critical mass of righteousness. The kid's name is John Motta. He kills it and he looks like he is having fun. The filmer and editor did a great job on this, too. Best clip I have seen in donkey's years.