There wasn't any joint: 2007

LI has been reading over our 2007 posts with some disappointment. In 2007, we were much more verbose and much less witty than in 2006.

The main thematic difference between this year and previous ones is political. From 2001 until about June of 2007, we emitted a constant stream of howls. Notably, about Iraq, and the crimes and misdemeanors of the Bush years. But in June we looked back and realized that, for all the denunciation of the feebs, the psychos, the deepily and creepily murderous D.C. set, it mattered not a wit. When the Democratic majority calmly let itself be immobilized and zombified by the Petro Gun club, displaying the same kind of acumen and forward looking spirit which infused the halcyon days of Bremer’s rule in Iraq, it answered the question that foamed on our lips: can this governing elite be saved? At the moment, grassroots politics in the U.S. is a sick joke, if not completely dead. It consists of what, four vegetarian Quakers? It is scary how dead. The slack jawed peckerwood and the cretinous investment banker, that unlikely duo that always emerges in true coup regimes, have so kicked the ass of the angels of our better nature that they seem down for the count. LI’s animadversions on this situation had become less critique and more the bad habit of a man in middle aged psychological meltdown. Fuck it, and fuck them.

In place of politics, LI’s posts became big, boggy steps on the way to our project – tracing the rise of the happiness culture and its tragic flaws. Plus we mixed in the usual welter of LI’s kinks. The language of the posts became self-dealing, inward looking –and rebarbatively explicative. But what can we do? It is in our nature (as the scorpion said to the frog) to be a village explainer, a crackhead on a cracker barrel.

Looking ahead, we doubt we will avoid picking at the scabs of politics completely. Next year is an election year, and that is always like shootin’ time in the shithead factory, as we get down to that rawest strata of the American Volk, a shared and beloved bozoism, mc-ed by a millionaire press squad compounded of sycophancy and hair oil. Fun for all!

So, this is the bad news. The good news is… well, LI has made some steps in the right direction, that is, as far as our happiness project is concerned. My image for this project is of a subterranean groping forward in a great darkness, the exploration of long lost passages clogged with the marbleized detritus of forgotten civilizations, upon which I can shed some flickering little light. The twentieth century, don’t you know. LI is, at least, an intrepid conceptual spelunker. So intrepid that the further I advance, the more I get the feeling that I’m alone down here, and nobody knows what the fuck I’m talking about.

“I knew a man once did a girl in.
Any man might do a girl in
Any man has to, needs to, wants to
Once in a lifetime, do a girl in
Well he kept her there in a bath
With a gallon of lysol in a bath
This went on for a couple of months
Nobody came
And nobody went
But he took in the milk and he paid the rent.
But here's what I was going to say.
He didn't know if he was alive
and the girl was dead
He didn't know if the girl was alive
and he was dead
He didn't know if they were both alive
or both were dead
If he was alive then the milkman wasn't
and the rent-collector wasn't
And if they were alive then he was dead.
There wasn't any joint
There wasn't any joint
For when you're alone
When you're alone like he was alone
You're either or neither…”

Okay, so much for confession. And contrition, I think I’ve been contrite. I've apologized, here, god damn it! And also, to be frank, I've written some hot stuff too. But I will do better, people; I vow to be funnier in 2008. Honestly. You’ll see.


Scruggs said…
LI is doing just fine. Here, I speak in behalf of the entire LI readership, not just the guys and gals of the vigilance committee. The occasionally confounding always gets cleared up. I, for one, never knew the tentacles of the happiness culture snaked so far back and caressed so many with their unclean embrace.
P.M.Lawrence said…
“What still alive at twenty-two.
A clean, upstanding chap like you!
Sure, if your throat is hard to slit,
Slit your girl's and swing for it.”

- Hugh Kingsmill, after A.E. Housman
roger said…
Mr. Lawrence, ah, whatever happened to that ghoulish tradition in poetry! There was a distinct vogue for it among the Victorians. But Thomas Hood is forgotten nowadays:

"Oh Mr. Malthus, I agree
In everything I read with thee!
The world’s too full, there is no doubt,
And wants a deal of thinning out, -
It’s plain – as plain as Harrow’s Steeple –
And I agree with some thus far,
Who say the Queen’s too popular
That is, - she has too many people
There are too many of all trades
Too many bakers,
Too many every-thing-makers
But not too many undertakers…"

Mr. Scruggs, I hope my self criticism isn't too self flagellating. I think there is something useful about the Maoist habit of self criticism (which is why I wrote this post with a dunce's cap on my head and a sign around my neck saying Counter Revolutionary Capitalist Roader). The end of the year is a good time to air out one's defects. Then comes New Year's resolutions, backsliding, late fees and the afternoon feeling that somehow, I've gotten terribly behind.
Anonymous said…
I feel as though in coming across your blog in the past couple of weeks, I've stumbled upon something worthwhile reading. And yet, it does seem a bit obscure what it is you're talking about - this "happiness culture" thing and its subterranean history. I hope it's not only for the initiated... Perhaps you could point me in the direction of some of your earlier posts on the topic (I'm beginning to work my way back, but you could perhaps save me a little time).
roger said…
Anonymous – you might find the summaries on Thursday, July 19, 2007, Friday, July 27, 2007, and Saturday, August 04, 2007 useful.