What exists in the space of not-knowing? I ask because I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have the faintest idea of what’s happening in our Unraveled States right now. Until we know, if we ever do, we make guesses, assumptions, rationalizations, form beliefs, do whatever we must to fill that void of uncertainty and doubt. But in so doing, we blind ourselves to vital truths that lie below the snake line of perpetual noise generated by this vaunted Information Age.
It is with tremendous pleasure and pride that I announce the publication of Raw Spewage, the first volume of posts collected from this blog. Raw Spewage can be purchased through Amazon by clicking on the cover image above. Please note: if you search for the book directly on the Amazon site, you will need to search by my name, not the title.
Many thanks to Amanda Higgibotham and Shane Charanias for seeing the potential in this project and making it possible.
Since my last post in April of last year, I have been writing and involving myself in some form or other with words, but I have chosen to do it in the private forum of a journal and other projects. These alternative outlets have given me the freedom necessary to work through troubled thoughts and feelings without the worry of criticism or judgment, in hopes that the words, once I was able to spit them out via the keyboard, would enable me to confront and, therefore, understand certain truths – good, bad or indifferent – about myself and the world. These truths, in turn, would inform a personal philosophy to guide me in my way through a world that increasingly makes no sense or diverges so far from my sense of common decency that I’ve wondered if I might be losing my goddamned mind.
A large part of reclaiming a narrative is reframing or discrediting language that historically has been used to demean certain groups and diminish their power in society. Authoritarians, especially Trump, bristle at the notion of political correctness, which is to say a call for greater sensitivity in the language one uses publicly in mixed company. And in today’s always connected and increasingly global society, there’s rarely a time when we’re not in mixed company.
As someone who orientates himself and makes sense of the world primarily through language, I consider words to be nearly sacred in their power. In my younger, more idealistic years, I attributed even greater power to them, believing to my core that a right and true combination of words could solve any predicament or right any wrong. Though I no longer believe such a romantic notion, I still believe that words, carefully chosen, have an undeniable power. Given this, one would think, even in this Land of the Free with the right to free speech enshrined in the First Amendment, that we would hold those responsible and accountable for the language they use in public discourse. To enforce such accountability, however, we must agree that language does, indeed, have power, and thus carries consequences with its use. One need only sample the vile rhetoric flatulating from the bowels of this year’s presidential election, predominantly on the Republican side where personal attacks abound and lie upon lie stands uncorrected, to see that accountability has gone out the window. The inflammatory language flung like shit by the media zoo monkeys and the politicians they cover amounts to a cacophony of noise and nonsense that only serves to isolates us from each other and tear us apart.