Saturday, December 14, 2013

The Essence of Rebellion

Howdy folks, sorry I haven't written in a while. I have been experiencing a writer's block of sorts. Recent events have also resulted in much introspection on my part and by introspection, I mean drinking beers.  A recent position which came to an end recently had completely drained my creativity and parts of my soul. It was the type of work where I had so little to do that I was relegated to watching car crashes on Youtube ( and left wondering why Russians love dash-cams so much).

I won't elaborate much more on this because they have a shitload of lawyers on retainer, but I came to the conclusion that large companies are deeply rooted in bureaucratic structure and ideals. Particularly companies that package and market rebelliousness to people eager to instantly acquire that image. The big boss man always seems so surprised when confronted with a rebellious attitude.

Don't misconstrue what I am trying to say. On one of my posts a few years ago an anonymous comment was posted stating that I was a whiny bitch etc. Everyone is entitled to their opinion I suppose, especially people that don't understand that I was attempting to explain a bigger picture and the futility of certain hierarchal systems. For better of for worse, the majority of us are in that system and your paycheque comes every two weeks.

As a society. we all need certain rules. We don't randomly switch from driving from one side of the road to the other, we don't pee in the display toilets at Home Depot and we don't sit on the porch with a loaded shotgun ( not in these parts, anyway). Similarly all workplaces have rules in place ( don't punch customers in the face and things of that nature) I'm OK with that and I'm pretty good at learning these rules. I don't smart mouth the powers that be and I'll do some overtime as long as there is lots of coffee available.

I realized that other factors are way more subtle. Let's face it ( think about your own workplace for a minute) a lot of these rules are arbitrary, contradictory and just plain inane in some cases. Then the rules change from day to day.

When I'm confronted with this, I guess there must be some subtle body language at play that people pick up on. Maybe a little tiny bit too much swagger, maybe some sub-concious chest puffing or maybe a Mr. Spock eyebrow thing ( or maybe hair is just a tad too greasy). That's when you are branded a rebel.

Many people fancy themselves rebels. Many of these people are in fact, mistaken. Some of these dudes who wear shiny Tap-Out shirts and sport gold chains seem to me to lean more towards sociopathic behavior rather than rebellion. The hippies, that I am so fond of ragging on, think of themselves as the ultimate rebels. They are readily identifiable, as they all dress in a similar fashion. They all share the same old, tired dogma. Some think that smoking copious quantities of pot is a true act of rebellion. If you want to get fucked up, just admit it. Beer drinkers do, and we're not rebelling against anything except maybe archaic liquor laws.

Don't even get me started on hipsters. Why they are still around is a mystery to me. They, of all sub-cultures, are the most conformist by far. Growing an ironic moustache, listening to talentless obscure bands and riding some shitty Honda CB that was hacked into a cafe racer doesn't make one a rebel.

Hollywood has been getting that one wrong for decades. It all started with the Wild One starring Marlon Brando in 1953. Even though it pretty much set the tone for that decade, let's face it, the main character, Johnny, was just an asshole who stole some guy's trophy, liked to intimidate old ladies and scare dogs and most definitely didn't have a job. He rode his motorcycle while drunk and didn't even have the decency to ride an American bike.

Which brings up the topic of Rockabillies.  Every last one of us fondly see ourselves as rebels. I must admit that there is a certain validity to that claim. One has to be a little crazy to walk around with a greasy pomp and cuffed jeans every single day of the year. We listen to music that was popular when stereos still had tubes inside, computers were as big as two houses and Elvis was still thin.

I guess there is a certain satisfaction that comes with non-conformity. One only has to take a look at mainstream music and society to understand why non-conformists exist in the first place. Still, some greasers completely miss the point. At a recent get-together, I was getting irritated at some cat dropping names of bands that he had met. The fact that he wouldn't let his socks touch the floor because they were "vintage" and sat with his feet on the couch the whole time ( like a girl, there I said it) was irritating me even more.

Are Rockabillies the true rebels ? Probably not. There are many occasions where we have to sometimes turn it down a few notches. You probably wouldn't wear a leather motorcycle jacket in court while fighting a traffic ticket. If you have a job interview, chances are you will wear long sleeves to cover up the tattoo that says " Fuck You, Daddy-o! " Let's face it, a lot of us had to sort of "de-pomp" a little for those same job interviews. Maybe you switched to gel when attending your cousin's wedding so that all the old aunties will quit asking " when are you gonna get a real haircut?" Sometimes it's too much hassle being a rebel.

True rebellion comes from within. It is not  a set of anti-social values, but rather a critical way of observing the world . There will be lots of instances where where one doesn't agree or finds something just plain ridiculous. Unfortunately there aren't always opportunities to change these things and on some occasions one will find one's self doing shit you don't wanna do.

So who are the true rebels you might ask? Dogs. Dogs are the true rebels of our society. Just think about it for a second. Dogs lick their own ass in public with impunity. They poop at will and there is always someone on hand to pick it up for them. If somebody annoys them they will bite that person good and hard. They can bark for hours on end, for no particular reason. If their ass is itchy they can drag it on the carpet ( your carpet).  If people fart and proceed to blame it on the dog, the dog is so alpha he doesn't even care, and, if one day, the dogs decides to fuck off, there is nothing you can do about it.

Life is a little more complicated for humans, most of the above would probably get the average person arrested. As for myself, I will just have come to terms with the fact that, until my dying days, there will be a little tiny greaser on my shoulder constantly saying " That's fucking ridiculous!"

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