Click images to enlarge.
Model: Eriana Lawrence
Location: Parque del Retiro (Madrid, Spain)
It’s very difficult to keep the line between the past and the present. Do you know what I mean?
[Warning: This chapter deals with sexual assault. Names have been changed.]
We didn’t last.
We could hash out the reasons for months – and we did – but in the end, perhaps it was inevitable: a transient soul meeting an intransient heart.
Chicago brought its share of challenges for Selene and me, financial and personal, but whereas in San Francisco there were common foes to unite us, now it was just the two of us sharing a single bedroom apartment in the North Side neighborhood of Buena Park.
There was much to love: the city, the neighborhood, our apartment. Within walking distance of Wrigleyville and Boy’s Town and right off the vital Red Line, we were just minutes from the Loop. We also had “our” bar for cheap drinks and billiards whenever we needed a casual date night.
Selene was able to return to school to finish up her senior year (a main reason for choosing Chicago) and my job search lasted a mere two and a half months instead of five. Granted, my job was as a sales associate in the cavernous Forever 21 on Michigan Avenue, but it provided a paycheck. Bills were being paid, life was being lived.
Unfortunately, our visions of the future were not in alignment. Over the year in San Francisco, Selene transformed from a shell-shocked new explorer to the woman who traveled to Chicago ahead of me to make arrangements. She was stronger and more resilient. Just because someone can move, though, doesn’t mean they want to.
As the months passed, Selene dropped hints about backpacking Europe together. It was an appealing idea – the classic travel narrative – but to do so would require staying at least another year in Chicago to save money. It’d mean abandoning 10 Cities/10 Years.
Other factors were leading to our dissolution, as well. There were the usual abrasions that build up on the body after two years together, exacerbated by our abnormal circumstances: Suspicions of infidelity and apathy, fights and spying, the subtle but inevitable erosion of passion. We took each other for granted, only seeing one another from the corners of our eyes.
I pulled the trigger. One March night, Selene once again brought up a European divergence, now more of an urging than a suggestion. I could no longer deny the inevitable. I felt incensed because of what she was asking me to give up, but also mortified because of what I was forcing her to forgo: a life of her own.
We argued through the night, much of it in tears. When the sun arose the next morning, we were sharing a bed but no longer together.
Neither one of us could afford to move out. Overnight, our apartment had suddenly become claustrophobic. It was late March and my move wasn’t until September. We had five months ahead of us, cellmates in a rented prison.
Some days, we were utterly miserable. Others, we found equilibrium. The fact of our underlying incompatibility was always there, but with that out in the open, we were looking at each other straight on again. At times, it felt like love; that is, when it didn’t erupt as hate. After everything else fell away, we still had passion. You can’t have the warmth of fire without destruction.
Four months after our break up, Selene moved out. She was staying in Chicago and had found a new apartment with a roommate who’d arrive from Philadelphia in a few weeks. Though we were cycling through one of our regular bouts of acrimony, I helped her move across town. That was to be, more or less, the end of it. We were both alone now.
I can’t remember the last time I slept uninterrupted through the night without the aid of intoxicants. There’s always a device by the bed, a tether to consciousness, to an unsettled world. It’s nigh impossible to disconnect.
It was late and I was asleep, but only barely, when a familiar chirping stirred me. Grabbing my phone in the dark, I read the glowing words.
“I was almost raped.”
I shot up in bed. Selene’s message sent shocks through my nervous system, that word exploding like napalm from every synapse.
In a fog, I texted back.
“Where are you?”
When she didn’t respond immediately, I called. She answered through choked sobs.
“He’s in my apartment,” she said. “I left.”
I knew who “he” was. Tommy, her friend, was stationed on a base north of the city and had come down for a Saturday night movie with Selene. I confess, Tommy had previously been a cause of discord between Selene and me. They weren’t romantic (he was married), but theirs was a charged, flirtatious friendship. I had never met the man, but jealousy preemptively bred hate nonetheless.
After the movie, Tommy went out with his buddies for drinks. Ostensibly too inebriated to return to base, he called up Selene and asked to crash at her place. She offered him her couch. What happened next is a common chapter in the stories of far too many women.
Tommy came to Selene’s room and made advances, which she rebuffed. She closed her door. Soon, he came back and attempted twice to force himself upon her. She fought him off and, with no other choice, abandoned her new apartment.
These details I learned later, but at that moment in my darkened room, all I knew was that he was still in her apartment and Selene was somewhere alone.
“I’m heading over there!” I yelled, already dressing.
“Please don’t! I need somewhere to go. Stay at our apartment. Please!” Fighting every instinct, every screaming, wrathful cell in my body, I complied. Selene’s stricken voice was drenched in tears. I stayed. I waited.
When she arrived, she was pale, her eyes sallow and red. She lied in our former bed and I pulled the blankets over us as she cradled into my body. It was like our first night in San Francisco all over again, except I never fell asleep. I wanted to be of comfort to her, but my body was so tense with fury that it must have felt like hugging a statue.
I worked the next morning. I imagine I must have offered to call out and stay with Selene, but for whatever reason I still went. I hadn’t slept, my body was sore from clutching Selene to me all night, and my anger hadn’t subsided. It was a Sunday morning, so the train was, thankfully, mostly unoccupied. I found an isolated seat in the corner, curled up against the glass as tight as I could, and wept. Bitter tears burnt my face.
At work, I managed some semblance of composure, but it must have been obvious that something was seriously wrong. Don, a jovial, good-hearted friend approached and asked what was wrong. He hadn’t been the first to ask how I was doing that morning, but I had brushed most inquiries off with the usual prevarications. When Don asked, though, I could no longer contain the anger.
“Jesus. What are you going to do?” He asked.
“I’m going to kill him,” I promised. Don coughed a slight, nervous laugh, realizing there was no humor in my tone.
I pride myself on eschewing macho male stereotypes, but in this situation all I could think of was fighting. I craved a violent solution.
The problem was, I had little recourse to enact revenge. This wasn’t a movie, I wasn’t going to sneak onto a military base and display some heretofore unseen fighting acumen. Any hope of punishing Tommy required he return to Chicago. I also needed help.
The following day, I found Tommy’s private email address and, creating a fake account, sent him a message with a simple subject line: “Careful”
I opened the missive by laying out what I knew had happened between him and Selene. I put it in exacting detail so that there could be no question of “interpreting” events differently after the fact. I warned that I knew he was married and I could contact his wife easily.
Then I made my demands:
You will come back into the city, Chicago, at a time that is convenient for me. We are going to meet face to face, man to man.
I ended with:
You will not tell Selene you are coming here. In fact, you will not talk to her at all, ever again. Forget you ever knew her.
Meanwhile, Selene didn’t want to return to her apartment, so she stayed with me. Around her, I hoped to be a calming presence, but I was nothing but boiling agitation and rage. She knew I wasn’t letting the matter go, but I kept her in the dark about my intentions. Tommy couldn’t go unpunished. I had to prove – to her, to myself? – that this crime would be met with sufficient vengeance.
Our SoCal friend, Kate, vowed to fly out and “beat the shit out of” Tommy, but I assured her I was taking matters into my own hand.
At work, I enlisted Don and another friend, Aidan, to my cause. Knowing most of the details, they offered their tentative support, not entirely sure how seriously I intended to pursue my plan. Trained as boxers, both men were muscular and intimidating in all the ways I was not. I can’t discount the racial component either: they were black men and I was planning to rendezvous with Tommy on the South Side.
I had no devious master plan, no Machiavellian revenge plot: I wanted Tommy in my presence and I wanted to hurt him. Only his blood would pay for his sins.
But Tommy didn’t respond to my email. Two days passed before I sent another taunting email. I tried to sound threatening, in charge, but the truth was, if he didn’t respond, there was essentially nothing I could do.
He responded. No denials.
I know i was so very wrong for this, i wish in so many ways i could reverse my actions, not because Selene turned me away, but because it was a darkness within me that i have been fighting for so very long.
It wouldn’t hold up as a confession in court, but it was enough for me.
Over the next few days, we exchanged a half dozen emails. I gave him a date to meet me. He provided excuses why he couldn’t get away from the base. I told him if he didn’t show, I’d forward our email chain to his wife and his CO. Meanwhile, Don and Aidan were, judiciously, backing out of my plan. They understood better than I that no one was making it out of this unscathed.
Finally, Tommy sent one last, clearly rattled email:
I have told my command and my wife what truely happened, they have all read your e-mail. I was given a direct order to tell you such and that i will no be meeting with you under any circumstances.
I attempted to goad him out of hiding, but he didn’t respond. So, through a fake Facebook account, I sent his wife our emails. And there it ended.
I have no idea what became of Tommy. I don’t know what he meant by “what truely happened.” Maybe his wife never read the messages or didn’t believe them if she did. If nothing else, I wanted the people in Tommy’s life to learn the kind of vile man he truly was. I suspect some already knew. I can only hope his “darkness” was never unleashed on another woman.
Without resolution, my anger wouldn’t abate.
A week after escaping assault, shaken but not broken, Selene returned to her apartment and a life that would continue in Chicago without me.
For the remainder of the month before I moved to Tennessee, Selene and I feinted at an amicable friendship. I wish I could say our final parting ended with hugs and fond reminiscing set to an acoustic song like some treacly TV series finale. Alas, our last meeting ended in rage-fueled tears – mine.
Still holding onto resentments from our relationship, I laid blame at her feet. I accused her of leading Tommy on by flirting with him. I did what so many before have done, what too many continue to do: I implied that a woman who dares display her sexuality gives up her right to bodily autonomy.
This was Selene’s struggle, and I had made it about me. I thought it was my war to fight, that I was Selene’s soldier. What she really deserved was an ally.
The Chapter Ends
We’d been good and bad together in equal measures. We had the singular ability to lift one another up, and tear each other down.
I left Chicago in a daze, 100% certain I would never see Selene again; 100% sure I would. I was halfway through.
Selene was no longer the girl I’d met in Costa Mesa two years earlier. So much had happened to her since moving to San Francisco – to both of us – and she’d been transformed. She couldn’t be the person she had been even if she wanted to. Change – positive, negative – is the inevitable result of stepping out one’s front door.
It was September. After two hard years together, our roads now diverged.
Over the span of this decade-long project, I’ve held 15 different jobs, not counting the odd jobs/side projects I’ve taken on to make a little extra money in lean times. Of those 15 jobs, more than half of them were found using the most infamous of search engines, Craigslist.
There is a lot to be wary of when using CL for goods and/or services. When looking for places to live, you may discover that the pictures in the ad do not match the actual apartment. That “Used but like new” furniture may include an extra helping of bedbugs. Or the limo service you looked into but never signed a contract with might still arrive on your wedding night in a duct-taped POS and expect you to do business with them. Anything can happen.
So, why, you might ask, would a person still do any business on Craigslist if there are so many scam artists, shysters and loons on the site?
The simple reason is that, despite all the noise, if you know how to look, you can still find better deals and job opportunities on CL then on any other site, all without signing up for extra services or junk email. There might be better sites for 1 or 2 specific things, but there is no better place for doing everything.
Now: I’m looking for work again. I’ve had a job for about a month and a half and I very much enjoy it. But I’m not getting enough hours, and New York City is way too expensive to try to get by on $300 a week. If I was still in New Orleans, I’d be set, but Brooklyn is decidedly not the Big Easy (though they share some of the same grooming habits).
With as much restaurant experience as I have, I should be able to find work easily. I received job offers from both of the first 2 restaurants I interviewed at in Boston. I had a job in a week. It was actually kind of disappointing because I generally enjoy luxuriating in the unoccupied time off for a few weeks while I explore my new city.
Alas, New York is a bit harder. Obviously.
Most of the ads for restaurants in both Manhattan and Brooklyn include this caveat: “New York experience required.”
Why, you might ask? I can’t really say for sure. I’ve been into numerous bars and restaurants throughout the city, and none of them strike me as any busier, any wilder, any more Herculean places to work than those I’ve worked in the other major cities. I suppose it might be a way to keep out the country bumpkins who served 6 years in their papa’s Iowa truck stop diner. I’ve never even lived in Iowa. Put me in, coach!
But I guess it really isn’t that bad. I do have restaurant experience and I’m getting called in for interviews (I have 1 today). It could be worse.
I mean, look what this person is looking for:
I know everyone wants a hard worker, but that’s ridiculous. Also, I don’t think it’s acceptable to call a woman a “dish” anymore. Maybe I’m just old fashioned, but there are better places to post this kind of filth. Like Tinder.
I still applied, though. I mean, I need a job dammit!
Wish me luck.
I am a writer.
It used to embarrass me to say that because it comes across as so utterly pretentious. Anybody who’s published a poem on Poetry.com can call themselves a writer, which pretty much dilutes the word. I’ve only felt comfortable calling myself a writer in the last few years, partially because I’ve published nationally and some of my stories and poems have appeared in journals. But the more basic reason that I feel comfortable using the ‘W’ term for myself is because I work damn hard at it.
I edit. I edit like a
motherfucker professional. Not a single post goes up on this site that hasn’t been read and re-read and edited for typos and grammatically confusing phrases and then rewritten again to make sure that it isn’t all just one big rambling mess. If an article goes up and I spot a typo after the fact, I pretty much can’t do anything until I’ve fixed it. And that’s just for blog posts. You can’t imagine how much time I spend on short stories and the longer pieces I work on. I’ve been editing a completed novel for years. It’s been finished, I’ve submitted it to agents (no interest found), and yet still I return to it in hopes of improvement.
Editing is only one part of being a writer. A very, very, very important part of it, but still not the whole shebang. A writer should also care for craftsmanship, the interplay of words and sounds. One needn’t look far to see that very little of what is written online has been crafted in any manner. Even if we’re ignoring the gibberish that gets posted in the name of SEO and Google analytics, publication on the internet is largely about filling space. Websites don’t employ writers, they employ content creators.
CONTENT IS KING(?)
“Content Creator” is this era’s greatest Orwellian euphemism, presenting the mindless sputum of the half-literate as ‘content’ and declaring the banging of one’s head against a keyboard as ‘creativity.’ Internet content is, by various definitions, valuable, even when it only exists to point the reader to the work of a superior thinker or artist. Unfortunately, the chained up monkeys who type this stuff, while still unable to reproduce Shakespeare, have learned how to market their smeared shit so effectively that we all stop and look.
A great many articles published online contain barely 100 words worth of original content all in reference to someone else’s video, photographs or article, copied whole cloth from another website or news source. So content-less has content creation become that the only real purpose of any creator is to slap up an attention-grabbing headline to bring in the hits. With headlines like “This Video Will Change Your Mind About Everything” and a screenshot strategically frozen to reveal cleavage (yes, Upworthy, I see what you’re doing), sites get your clicks and your shares, spreading their empty content like the mental herpes it truly is.
A content creator might push back and say, “You’re just bitter because you’ve failed as a writer.” To which I say, yeah, probably. But what is a writer if not someone who has failed at everything else in life.
WRITERS WRITE RIGHT
I am not criticizing the Internet. I have no qualms saying that the World Wide Web is the greatest scientific achievement in all of human history. Yes, even beating sliced bread. Counter to common belief, I don’t think the Internet is making us worse people, or even less social. The Internet didn’t turn us into assholes, we already were assholes (slavery, anyone?). This tool is transformative and quite often magnificent in the way that it brings together ideas, cultures, experiences and, most importantly, people. Blaming the Internet for our shortcomings as a species is like blaming the automobile for car crashes. In a certain light, it’s vaguely true, but it’s obviously missing the larger picture.
I know a lot of writers personally. Some I like and some I don’t, while some like me and most… tolerate me. Most of the writers I have known over the years have, at some point or another, stopped writing. At least, in a serious way. They may toss out a poem here or there, or loosely maintain a blog. Many of these writers have attempted to get their writing published and found out the hard way, like I have, that it is really, really hard to get published in this age, especially if you’re not writing erotic fan-fiction based on someone else’s creation.
It’s… disheartening. I’m not saying it was ever easy to be a writer, but I don’t think anyone would dispute that this is the hardest age for a writer to find a faithful audience and make a living by it. The Internet is, somewhat, to blame for that. The other party at fault is us, the writers. We have grown to accept the truism that no one will pay us for our writing, like we’re all part of one global internship and our bosses are waiting for their coffee. I’m not saying this isn’t true, just that it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Of course no one’s going to pay for what they’re getting for free. Remember what your mama said about buying the cow? Yep, we’re all sluts.
This is truly a shame because nobody has changed and shaped history more than writers. Great ideas and revolutionary movements spread through the written word. As much as Twitter gets a bad name for its 140-character limit and seemingly frivolous content, it actually serves a tremendous function because it helps spread messages. It lets us share the word.
Writing has value. Content doesn’t.
EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!
We’re a headline culture, so it’s no wonder that we believe all human knowledge can be reduced to a series of bulletpoints for easy consumption. The epidemic of scientific illiteracy that has created the Anti-Vaxxers, the Climate Change Deniers and the Intelligent Design Movement is largely based on these various groups believing that if they read a couple of headlines, a Wikipedia article and a science study abstract, they’re suddenly as informed as a person who has devoted their life to the field. You can’t reduce hundreds of years of research into an afternoon and then call yourself an expert.
The more reductive we become, the harder it is to convey anything meaningful. Even the flashy content creators are shoving extra information into their headlines (“#16 Will Blow You Away” “#3 Will Literally Get You Pregnant” “#10 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”) because the fire-hose torrent of hyperbole is losing its ability to draw eyes. Everybody is screaming with ALL CAPS that what they have to show you is worth your 5-second attention span, and in reality almost none of it is.
Which is why it’s time for writers to fight back.
Don’t give in to the easy pull of content creation. Don’t aim for the lowest common denominator. Don’t over-hype your work with misleading, exclamation-filled headlines. Be a writer. Craft your words with care, edit them to perfection, and if the world doesn’t care, do it again. And again, and again. The world doesn’t owe you an audience. As a writer, though, you owe it to yourself and to your work to actually give a damn about the quality of your writing. The word will remain long after all the content has been banished to the unlit alleyways of internet obscurity.
So what are you? Content Creator, or Writer?
Any consumption of art is an act of exclusion. When you wander the aisles of a bookstore, scroll your Netflix queue or open Spotify, you are presented with a sea of choices and you narrow it down based on internal criteria. You could spend your entire life devoted to consuming art and you’d still never scratch the surface. Being an informed art consumer has always required a considerable amount of dedication, but what does that dedication look like in a time when the territory of art is expanding?
Our modern world provides vast options. It’s not just the prodigious abundance of artists and genres that exists; we also have forms of art that no past generations could have ever conceived of, let alone experience. Even relatively new mediums like film and photography feel ancient in comparison to digital mediums and the new forms of storytelling that computers and the internet now provide.
The medium that brought us Pac-Man now offers characters with backstories, motivations and morality. Within the span of a generation, video games have evolved from mere distractions to long-form, narrative-based interactive works. Are they art? As someone who doesn’t consume the medium, I don’t feel qualified to answer, but something tells me that the more appropriate question is, “When exactly did video games become art?”
My personal consumption of art probably qualifies me as old-fashioned and stodgy. I love books. Physical books. I have a tablet and I’ve started reading my first digital book (Mark Twain’s Following the Equator), but my bed remains a repository for a pile of bound paper. I still own DVDs and I prefer slow-paced, character-based dramas to loud and CGI-enhanced (though there are always exceptions). My music library is all digital now, but I have rarely ever bought one song on its own. I believe firmly in the album experience and I like artists who care more about tracklists than singles.
As I’ve already mentioned, I don’t play video games. I’m not opposed to them, I just find them personally unengaging and I usually lose interest well before I have any hope of completing my objective. This is probably the result of my parents refusing to have any console system in the house more advanced than an Atari, no matter how much we kids begged. I don’t know if that was the “right” choice, but it had definite dividends for my reading habits.
Am I better off without video games? Many would say yes, but I’m slower to make that judgment.
WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS GENERATION?
A reoccurring refrain among older pundits is that kids don’t read, an odd recrimination considering that YA fiction is one of the strongest arms of the publishing industry. The best selling series of all time is Harry Potter, and while a healthy percentage of adults read those books, too, I don’t know a single person currently in their 20s who didn’t read them*. Kids do read, it’s just that they also do a whole host of other things, too.
Films and TV were books’ first competitors, but the 20th century is one long history of alternative leisure pastimes. By the 21st century, the fledgling internet was just one of a plethora of activities and distractions available to us. Ask someone in their late 20s to early 30 and they’ll have vague memories of what their life was like before the internet became ubiquitous, but let’s not kid ourselves: We weren’t all sitting around fastidiously studying and reading for our personal edification. We were watching absolute crap television like Knight Rider and Saved by the Bell and trying to save the princess.
Before that, it was Happy Days and a bouncing white ball on a black screen.
There isn’t something fundamentally wrong with this young generation that wasn’t already present in their forebears. They just have overwhelming choices in what they consume, so many choices that it’s sometimes hard to grasp just how diverse their experiences have become. A kid today has the same kind of peer pressure to be knowledgeable about his generation’s pop culture as all of us had, but there’s also an assumption put on him by adults that he will consume older pop culture, too (because, of course, our art was better).
Today, sounding artistically informed not only requires familiarity with two or three centuries of literature, but also with the past five decades of pop music, films of the 70s and 80s, television in the 90s and 00s, comic books (superheroes and other) from, at the very least, Frank Miller’s run on Batman, and video games going back to 8-bit. There should also be thorough knowledge of internet memes and viral videos. Compare that to the know-it-all hipsters in High Fidelity and John Cusack seems like a pussy.
If I exclude certain forms of art from my diet (and by necessity I do), it’s merely because I don’t have a taste for them, not because I believe they lack merit. My personal disinterest in gaming says nothing about the medium’s ascension to art. It wasn’t too long ago that comic books were considered frivolous entertainment, but now graphic novels have won a Pulitzer Prize and numerous Hugo Awards. I don’t have to be a consumer of these art forms to recognize there is admirable work being done. In an ideal world, I’d have the time to appreciate the finest examples of every art form. Also, whiskey would pour out of faucets. Nothing’s ideal.
I know some critics might stop me and incredulously ask, “Are you suggesting we throw out our art standards?” Quite the contrary. Art is the most important non-essential element in our lives. So important, in fact, that it honestly crosses over to being essential. A life without art cannot possibly be considered life. A life without good art is shallow. We should still care about the quality of the art we consume, but we mustn’t assume that medium dictates worth.
Generational scolds who look down on a younger generation for their artistic diets are failing to understand that the buffet before these kids is practically limitless. To compare their consumption with that of a previous generation is comparing apples to Apple. In an hour online, a kid can find more information than a student in the 80s would be able to access sitting all day in a library. With shorter attention spans, kids might not be adapted to our world, but they are adapting to the world that’s being created around them every day.
Does that mean that the kids are alright and we should just get off their backs and let them be? Well, mostly no, but a little yes. Every generation needs to be challenged and pushed and forced to work hard when they don’t want to. Kids shouldn’t be coddled or neglected, and just because a child doesn’t like something immediately doesn’t mean they should be allowed to abandon it. But, this young generation also needs to be judged by different, ever-evolving standards.
That’s right, being an adult doesn’t mean you get to stop caring about new things. I know you were secretly relieved when you didn’t have to keep up with all the latest fads, but the world didn’t stop changing when you did and that evolution is speeding up exponentially. Each generation finds new ways to express themselves, and while it’s comforting to think that the art we loved will always be relevant, the youth culture has always been the harbingers of the art to come.
As a writer, no one is more invested in seeing the written word maintain its prominence in the culture than me, but I’m also a consumer with a large appetite for diverse flavors of art. New art forms don’t threaten what I do, they build upon and expand it. I hope in a hundred years we are still reading novels and listening to albums, but if we’re not, that doesn’t mean art has died. It’s just evolved.
*Well, I never read them, but I’m also not currently in my 20s, so let’s not quibble.
Really, truly, this is it. This is the post that will change everything. After this post goes viral, nothing will be the same.
Dogs will be cats. Gravity will pull up. Nicholas Cage movies will be good.
This post is so earth-shatteringly, life-changingly, adverb-creatingly important that you need to share it immediately, before you’ve even finished it, because I promise it’ll be worth it and why even think about it, just Tweet it and Facebook it and Tumblr it and Instagram it and Myspace it and Snail Mail it and Pony Express it and Carrier Pigeon it because if there is anyone who hasn’t read it by the end of the week they won’t be able to function in the new paradigm that will have shifted or begun or matriculated or whatever it is paradigms do.
You remember that post last week that was the most important post you had read all week? This post is even more important-er than that.
And that video you saw yesterday, the one that was going to revolutionize the way the world thinks about stuff? Yeah, well, be prepared to be nostalgic, because that’s the past. This post is the PRESENT! No, wait, this post is the FUTURE! YES!
This post is so revolutionary that it’s preemptively nullified any upcoming ‘Most Important’ posts that haven’t been created yet.
That’s right, Upworthy.com, this post single-handedly makes your entire existence meaningless. BAM! I’d apologize, but I don’t have time for that, I’ve got to write the single most important thing to ever exist in all of history. Suck it, The Bible.
For too long, the world has existed the way it is, with bad things happening to good people, and the rich getting richer, and low-fat ice cream not tasting as good as real ice cream. Well, NO MORE! It’s time for a change, and I want you to remember that it was in this post where you first read someone calling for change.
Sure, sure, other people have called for change, in the past. The Occupy Wall Street movement wanted change. And the Tea Party wanted change. And Obama wanted change. And Bush, Jr. wanted change. And Hobo Henry wanted change. But their change wasn’t the same as the Change I want. So my Change is more important. And better, and faster, and sexier, and bluer, and less filling, and twice the flavor, and child proof, and chemical free, and available in your choice of Red, Blue or Taupe, and perfect for those quiet Sunday afternoons when you’ve got nothing to do and you’re bored and want to leave the house but you don’t want to go to the movies alone and it’s too cold to walk around downtown so you stay in and flip through the channels all day and then on Monday Susan asks, “How was your weekend?” and you’re like, “It was nice,” and then you just go back to your desk.
Yeah, that’s my Change. BAP!
I hope you weren’t too attached to the status quo, because: BOOM! That’s dead.
Someday, your children are going to ask you about what the world was like before the existence of The Most Important Post Ever and you’ll think back wistfully and try to remember, but you won’t be able to because it’ll seem like a completely different life and so you’ll send little Bobby and Esmeralda to bed and sit in silence in your easy chair and wonder if you’re too old to wear skinny jeans, but NO, you’re not too old, because ‘too old’ is a construct of the world that existed before The Most Important Post Ever and that no longer applies in this newer, better world, so go ahead, buy those skinny jeans, they look great on you. FLURP!
And when the world comes knocking on my door to thank me for FINALLY changing the world in the right way after all those other posts and videos and viral links didn’t do the job, I’ll be modest and say, “I just knew something had to be done.”
It was the least I could do.
You’re welcome, world. You’re welcome.