Up around 3:30, wanting to shape or finish my picayune monthly column for the local newspaper. Usually, the column appears on the third Wednesday of the month, but I was given the option of delaying it until Memorial Day on May 30. The editor wrote to say I had "first dibs" on space during the holiday that remembers the service members who died in America's wars. I opted to wait.
So earlier today I picked and critiqued and cut and added and worked myself into a writer's dither. I wanted to get the column right. Get it clear. But then, about an hour ago, around 8:30, I watched the Vietnam War segment of a serial ("The Sixties") on the movie channel Netflix. The serial carries the name of actor Tom Hanks and I have a hunch that's why it was approved. The series is badly edited but nonetheless compelling here and there ... as tonight.
There I was fussing and dithering when a single look at a single combat soldier let me know that it didn't matter what the fuck I wrote. What counted was that I did write and express myself. Not because I am right, but because my conscience won't let me do otherwise. Speak up, asshole! If you've got a platform, even if it only reaches one person, use it -- speak up or be damned.
Twenty-twenty hindsight is easy as pie as always. The government didn't/doesn't know what it's doing and yet young men die or are ripped to shreds within. My desire to get the words right, the cadence right, the finger-nails-on-a-blackboard right is minor, minor shit. Look at that face ... look! look!
It is hard not to use the word "soul." Some idjit is bound to start spouting scripture in an arena where scripture finds no footing. Pissing on a man's soul, shredding that way-inside decency ... fuck the smarm! Look! Death is as nothing. Look!
It is said that Gautama the Buddha wept when he beheld the future and its unkindnesses. I am not the Buddha: I'd like to knee-cap every set of perfect cuff links that made this shit up. Just because people have the capacity to be assholes is no reason to encourage them.