What’s Real?

Goth Girl

I have a friend who doesn’t trust anything he can’t perceive through his five senses. He is suspicious of anything not in his immediate experience. He wonders if maybe solipsism is correct. He seeks pleasure because it confirms for him that there is a tangible truth he can grasp. Sex is holy because the ecstasy of it breaks through all his fears that outside of this moment and the tangible signals he perceives, there is nothing. God has been dead for him for many years. Then he met a girl.

She occasionally went to a Unitarian Universalist meditation on Thursdays. He liked it that the Buddhists were very concrete in their insistence on correct technique. At least, he said he did. I found out later that she’d get really horny after meditation and so they’d smoke weed and horizontal bop like rabbits on meth. Zazen hurts, especially for beginners. I’ve seen people try to stand after sitting Zazen and fall flat on their face. Plus, as you open yourself all this spiritual puke comes out. And . . . the devil is quite happy to inhabit the room in your soul created by shitting out all your crap. Zazen needs care and a good teacher. My friend seeks pleasure and avoids misery. You can fake Zazen at the beginning levels. Zazen was tolerable for my friend only because later came the sex.

Women, please put the claws away after reading this. Y’all are trouble. MGTOW is because some men won’t surrender and so instead of dealing with women they build out a fantasy world of waifus and false goddesses. Now, let me say why wimmins be trouble. God made Eve as a helpmate to Adam. If you know my writing or have known me you know what comes next. For the benefit of everyone else, here is the rest: what God had in mind as help when he made Eve isn’t at all what a lot of guys say they want from a woman.

One of the girl’s core beliefs is that you deal with your shit. She sat Zazen because it was a spiritual latrine. She’d done her share of therapy and began to be annoyed because the last three therapists all seemed to be into her shit as a way into her pants. She needed something else along with her meds. So, to be with her meant being with Zazen. The girl is also very much absurd. Nothing is real, everything means something, maybe the Zombies are not just a TV show. Her world bests Lewis Carrol’s Wonderland for oddity and methaphor. She’d been dealing with her shit for a while and made some headway.

She thought, as some women  do, that it was obvi he’d want to work on his shit. That he just wanted to work on her crotch was a tolerable annoyance she thought she could overcome. He said pretty words about wanting a better world, a better life, love and world peas. He was earth to her water but she thought they could do better than mud. His stink was the smell of earthworms, compost and really great tomatoes this year.

It was the best romance ever. For a while. Then . . . she started to press him on the shittier aspects of their relationship. It bugged her that it always seemed to be her fault. She couldn’t get over the nagging feeling that she had to be happy in the way he wanted her to be happy. She had to inhabit his space in ways hard to understand but clearly amenable to him. It was as if his closet was full and her toothbrush in the bathroom was an intrusion. She was a good girl so it was ok to help him be happy the way he wanted to be happy. And she couldn’t deny that the sex was good.

But . . . she’s also a modern woman who wants a more even allocation of closet space. And couldn’t she be more than a piece of ass? Why not just a glass of wine and a nice movie on Netflix instead of the usual stoked brownies and meth-fueled ugly bumping the night away? Or maybe do something other than a marathon Mario Cart binge. Oh, and to top it off his kitchen was a toxic waste dump full of rotting pizza boxes & rinds and Chinese Takeout containers. All he had to do was a couple of simple things and she’d be more ok with him.

She forgets, as I too often forget, who I write about. Us, we don’t come correct. We are more likely to throw a fit at seeing that toothbrush and dump her clothes on the street. Trying to bend us toward more amenable behavior is just going to be frustrating. So, predictably, the conversation came up, “Honey, I’m really tired of finding rat droppings in your sink. I think I saw one run behind the trash pile.” To which he replied, “The glue traps are in the linen closet.”

Then came the next volley, “So, are we a thing?”

No, but the thing between your legs is awesome.”

Funny, in a boorish, young guy kind of way. Wrong answer, though. She left him in the glow of his 48″ 4K OLED monitor with too few life points left in Call of Duty.

If that were it then I’d probably not turn it into a blog post. No, what I get is my phone blowing up with Facebook notifications. He says he can’t tell what’s real and what isn’t. He says she lied to him. She abused him. She took from him the only thing that was true. I read all his posts and couldn’t help feeling that his storm of words was a tantrum from someone who just got pwned by a girl.

I messaged him and he doubled down on claiming that he couldn’t tell what was real and what wasn’t. I told him that for me, it’s all story. It’s all lies. I’m probably fire if I am anything. And choleric trying to be sanguine with limited success. So, it don’t mean no never mind if I miss out on “what’s really going on”. This space and I live in Wonderland in a one-room shack on the shores of the River Styxx. The valley is called Imago Mortis Valle, maybe you have heard of it? Down the road a piece is a bar that features a house blues band. Truth is fungible. Reality negotiable. So, the girl being water and wanting him to be more earth and less rock just felt right. His tantrums about cognitive dissonance because he got a peak at where I live seem childish.

The boy, being earth and more rock than soil, wants everything angular and precise. Curves are suspicious. Girls are problematic because there is very little about them that is angular or precise. But they offer sex and truth in those spare moments of it. He gets a blog post because his insistence on natural law, on an explicable truth that explains what’s clearly obvious to him, is exemplary of many guys I’ve met his age. Physicists committed blasphemy when they began to suggest that all is not neat angles and arithmetic precision. It must be so that these men understand what’s understood and if we would just be so kind as to agree that they know what’s innate and right things would be so much better.

It is a zeitgeist that pushes a frozen narrative of the world as it was just after the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917. Everyone has their proper place in the world. Brown people are innately fucked and incapable of unfucking themselves. Women are useful as domestics, incubators, and glory holes. Nothing has changed in 99 years. So, when he blew up Facebook with his tantrum about her, about not knowing what was real, I was amused. My thought? Good. He needs a little cognitive dissonance. Reality┬áis way more fun when it isn’t constrained to Socrates and Aristotle.