I would like to explain the kind of writing I am trying to do with this blog a little more. Think of it as a diary, but where a diary is a reflection of one’s own feelings and inner thoughts, this is a diary of what I see and think of what is going on in our culture on a day to day basis. Where a diary would be all about me, with this blog I am trying to hold up a mirror to the world as best I can.
I am trying to write on a daily basis, without fear, on what I see, hear, and read. All writing is biased and personal to some degree. I don’t have a stranglehold on the truth. I am simply trying to tell my truth as best I can.
View the culture as an ocean. Everyone is swimming in that ocean. It influences us in ways that we can’t even comprehend. I am trying to help people understand that ocean and how it influences us. In even the simplest pop song there are market forces, cultural prejudices, and tribal loyalties at play. When someone drives a pickup truck they may be driving it for reasons of need related to work, or they might be driving it because of reasons associated with identity.
I grew up in a liberal family with mostly conservative friends. I am from the North East, but I live in the South. I am a musician who played sports as a kid. I’ve worked white collar jobs and I’ve worked blue collar jobs. My parents are Unitarian, but I have read the Bible and taken religious classes, and I don’t belong to any kind of church or organization. I’ve read Steinbeck and I read Entertainment Weekly. I treasure David Lynch, but I’ve watched trashy reality shows.
My heroes include Kurt Vonnegut, Hunter Thompson, Morrissey, Oscar Wilde, Oliver Stone, Terry Gilliam, David Lynch, Leonard Cohen, Bruce Springsteen, Nicolas Winding Refn, Bob Dylan, Paul Westerberg, John Lennon, George Orwell, Hampton Sides, Lou Reed, Bill Maher, Haruki Murakami, Flannery O’Connor, and George Carlin. Those are just a few of the many people that have influenced my way of thinking.
I have an American Studies degree from PennState and am getting an Environmental Science and Policy degree from St. Edward’s University. I play in a band called No Show Ponies and a band called Shinyribs.
This will hopefully tell those of you that don’t know me a little bit about what my background is and who I am. I’ve always liked George Carlin’s distaste for groups and the way that he tried to treat every individual as an individual.
I have my own biases and blind spots. I don’t claim that I have some kind of secret information that elevates me above anyone else. If there is anything that I view as being slightly different it is that I don’t fit neatly into any tribal affiliation. In the past year I’ve gone to art museums and drank beer on the back of a pick up truck while my friends went hunting. Although most of my political beliefs could best be described as extremely liberal, I have friends that run the gamut in terms of their political orientation.
Every time I write something I am filled with a feeling of pride followed by a serious feeling of dread and self doubt. I promise to write as honestly as I can in the moment and let it stand as is. I will not revise anything, unless it is for spelling or grammatical purposes.
Hopefully those of you that read this will learn to trust me. Not that you will agree with me, but in the sense that I will not bullshit you. I will fail and I will succeed. I am human.