Love Letters

Suicide notes are love letters

Feelings rushing and spilling 

The deepest cares and regrets

‘It was special – the way we met’

Most sincere wishes for the future

How rich and profound you have all made my short time here

How sure I am of the beautiful things to come

I leave you with my heart more open

Than it ever could have been in life.

LAM-ELISA

I am LAM-ELISA

A simple biological test for the presence of one particular molecule.

Used worldwide to screen for tuberculosis.

Someone tells me that in one of the tens of thousands of locations where I have been utilized,

There is a human called Elisa Lam who died in a hotel nearby.

Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later.

Fuck Prince Philip

Fuck Prince Philip.

One day of mourning and sycophancy was pathetic enough, but this is now a full-on national tantrum.

I guess we’re seeing the death throes of the remaining few generations who are still brainwashed by the cartel of the monarchy.

Philip was a racist bastard, part of a eugenicist regime built on a tower of black and brown bodies, empowered by a propaganda machine so powerful it can bring our entire system of government to a halt so politicians can violently proselytise at each other for hours in the heart of our democratic chambers about the Dear Great Leader and how noble it is to sacrifice your life upholding those most British values of colonialism, blood purity, and service to the state.

North Korea *wishes* it had subjects as obedient as ours.

But Philip’s generations of worshippers and disciples are dying, now faster than ever. They should consider themselves lucky that the end of their beloved monarchy will be with a whimper.

(Credit to Ash Sarkar for the phrase “cartel” in reference to the monarchy)

Stokely Carmichael and White Fragility

TW: this may not be comfortable reading for Black people, as I am sharing my own anti-racist education, and therefore my ignorance.

I’ve just learned about Stokely Carmichael, a huge figure in the US and global civil rights movement, who transitioned from a mostly non-violent philosophy to a much more radical one. As chairman of the SNCC he stopped white membership, and soon after gave a speech during which he popularised the phrase “Black Power,” triggering a new radical movement in civil rights.

This is really profound for us white people to pay attention to, right now – when even the most ‘well-meaning’ of us can have our white fragility triggered by the most genuine and important cries for freedom. Imagine the bravery of Carmichael in revoking white membership to the SNCC, anticipating the backlash of white fragility it would cause – while still knowing this was needed for radical change.

So I will try to pay more attention to the kinds of white fragility I see in myself and others, and know that real radical change requires the provocation of white fragility. I must deeply acknowledge that white people are all complicit in white supremacy, and we can not be a part of radical change without accepting our inherent role in maintaining white supremacy.

https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/stokely-carmichael

Had to get this off my chest

I just remembered this scene in hunger games and how fucking mind-boggling it is

Not only did Peeta learn like world-class level cake decoration in his time as a baker in one of the poorest districts –

but he had a cake decorating/face paint kit with him

and while gravely wounded sat for hours, presumably with a mirror, painting his own face to look like a rock

Continue reading “Had to get this off my chest”

Replaying war crimes on a film set

I’ve read a lot about the Vietnam/American War, both nonfiction and fiction. It was this conflict in particular that helped me finally grok the immense failure of sentience at the heart of warfare, and the horrors of capitalist and colonialist conflicts.

In Vietnam, class, race and culture collided in the context of a truly hellish war, exposing the hypocrisy of Western society through the blood of millions of young Americans and Vietnamese.

Obviously that conflict changed our world in many ways. I don’t think its profundity can be overstated.

Continue reading “Replaying war crimes on a film set”

Our existence is inherent and meaningless

In his latest video, PhilosophyTube mentions this great analogy for natural selection (paraphrased):

“Imagine throwing random fridge magnets at a fridge, but they only stick to the fridge if they form a coherent sentence” – within this system, what initially may appear to be immensely meaningful or ‘designed’ is in fact just an inherent function of the chaos.

Extended to a metaphysical level, I’m experiencing a state of me-ness right now because there’s no other state I could be experiencing – not because I’m here for any purpose or because I have any kind of say in the matter.

Applied to the fridge magnet analogy, my existence would be like the universal consciousness throwing magnets and eventually seeing the sentence “I’m Pat experiencing Pat-ness” emerge on the fridge. This blossoming of individual consciousness from the universal ocean of mind may at first appear extremely unique and meaningful to the perceiving one (i.e. me). But hopefully upon gradually receiving a greater awareness of the state of the fridge and its randomly-thrown yet rule-following magnets, I will start to understand that I am no more special or purposeful than a particular grain of sand in the desert.

fridge magnets

Savage Garden

What else are blogs good for if not explorations of personal psychosexual development?

I was maybe 10 or 11, being driven to my first session of after-school rugby practice by my dad. Affirmation by Savage Garden was in the CD player. The album was written by Darren Hayes after his divorce from his wife, and just before he came out as gay. It has an undercurrent of sexual freedom and emotional openness that was not lost on me as a kid.

Rugby practice was painful. I didn’t like it. I could sense the disappointment my dad felt at seeing his son be so afraid of physical contact and pain.

But it was OK, because we were getting back in the car and there was more Savage Garden playing.

I enjoy thinking about this moment a lot. The richness and warmth of being attracted to something new and exciting. The melancholy of feeling confusion at not receiving unconditional love from a parent. The desire to hide away from the world while wanting so much from it.

I’m much more a child of Savage Garden than a child of my dad – and I’m grateful for it.

Can SpaceX Set a Precedent of Safe Space Travel?

There is good reason to be apprehensive about tomorrow’s first crewed flight of the SpaceX Dragon Capsule.

NASA, as vanguard of both capitalist excess and nationalistic fervour, has emblazoned US space exploration with a legacy of avoidable deaths. 

The Columbia and Challenger disasters, 17 years apart, were both excruciatingly avoidable and led to the gruesome deaths of 14 astronauts. 

SpaceX is now poised to launch astronauts into space from US soil for the first time in nearly a decade. But is SpaceX just another capitalist endeavour doomed to repeat the same mistakes as NASA?

Continue reading “Can SpaceX Set a Precedent of Safe Space Travel?”