Author Topic: The end of the world, Dok.  (Read 2093 times)

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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The end of the world, Dok.
« on: April 02, 2010, 09:50:27 pm »
The end of the world. Itís a different place for everyone, but everyone knows where theirs is, although sometimes they donít know where to find it until the moment they need it.

That highway calls to us, the highway to the end of the world. If you feel inside of yourself,  youíll see you know instinctively where the beginning is. Sometimes, driving, you might have the sudden urge to take that freeway entrance, make that turn, and just drive.

Itís not like the lure of the bridges; the bridges are something outside of you, coercive, malicious. The siren song of the bridges is to distract you, to trick you. The bridges, beautiful, old; they have no love for you, other than their love of your sorrow. Just walk across one, youíll see what I mean, the water glinting grey and deep between the slats under your feet.

No, the end of the world is something inside of you, which is why all the bridges stay the same for everyone, but everyoneís end of the world is different. It may be only a few minutes from home, but usually itís a long drive away. The end of the world is not danger, it is solace. Itís where you go in your mind when everything is crumbling, the place you long for when the steel band circling your heart is two notches too tight. You close your eyes and feel it calling for you, yearning for you, loving you. It wants you there as much as you want to go.

Down the street, a left turn, a slight right, up the freeway north, north through the city and past the volcano, past where the cooling towers used to be, through the small towns and the capital, past the religious nut with the billboard and past the 47-year-old Columbus Day Storm snags of trees jutting like broken teeth along the wind tunnel of the I-5 corridor, north into the riparian jungle, the wetlands and marshes, off the freeway and onto the highway, past the casino, off the highway and onto the winding rural roads that take you through the reservations and the small, small towns, north until you get to the place where you canít go north anymore, and you get out of the car and walk through the trees to the spot where the water crashes against the rocks 60 feet below, and maybe you take a small object out of your pocket and throw it, or maybe you sit on the edge looking down, or maybe you donít, and you know that in all this solitude, in all this quiet, your dirt and loss and all your pain will be washed away, washed clean and smooth like an eggshell, like the blank slate you imagine you used to be, and out here at the end of the world no one will ever, ever find you.


Where is your end of the world? Where is it, Dok?
« Last Edit: April 02, 2010, 10:32:42 pm by Calamity Nigel »
ďIím guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,Ē Charles Wick said. ďIt was very complicated.Ē


Doktor Howl

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2010, 10:40:55 pm »

Where is your end of the world? Where is it, Dok?

Davidson Canyon.  It is the demarcation line between Tucson and the wastelands.  There is nothing beyond that, though the old timers talk of an "outside world" that used to exist, back before The Big Whoops.  Sometimes, when The City gets to be too much, I drive out to the canyon and just sit on the edge.  Sometimes I take pictures, but not often...the wastelands never change, of course.  They are eternal.  They are precisely the same as they were when Wyatt Earp used to hang out here.

The wind coming across the wastes has the same siren song as your bridges.  On very rare occasions, I have had to force myself to not just drop my gun and my water bottle and start walking.  Peope do that, you know, when they feel that The City has used them up entirely...and usually, their bones are never found.  

That call is particularly strong when you've lost something or someone that makes you hurt so bad that you feel like you've been gut shot...But you have to ask yourself, "What would Curly do?"  That glorious fat bastard was a rock, and he always managed to smile through the pain.  So, in honor of him, that's what I do...Smile through the pain, even when I wake up alone and wonder where she is.

The secret, you see, is that the lure of the bridges and the canyon are just that:  A lure.  They aren't the escape that they promise to be.  Any cosmology should include the hideous possibility that the afterlife is at least in part predicated on how you feel when you die.  Imagine that, Nigel...I could walk into that waste, and I'd be walking there and missing her until the end of the world.

Maybe longer.

No, I have discovered that things can get better here, and they might not get better anywhere else.  So I collect my scars, and I put one foot in front of the other, all the way back to the Jeep.  Then I drive back through town, occasionally comparing my scars to those of passers-by...Because scars are beautiful things.  They are a sign of healing, however imperfect.  They remind you of the things you went through and the people and things you've lost, when enough time has gone by that it doesn't shoot you in the gut again.

And then I get on with my life, until the next time I have to go out to the canyon to challenge that siren song.

Okay for now,
Dok
« Last Edit: April 02, 2010, 10:43:00 pm by Doktor Howl »
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, shattered underpance lies,
With blown elastic, and exploded back,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Doktor Howl, Spag of Spags:
Look on my ass, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2010, 11:06:20 pm »
I have that fear sometimes, Dok, that a bridge will get me and then that last moment will be eternity, the fear and loss and the cold and the choking, the taste of mud and corpses and sewage, the bones breaking as I hit the water, regret and heartbreak and agony all rolling into one permanent instant as I wish I could change my mind about the bridge, about everything, walk back up the street for a pack of cigarettes, a shot of bourbon, cry it out, shake it out, scream it out, sleep it out drugged and curled on the couch, anything but experiencing that one last moment more than forever, because when time stops there can be no end of the world.
ďIím guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,Ē Charles Wick said. ďIt was very complicated.Ē


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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2010, 11:31:11 pm »
I have that fear sometimes, Dok, that a bridge will get me and then that last moment will be eternity, the fear and loss and the cold and the choking, the taste of mud and corpses and sewage, the bones breaking as I hit the water, regret and heartbreak and agony all rolling into one permanent instant as I wish I could change my mind about the bridge, about everything, walk back up the street for a pack of cigarettes, a shot of bourbon, cry it out, shake it out, scream it out, sleep it out drugged and curled on the couch, anything but experiencing that one last moment more than forever, because when time stops there can be no end of the world.

This is precisely why Hank sang the way he did, you know.  Most people sing when they're happy, but Hank knew that the real value of song is to let pain and sorrow and loss out, and he did it well.  Not in some shitty, ridiculous emo way, all full of angst and spoiled rotten privilege, but in a way that made you ache even if everything was right in your life, because when he sang, you understood precisely what he was feeling. 

Hell, go to Youtube and punch up There's a Tear in My Beer, with he and his son singing.  Don't worry too much about Hank Jr, he was good but he didn't know pain.  Just listen to the old man sing in that horrible scratchy voice he earned with pain and whiskey and tobacco.  Hank didn't take the easy way out, either...The easy way took him, one time when he was driving down that lost highway with a head full of broken glass and veins full of pills and booze.  He never would have gone willingly, he was a giant even with his heart broken.

And the world is a poorer place without him.  You see, he knew the score.  He knew that pain passes, wounds heal, things get better...If only for a little while.  He never, ever gave up.  He collected his scars, and he just smiled a bit when he crossed his bridges and canyons.  So I think maybe his afterlife involves a stage in a shitty little honkey tonk, with a glass of bourbon and a half a pack of smokes, and maybe the one that got away, singing right along with him.

Hank died for your sins.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, shattered underpance lies,
With blown elastic, and exploded back,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Doktor Howl, Spag of Spags:
Look on my ass, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2010, 12:11:09 am »
You ever heard of Ryan Bingham, Dok? He can't be more than 30 but he writes and sings like his heart's been roadkill for 80 years.

I don't think anyone wants much more of an afterlife than they want from this one; a warm spot in the sun, a garden, that moment of bliss when you wake up in the morning and sense that the warm body next to you is someone you love. It's when all that goes awry that we have to run, have to lock the car doors and piss in a bottle driving ninety up the rain-slick freeway at one am to get away, to get the hell away from the city and the bridges and the wreckage of hope. Or you run by pouring it out onto paper or into song or by pouring whiskey down your throat, or you run by fucking someone new but the new never quite stops reminding you that those brown eyes and that smile are not the brown eyes and the smile that you're running from, and pretty soon, no matter how far you run, you can't quite remember if you were running away from something, or trying to chase it down. That's why we need the end of the world, Dok, and that's why we need the wastelands and the bridges. The wastelands and bridges, their siren song scares us and makes us run, and the end of the world is the place where we get to stop. It's not the afterlife but it's close enough, close enough to let you sit down and catch your breath and try to remember whether you were chasing something or fleeing from it, and remember that the cigars and the bourbon and the tranquilizers and the sex and the running never did get you any closer or any farther away from whatever it is. And maybe you just take a minute, and that's all you need, but maybe sometimes you go to the end of the world and you never come back, and if there's anyone to talk to, you never, ever talk about why you're there.


Your heartís on the loose
You rolled them sevens with nothing lose
And this ainít no place for the weary kind

You called all your shots
Shooting 8 ball at the corner truck stop
Somehow this donít feel like home anymore

And this ainít no place for the weary kind
And this ainít no place to lose your mind
And this ainít no place to fall behind
Pick up your crazy heart and give it one more try

Your body achesÖ
Playing your guitar and sweating out the hate
The days and the nights all feel the same

Whiskey has been a thorn in your side
and it doesnít forget
the highway that calls for your heart inside

And this ainít no place for the weary kind
And this ainít no place to lose your mind
And this ainít no place to fall behind
Pick up your crazy heart and give it one more try

Your lovers warm kissÖ
Itís too damn far from your fingertips
You are the man that ruined her world

Your heartís on the loose
You rolled them sevens with nothing to lose
And this ainít no place for the weary kind


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zelvaxvTaUk
« Last Edit: April 03, 2010, 12:36:27 am by Calamity Nigel »
ďIím guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,Ē Charles Wick said. ďIt was very complicated.Ē


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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2010, 12:29:58 am »
I can't wait for the end of the world, whether it is my bloated Fuel Tank or the influence of the newer models

I just don't care.

Though I still move along the road, what choice do I have? If I go off into the wilderness I might survive only for so long but I've become too dependant on the road, but I have no fear if my car breaks down, or if I take a wrong turn, I just don't have it in me. I just follow whats under my feet, sometimes it feels like I am just stuck on the roundabout - too scared to jump out, and sometimes it feels like I'm not even driving a car but rather a bumper car ... The damn thing won't even move when its out on its own. The design utterly sucks... It Might look like fun at the beggining but it quickly grows tiresome. But if I want to go out of my own ... you know the rest.

But the problem is I don't even care to offer a solution! Sometimes I think I will end up old rusted and alone, and it doesn't worry me or scare me - is that something to be alarmed about?

I am just very selfish. Or is this just the foolish youth talking?
« Last Edit: April 03, 2010, 12:38:49 am by NotPubli »
In Soviet Russia, sins died for Jesus.

Doktor Howl

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2010, 07:01:23 am »
Who told you there was a solution?  Odds are, it was a politician.  They promise solutions, just like preachers promise you rewards in the afterlife for behaving yourself here, and like the army promises you'll see the world (You will, but not the good parts, because people only fight over the shitty places.).

There is no solution, NP.  There's only yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And since there's no guarantee that you'll get a tomorrow, you'd damn well better start appreciating today.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, shattered underpance lies,
With blown elastic, and exploded back,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Doktor Howl, Spag of Spags:
Look on my ass, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

Doktor Howl

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2010, 07:02:21 am »
You ever heard of Ryan Bingham, Dok? He can't be more than 30 but he writes and sings like his heart's been roadkill for 80 years.


Going to go watch his shit now.

Will respond to the rest of your post tomorrow, when the caffiene is gone and the pills are here.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, shattered underpance lies,
With blown elastic, and exploded back,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Doktor Howl, Spag of Spags:
Look on my ass, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2010, 10:09:11 pm »
Who told you there was a solution?  Odds are, it was a politician.  They promise solutions, just like preachers promise you rewards in the afterlife for behaving yourself here, and like the army promises you'll see the world (You will, but not the good parts, because people only fight over the shitty places.).

There is no solution, NP.  There's only yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And since there's no guarantee that you'll get a tomorrow, you'd damn well better start appreciating today.
and
Yes, you are perfectly right there Dok. I gotta get off of my high-horse (High-chair if you will); there's always room for things to be appreciated. Everything has gone through the hands of millions to get to the state it is at now ... that is alot of lives to make a more convenient tommorow (For most I like to think so...)
In Soviet Russia, sins died for Jesus.

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2010, 10:11:17 pm »
Who told you there was a solution?  Odds are, it was a politician.  They promise solutions, just like preachers promise you rewards in the afterlife for behaving yourself here, and like the army promises you'll see the world (You will, but not the good parts, because people only fight over the shitty places.).

There is no solution, NP.  There's only yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And since there's no guarantee that you'll get a tomorrow, you'd damn well better start appreciating today.
and
Yes, you are perfectly right there Dok. I gotta get off of my high-horse (High-chair if you will); there's always room for things to be appreciated. Everything has gone through the hands of millions to get to the state it is at now ... that is alot of lives to make a more convenient tommorow (For most I like to think so...)

Things are better now than they were a hundred years ago, but not as good as they were 10 years ago.

Enjoy it while you can, because you can only get on the ride once, and it never, ever lasts long enough.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, shattered underpance lies,
With blown elastic, and exploded back,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Doktor Howl, Spag of Spags:
Look on my ass, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: The end of the world, Dok.
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2010, 11:39:15 pm »
Who told you there was a solution?  Odds are, it was a politician.  They promise solutions, just like preachers promise you rewards in the afterlife for behaving yourself here, and like the army promises you'll see the world (You will, but not the good parts, because people only fight over the shitty places.).

There is no solution, NP.  There's only yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And since there's no guarantee that you'll get a tomorrow, you'd damn well better start appreciating today.
and
Yes, you are perfectly right there Dok. I gotta get off of my high-horse (High-chair if you will); there's always room for things to be appreciated. Everything has gone through the hands of millions to get to the state it is at now ... that is alot of lives to make a more convenient tommorow (For most I like to think so...)

Things are better now than they were a hundred years ago, but not as good as they were 10 years ago.

Enjoy it while you can, because you can only get on the ride once, and it never, ever lasts long enough.

Hey Dok, ever heard "No Children" by the Mountain Goats? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wRP6egIEABk

Highlights include the lyrics:

Our friends say it's darkest before the sun rises
We're pretty sure they're all wrong
I hope it stays dark forever
I hope the worst isn't over
And I hope you blink before I do


Now, I'm off to research why my children want hookworms.
ďIím guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,Ē Charles Wick said. ďIt was very complicated.Ē