Me is Dead; Me is… ALIVE!

How many personalities of mine have died? Over the years… I have changed so much. The old me is dead. It’s died again and again. That is one side of the coin. The other side is, I feel young, and it is still me here.
But that’s it, that’s why, dammit, I feel young because I’ve changed, again and again. Whether I wanted to or not, I haven’t stayed in stasis. Sometimes I chose change, more often that not it was forced on me. At times it seemed hard, but in the middle run it always was for the better… because it kept me young, flexible.
And I’ve died a thousand deaths anyway, Billions, more like. The greater part of the cells I am composed of aren’t the same ones that were me a month ago. I am, physically speaking, a new person. Each morning Hellstrøm the zombie awakens anew, shuffling through the day grunting at innocent passers-by who have no inkling that they too are zombies, that they are all gradually dying and being renewed at the same time by a power which they only dimly understand, if at all. ALIVE!
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Nobody Knows

Nobody knows how things will go on from here. Nobody knows. So don’t worry about it too much. Do what you can to anchor yourself in this insane flood we call life, and help others to do so if you can. We’ll all see what comes out in the end, whether we want to or not.
Determinism says you do what you do because of genetic predispositions and social conditioning aka environment. But that still doesn’t mean they can determine your behavior, so go do something crazy to drive them up the statistical wall, please, if you would be so kind. Exercise your free will. Had my fill of statistics lately. I’d rather hear music. Listening to Habib Koité, Saramaya. And now Mannse Cise. Like a damned classical arrangement, if it weren’t for the African rhythms and instruments.
Do I digress, perhaps?
Ah, hell. Just don’t listen to anybody, and do what you want to do, having thought it through. You’ve only got this one life, and when it’s done, it’s done. It’s your last chance. Do it, after considering the consequences. The only thing I ask is that you don’t hurt others on the way if you can possibly help it. Don’t hurt other sentient beings. What’s sentient? you might ask. Fuck if I know, you’ll just have to figure that out on the way. I consider most dogs I’ve known to be sentient, and I’ve met a few humans who left me in doubt. Perhaps sentience is not a the right criterion anyway . . . it’s for you to decide. It’s subjective. Nobody knows.
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And when your time comes, don’t take it so hard. Remember the good moments, and let them go. If die you must, then die with dignity. And if circumstances should prevent you from dying with dignity, then at least go down proud of what you have done in life, no matter how prosaic it may seem in retrospect. Wotthehell. Better than nothing.

Time

You lose. There is a sort of deep ferocity about it, isn’t there? The next are waiting. It’s cruel, time. You simply can’t win against time, being mortal. You’ll never get to say all you wanted to… there isn’t enough time. You’re waiting for the right moment, and it just isn’t there. Or it has already past… you’re not fast enough. By the time you’re old enough to realize what you want to say, no one is listening anymore. Time’s up, you’re fucked. Well, perhaps it’s all for the best. Or not. You’ll never know, because you’ll be dead. In any case, you’re fucked.
Listening to Turkeychase, from Bob Dylan, by the by.
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Levels

Get rid of the fucking levels, please. Often enough I’ve written about levels and how interesting they are, but when it gets down to the nitty gritty, I make things flat. Reduce it all to one level. At the moment I mean this in the technical sense. You know, technical shit, computers and all.
I get data from all over the world, and I feed it to machines that are supposed to make sense of it. And when they get data that is on many levels, they choke on it, more often than not.
I don’t blame them. If someone were to feed me data that included so many levels, I might choke on it, and no one would think the worse of me, though my brain is far more complex than any software yet invented, so complex that it can even master something we call intuition. So why do people expect that to work with a printing machine, a machine that reduces data to a two-dimensional graphic that someone can look at and understand? These are machines that, in the end, bring ink to paper. It doesn’t matter that the ink is actually not ink at all, but rather artificial resin, or wax, or solvent-based tints. It’s a physical process, dammit. It’s hardware. It’s simple. And though it is guided by software, it’s no wonder that it chokes on levels.
All these levels are only present in our minds, and they have no place in the physical, the real world. At least not in the real printing world. So, no matter what you want to have printed, please, just… just please… get rid of the fucking levels before you send it to the printer.
So much for the technical side, now to the philosophical. Gimme the levels, baby. The more the better. Maybe you’ll force my mind on its knees with them, but I’ll have fun trying to figure them out (well, mostly). Life is not as simple as bringing ink to paper, thank stochastic and the crazed human brain. So, gimme the levels! Make me think, please!
I may not like the truth you speak, but I will think about it. Even if it is a lie, I will think about it. I will take it in my mental hands and turn it hither and thither and look at all the levels and wonder. I’ll pick those levels apart and try to understand them. Why did you make those levels? What do they mean to you, to me? Who are you, that you were impelled to build those levels as you did?
It never ceases to fascinate me: the human penchant to take things apart, to categorize them in to many different little levels. But the most fascinating thing of all is that the actual goal of all this minute analysis is to make an understandable whole. In the end, we want to bring things down to one single level after all. We want to understand everything. We want a formula, a simple statement, that will describe everything. The answer.
That is insane. It’s impossible. Crazy apes! Crazy, stupid apes!
Is that all there is? There’s something in me striving, driving for more. There has to be an answer, it says. I doubt I’ll find it, but someone will, if the human race should be lucky, and survive long enough. Yeah, well, the other side of my coin says, each answer poises new questions. It’s like trying to find the smallest particle… there is alway something smaller yet. And the answer gets smaller and smaller… until there is nothing left but nothing.
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I am anything but alone in this, and I know many people find the answer in God. It’s a simple, flat answer. Belief allows them to live their lives in peace, because they don’t have to think about it anymore. It’s as if they’d been printed on a piece of paper, and that’s it, black on white. Well, maybe there are colors, too, but in any case it’s a done deal. Tempting, isn’t it? Someone printed me, with intent, I am a product, made with something in mind, with purpose. Though I may not understand the purpose, just as ink on paper has no knowledge of what it says, I have a purpose.
Well, I am literally laughing out loud, rolling on the fucking floor at that statement… purpose? You’re kidding me, right? You… *gasp* you can’t mean it seriously? Hahahaaaa…..! Oh shit, I’m gonna die, can’t get no air…! *Gag*
Alright, I survived. I didn’t die from that gut-laugh. My body prevented me from dying for lack of air. It’s part of the paper I’m printed on: my physical body will not allow me to give up. Not for comedy, not for philosophy, not for anything. No matter how hard I laugh or cry over it all, I have to go on. The man in me won’t let me give up.
That man in there, what does he want? I don’t dare forget him, because he is the one who drives me, in the end. He may think about all these things I describe, but basically he has another agenda. He wants to see his children grow, he wants to live and love… the basic things of life. He is an ape, and he knows it. He has no problem with that knowledge. He couldn’t care less about the world at large. He’ll kill to defend his own, and he’ll drink a drop on the way to make the killing easier. He doesn’t give a damn about purpose, provided it’s not his own purpose. He’s been indoctrinated with certain ideals, but he’ll bend them to suit his needs and desires. Slightly. He can’t, after all, jump out of his own skin. Even if he could, he wouldn’t want to. Fortunately he has not been brought up to believe in God, for otherwise he would most likely do so.
He has been brought up in doubt. He doesn’t know, therefor he inquires. Sometimes it makes him unhappy, nevertheless he reminds himself that, as Voltaire put it, doubt is not a pleasant state of mind, but certainty is absurd. On the other hand, it is his sense of absurdity, when he thinks about it, that keeps him from going insane. That, and his belief in love. Belief.
Oh, shit, belief? I might just as well believe in God, or? But for me, God is just a concept. I can’t feel God. I can feel love. You can tell me a thousand times over that love is just a mixture of chemicals in my body and brain that make me feel that way, and intellectually I will pay you heed, but you will never ever convince the man in me. So, when it comes down to it, am I just as bad as a fanatic religionist. My glands rule me, crazy little animal that I am. But I am at least aware of it, and I don’t swear it is the only truth for all of mankind. I wouldn’t go out and kill other people because they don’t love.
However, this is the belief that keeps that crazy little ape in me in line. If it weren’t for that, I would run amok. Without that belief, my life would be worthless, and I would show all the other crazy apes what that means: I’d kill, and kill, and kill… because I don’t like people. They are a bunch of fucking assholes, slaves to greed and idiocy and the feeling of power. Love, that is the most meaningful thing for me. It’s the way I am built, nothing I can do about it. Without love, I’d be a loose cannon.
So, you may be wondering, like me, how I came from levels in print-data to love and death. Just goes goes to show how everything hangs together. Or how a creative mind can establish weird connections. A crazy mind, what the fuck. As usual, you can’t take anything I say at face value. Trickery. The rings under my eyes hang down to my balls, and that is an indication of how seriously you should take my statements. Very seriously, or not at all.
More rum, please.

Reminiscence

Two strawberries lie on a wood cutting board, one has been bitten in to. The man who has just bitten in to the strawberry wipes at the drops of juice that have fallen on the piece of paper he is writing on. He drinks a bit of wine, thinking that the wine has real character. He stops and wonders if he should think about his life, but decides it isn’t necessary. Another drop of wine. The strawberries are quite delicious. He lights a pipe of hashish, inhaling deeply and holding the smoke in his lungs. Recently he’s been told he may have cancer, but he doesn’t really believe it. Even if he really had it, it wouldn’t  phase him. Cancer is mostly curable, so he thinks. His chances are good. And he always has been lucky with important things. He eats the rest of the strawberry, there’s just one left.
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Wine. Smoke. The fact is, he doesn’t have cancer, but he doesn’t know that. He doesn’t care, even if it turns out he will have to die… because he has children. Beautiful children that make everything whole. He knows, without thinking of it, that he can leave them and they will survive. Even if he dies he has given them power for life, strength to keep on. He is sure of it. He bites in to the last strawberry; it’s amazingly tasty for this time of year. He decides to save half for later and takes a smoke. It’s not like I want to die, he reflects. Fuck no, I want to live, and enjoy it as long as I can. Might be five weeks, might be 50 years. He grabs the bottle and pours another glass. He doesn’t know what to write anymore, so he goes and takes a piss. The children are snug in bed. He flushes the toilet by mistake, but no one wakes up. He goes and drinks some more wine, and smokes some more hashish. Half a strawberry is looking up at him from the cutting board. First more wine. Should he get some bread and cheese? No, somehow, the remaining half a strawberry will have to do. Wonderful. He eats it and takes a mouthful of wine afterwards, letting the taste mingle in his mouth. Heady.

Have Some Fun

It’s later than you think. Soon you will die, oh so soon. It’s just a matter of years. Those little short years, you’ve surely noticed how fast they go? So have some fun, live it full, tell your love that you are hers, or his, as the case may be. Fill your cup to the brim, because it may be your last.
We all have to go some time. A man I know is about to go. He ain’t all that old, but hell, cancer sits in ’im, and he has to go. He’s not the first I’ve seen go. Good people… they go just as fast as the bad, if not faster. Will I be there, at the burial? No, but I’ll honor him in any case, in my way.
So, you get older, and you notice how people die. People you know. Whether it’s the people you look up to, the mentors, or people you got to know in passing… they all go. A few of them are left, and at some point you start to wonder when you are next, when you are the one they knew who went down.
That’s life. That’s normal. Life is death is life is death… and we are all made of stardust. There is no life that wasn’t made of death. The atoms of which you are made are recycled. Nature doesn’t waste a single fucking one of them. You are a mouse, a stone, a star, a bloody fucking porcupine. A part of you is a bird, that flew so far and wide. A part of you is lava, that was thrown so high… perhaps, at one point, you traveled, as a little stone, from deep in the earth, over thousands of years, to the surface of this beautiful planet. Or you were the stratosphere. You were air. Does it matter?
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So there is nothing to complain about. You will die, as you have died before, a thousand times, in one form or another, whether you were inanimate or not. This is not religion, you little fuck, this is nature. The atoms you are made of are (nearly) indestructible. And, even if I could destroy the atoms you are made of, the atoms are made of something else, smaller yet, which can not be destroyed.
So you are a beautiful creation, indestructible. You had to be. But you are a part of the whole. You are indestructible only in the absolute, natural sense. Nature will reorganize you, will use you, will disperse you according to „her“ stochastical „needs“.
Why is nature female? Because she is the source of life. There are animals which do not rely on females to produce offspring, but human beings do. So for us, feeling, living, squirming little animals that we are, life and the creation of life is inevitably a female thing.
As a man, I am in awe of women. Not all of them, I’ll admit. There are some I could dispense with entirely. But then, I can say the same of men. But I digress, as so often. What I wanted to say is: I worship women because they can brew life. They bake babies, and that is insanely wonderful and definitely worth envying. It is amazing. It throws me for a loop, dammit, it shoves me off the stool on to the floor… I sit there on my ass and am amazed. Amazed. It’s insane, this ability, it’s like: KAZAM! Crazy. Impossible. Something out of a nutty science-fiction novel. And women can do it, just like that, like nothing. They don’t even have to try. I know that they couldn’t do it without men to inseminate them, but nevertheless… I’ve seen a woman give birth; I saw my son come out, so I know what the hell I am talking about. The simple fact that women can produce babies sets them on a higher level in my eyes. It makes them worthy of worship.
Too bad I have no female to worship at the moment.