Thursday, February 27, 2014

Then Again, Maybe I'm Just A Terrible Person

Now, I don't suppose it's going to come as a surprise to anyone that I have been occasionally known to take the moral high ground here.*

*Unless this is the first thing you've ever read here, in which case - surprise.

While I stand behind my moral superiority for the larger chunk of things (and it should as always be observed that dogs are better than people), I've recently become aware that I might be at least partially evil.

Exhibit One - as regards the ongoing grey sedan situation.

I've discovered a couple of things about myself over the course of the ongoing parking spot struggle.  Primarily, that the threat of someone else taking my parking spot is enough to get me out of bed on time and into work before 9 (A feat that nothing else has heretofore accomplished)

But more than that, I've recently become aware that just getting to my spot as god intended isn't enough for me.  Sure, I get that celebratory rush as I pull into the waiting space, my firm vehicle thrusting forward into the tremulously waiting void.  It's purchase sliding gently into the waiting effervescent... I'm sorry, what was I talking about again?  Right... The parking spot...

I've realized that I'm not completely happy about things until I slip back down to the parking ramp mid-morning and look around to make sure the grey sedan is there and parked somewhere less convenient.  After all, if not then how am I to know that the owner of the grey sedan just wasn't coming in that day, in which case I would only have won by default.  It's not enough to have my rightful spot-  I need to have made the grey sedan suffer. I need to have beaten them.

I'm not entirely proud of it, but there it is.  When I see that well scrubbed and detailed shiny grey bastard parked in that awkward spot around the corner of the elevator bay where the smokers like to lurk, it moves me inside.  Mmmmmmmmmmm.  The sweet smell of victory and stale nicotine.

Exhibit Two - As regards uplifting religious videos

The other day I came across a 3 minute long video that had been posted by some well meaning church or other that showed a guy getting in his car and driving to get coffee.  On the way we hear his internal monologue as he's inconvenienced by all manner of things; a kid on a skateboard who gets in his way while backing out, a woman who steals his parking spot*, people that cut in line at the coffee place, etc.  Then, as he sits down in frustration he's approached by that all too common character in 'post racism' film and television - the 'mystical black person'** who hands him a pair of glasses that - when worn - allows him to see in writing what every single persons greatest personal issue is.

*He has my sympathy on this one.

** In all seriousness, this is a disturbing trend in modern film (see 'The Legend of Bagger Vance' to see the phenomena I mean.)  The upshot of it is that somehow Hollywood has embraced the concept that by showing minorities as 'mystical spirit guides' to their regular crew of white protagonists that it's somehow making a bold statement about race relations.  As opposed to what it's really doing, which is continuing the tradition of presenting all minorities as only being relevant in how they affect the lives of white people.  It really is, frankly, repugnant the more you dig into it and I whole-heartedly wish that we would all stop pretending it isn't.  A good overview of the issue can be found here, although - as always - Wikipedia should never be considered an unimpeachable source.

So, armed with these glasses, the man in question sees that the guy who cut in line at the coffee shop has just 'Never know the feeling of friendship', the woman who took his parking spot is 'mourning her best friend*, and the kid on the skateboard 'Just needs someone to care'.


The basic point, obviously, is 'hey butthole, everybody else has problems too.  Maybe you could cut the people around you a little slack'.  But what I took away from the video was 'Man.  You could make a killing out of people if you had those glasses.  I mean, just take the 'never had friendship' guy.  You don't suppose that if you became his friend he wouldn't... say.. buy dinner...?  A new blu-ray player...?  Plane tickets to Tahiti...?   You could unquestionably clean up with a pair of magic glasses that show you the primary weaknesses of each and every person who comes into your line of sight.  No question.  And God help the kid who 'just needs someone to care' should those glasses fall into the hands of the friendly neighborhood pedophile.

Sometime after the first fifteen minutes of thinking about this I started to question how good a person I actually was.

And then I went down to the parking ramp to look for a grey sedan.

Yeah..... Still totally winning...

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