More of a social justice worrier.

I’m not struck by inspiration to write as we speak. There isn’t a lot growing at the top of my brain stem, no ripe fruit ready to pluck. I’m writing because I want to clear this out to keep my evening free. Treating my daily task as no more than detritus, inspiring stuff, no? If there’s anything inspiring me at the moment, it’s that some hapless reader stumbled upon this page by searching for an insane, arbitrary Coco Pops ad from 90s New Zealand television. If anything should make me feel good about both my reach and irreverence, that’s it. Almost as heart warming as all of the “marshmallow porn” searches that find my page. Did I accidentally create a fetish for someone? I never thought myself to be so seminal. Then again, there was that window when I thought I’d sculpted Cake and Cunnilingus Day from my own grey head putty. Google was quick to call me out. Thanks buddy.

It doesn’t worry me, but the sheer number of arcane unrelated terms that people could search to find this place is staggering. Judging by the recent blood-in-the-water reaction to Trevor Noah’s crappy tweets from years past, if I ever held a position of influence I’d topple before long. It’s scary, how things work these days. I’m a huge fan of trying to make this world more accepting, aware of the influence of their actions and words, but that doesn’t alleviate my small fear that I would be torn asunder if I was anyone who mattered. The sheer quantity of shitty problematic things I’ve said or written in what almost seems like a past life is gargantuan. If you looked through this writing project you wouldn’t even need a fine toothed comb to pick out all kinds of ticks that’ve gone unchecked. I’ve said oodles of stupid things. Most of us have. I don’t know what it is, but there’s some extension of activism that seeks to tear people asunder at even the smallest step aside from a virtuous path. Just letting you guys know that if and when the time comes that I’m in the public eye, I’ll be the largest target.

I can’t help but think if someone called me on something I’ve said, the only viable response would be “you’re probably right. I’ve said and probably do say dumb things. Let me know how I can be better and I’ll try.” What more can someone do? I regret knowing that I have the capacity to really hurt people and that in all honesty I probably have. I hope I’ve never done irreparable damage, but I’m aware it’s a possibility. You might not think it from my numerous crazed ravings, but I’ve got a big mouth to go with them big lungs. It sometimes talks faster than my brain can compute.

One thing I’ve never understood though, is absolute pride. How much power do you need to wield to make an apology remotely a big deal? I fuck up all the time. I do or say something that I realise affects someone in a negative fashion. I say sorry. If I realise I’ve made an arse of myself, I apologise. Because I want to be better, and acknowledging that is at least a step in the right direction. I was a loudmouthed asshole and at times still can be. As a teenager (and probably some time beyond that) I made countless jokes about rape, cancer, death, poverty, mental illness, sexuality and loads more. If something could affect or afflict someone, I’ve probably joked about it. Over time as perspective has sunk in, I’ve shied away from that kind of thing. I’m sure I still make jokes about affecting things, but I’d hope that at the very least I’ve learned about my audience and how I’d frame them. At the very least I’d hope that I’m able to understand the difference between humour at the expense of a victim and humour that exposes a problematic system’s structure.

I guess what I’m saying is, humans have the capacity to be very myopic. If you’ve always lived your life with tunnel vision, how would you be expected to see beyond that? We also have the capacity to be open to change. I don’t think I’m a bad person, but I’ve definitely had some problematic views in the past. Is it right for me to be burned alive over these things? Well that’s your choice. I’d hope that your first response would be to explain to me why it is the things I’ve said or done were an issue or how they made you feel, so that I could come to understand how to improve. It’s hard for me to open my eyes to new views if I’m having to shield my current one from assailants. I don’t need to get defensive if I’m not being attacked. Call me on my shit, but do it by helping me learn, not saying I’m shit.

Thank fuck I’m not on Tumblr…

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