A Vengeful Jack Russell

When stuck with a problem in our surroundings there have and always will be three options. They are: defiance, ignorance or apathy and finally, find pastures new. Unfortunately, all require some level of effort; even being ambivalent to it all since the problem will stick around like herpes and it’ll still kill the mood  – again, like herpes. I’m facing a problem right now and my fair adopted city of York seems like cross between a fish bowl and a prison cell. The company I used to keep has definitely come back to bite me in the arse like a vengeful Jack Russell.

The feeling of being totally trapped and spooked by shadows is something that’s universal through history and the uncomfortable air of it all marks the difference between existing and being allowed to live. That’s what it comes down to for me and perhaps others considering the unnecessary crushing cruelty of reality that seems to shit on you at every turn. It’s like reading an expensive academic textbook that has no good information in it, but you have to read it to make the most of your investment. Thinking about it, that analogy is a bit wishy-washy but the point stands. To make matters worse, in some cases, people who find themselves at the shit end of the stick will inadvertently create more problems for themselves trying to find that cure for their particular herpes, accidentally spreading it like peanut-butter in the shit sandwich of life.

A prime example of this is perhaps my own fuck up. In an attempt to ignore and be apathetic towards my situation, I’m realising that I have inadvertently alienated a good portion of the support network that I had which could have had helped me out of this grave that I’ve seemed to dug for myself. It’s probably too late to do anything about it and I’m going to have to take responsibility for that level of destruction. I can even trace back this whole situation to a poor decision back in October when I got myself into a relationship more toxic than the atmosphere on Venus. Self-realisation and responsibility for that is, in my opinion, a good first step and maybe that’s something for everyone to take away. Looking back and retracing your steps to the root of whatever problem is perhaps, the only true meaningful way of moving forward.

Admittedly, moving forward is always going to be an uphill battle where you’ll have shit raining from the heavens upon you but at least the first effort would have been made. Finding the motivation for the climb up the hill, or out of the grave, or whatever analogy you like is unfortunately, perhaps, the hardest part. Being miserable becomes habit and almost ritual, which is something you don’t learn about in those PSHE lessons in school. Thinking about it, maybe they did teach us but I couldn’t tell you the name of a single person who paid attention.

A Vengeful Jack Russell

Synchronised Skydiving

When we are alone, do we invite disaster? Say if there was someone else with us at the time we make some decisions to tell us that’s the stupid one, would we be more likely to make the right one? For example, I think if someone was with me this morning, they would have told me to demand a refund when I was served a cold toffee latte. That’s on a minor scale but it could be said that being alone is both the best of times and worst of times – freedom yet free falling.

I’m not saying that group mentality is any better take the London Riots, that snowballed until it became an avalanche because of too many voices all harmonising in anger, rising quick and hot. It’s that one other person, that sole company, just to lean on is what we all fundamentally need. That person may change from time to time but in that time free-falling becomes synchronised skydiving. For many people, this comes in the form of marriage – which personally I don’t see any merit in – and for others it means having lots of friendships which amount to the support. The latter is, in my experience, an incredible fucking hassle.

You’ll find the people who choose to be alone just haven’t found someone to prop themselves up on or have and that other person isn’t one for propping.  It’s then people do seemingly strange things that most would raise an eyebrow at in 2017. Hobbies like trainspotting (literally, not shooting up in Scotland), journal keeping or collecting sex dolls. Speaking of which, aren’t those quite literally a last resort in the quest to find someone to lean on and someone to be intimate with? A physical manifestation of an imaginary friend which has the added bonus of that you can fuck them and perhaps, feel less self-loathing than you would if you had PornHub bookmarked in your internet browser. It’s become such a modern phenomenon that the industry is legitimately affecting UK legislation right now as there’s going to be a review, and rightly so, into having an import ban on child-like sex dolls which should be called robots more than anything these days considering how responsive they reportedly are. Hell, the fringe movement is becoming so technologically advanced that Channel 4 created a sci-fi series based around the controversy of customisable robotic partners becoming more popular than real ones. In that sense, is it true companionship and actual sex or is it just advanced masturbation?

That was a bit of a tangent but the point is that as humans, we’ve individually tried to find a herd for ourselves – and this is where I’m trying desperately not to sound like a shitty quote from any of seemingly endless Ice Age films. We’re not smarter together and perhaps not stronger either, but unity gives us a weird conviction and purpose. It’s the kind you can’t find on your own and even the lone ranger of the Great American Desert needs their horse.

On the other side of that of course, is that peace of being alone. Not particularly intrinsically reliant on one person and comfortable with the knowledge that one day there might be or won’t be. That’s where I am or so I think, I don’t know, ask me again tomorrow. Yet right now perhaps like millions of others in this weird blank space of self-devised solitude, it’s okay. While it’s not synchronised skydiving, it’s more like how Toy Story’s Buzz Lightyear put it: ‘falling with style’.  Still, like I said, ask me again tomorrow.

Synchronised Skydiving