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All cultures thrive on indoctrination. Passing down tradition like a long-winded telephone game. I used to hate it. I used to think it was a pointless human practice, but it’s probably just natural—to want the children to believe and think like you believe and think. To see if creation can work like an overworked office copy machine.
It rarely does—evolution happens just the same with ideas—and yet my aversion to religious and political systems—systems almost entirely reliant on indoctrination for survival—made me see red as a kid. Drove me to wear all black. Drove me to pick up a copy of Minor Threat’s discography at thirteen years old—drove me to jam track 3—red, I’m seeing red, I’m seeing red, I’m seeing red—drove me to relate.
When I was a kid, I thought punk rock was about nonconformity—about thinking for yourself—about not trying to fit in—about smashing the larger cultural system—but I’ve come to realize through books and collegiate classrooms and documentaries and my own self-examinations that countercultures work with and through the larger cultures and not against them—generally the only thing counter about them is their lower numbers of participants.
Poem of the Week
who have experienced
on a large
i tell raif
i think my
might be dead
haven't seen her
& her car hasn't moved
for two weeks.
you would smell it
passing me a plate
of triangular shaped bread
slathered in jam.
Story of the Week
DARLEEN SQUEELED into the empty spot as soon as the gleaming white Mercedes pulled out. "We got lucky," she told Montana. "Even on a Monday night, this lot is killer."
Montana rolled her big blue eyes. "Whatever."
The eleven year old had better things to do, like text her friends. Incessantly, as if she had a tic. The kid hadn't wanted to shop tonight, but Darleen insisted. This was their first Christmas without Paulie and the girls needed to stick together. Darleen's ex had been nasty lately and mediation had hit a cement wall. Montana wasn't aware how dangerously close they were to losing access to Paulie's vast and unreported wealth.
Montana sighed dramatically as she yanked open the door of the Porsche Cayenne and tumbled out. She didn't pause in her texting.
Darlene checked her face in the rearview mirror. The most recent fat transfer had been wildly successful. She loved her new lips. Grabbing her Gucci bag, she hopped out of the front seat.
Her daughter trailed her into the mall, thumbs flashing on her phone keypad.