I remember my last heartache. Well — I’ve had many heartaches in this my current relationship. I guess I should just say, I remember heartache. It’s on my mind because of a strangely compelling tweet from a woman that I ran across the other day. It said something like, “You’ll really be [verb-ing] some guy’s [nouns] like a fine vintage wine one day and not even speaking the next.” What a strange thing to have lodged in my mind, but it’s poignant! It is shocking, and emotionally violent — the cognitive dissonance of sexual intimacy alongside the standoffish rhetorical guessing game that can escalate, like a cold war, into total non communication — and seemingly for no other reason than that you did, in fact, sleep together. So awful. I was vol-cel when I met Nick, I should have stayed vol-cel longer than I did after I met Nick, and I’d be vol-cel for sure if we broke up. My last heartache was how I came to that conclusion — that vol-cel was the medicine I needed. Sex, the engine of creation, seems most likely to destroy everything, and for what?
I think this is why people resort to the use of friends with benefits. They’re like, “I’m just going to isolate sex’s intrinsic damage over here, where it can be limited and contained, and won’t impact the people and circumstances I’m actually breathless over and need to not mess up.” How, also, awful.
I don’t know if this, also, is another facet of my emerging Conservatism in the face of 2020 — actually, let me just illustrate that a little better, before I go on. There was some movie that came out and it was probably unremarkable and I never saw it and I don’t really care to even get the facts, but the trailer involved people in these unworkable situations — who desperately needed money, I believe? — and someone would come to their house with a big red button. There would be a conversation at the kitchen table: if you press this big red button, you will receive a lot of money, or good luck or whatever, BUT someone, somewhere, will die. You might know them. You probably won’t. But you, pushing this button, will be the cause of their death. It was a movie about moral quandaries. I imagine — like I said, never saw it.
Then, there was a satirical trailer that came out, where the mysterious keeper of the big red button couldn’t even manage to finish explaining that the button would bring wealth, but also kill someone, before the other person mashed it down. Just instant: bam. But wait —! Someone will die —! Bam, they’d hit it again. No hesitation, no moral quandary. Where’s my money, mofo? Bam! Just hitting it, like a nine year old playing Call of Duty.
So that was funny. What if they threw a moral quandary and no one came?
Anyway, my experience of 2020 has been like: I’m sitting at my kitchen table. I’m totally stressed because I’ve just discovered that almost everyone I know has tested positive for believing literally anything they’re told. Even worse — while they’re milling around, lugubriating at the sky, a political coup is being organized to fuck us all over. If I mention this whatsoever, they all start slow motion attacking me. If I stop mentioning it, they resume milling around.
So I’m sitting at my kitchen table and I’m rubbing that spot between my eyebrows. There’s a knock at the door. It’s someone with a big red button. The button says “TRUMP”. This person is trying to explain to me that, if I push the button, the political coup won’t succeed, and Constitutional values will prevail. People will be allowed to jump at their own shadows all they want, but they can’t keep shutting down the economy, trying to make us all accept the idea of permanent welfare slavery. BUT —
And then I just smash my palm down on the button. “Done!”
The keeper of the button, though, is like “But wait! If you push the button, everyone will think you’re a Conservative —!”
“— white supremacist —!”
“— science-denying —!”
“— worshipper of the cult of the Orange Man!”
Bambambambambam. Price: paid. Happily.
Anyway, back to my point — I don’t know if this is a facet of my emerging-slash-apparent Conservatism or what, but more and more I think that…
What do I think? It’s something like: sex represents the distillation of our spiritual sickness or wellness, individually and collectively. I guess I would call it “medicine”, but kind of the way the Navajos use the word, specific to like peyote. I was in an all-night peyote ceremony back in my early 20’s, and I’d always heard about peyote making people vomit, but I’d never tried it before. There was an awful tea and big basket full of awful buttons to chew, and both kept going around and around, with the taking of more being low key expected. It’s not pleasant, that’s for sure. But the road man said, it will only make you sick if your heart’s not in the right place — meaning you’re not fully committed to the patient’s wellbeing. I forget if this was the one where I was the patient or not. I attended a couple, and one was for me.
So this is brilliant, right? It’s easy to SAY you care about this, that, and the other, and even put on a convincing show. But that’s why these plants are regarded as not only medicines but actual *teachers*, by indigenous cultures. They expose you. You can say whatever you want, but you’ll be made to vomit, and leave the ceremony, if your heart is not right. I thought my heart was right? I mean, it makes you question your own level of commitment, you know. And ultimately I felt no urge to vomit or be sick, so I passed the mescaline test. My heart was right enough.
So that’s what I mean when I say sex is a medicine, a teacher, but in the peyote sense. It will eviscerate you, if your heart’s not in the right place. It will make you sick. And if your heart is in the right place — it can still make you sick, dealing with a partner whose words and heart-level intentions do not match. You should know better than to take *their* medicine, in this case. This has nothing to do with societally sanctioned rules and regs — I’m talking about all the way spiritual integrity.
And frankly I don’t find a lot of resonance, anywhere, certainly not on either side of the aisle, politically, with how I tend to see things here. On the Left — and I was very liberal and very free spirit and all that, all of my life — sex is constructed as this biological function, this human right, this defining form of empowerment — to express ourselves sexually, and fully, and evolvingly, however we choose, without finding ourselves hampered by obsolete tradition or archaic dogmatism. On the Right — you’re just not supposed to be having sex willy nilly, or that seems to be the takeaway. You’re supposed to get saddled up in some kind of formalized agreement that makes sense and connects you to the larger community in a meaningful way, all of that.
So, yeah, I’m not really talking about either of those two things. And I know, this is probably not the closest alligator to everyone’s boat right now, as we discuss whether or not video evidence of election fraud should count as a thing to consider real, or part of reality. Yep — that’s where we’re at. Or as Scott Adams puts it: “Democrats think they ‘follow the science’ when they can’t even tell they are watching fake news all day long.” Lol.
But whatever, I’m going to blog about it anyway. I think spiritually well people could theoretically go around having sex willy nilly and it would be fine. I doubt they would, but they could. I think spiritually sick people could pay lip service to every respectful custom and the experience would still be toxic. I think all of us are in a position to somewhat salvage sex, in our own lives, from the flaming wreckage of its misunderstanding and mistreatment both within our own culture and throughout most of human history. And I think a big way we can do that is to respectfully abstain, except when it would pass the mescaline test. And if we don’t understand what that means, we should figure that out first.
In fact, I’m so grateful to have sat in those peyote ceremonies, all those years ago, because I think they gave me a frame of reference for right-heartedness that some people have probably never even cultivated. If you were to ask them, “Is your heart right?,” they’d use their monkey mind to concoct some rationale. And no offense, either. I mean, that’s what we do. It’s just different when a big basket of peyote is being handed to you, by firelight, and the NAC road man tells you, “That will make you sick if you’re heart’s not in the right place.” A psychedelic, and importantly non-verbal, polygraph test.
So, strange as it may sound, my heart hurts for all the people wounded by sex. And I don’t mean crazy stuff like rape, roofies, sexual violence, pedophilia, things that are obviously wrong. I mean, the people who’ve been hurt like I’ve been hurt. By knowing you’re playing with a fire whose only real intention is to burn you and then getting burned anyway, like a dumbass, or even worse — not knowing that’s the kind of fire you’re playing with. Actually believing someone. Except when you take their medicine, it does show you the truth, the one way it can. And it’s not even an attack or judgement. Any given person can have their heart lined up, or not, at any given time. It’s just an indicator.
I feel mostly buffered from all of these problems — mostly.
Speaking of medicine, and being buffered from problems, Buffy has become quite the little stoner. There’s something in our yard that she can’t get enough of. She doesn’t eat it — she just roots around, for hours and hours, wagging her tail avidly. Total tunnel vision. She checks all her little spots again and again, toddling around in an industrious and bean-counting manner. Nick coined a nickname for her: Bangkok Burf (because it’s like she goes into jungle stealth mode) but then changed it to Apothecary Burf. She is BLAZED, all day long. I’m not going to confine her to the house without good reason — she loves it out there — and whatever it is doesn’t seem to be actually hurting her. So…yeah. Her normal sad-sack demeanor has changed to having a huge grin, with a big pink tongue. Normally she never makes eye contact but now she just gazes at me happily from the chemically altered reality of her own private opium den. This same thing happened with a tree in our yard in Albuquerque, for five or six weeks, and then she lost interest. So, who knows. She’s asleep next to me right now — resting up for her next bender.
Milo has remained totally immune to all this. He prefers males, though, it’s become obvious. Now that Nick is gone much of the day with his surprise job, Milo doesn’t resort to me. He sits on my brother’s lap, or my dads, and waits for Nick to come home. He’s a little man’s man, turns out!
Okay — got a late start blogging today, and that means it’s already barbell time.