Before you get all self righteous and indignant, let me very clearly start out by saying that of course I don’t want anybody to die. I don’t even want anybody to get sick. I know that none of you do either. What we do want, and in fact love though, is the next big scare.
I know that I’m not the only sick twisted individual. I know that most of us are all the same. I’ve seen the heart of man and found it lacking. If it does not affect you directly or anyone you know, then let er rip. It’s finally something substantial to talk about at the water cooler, the local pub, or the opium den; wherever it is that you gather and converse. Whoever you are and wherever you go, you can plainly see the barely concealed glimmer of excitement and hope that there is something, anything, going on.
We are now officially a society of grinning, yellow parka wearing, weathermen swaying on the white sand beaches of Key West, huffing and puffing at the camera about how this is the big one, this could reach a cat 5. While behind us looks for all the world, exactly like a corona commercial espousing the virtues of tranquility and alcohol.
Most of us grew up on ‘The A Team’ and ‘Knight Rider’ (before Hasselhoff could be found making sweet love to a Wendy’s hamburger with his face.) We grew up with ‘Rambo’ and ‘The Terminator’. I know that I was definitely supposed to be ‘Indiana Jones’ by now, damn it. Instead of running through the jungle, kung fu fighting, and blowing shit up in spectacular fashion, most of us (although not me, ha-he) are rotting away in a post-industrial wasteland, lit by phosphorescent lighting, sitting, always sitting, in a cubicle. I doubt that even ten percent of us are living up to even our most mundane childhood fantasies. So when a chance for excitement comes, any chance, we cling to it with a quiet desperation.
We love it because we love adrenaline, it’s the last vestige of our fight or flight animal nature. Most of us are now so far removed from any real danger that our minds clutch at the slightest promise of any true, real, red alert, elevated risk, dangerous danger. Even if it’s in the form of a 100 degree temperature and some aches and pains. Possibly the dreaded nausea. Yes people have died, but more people die from bizarre S and M accidents. Swine flu is scary because it’s the unknown and the unknown is always scary. Beautifully, deliciously, scary!
It’s must be absolutely terrifying for Muslims as the biggest disgrace they could ever endure is being buried with a pig or part of a pig. It’s one of those things that you wouldn’t do to your worst enemy. This would be like getting raped by Satan at the cellular level. That would suck. Getting raped by Satan I mean.
Anyway if I was wrong about human nature there would not be so many 24 hour, all ridiculous all the time, news networks out there. CNN, MSNBC, Fox, The Doomsday Channel, and the always popular Apocalypse Nightly. If you really pay attention it’s always ‘the end’ on these shows. The end of our civil liberties, the end of our sovereignty, the end of America as we know it, the collapse of Glenn Beck’s emotions, the explosion of Bill O’Reilly’s head. The end of the world, baby!
All I’m really saying is that I think everybody (especially me) still daydreams that their life will miraculously turn into an action movie. It’s exactly these kind of news stories, this fatalism, that keeps the ‘I Am Legend’ flame lit. Yep, it’ll be Will Smith and me kicking ass, taking names, and saving humanity. Well maybe Will Smith, me, and Sanjay Gupta.