Thursday, February 23, 2006

I'll talk, you listen.

When I was young and naiive, around 10 or 11, I had an ideal.

I believed that one day, when all us kids had grown up and become adults, we would repeal all the laws that the greedy industrialists had passed, and we would write new, better-for-the-planet-and-everyone-on-it laws.

Like i said, naiive.

Because instead of growing up and remaining idealistic and gliding upon the strong and supple left wing of youth, we too wanted to get paid, and screw whoever/whatever got in our way. Well, not all of us. There are still those people who ride to their work on the same ten speed they had in high school, and they've been recycling their own paper since 1987 and all that. And good on them too.

But most of us don't wanna be like that.

And so as we get a taste of getting rich, and we have some money to protect, we vote in (or keep hold of) the Government that best suits us. And that Government isn't gonna be too hip and down with what the kids think.

Fuck the kids.

And so, it is with great regret and surprise, that I too have to admit that I am not the young person I used to be. I am becoming increasingly conservative. And I can't see how I ever used to be so bleeding heart and caring. I am becoming the classic Australian stereotype of 'the grumpy old cunt from down the road'.

Usually called Neville, or Cecil, or something wildly retro and evocative of getting pregnant at the dance with U.S. servicemen (yankee cervixmen) before everyone shipped off to die or donate legs and arms to the beaches of Turkey, I have joined the ranks. I'm not quite at the stage where I stand out front at 6pm watering the roses, with the races blaring out of the stereophone in the lounge room. I'm not a homeowner, and we have water restrictions. But I have caught myself thinking things I would have been horrified to confess as a younger person.

When will someone podcast the racing?

When I was young, I actually thought junkies were people. I honestly believed smack addicts deserved the same rights and priveleges as the rest of us. When John Howard blocked the opening of shooting galleries in Sydney, I thought he was insane and stuck in the 50's, for not seeing the need for these poor innocent victims of hateful drug dealing syndicates to have a clean, controlled place in which to satiate their addiction, without fear of overdose or infection.

If your ball comes over my fence, I'm keeping it.

Now I think we should give addicts one choice- clean up, or we clean you up. Instead of providing methadone on the pharmaceutical benefits scheme, we should have mandatory rehab clinics in every state. And you don't get out until you are clean. If you go back on smack, you can go to prison.

Oh, but it's a sickness! You can't blame these poor victims!

I've actually heard this. Like it's okay for everyone else in society to pay for their smack habit, just not them. As if someone held a gun to their head and said "try this delicious smack, or you're dead". If you have followed my blog (all 3 of you), you will know I have a massive problem with the death of personal responsibility in this country. It's simple. If you did it, it's your fault. If you were drink or drug impaired, it's still your fault. If you did it in your sleep, I'd let you off, but I would recommend medical supervision and treatment where possible. If you're a werewolf, I won't blame you, but I'll still lock you up until a cure comes to light.

I have turned into Cecil.

I have this thing where I now automatically hate guys from India, and taxi drivers. If I come across one of either, they have to show me pretty thoroughly they're not like 'the others'. How fucking xenophobic and arrogant is that?! All because the percentage of utterly rude and obnoxious Indian men I have crossed paths with in Australia is in the high nineties. It's probably my fault for not seeking out the good ones. And pretty much every Indian I met in India was lovely. I'm trying to tell you I know it's wrong to be so intolerant. I'm holding myself up as an example of what not to do. I'm making a dunce's cap and going to stand in the back corner of the class with my face to the wall. Bad, bad, bad, and wrong, wrong, wrong.

Children should be seen, and not heard.

The thing is, I think, is that it's easy to chalk it up to behaviourism. Like, getting set in your ways. But we have learned, in this more enlightened age, that it pays to keep an open mind. It's important to not freeze over when it comes to issues of social justice. You gotta keep your eyes and heart open, even though we're all so bombarded by pleas for help and donation requests. I saw the guys from Amnesty International had set up a human cattle pen on Elizabeth street in the city the other day, so no matter which way you walked or where you looked, they were right there asking. And that's bad and impolite. But it also shows how desperate aid organisations are becoming, as we put the walls up higher.

I know I'm heading in the wrong direction, and it's so important for me to find a balance, where I maintain my own boundaries, but still leave room for others to move into. I have to pry my mind open, and see the world from an understanding perspective, as opposed to the bullet train from knee-jerk-a-sawa. Because you can teack an old dog new tricks, it just takes longer.

Now where's my garden hose?

This is knifey, from 'the internet'.