13 July 2009

A case of the fedups.

I've got a case of the fedups. I've been trying to stay all positive, even reading silly books like Eat, Pray, Love (excellent substitute for inducing vomit in my very personal, absolutely minority opinion) and wondering what's happening all around. Friends tell me I'm just crabby because I don't like the monsoon. Some say I am sadder about Michael Jackson's death than I realise. And some think I'm generally disgusted with the shambles of the world we are living in. Now this is all true. I mean seriously, between Facebooking each other, writing random rants like this one, following macrobiotic diets to no avail, wasting money on really bad books, watching inane drivel in a movie theatre, reading trumped-up news with terrible grammatical errors and generally naffing off, what's the real deal these days?

When I was in London, I heard the same rants from friends. When I was in Geneva, even the Swiss jumped about like a large red tropical ant had eaten its way through their skisuit and was chomping on a wealthy bum. While I am in Bombay, I realise that the most exciting thing that people were talking about was a shoddy bridge connecting two parts of the city, with the worst emergency provisions I've ever seen in a so-called developed city. And I mean just lighting. Forget about accidents. Better to jump into the water and pray to an unhearing god.

All we seem to do is hear, talk, see, listen, explain, bitch and verify the same old shit. Politicians are crooked from the House of Commons in England to every house in India. Celebrities are dying of cancer or drug abuse and their funerals are nothing but hammy, showy, badly directed cheap television where even children aren't spared. Corruption ranges from charging a battery for 88p to government contracts handed out to unworthy sons-in-law. Google and Microsoft are at war again, as if there aren't enough wars to keep us busy and in danger until 2050 at least. Recession tales have become competitive- who's more screwed, you or I? The news channel are still worried about who is dating whom and is that his long-lost daughter? Oh no, wait, that's just Woody Allen again.

In the middle of this white noise, I am wondering, are books the last refuge? Are they really? Or are they becoming the same monster? Publishers will only publish already published famous authors because in this scary economic situation, new authors aren't a safe bet? Or will a new author bring down the aristocracy by writing a 'popular' book with very little literary life to it and yet win an astonishing prize? Shall we just stick with the classics? And yet, I walk into bookstores untiringly, only to find that people are really just there for the coffee and brownies. They are only there to 'pick up a gift for my friend's kid's birthday party' or only there because a popular socialite is 'doing a reading' of a book they haven't even read.

As I said, a case of the fedups. Where nothing seems to be worth writing about or doing or listening to. And if you are going to come up with some homily about life is beautiful or some such similar crap, spare me. As I said before, self-help writers make me vomit. And since when has it been politically incorrect to correctly identify the absence of genuine inspiration as just that?

Whatever happened to a good old-fashioned rant about the mediocrity of mankind and the accuracy of Thoreau?