The Best and the Rest

I’m so offended by the plot points of the national narrative that emerged yesterday that I’m going to force myself to not even talk about it for a bit, and anchor some immediacy instead.  Every day has been something, of course, but this has just got me squinting at my computer.  I really felt it.  

Okay so self-imposed cooling-down prelude.  I woke up.  

No, fuck that, I’ll get back to it.  This juxtaposition of Seattle Chief of Police Carmen Best’s forced resignation on the same day as Kamala Harris’ appointment as Dem VP has shredded the last thin veneer of credibility the racial justice movement had, and for me it had nearly none already, from the talking heads on TV (via my phone) all the way down to every excited white girls on my FB feed, and all points in between.  I don’t know who needs to hear this today, but race and gender doesn’t in itself make you worth a shit at your job, and we’re hiring and firing people relative to some pretty damn important jobs.  The Onion, my favorite satirical news outlet — and the only news outlet in a position to play the ridiculousness of both sides, as it arises, which is interesting because you’d think the other news outlets might as well, but they don’t, which tells me everything I need to know about following the money — anyway, the Onion had a headline back in ’09: East Timor’s First Female Dictator Hailed As Step Forward For Women: “Amivi Gama’s violent rise to power has proved that women are just as capable as men when it comes to brutality and oppression.”  That’s where we’re at, people.  

Kamala Harris could be all that and a bag of chips, as every excited white girl on my FB feed is convinced, but the fact remains that somehow, through some extraordinary set of missteps, the Democratic Party chose as their fighter the ultimate Old White Man avatar.  Biden was markedly more coherent even earlier this year — it’s really shocking to compare footage of him at the Democratic primaries to what’s coming out literally every day, now, and being hastily suppressed every day by his personal PR team, the MSM.  He’s fucking cracked, and as I’ve said before, continuing to advance him feels almost like elder abuse to me; the only silver lining being that decrepitude may slow his roll when it comes to sniffing little girls’ hair and sexually assaulting random bystanders.  If I lived at an RV park — and I have lived at RV parks before — and Joe Biden lived there too, which would be entirely unsurprising, I would not come in for iced tea; I would not have him babysit my dog; I would not hang out in lawn chairs with him.  It’s obvious that he has no moral compass whatsoever, and he disguises this by maintaining an easy-going, good-times-guy demeanor, and it’s clear he doesn’t really like conflict, so he dodges and capitulates, all without any head-heart connection or shred of integrity.  That’s the read I get on Joe Biden.  And then you take all that and add some dementia and the fussiness and disorientation of advanced age, and you get exactly what we’ve seen.  He was on The View, getting fucking crucified over his track record of violating women’s personal space — which we’ve all seen in photos and on film, so it’s not like a secret or a rumor — and he could not speak to it.  He could not formulate a response, he could not stop tap dancing and obfuscating and rationalizing.  It was the saddest, most unconsciously evil thing I’ve ever seen.  That’s a lot of words I just threw out so let me distill it down to the main idea: no moral compass.  He doesn’t even know what it feels like to have a moral compass, it’s an entirely foreign idea.  

So that’s the motherfucker they’re gonna rig the election for, representing this party that pays ultimate lip service to diversity while militating for ultimate obedience to ideological homogeneity.  So it’s a given that the Old White Man avatar must be offset by the darkest, female-est sidekick available (who incidentally will end up running the country, due to Biden’s advanced age — Trump’s hilarious ad called her Biden’s “political living will” lolllll), in order to satisfy the utterly hollow values espoused by identity politics decree.  

So that’s Kamala Harris, his “historic pick” — I have no doubt Biden was picking, at best, his own nose while this was arranged for him, and like I said, maybe she’s great.  I was a default Lefty for long enough that I can totally resonate with Old White Man fatigue syndrome, whose motto is basically this: if we’re just going to elect people who are kind of shitty anyway, let’s throw in some (visually apparent) minorities while we’re at it.  If they turn out to be good at their jobs, awesome; if they turn out to be shitty, well, at least they’re diverse.  In reality, no one will be able to agree on whether they’re any good at their jobs because half the country will assume they can do no right, because they’re dark and female, while the other half will assume they can do no wrong, and for the exact same reason.  

Brief tangent: I’ve told this story before but it’s worth repeating.  At my next-to-most-recent job interview, for my CDL instructor job, the committee asked me what career guidance I’d give to female students specifically.  I said, “Just get a strong skill set as a driver and then lead with that.”  They looked at me, waiting for more, and I just shrugged, because there is no more.  There isn’t any more, people.  I got the job, but was advised later that what I should do is refer female students to the Women In Trucking association and various minority resources, to which I shrugged again.  I have nothing against that, but sometimes we forget that most arenas in life are actual meritocracies.  Most hierarchies are hierarchies of competence.  

Even if there’s some obstructive, regressive bigot somewhere, throwing his or her weight around, it’s like — well, here’s exactly what it’s like, and you may find this analogy odd but I think it’s apt: buying Bitcoin.  Did you know that, if you had invested ten dollars a week in Bitcoin for the last five years, you’d be up 800% overall?  I didn’t know that, until just recently, because clearly I would have been doing that if I’d understood.  I’ve been, you know, seeing it go up, go down, stay down, stay up, spike around, then I’ve ignored it for broad swaths of time too, and generally I’ve just done it all wrong.  I have my Coinbase wallet set, now, to buy $10 worth of BTC and Ethereum, every single week, because even if I learn the hard way, at least I learn.  Sure, I’ll throw in a grand here and there when it’s particularly (relatively) low, but none of my half-assed, intermittent buying and selling has brought me even close to 800% up in five years.  

That’s how Bitcoin works and that’s also how meritocracies work, and it’s hard to recognize that actually everything everywhere is a meritocracy when we’re so focused on the frosting but it is.  We all know that.  Everyone knows that, deep down, no matter how many people on TV or IG are famous for being famous.  I mean, just think of your job.  You know who sucks and who gets it.  No matter how much we want to make it not about that, it’s still about that.  So long story short, it’s not simply that I “believe” — it’s that I’ve directly experienced, over and over — that no matter who thinks what about anyone’s race or gender or age or anything else, relative to whatever job, especially initially, the way you get rich at Bitcoin or credible at work is by putting in your ten dollars worth of basic ass competence every week.  As my favorite drill sergeant said, “It all comes out in the wash,” and fairly quickly, too.  

Anyway: so we’ve got a VP pick who everyone now has spent about ten minutes forming an opinion about, above and beyond the overt fact that she was minority profiled in to her current role.  Maybe she has been instrumental in prison reform, like she says; or maybe she did prevent people on death row from having redress based on DNA evidence just to maintain her conviction record, and obstructed strategies to ease overcrowding in favor of retaining a source of cheap labor for California, and publicly named Biden a racist and sexual predator (correct) all the way up until the point she stood to personally advance from aligning with him.  With the news being the chaotic, biased, he-said/she-said mess that it is, I tend to trust my gut about people and watch their body language, and I got a bit of a vomit reflex, personally.  Tulsi Gabbard challenged the morality and integrity of Harris’ policies specifically in terms of how they’ve affected the least empowered individuals in the US — incarcerated felons, at the mercy of drivers and interpreters of policy — and I didn’t see a shred of authenticity or attention to the gravity of any of those questions and their consequence to actual, legally helpless people.  It was just exasperated, bitchy eye-rolling.  Whatever.  

Okay, so on the very same day, we saw the resignation of the aptly-named Carmen Best, Seattle’s first black female Chief of Police, who served the force for 28 years, following the uber-woke city council’s decision to gut her department and slash her personal pay by 40%.  Oh, also the council failed to denounce mobs congregating at Best’s actual home residence.  Even prior to the resignation announcement, I’ve been trying to imagine what her life has been like, these past months — you know, the CHAZ and all that.  I’ve been continuously impressed with her focus on, you know, protecting and serving, doing the actual job police are there to do.  My brother lived in Seattle up until the first of August, at which point he got the fuck out like any reasonable person would, but not before having his business defaced, his immediate locale threatened night after night, and of course his race and gender (white male) extra scrutinized and put on trial in a variety of ways in his matter-of-course dealings.  The “grand experiment” of defunding the police in Seattle is underway, and Carmen Best and her entire career, from Army veteran to patrol officer to big dawg, is mere collateral damage, just like David Dorn was in St. Louis, who was murdered the same night we were randomly passing through on our way back West.  Retired Seattle Chief of Police Jim Pugel remarked, “She has got to be the most talented chief this department has ever had.  Those people [city council] act like good chiefs just grow on trees.”  I’m sure she can scare up some good work, post-resignation, if she chooses, with her impressive skill set, but sucks to go out like that.  She’s been a class act, nevertheless, and even thanked worse-than-useless Mayor Jenny Durkan on her way out.  

Carmen Best was steely under pressure, and Kamala Harris would clearly sell out her own mother under pressure and if the opportunity was right, and my social media feed is full of masturbatory SJW feel-good for the latter and entirely silent on the former.  I do think it all comes out in the wash, like Sgt. Johnstone memorably said, and I do think we’ll have occasion to reflect on our hasty assumptions, and how they pertain to actual competence and actual diversity.  We’ll have all the time in the world.  

While I’m in the neighborhood, I just want to clearly state that the whole evolution from George Floyd to BLM to #defundthepolice, which was clearly supposed to pass for an organic grassroots conclusion, feels about as fake as Monsanto to me.  80% of people of color in crime ridden areas desire the same level of police presence if not more, because they actually need protection from criminal elements on a daily basis, but that doesn’t matter because we can’t take away people’s guns if we don’t first defund the police.  Point-blank, that’s what I think it’s actually about.  And I know, it sounds so hick and so country and so redneck to say “they’re gonna try to take our guns” but I can, actually, recognize a Sinister Phase One when it hits me in the face.  Phase one is defund the police, phase two is take the guns, phase three is do whatever the fuck you want with the populace, at gunpoint, because you can, and that’s how it’s gone down time and time again in tyrannical human history.  The election at all costs of Joe Biden and his political living will, Kamala Harris, is integral to this plan.  They’re not here to make anything better; for fuck’s sake, look at them.  Unprincipled lackeys.  I wouldn’t let her babysit my dog either, for anyone who’s interested.  

Luckily — and I’ve said this before — I don’t see phase two going well.  I see it as a Mountain Dew fueled bloodbath.  Americans continue to be, sometimes ironically, one of the most rascally, actually diverse, and fundamentally empowered populations on the planet, and convincing everyone that up is down and that the sky isn’t blue can only accomplish so much.  I mean, it’s accomplished a lot — look at everyone, celebrating every single step of their own calculated enslavement — but we’ve still got a really strong, really competent backbone.  That’s still true, and I see it everyday, I work with vertebral elements of that backbone every day.  

So enough about that.  I don’t know if I’ve written, or felt, so clearly about it before, so I wanted to make sure I did.  TOTALLY hope I’m wrong.  If I was wrong, that would be just fantastic.  I’d rather be happy than be right, in all things but particularly in this.   

Now, back to the matter at hand, because I need to cool my jets and take five: today I woke up.  We’re sleeping in the tractor (not a farm tractor, the tractor part of the tractor-trailer, for the uninitiated) because it’s not a good situation here for staking out our way more epic tent, unfortunately.  Nick jumped on the grenade of the earlier shift today, so I got to sleep in til about 6:30.  He sleeps on the bigger lower bunk, because he’s big, and I sleep on the smaller upper bunk, because I’m small.  It gets too hot to sleep around 6:30, so nature’s alarm clock strikes again.  Milo sleeps with him, so they were up and at it before dawn, and Buffy sleeps with me, and is never interested in waking up before about ten, but I make her get up anyway because I’m not just going to leave her stranded on the upper bunk of an increasingly hot tractor, as much as she might think she wants that.  So, yesterday we squatted again — we’re not taking any scheduled days off lifting, because we get enough unavoidable interruptions to the schedule as it is.  So we’ve done two whole cycles of push, pull, squat, push, pull, squat since we got here, with no days off.  We’re both just a creaky mess, honestly.  I feel along my legs sometimes, at night, and kind of marvel at the emergence of rock hard hamstrings and less and less body fat, despite the total abandon with which I eat and nearly zero cardio, on these fires.  I really like sculpting my body in one hour per day installments.  I almost fell against the seat, trying to just put my stretchy shorts on, because my back won’t bend and my arms are locked into this T-Rex rigor mortis configuration when I first wake up.  I move and it all loosens up, of course.  

Buffy and I peed on the gravel, out of sight, and then rounded the corner to the office-trailer to find Nick and Milo just laid out, asleep.  We didn’t have our first shower customer for five hours, so it’s not like go-time around here.  The Antifa flies and wasps continue to be a nuisance, and the best decision I ever made was to pack a flowy, gorgeous kimono.  (It’s my “beater” kimono, which is still the loveliest kimono on earth except for all my other kimonos.)  I’ve been wearing it every hour of every day, except when I’m actively lifting or cleaning shower stalls, just because it dramatically reduces the surface area of my bare skin that flies can land on.  Anyway, I saw that they were landing on Nick’s legs and he was twitching in his sleep, so I draped my kimono over him (too hot for a blanket) and then put on some light pants and socks so I could blog without feeling the sensations of them landing on my feet every five seconds.  

As the heat of the day intensified, so did the flies and wasps, and eventually Nick broke out the WD40 and a lighter and started flame throwing all around the shower trailer, sending a strong clear signal to the survivors.  I regret the necessity of hurting anything, and for the record our shower stall cleaning times are greatly increased, each night, due to the number of moths, beetles, and dragonflies we gently pick up and carry outside, rather than simply pressure hosing them to death and wiping them up along with the other filth.  I can’t and won’t kill a helpless bug, just trying to live its life.  These relentless flies and wasps, though, would crawl into our actual eye sockets if we let them.

So, another day is underway.  The fuel tender is filling my tractor now, which is awesome.  I was always the fuel tender going around and filling everyone else’s stuff, the last three seasons, and I feel like Queen Shower having someone come and do that for me.  We’ve got plenty of potable water and the gray water guy is at it right now, with his super slow pump (run by hamsters, or dial up, it almost seems), so life is good.                    

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