Uranus goes direct and the Moon goes full on lunar eclipse in Gemini. I’ve got my popcorn ready. Already, I’ve time traveled back at least two decades today. I spent over an hour on Skype with a grad student from Paris talking about my experience at MONDO 2000. It was fascinating to review the rise of cyber culture and my place in it. My monologue turned into a lively discussion between us as we discussed the perils and potential of technology and the edgy precipice of change from which we seem to be hugging and clinging onto for dear life. Eventually the discussion morphed into Tumblr pages, walls of images without text, the post-modern equivalent of the Lascaux caves; testaments to our presence without syntax.
Twitter and text speak hacks the language into generationally encrypted code. Slang is a quaint notion–few altered words peppering the lexicon at the fringes, almost always assimilated at some point. This is different. Its a whole new speak. I’m not necessarily disparaging it. I never want to be the old dude that talks about, “when we were young” but I have to tell you, I am hanging by the thinnest thread of a hyper-tensile nano-filament from becoming that guy.
As I try to decipher a typical Tumblr page, its almost overwhelming. I think about the minds and hearts that plugged the images into the page. How overwhelmed they might be and that the wall of pictures is their way to process all of it without the burden of language. In essence, this is the most expedient way to arrange and assemble a world that is making less and less sense, while hope fades like a bleeding sunset, rust colored and burning through the gauze of iron oxide skies. I get it. This is how they feel and words are a luxury. Besides do they even trust words?
Words are the basis of contracts, both agreed upon and implied. Words are vermin spreading the plague of lies. Images generally don’t lie inasmuch as they don’t always tell the truth either. They have their own narrative which is far more subjective, and can’t be held to any reasonable standard. But what are the images really saying? It appears to us as chaos, but in reality the Tumbler walls are both a shrine to chaos and a desperate attempt to capture and chronicle as much of it as possible–almost obsessively. By living on Twitter, Tumblr and Text, there’s a ferocious effort to manage chaos on nearly a moment-to-moment basis by taking pictures of half-eaten plates of pad-thai, a cocktail, bubble tea, ken doing barbie, eyes of horus, Drake, unicorns, rainbows, family pets, you name it. Its like a frenetic catalog of existence, dark, humorous, tragic and mundane. Don’t make too much of it though, or you’ll get their most powerful symbol; A big middle-finger.
As I skim through random Tumblr pages, its becoming increasingly clear that the youth are adopting illuminist imagery and symbols with greater frequency. Remember, this is mostly the “Pluto in Scorpio” generation and they are into power–plain and simple. They see the likes of Jay-Z, Rhianna, Kanye, Ludicris, etc., as ambassadors of power, gate keepers of realms that need no apology and are devoid of the burden of morality. Their care has been cremated in the bonfires of convention with ritual blazings of blunt realities.
When I step back and view them from the most dispassionate place that I can, I ask myself; “Is someone else offering them a better deal?” Contemporary Christianity has failed them as its become so utterly concerned about its end times navel. Its lost touch with the power of the gospels and is high on revelations. Its not their fault really. Faith has been hijacked so as to be thoroughly disconnected from this temporal realm. The strategy has been to give up on this world and wait for the day when they’re snatched up from this hell hole and watch the end times in 3-D from the comfort of heavenly McMansions with the most divine popcorn balls you’ve ever tasted–you can even get’em deep fried too, without any of that nasty fructose and GMO corn they have back down there on planet sin.
If I’m 19 or 20 and my options are getting high, having sex, listening to hip hop and trafficking in symbols of ancient power, rather than listen to Ziocon blowhards like Pat Robertson or John Hagee cheerlead for Israel, solely to keep it in place for its destruction upon the arrival of the Second Coming, well which one would you pick? One philosophy espouses getting laid and getting paid, while the other is completely impotent in the face of chaos, offering the faint promise of a tardy savior who’s taking his sweet time, delivering for a God that’s seemed to forgotten the planet he once imagined into being. What would you choose? Man, this Gemini Full Moon has me dancing all over the ancient corpse of belief.
But do these children even know that they are summoning the ancient ghosts of Babylon to rise up and incarnate the empty shells of their broken hearts? I seriously doubt it and even if they did, I bet that they, “wouldn’t give a fuck.”
DANCES WITH OMEGA WOLVES
I’ve always loved wolves. In fact, I even lived with a couple for a few months. One was a pure Arctic female named, “Pearly” the other was a 85% Timber named, “Pete.” I used to rough house and play with them long before Kevin Costner danced with them on the silver screen. For a very brief time, they felt like kin. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been ruminating on DHS’s alert that we could be seeing the rise of “lone wolf” terrorists, not aligned with any supposed terror cell. I wondered how do wolves become lone wolves? Given that there might actually be lone wolf terrorists. Then I discovered the Omega Wolf.
The Omega Wolf is the wolf that is the lowest in the pack and pecking order. They are usually the scapegoat of the Beta Wolves; objects of pack derision. But the Omega Wolf performs a vital function and the pack cannot exist without them. They are the clowns, the jesters, the fools, the outsider that diffuses pack tension, resolves conflicts and tends to the psychic needs of the pack. They often eat as well as the Alphas as a result. They are both shat on and respected. Occasionally though, they are chased out by their pack, ostracized for some perceived imperfection in their genetic code or a serious lack of extra food available. Thus the Omega becomes the lone wolf, forced out from the pack to find its way in the wilderness. Alone.
This is by no means a death sentence for the Omega and in fact, if they find a female to mate with (and they do), they can actually start a whole new pack, and then the Omega becomes the Alpha. There’s no guarantees, but its a better shot at a meaningful existence, than getting constantly hassled by a bunch of toothy Betas. In essence, the Omega Wolf is the fool. The Omega Wolf has within it the seed for new beginnings. The Fool is the 0 card in tarot. 0mega.
When DHS starts talking about “lone wolves” what we’re really talking about are Omega Wolves that have been pushed out of their packs, both local and collectively. As the middle gets squeezed, our version of Omega Wolves populate the peripheries of our society and here is where the genesis of new beginnings can take root. If the pack was happy and healthy, you’d have less Omegas on the roam, because you know that when herds get thin, they’re the first to go. With a faltering and crooked economy, no matter what the unemployment numbers say, more and more people are toiling on the edges. In essence the same system that is condemning the culture of lone wolfishness is having a distinct hand in creating them.
Looping it back to the beginning, one of the more popular figures that’s emerging in hip hop, is Tyler The Creator, whom I’ve written about before. What’s the name of his his group? Wolf Gang. They’re a generation of Omegas pushed out and abandoned by adults that abdicated their responsibilities and put their lives on automatic pilot in the final fumes of the American Dream, going up in smoke.
It was revelatory to come to understand the importance and dignity of the Omega Wolf, because I am he and I am not ashamed to say it. Forced out of the mainstream of the pack I roam the ranges of my life, ducking into the vast plains of the cyber wilderness, running with an invisible pack of souls, howling at a shadowy Gemini Moon on a crisp winter night.
Here’s a trailer for Whitley Strieber’s “Wolfen” starring Albert Finney, Edward James Olmos and the late, great, Gregory Hines. What’s fascinating is the sub plot of terrorists going after corporate executives juxtaposed against a race of supernatural wolves that devour the spiritual and physically diseased members of society. Hmmmmm.