As has become rather customary on my blog, I’ve been very silent… at least until I uploaded that blog on horseradish a few days ago. You’d think, what with all this extra time on my hands, that I’d be blogging up a storm. And it’s not like there’s no shortage of topics to talk about. There’s COVID-19. There’s the fact that cops haven’t stopped murdering black people in cold blood in our streets (FTR… justice for George Floyd. Black Lives Matter. Fuck the police. ACAB). More trans men and woman are dying this year. Trump is still president, and an absurdly high number of Leftists still think he’s better than a Democrat, despite four years of evidence that he’s the worst thing to happen to this country since at least Bush Jr, and is absolutely the worst president of my (now 33-year) lifetime.
I genuinely didn’t think things could get worse than 2016. Holy shit was I wrong.
So. Fucking. Wrong.
And yet, despite all this, I stay silent. I’m not here talking about the pandemic, or the protests, or Trump.
Why is that?
Because I just don’t want to.
As for the protests, I honestly feel like I’ve said all I could say. At this point it feels a lot easier to signal boost my previous post called “White Supremacy and Violence”, which continues to say everything I’d want to say… maybe not in the best way I could have said it, but says it, nonetheless. It also feels more prudent, and important, to signal-boost black voices, such as…
Then there’s the pandemic. I mean really… what is there to say? You know I actually have a ton of complaints about it…
In fact, I originally had a very long list of complaints and really just heated, angry cynicism here. I was going to call this post “The Right to Complain”. It was initially inspired by this kind of great rant I heard on the Even More News podcast about why questions like “how are you” and “how are you holding up” and “are you okay” and so on can be problematic in certain cases. Given my not-very-good writing skills, I ended up not quite taking that rant in the way it was meant. I was going to use it as an excuse to be a cynical, complaining asshole.
But that’s not really fair to y’all, is it? I know so many people need positivity in these times. The times suck, but there has to be an end to them. And that’s not a question. I know there is. All tunnels have an exit. It may be all too many miles away, and there may be so much treacherous terrain and who knows what else along the way, but there is an exit.
It is really, really hard to find things to be positive about these days. Trust me, I know. My depression has been worse than normal, as has my anxiety. I get headaches way more often than I used to, and sleep even worse than I usually do (and I never slept well to begin with). I am utterly terrified of what seems like an uprising in this country right now. Don’t get me wrong… most of these protests (specifically all the ones centering around the death of George Floyd and the demand, again, that Black Lives Matter) are not only justified, but needed.
We white people (Note: keep your “not me” bullshit to yourself. Are you white? You benefit from White Supremacy in at least some way, so yes… yes, you. And me, too) have been oppressing black people (and all people of color, if we’re being honest) in large and medium and small and tiny ways for centuries. And then they go out and rise up, and we clutch our pearls, fall onto our fainting couches, and cry “why? Why like that? We agree with you, but can’t you be quieter? You’re so loud and violent to my delicate sensibilities!”
I really think Kimberly Latrice Jones talks about the riots way better than I ever could, when she says that the social contract is broken:
Yet all I hear about every day is how cops keep instigating violence amongst protesters. Even now, today, right here in Atlanta (where I live) are protest and riots. Right-wing groups are trying to instigate the very civil/race war that they’ve been talking about for years.
I’ve said many times that if Trump gets another four years, he could very well be the last president this country ever has. It genuinely feels like that’s where we’re headed right now. And look… I may not be a pacifist, but I am a coward. As much as I’d like to believe that I’d play a support role, in reality, at the start of any revolution, or civil war, or something like that, you’ll know where I am by the sound of my screeching tires as I grab every member of my family and all my friends that I can and high-tail it to Canada and then overseas.
Plus I know who will be hurt by a violent revolution, and it won’t be the wealthy or the powerful; it’ll be us. It’ll be the poor. It’ll be people of color. It’ll be the LGBTQIA community. It’ll be the disabled. It’ll be the neurodivergent. It’ll be minority religions (Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists… really, anyone who isn’t a specific brand of Christian). It’ll be everyone who actually needs a major change in how this country functions. It’ll be everyone who actually needs Socialism to be a reality. And Socialism won’t take hold after such a revolution; Fascism will. That’s exactly the kind of power vacuum fascists love.
So yeah… I know how hard it is to find positivity these days. For myself, though, I have found… distractions.
A few months back, my brother got himself a Nintendo Switch. One of the games he got is a game that originally came out (for the Switch as well as the WiiU) in 2017; Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I recently finished my second play-through, and I’ve actually been working on a review for it. I’ll be posting that review here. It won’t all be good. There’s a lot I love about the game, but there’s a lot I’m meh on, and a lot I hate about it, as well. It’s really not the “perfect” game that many Zelda fans seem to want it to be. But I don’t need to go into detail here because that post will be going up… when I finish it. There’s also an outline for a second post containing stuff I wanted to say but didn’t think fit in the review, although I have no idea if I’m actually going to post that.
Quite separately, I’m also trying to develop my own recipe for challah (egg bread). Once I figure that out, I want to share it with y’all. My brother is trying to develop his own recipe for no-knead, slow-rise bread, which I hope I can share with y’all when he’s got it down pat. And to be honest, he and I have been getting up to all sorts of culinary adventures.
For your own food-related distractions… if you’re comfortable watching videos shot via a Go-Pro strapped to somebody’s head, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt (probably my favorite recipe-developer of all time) has been doing some incredible videos just showing him making stuff. He even uploads the mistakes, which is so refreshing for an amateur like me to watch. And if you’re interested in more Foodtube (that is, the fooding side of YouTube), there’s Helen Rennie, Adam Ragusea, Joshua Weissman, Maangchi, Adam Liaw, Binging With Babish, Serious Eats, Just One Cookbook, Island Vibe Cooking, Alex (French Guy Cooking), and Chinese Cooking Demystified, just to name a few.
(Speaking of FoodTube, I may have to do a post about how there seems to be an Elitism/Classism problem with it and the fooding side of the internet in general, however, given the fact that a lot of internet-famous chefs seem to the think that the average reader can afford kitchen appliances that average around $300 to well into the thousands, list these as “essential kitchen appliances”, then develop recipes for them and insist that those recipes cannot be made without them… but that’s for a later date…)
I’d love to also recommend Bon Appétit, but they’re a racist company that doesn’t pay their employees of color so you really should avoid them like the plague for now, depending on how they, and Condé Nast in general, fix things moving forward. That said, definitely do follow Sohla El-Waylly wherever she goes; she’s a national treasure. Hawa Hassan is another chef to follow, as are Priya Krishna and Rick Martinez, Christina Chaey, and Gaby Melian. I only listed six people… you should absolutely search out other Chefs of Color who worked at Bon Appetit and/or were burned by their racism, and follow them where you can.
After that review of BotW goes up… you know, maybe I will work on that post about the Elitism/Classism problem of Foodtube and the Fooding Internet in general. IDK. I really should start posting here more often, again, so I need more things to post about.
I do miss doing the Great Guitar Solos series, actually, but I have to admit that I haven’t actively listened to music in a while… I’ve either listened to podcasts, watched YouTube videos, or played Breath of the Wild. Maybe I really do need to try and get back into that, for the series if nothing else, and every time I think about it, my life is 100% deprived of guitar solos. I love them so much and I miss searching for solos I hadn’t heard before. Yet I just… don’t… do that.
Unfortunately, I don’t want to post about current events. I know I should, but I don’t see what my voice can add. With COVID-19 there are scientists out there getting the information out way better than I ever could. As for the protests, I’d rather y’all just seek out the words of black people, especially black women and black members of the LGBTQIA community (and especially the overlap thereof). Plus, blogging about this shit is extremely anxiety-inducing, and my anxiety is bad enough as it is.
I’m not ignorant of what’s going on or avoiding it… I just don’t think adding my voice does anything when there are better, louder, and more important voices out there saying what I’d want to say a hell of a lot better than I could ever say it.
So I need to figure out what this blog is going to look like going forward. I also have a Patreon page. I can’t justify advertising it, but maybe if I start posting more, I can do that. I want to transition to vlogging eventually, but I have to afford a good camera and afford to build a good computer, so… yeah.
Anyways. This is my “hello! I’m still alive!” post. That BotW review is definitely coming. Beyond that… we’ll see… there’ll be more. I just don’t quite know what, yet…