Post Petroleum Man Poser
A couple of days ago I decided to go against my usual anti-social self, and I ventured out into the public domain in an effort to find some signs of intelligence in my back water prison that is Rock Hill SC. I say back water because it seems that the Scots-Irish "boarderer" mentality has infected the people here entirely. I learned about that while reading Joe Bagaents "Deer Hunting with Jesus." Part of that mentality is a stubborn resistance to any kind of change, especially where pertains to intellect. A good example is the tradition of using pesticides and applying synthetic, natural gas derrived, bags of 10/10/10 to the back yard garden. Using organic methods of gardening are not even known about around here, much less practiced. The locals just simply can't conceive of not using poison. I suppose it makes to much sense to work with nature rather against it.
At any rate, I left my illusion of seclusion, as I call my residence, the other day on an expedition to find some intelligence. Now, I'm not a social being mostly because I don't care to small talk about stupid shit like sports, television, or the weather. I don't care to cultivate relationships with people who aren't going to understand what I'm about. I just see it as a waste of time and therefore I am mostly a loner. I'm beginning to make peace with this unchanging aspect of my personality. Lately I have felt the need to meet people of like mind, and I think this change is mostly due to all of the reading I do. I read a lot of books about the future as pertains to the natural constraints we are reaching due to nature. One of the themes for possible meaningful action as a result of this understanding is to cultivate local relationships. John Michael Greer's "Green Wizard Project" suits me best, but I'm also aware that a lifeboat built in isolation is not going to float. The survivalist cabin in the woods is not conducive to happiness, or any kind of life that I want to live. The society that will maintain in the future will be one built on local and organic relationships with one another. The problem with me is that I'm a loner and I don't know how to seek out individuals who are human and not Zombies.
I have been looking for humans who inhabit my little portion of the back water south. I know there has to be people here who understand that Petroleum fuels our way of life. I'm not asking for people just like me. I don't want to hang out with people who agree with everything I say and think. However, I have no interest in aligning myself with people who don't understand the predicament that our industrial civilization finds itself in. Michael Ruppert gave a very interesting speech recently where he outlined the difference between "Petroleum Man" and "Post Petroleum Man." His speech can be seen here. At some point Petroleum Man mutated into Post-Petroleum man, of which I am a member. At this point we are a young species, and we are small in number. Unfortunately for the planet we tend to not procreate much, so I'm not sure that we are going to make it. I did my part to contribute by voluntarily donating my seed to create half of my son, Ayden Zen McCarty. He to is part of the species of Post Petroleum Man. He's going to understand that wealth is derived from Nature and that nature is not to be abused. He is going to grow up worshiping the Sun and Gaia. He will make offerings at the foot of majestic Oaks and will be taught how to properly hug a tree in reverence to all that the tree provides to us for free. He's not going to be afraid to compost humanure. He's going to play with bugs and soil rather than iphones and play stations. He's not going to watch television. At this point, I must add, that he's going to be whoever he is. I do not have any intentions of squashing who he is or attempting to fit him into any molds. I'm going to keep him free as long as I can. But I'm going to teach him while he's young about Nature, of which we are a fundamental part. His church will be found outside amidst the trees and beneath the sky.
So I was saying that I left my house the other day in search of Post Petroleum man. I'm saddened to say that I found no such beast, but I did find the new version of Petroleum Man. He was selling Organic Pepper salsa and hotsauce. I got excited when I saw him because he was who I was out in public to meet. The venue was something the city of Rock Hill has been sponsoring called "old town." It's a farmers market of sorts where local people buy booths to sale whatever it is that they sale. The idea is that it's all things produced locally. There were a lot of people selling vegetables (not much organically I might add, but there was some of that going on), grass fed beef, pottery, wood crafts and the like. We placed Zen in his comfy stroller and hit Old Town to see what we could see. That's where I found the Post Petroleum Man Poser dressed up with a green veneer. I fell for the veneer. I walked up to his booth and he was selling organic hot sauce and salsa and he was wearing a shirt that said "tree hugger" on it in bold print with a picture of a tree. I bought some of his salsa and struck up a conversation with him. At one point he informed me that it was possible to hallucinate if enough capsaicin is ingested. Apparently he's got the hottest pepper in the world weighing in at about 1.25 million scoville. To give you an idea of how hot that is, the average Jalapeno is around 5000 scoville. He knew how hot his ghost pepper was because the local university had tested it. He even had the paperwork to prove it.
I was excited to meet him. The problem I had was that I let down my defenses because I gave him the benefit of the doubt that he was who he appeared to be. At one point I asked him if there were more people like him in Rock Hill. He said that there were plenty of people and that he was friends with them. I said to him "I mean I'm just looking for people that understand that you can't have infinite growth on a finite planet and have read books by authors such as Richard Heinberg, John Michael Greer, James Howard Kunstler, Dimitri Orlov, and Michael Ruppert. Have you read any John Michael Greer?" To which he replied, "I don't know, name a book he has written." When I said The Long Descent he suddenly said that he was familiar with his work. He was full of shit, but I couldn't see it at the time because his tree hugger shirt had fooled me. I should have known it when he said, "you know you have to be careful with what a lot of those authors are saying because what works in California might not work so well here." I agreed with him, but I should have caught it. I should have said "like what?" Obviously you can't plant some of the things that grow in southern California in Upstate South Carolina, like Avocados (god I would give my left nut to have an Avocado tree). But Humanure works just as well there as it does here as does organic gardening, holding nature sacred, and local resiliency. I should have made him explain himself, but I didn't. I should have realized who he was when he told me that he was "first and foremost a capitalist", but I didn't.
Then it happened. In the course of our conversation I said that I worked for "The Man," and you would have thought I whipped out my penis and pissed on his leg. He immediately got offended and started going on about how I shouldn't use that term because "The Man" wanted to be embraced by our movement and not ostracized and bla bla bla. I explained to him that I meant no offense and he said that none was taken, but from that moment on the energy exchanged between us changed. Our conversation was interrupted several times because he was there trying to sell his business. He told me that he had another pepper that was 1.4 million scoville and that he was going to sell the rights to his other pepper to fund the expansion of his business. He was there looking for investors, but I couldn't see that. I mean I'm not anti-capitalist but I also know that unrestrained capitalism is mostly responsible for the damage we have wrought on Earth. It's mostly responsible for the death of Nature and is going to be our undoing. I didn't understand why he was so offended by my use of the phrase "the man," at the time. I have since figured it out. He told me as much but I was blinded to it. I was too excited to have found a member of my own species.
He was posing Green to appeal to that green dollar as Bill Hicks would have put it. He was trying to tap into the organic market because it's the new hot thing. The terms my species have traditionally used to describe what we are about such as green, organic, sustainable, renewable, and recycle have been hijacked by the man. We can't identify one another based solely by our jargon. Our language is not immune to the Newspeak double think that the controlling corporatocracy uses to ferment our brains into a anathemic mess of ignorance. "Organic" no longer means untouched by the corporations. "Green" no longer means in service of Gaia. Now it mostly just means you are paying more for the same old shit that the Man's been sellin' from the start. Debt slavery and indentured servitude.
After about ten minutes I realized that he was growing tired of our conversation. At the time I just thought it was because he was trying to sell his business and didn't have time for a long conversation with me. I understood that. I mean we all gotta pay the monkey, as the Dude would say. I asked him if he was going to need any help with his business in the future. I wanted to learn from him because he supposedly gardened organically and had been doing so for something like 30 years. The guy was in his early fifties. I figured if he's going to quit his job (which I later found out he was a banker) to dedicate all of his time to this business, than it may just be my ticket out of randomly pissing in a cup to keep my house (I'd give my right not to be able to smoke a bowl every now and then and would therefore be nutless for avocados and weed). I got excited thinking that maybe I could make a living growing vegetables organically for this guy. I was so excited to think that I could make a living working for somebody who appreciated me for my labor while practicing a labor of love. He told me to email him and that we would meet for coffee and get to know one another to see if there was a future for me with Pucker Buttt Peppers (the name of his company). I said I would email him when I got home and left him. Before I could shake his hand and tell him good bye he was already jabbering with some bald headed biker who looked like he probably worked in marketing and was just posing as a biker himself to compensate for the fact that he can't get it up anymore without chemical assistance. Hot Ed, or whatever the hell the Pucker Butt Poser went by, was excited to talk to this other poser, probably a potential investor. At least that was the feeling I got while walking off.
I went home and emailed him this email:
I figured you'd recognize who I was by that subject (in the subject box I put "the man"). I didn't take offense by the way. I have anger about what our species has done to the planet and tend to blame those who have cared only about profit and nothing else. I've lived my adult life in service of the truth. I realized at a young age that possessions end up owning you. So I stayed true to myself. I'm in no way against capitalism but I also don't have much faith in my fellow man to do what is right. Just based on what appears to be the status quo nature. Monsanto got where they were for a reason. I'm not pointing the finger at anybody in particular and I'm not on some conspiracy theory trip either. It's just obvious that unrestrained capitalism results in..well..look around. Better yet, go to the "third world" and have a look around. I'm sure that I'm preaching to the choir. I don't want to say to much because it's easy for intentions and meaning to be lost in this form.
I'm interested in finding out who you are. My first impression is that you are somebody I would like to work for. We definitely share a love for capsaicin and organic food. That's enough for me. I wasn't thinking business when I was talking to you. But I assure you that I'm capable of it. I know how to not offend anybody. Offending somebody in the business of EMS, offending a customer, will get you fired in short order. I tended bar for several years after I got out of the navy, but I haven't been in public as myself lately. It's always my work self which is a facade so as to stay employed. At any rate. I'm off this coming Mon, and Tues as well as next Fri-Mon. I'd love to meet for coffee, or lunch, or whatever to chew the fat. I'm looking forward to hearing from you.
He never replied. Apparently I wasn't preaching to the choir. I'm still out here in Zombieland holding down the fort for the time when more of my species, Post-Petroleum Man, shows up. If you are out there, and you reside in Rock Hill SC, I would very much like to meet you. If you're a poser, and you don't really give a shit about the Earth, then don't bother because I have no interest in talking to you. My biggest pet peeve in life is to talk and not be listened to. And for the record, it's not nice to go around posing as one of my people. It's just plain mean, but then you are mean aren't you. I now know why you got so upset when I said "the man." Because you are the man dressed up in green drag. You're destroying the Earth and I'm sure there is a special place for you when you die. The irony is that you are worm food just as I. The Earth will consume you one day. Maybe you'll be lucky and you'll fertilize something beautiful. I think that's the most use you will ever have.