Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Anti-Industrialist's Very Orderly Life

There's a conflict of two very orderly worlds, that of the industrial powers and that of the anti-industrialist. You might say it's a conflict that will go to the bitter end, while remaining very neat and tidy.

Now that the industrialists' world is neat and tidy, at least not the effulgence and influence that comes from it. Within their world, I'll grant it, there must be a lot of neatness and tidiness. Such as in the offices where the executives dangle the world's fate by a string over a candle's flame. There, I'm sure the surroundings are very sparse and tidy, having tables with very sparse arrangements of things.

My own neatness and tidiness doesn't extend to the arrangements on tables or bookcases. As for myself, I am a sentimental collector of things, so I have things everywhere. The neatness and tidiness that I have is my ability to compartmentalize life and experience and keep it orderly in that way. That's one of the things that makes me such a crusader and an anti-industrialist. I and the industrialists, you might say, are two sides of the same coin. I'm the good side, the heads, the tails being the evil side.

I see pictures of bookcases in newspaper ads or catalogs and I'm amazed. The people posited in the arrangements, the faux families who appear to own the bookcases, have about five books, then a clock, a couple knickknacks and maybe a flower. They don't need a bookcase. They need a coffee table.

The neatness of the industrialists -- who spew such filth and toxicity into the air, the streams, and make such a mess of the world and people's lives -- takes place in their offices and maybe in their homes. As far as they're concerned, the runnings of industry is a lot of very orderly cylinders and sprockets working like a symphony. Getting to the base of it, there's a lot of orderly plinking, clanging, machines operating in harmony.

If I could regain my viability -- presently lost by the reputation I've garnered as a vocal anti-industrialist -- maybe I could ride in on one of the bus tours and see it with the others. Then I could witness what they want us to see, the drills, the sledge hammers, and the automatic welders, pounding, boring, and sealing. You might visualize or imagine it audibly to The Cars' song, "I'm In Touch With Your World."

Then there's me, the anti-industrialist at home, leafing through my files, my photos of pallets, broken fences, and piles of tires and rusty castoffs. Each one is numbered. Each detail is studied for further evidence of industry's wayward spirit. It's all so neat and tidy, they're already indicted. As far as I'm concerned, they don't need to wait for judgment day to be judged; they're already judged.

I can hear that Cars' song in my mind's ear right now. It makes up part of the soundtrack of my life. It's a great song for filing. Too bad there isn't an extended version.

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