Settin' Out for a New Territory
by LF (6/2/99)
You know what I see when I close my eyes? Not a single gawddamned one of you all.
Here, let me check again . . . yep, nobody comes swimming into view.
Figured it'd be useful to pass that along if only to differentiate myself from
80-some percent of the population, the goofs who go on and on about how much they
care about all those other goofs they've never even met. You know who I'm talking
about. They like to churn out mangled sentences which prominently feature the
word "we", as in: "What can we do to prevent tragedies like this from
ever happening again?" And then they step on my dick with new laws and regulations,
forcing my face deeper into a jelly jar full of bourbon.
And there's only so much bourbon.
The LF site gets me e-mail that can be broken down into two categories.
The first is simple fan mail of the "Right-ON, Dude!" variety. I tend to
like 'em since their authors often end by offering beer, and maybe even a stained
couch to crash on, if I ever visit them in Shitsville, USA.
The second pile consists of those who are trying to wire me into whatever funny
stuff trips their triggers. I've had folks invite me to pro- and anti-abortion protests,
pot rallies, armed and unarmed marches on Washington, thinly-disguised compound
tours, Harley-Davidson helmet smashes, smelly commune functions, and more.
Members of group #2 are obviously missing the point.
A prime example is this jim who runs a Kalifornia punk rawk magazine.
He dropped by, liked what he saw, and asked if he could print some of my stuff.
I agreed, calculating it might gain me exposure amongst green-haired skank. Then
all of a sudden I was supposed to be the gent's father-confessor / mother-whackmate
surrogate. But apparently I suck at those roles because he was disappointed
with my curt responses and arrogant dismissals of the wondrous insights contained
within the e-mails he immediately started piling into my box.
If forced to guess I'd have to bet that Fun Boy One figured my angry loner bit
was some sort of facade. That I was prolly just like him, casting-about for a
very special pal to share my load.
Let's go over some of the relevant points again:
I can go to the Animal Control Center and snag a neutered and beaten-down mutt for less
than a hundred smackers. And I have enough family nearby to easily fill those
looong holidays. And I can count my real friends on one hand. And strangers
who claim to be my Bestest Buddy scare the everlovin' piss out of me.
Sometimes I feel bad about not getting married and putting-in for a rugrat. Those
momentary dips into maudlin fantasy usually swell up after I spend some time
watching after my niece, who is on the whole a pretty pleasant kid to be around.
But after sobering-up I once again comprehend that we get along so well because
she goes home after a few hours. (In an ugly parallel, I'd guess that's the main
attraction of prostitutes. As my friend Arnold contends, you're primarily paying
them to leave.) Given a choice, I prefer to be by myself.
I fervently believe that many women are entranced by Socialism Lite because they've never
taken a good beating, which is why they'll spout crud like the interminably-recurring
notion that schoolyard bullies are insecure, or are seeking attention, or were
mistreated themselves, or whatever. They're more likely to be generous because
they have personally never been held down and kicked. Believe me, getting seriously
and thoroughly thumped is capable of disabusing just about anyone of simpery notions regarding
"inherent goodness" in the gene pool. I've been told that such abject lessons are already
part of the curricula in our inner cities, so if they could just be exported to the
suburbs, where panty-waisted huge-government types spawn like guppies, this country
might stand a chance.
But it ain't gonna happen. Nowadays folks are increasingly likely to be killed
(indirectly, of course) by those who wish to help them. Call it the Oprahization
of Force, whose proponents will never take a step back and realize that the usual
reason that bullies are bullies is because they can.
Newsjunk like some kid falling down a well in Texas can now completely command
the attention of the nation . . . remember that hubbub? Maybe nothing came of all the
clamor -- but then again, as far as I know there is now an army of federal
inspectors roaming the countryside, registering the owners of post-hole diggers
and cataloging the movements of extra-portly groundhogs, all due to the
actions of the surrogate mommies who swarmed after a clumsy tyke a sight more
than a tad bit too late.
Up North it was kind of fun to watch the religious and the secular humanists go
at each other. Being an atheist gun nut, both sides would feel free to take swipes
at me whenever I horned-in on one of their little squabbles. The
Christians would dismiss me as a closet Commie because I failed to clasp their
Big Fella to my bosom. The socialists would condemn me as a fascist because I
owned firearms, and therefore obviously rejected their complete agenda and despised
their favored pet groups. So I was in pig heaven, with eye-gouges all around.
Down South, almost all of the liberals are Christians as well, which really puts
a crimp in the "debates". Oh, they're still nasty, but the boundaries are so
constrained that the two main groups can blissfully ignore outsiders. So when
I point out that whole Protestant denominations reject self-defense as a reason
to own firearms (the Presbyterians leap to mind), the Christian Republicans claim
that them fellas ain't real Christians. And when I jab the Christian Democrats on
whatever, they smugly point out that their wayward brethren have obviously missed
the message of the Lord of Peace and Taxpayer Squeezings.
So here, if I shout that I want to be left alone, I'm denounced as selfish and
un-Christian by both groups, and that's the end of the discussion. Since they're
confident that their church-going constituents will keep them in power, any miscreants
who fail to grasp the Heavenly Goodness of their intentions are beyond hope.
So I get to sit on the sidelines during a textbook example of conflating religious
impulses with political power. If something appears to work for a group, then there
is no directly obvious reason for its members to think that their privately-taken
actions won't function just as well if everyone else is forced to perform
the same way under the threat of governmental intercession. After all, good Baptists
would never propose anything genuinely wrong, would they?
What the pew-humpers are missing is that once government gets involved in
personal policy decisions, individual liberties become merely an inconvenient
but temporary obstacle. Punishing murder, rape, theft, outright fraud, and a
relative handful of other offenses are about all "public servants" are truly
good for. If well-funded bureaucrats are allowed to roam about freely, they'll
soon invent reasons to become involved in more and more crap. Until there's
. . .
I'm coming up on eight years in North Carolina, and am just not gonna fit into
the Goober groove. So I'm casting about for a new place to land.
Luckily, there are different places to go in the country (and elsewhere -- if
I could be assured that I could keep my guns, I'd move to New Zealand, which
has by many reports managed to pull itself out of a socialist spiral and get its
act back together). Thanks to the Web, work is wherever you can hook up, so
with a good bit of planning Cheyenne can be almost as geek-friendly as Silicon
Valley. And taxes in Wyoming are a teensy bit lower. My company is big on telecommuting,
so there might not be any pain involved at all.
So if you clowns could give me a hand, I'd greatly appreciate it. Let me know
where you live, and why you like it (unless you reside in California, Connecticut,
Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Massachusetts, or Rhode Island,
which are already on my shit list).
My rough criteria, in some semblance of order, are:
- Gun-friendly. And it'd help if there are plenty of places to shoot which
don't require taking out a second mortgage.
- Low state and local taxes compared to North Carolina.
- ISDN or better access to the Internet (which probably means I'll need to
end-up near a university).
- Autobahn-style rules on highways.
- No ridiculous "Blue Laws" regarding booze, which knocks out a good chunk of
many Southern states.
- Has weak or no penalties for pot (I have not smoked in years, but the thought
of sparking-up a unit every once in a while without getting my belly stitched by
a SNOT team is definitely appealing).
Obviously, that kind of hierarchy can yield some interesting results. Socialist
Congressman Bernie Saunders is from Vermont, so I'd guess the taxes are
pretty high, but it's the only state which allows anyone lacking criminal
intent to carry a concealed firearm without a license. Texas, as far as I know,
has no state taxes at all. Montana does not place speed limits on their highways.
And so on. What I'm looking for is the best combination currently available.
Some Things I'll Miss About North Carolina:
Don Murray's Barbecue
Absolutely killer all you can eat hot Bladen County-style pig barbecue
alongside Southern fried chicken with a crusty shell that shatters when
you nip into it, fried fish and shrimp, sugared butter peas, greens boiled long
and hard in animal fat, and cobbler. There's a good reason why you never see
anyone in there over the age of fifty-five or so -- they died in the parking lot
of congestive heart failure.
The Durham Pistol and Rifle Club
The first place I could ever call "my club". Lotsa good folks, very low dirtbag
count. 300-yard rifle range, combat pit, 40-point covered pistol range, etc.,
and a lone Porta-Potty. All for only $120 a year, a fantastic deal. Most of
the members are just dabblers, so on many weekends I have the run of the
WKNC and WSHA
North Carolina State's KNC is one of the premier metalhead stations in the
country, period. College radio over at Duke and UNC pales in comparison
because they seem hell-bent on employing the wispy-beard-and-beret crowd
who think it is their duty to "educate" their minimal audiences with awful
noise (i.e., a typical show might consist of 55 minutes of pots being banged
together, followed by a longish whale-song segment, topped off by
disco remixes of Gregorian chanting). I doubt if the kids spinning that
crap even like it themselves, more likely they're just proving their
disdain for the dirty little people out there who may accidentally tune in
for a few seconds. Not at KNC. Pop it on, and they'll probably be
playing MUSIC. House of Pain? Death Angel? Stereolab? P.J. or Alex Harvey?
Ridiculous new or old KISS? They got it.
Shaw University's SHA usually plays jazz, which I generally enjoy solely
as movie soundtrack fodder. But they also run an oldies show stuffed
with Motown, and a blues show that still manages to surprise me due to
the deep racks available to the various hosts.
The Oak City Diner
The food's not fantastic, but it's greasy, the helpings are
large, they're open all night, and it's within walking distance of my
place. So when the whiskey runs out and my belly starts rumbling,
I stagger down and get dagger eyes from all the cops who swarm the joint.
And that's about it. Not much of a haul for an eight-year jaunt.
Up the spout