This is a work of fiction.
I try to eke out my days as a “dirt hermit,” a solo shaman hiding from the Processors. They are like dog catchers who loop the time clock around your neck, leash you to a chain of money.
Go to a shelter, you get Processed. Regimented. Soon herded to another shelter, and so on, until you find yourself in a freakzone ghetto asylum. Fifty miles of lattice in all directions. It is a moat of asphalt that keeps you in, teeming with gangs, prejudice and police.
So I'm a dirt hermit. I stink. My clothes rot. I look like the protagonist in Ordinary Wolves, that boy who lived as a paleo-eskimo, his greasy Parka patched with duct tape and crusted with caribou blood.
People forget that our ancestors stabbed caribou (or deer), drove stone knives into their throats.
Slasher films, which cost $20 per rich kid, owe their visceral impact to the practice of the kill. Slender animals with feminine necks. Most of history is the tribe, women, men, and children, getting drenched as they cut up what once roamed free. Quality time.
Miracles destroying miracles to create more miracles.
If you’re raised white and decide to be the last eskimo, or a dirt hermit, you have to go back a long way, but once you do, it is vast: a hundred thousand years of stabbing animals' necks.
It's in you somewhere. All this ordinary bloodshed.
Don't assume that 99.9% of your ancestors had no morals. They killed far less than we kill, had no concept of war. Maybe they understood evil from watching the battles of ants. They did not act like ants as we do. They did not swarm.
A dirt hermit must look crazed and out of place. Contact with raw earth makes you the modern pariah. Farouche.
Without Processors, you won't be upgraded to the latest version of the Program. The Program does not see you, even when you stand on a corner and watch thousands of tin coffins go by.
Humanity used to kill wild animals, then it killed the wilds, and next it will kill the wild in itself. We are the Bridge Species on this planet. It didn't take us long to murder nature.
Nothing like 'us' has happened in the last five billion years. The Permian Extinction and the Triassic Meteor Strike, those were different, merely set evolution free to play.
Welcome the end of it all, the Era of Machina Convolvus.
(Note to myself: "era” is “are” backwards)
We all say yes and we act no. In other words, we are as much pawns as that primal algae which turned the sky from methane to oxygen. It destroyed itself by teeming.
As I watch the reorientation of the essence of our planet, I can do nothing. I am like a frail old man watching an avalanche.
At least I've had my time. Thirty-seven years is nothing to regret. Twenty with the spirits.
The world that cradled our ancestors was profound, variegated, restorative and abundant. She was never miserly or egocentric.
Now the Processors are carving her up. It is a tragic to mistake Gaea as a creature who exists in the way that a caribou exists.
Why She lets us do this, I don't know. But she does.
I’m a dirt hermit who stares at a cosmic cross-roads. A metamorphosis both awesome and immoral.
In the end, the joke is on us. We are just a means to a new twist, nothing more than an algae which feasts until it dies.