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Modern England Is a Lie!

January 9, 2014

Not the band. That’s Modern English, anyway.

The country.

For reals.

As I sit here watching some documentary about a new theory regarding Stonehenge, I see modern houses in the background behind Durrington Walls. You never see these things in the pictures or postcards. At one point, a car drives by. I’m flabbergasted. Modern England’s existence to me is a possible as the world of Harry Potter. Such things do not exist.

"Oh, the shame!!!" Photo by Mike Pitts.

“Oh, the shame!!!” Photo by Mike Pitts.

I’ve been to England, mind you, but I have nearly convinced myself it was a dream, and as it was just a short 24-hour stint, my jet-lagged head didn’t see much other than my pillow. The sheer AUDACITY, I think to myself, the very THOUGHT of putting up houses on land what ought to have maintained its natural state… I am shocked, to say the least.

It can’t be real.

By that token, Modern America isn’t very real now, either. Except, I don’t think America has as much impressive historical architecture, does it? Some big ancient burial mounds, and certainly some very impressive cave dwellings, but that’s about the extent of it, right? So it’s not as shocking when Americans destroy ancient history. Or maybe we’ve all just become inured to America’s brazen behavior. I expect more of the English. So many elements of its long history remain in the culture and geography, and yet it shares so many features of its bastardized offspring, America. Don’t get me wrong. I love modern America. My house is now 100 years old, and around here, people are impressed by that. I love the technology, the traffic, the…sheer modernity of it. But it all strikes me as decadence, utter classlessness in most cases. England, in my mind, stopped “evolving” (or, let’s say, avoided devolving) in Shakespeare’s day. In fact, that’s most of Europe in my eyes, except perhaps, and most inexplicably, parts of Spain.

In England’s defense, I suppose, America really only began its own serious devolution in the 1950s – it has been, however, a steep incline downward. I have no conflict with civil rights, paradoxically. I just think everything was more beautiful up until the 60s. Well, barring some serious humanitarian setbacks, at least.

These things, these places… they can’t be real. What connection do we still have to our world history? Why do I have to watch Netflix to learn about history instead of watching The (Un)History Channel. Isn’t Moonshiners on that channel? I’m sorry, and maybe I’ve just identified a little Anti-Appalachianism in myself, but that’s just not history.

It’s all very strange to me. Don’t even get me started on Germany, which, aside from America, might be my favorite country. There are just some… things… some issues, we’ll say, that bother me. Let me sum it up in a brief, negatively-phrased letter:

Dear People of Modern Earth (including Twig Anthony),

Don’t be tacky.
Don’t be shitty to other people, whether in your own culture or another.
Don’t neglect your history.
Don’t lose sight of the present as you build the planet into one giant example of planned obsolescence.
Quit treating the earth with disrespect.
Stop killing shit.
Don’t let companies continue their greenwashing tactics.
Don’t be so effing greedy.
Don’t forget to see the beauty in as much of the world and humanity as possible.
Don’t ignore history’s mistakes just to see if it will work out better the next go-round.

These are your new guidelines.




From → rants

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