I had quite an affirming experience last night, in Roar of all places. I was with an ex-housemate, a no-nonsense, laddish, conservative-voting, working-class army guy. He admitted that while we lived together two years ago, he thought my philosophy degree was a frivolous, pretentious waste of time. But with recent discussions in the media about bringing back the death penalty, he told me that he had changed his mind. “That’s what you guys do,” he said, “and that’s big stuff. That’s important.” It was great to hear that some people recognise the value of what I’ve been doing for that last few years and what I’ll probably be doing again at length in the future. More importantly, however, it was refreshing to see someone - particularly a conservative voter - acknowledge that tough political questions should be answered by experts and not the unreliable intuitions of public opinion. He did not offer his own opinions of the death penalty but instead acknowledged that were was no easy answer and deferred to people who study such problems.
Last night I dreamed about, or at least very vividly invented the concept of, what I dubbed ‘futurist space hippies’, or something similar.
It was based around the idea that light from stars, nebulae and other cosmic entities help us create vital vitamins in the same way that natural sunlight helps us create Vitamin D. And just as a lack of sunlight can lead to vitamin deficiencies and even SAD, I came up with a sort of conspiracy theory that the human race only has all the problems it does because we are not getting enough cosmic light - thanks to terrestrial light pollution - to keep us healthy and happy.
Hence the futurist hippies hope to reach enlightenment and free themselves from the confines of bourgeois earth-bound society by pursuing space exploration and exposing themselves to all the space radiation they need to be complete. In the meantime, they travel to remote, uninhabited locations - particularly in the southern hemisphere, since it is pointed more towards the Milky Way - in order to bath in starlight. They stare through powerful telescopes at distant nebulae and imagine the sensation of being bathed in all the various alien colours we could never experience on Earth. They eschew the Pagan Gaia worship common among standard hippies and worship the cosmos more generally, studying physics, astronomy and engineering in the pursuit of leaving Earth rather than wearing hemp and running organic greengrocers to try and preserve it. They are technophiles where normal hippies are technophobes. Brief truces are made to organise black out events in big cities, but the futurists are involved purely to reduce light pollution rather than energy usage.
I can’t remember much more; in fact I had to make a concerted effort to remember anything at all and can’t remember anything else from last night as a consequence. I thought this concept deserved it.
I put red wine in the pasta sauce I cooked for dinner this evening and it tasted fantastic. I’ve never cooked with wine before because I usually never have any around the house, but I think I’ll be doing it again in the future. It’s such an easy way of adding depth, body and richness to a sauce.
When I was 13 I dreamt about an imaginary Soundgarden song called ‘Cyanide Christ’. Upon googling this title in the morning I found that it’s actually part of a Meshuggah song that I couldn’t recall ever seeing before. Spooky, eh?
I hadn’t heard that Meshuggah song myself, despite being a fan. I thing I considered the album title and artwork too cheesy, even for Meshuggah. Are you a fan? They are a semi-guilty secret for me, but I feel validated because Wire reviews them favourably.
Upon listening, New Millenium Cyanide Christ is classic Meshuggah and I love it.