Sunday, October 14, 2012

Cheering for the Wildebeest

My self medication of choice for depression, as I’ve said before, is Cheetos. But I’ve learned that Cheetos alone aren’t enough, not even if they start making them prescription strength.

I’ve learned that I have to avoid all those things that can trigger a spiral of despair. Thus, I can’t watch any more nature shows. Because I always cheer for the prey. That’s just the kind of guy I am. It really sucks sometimes. There’s the grazing wildebeest. The lion lurks. My delicate sense of justice is offended.  I want so badly for the wildebeest to defy all the odds and kick that damn bully lion’s ass! Sometimes the wildebeest actually wins the battle. Maybe it comes up with a ruse and scares the dumbass lion away. (Thank God lions are stupid or we’d all be fucked!) Or maybe the wildebeests organize and lion realizes it’s outnumbered.

But even if the wildebeest prevails, I still get depressed. Because I know it’s not that morally cut and dried. Prey is such a relative concept. One species’ prey is another species’ predator. There’s no idealizing it. I have a Chihuahua that hates chipmunks. She despises chipmunks with every fiber of her 11-pound being. She sees a chipmunk and she breaks into a psychotic, barking rage. To a chipmunk, my Chihuahua looks like a tyrannosaurus. But a chipmunk looks like a tyrannosaurus to a gnat. And a gnat looks like a tyrannosaurs to an amoeba. Etc.

I can’t rejoice for long even if the wildebeest lives to graze another day because it is only a temporary stay of execution. Sooner or later, the wildebeest with fulfill its inevitable destiny as a food source for lions. Because isn’t that why the universe bothered to conjure up the wildebeest—to be a food source for lions? 

And then I’m reminded that this is why all living, earthly beings have been invited into the universe in the first place. The universe brought us here to be food sources, if not for another species then for the earth herself. And then I’m reminded that this includes me.  In the grand plan of the universe, I am but a future food source for earth. That is why I’m here. I am prey.

This is where the spiral reaches its nadir.  Even Cheetos won’t help.  I grab my psychological bootstraps. I give myself the old Knute Rockne halftime speech: “Okay, so your ultimate universal purpose is to be a lowly food source. Big deal! Welcome to the club! That doesn’t mean you have to act like a food source! You’re not a food source today, are you? And you probably won’t be tomorrow, either. So get out there and go go go! Don’t just quiver in the corner! Who says food sources can’t have fun, huh? Get out there and boogie with a female food source! That’s the best way to get even with the universe! Have fun! Don’t let the universe push you around! Fuck the universe!”

And so I get out there and try to have fun, motivated by those three little words: fuck the universe!

I know I’m all screwed up in the head. You don’t have to tell me.