venerdì 28 giugno 2013

Storytelling : Neuropolis

I once read a sentence on the pages of a book, which impressed me so strongly and created such a vivid, lively image in my head, that i decided to write it on a piece of paper and keep it, with the purpose of framing it and hangin in it on an unspecified wall of an uncertain place in my unfocused future.

Now i am 45, i am a smoker, i am recently divorced and write essays like this for a living, which means that i have a stroing chance of not having anything like a future, or at least not one that involves walls that have the puprose of showing enlightening turns of phrase to my friends and neighbours.

Those word, though, are still in my head.

"Their weaving is stronger than the fabric of reality. It's tight and rhythmic, it's made of sounds, lights and fury. Of laughter and tears, bonded together in such perfectly symmetrical way that makes both resonate stronger. It's a fabric that wrtaps the reality of the daily mundane things and it's hole, its broken edges, its flawed texture, and almost lulls it to sleep . waiting for the day in which it will incorporate us all"

Those words might sound like the ones you might hear from a self absorbed philosopher or a writer that hasdnt yet learned the lesson thatr all writing is nothing but a breeze in ahurricane, and still believed so strongly in the topic of his description that rhethoric took him over.

And what could be so important and unique that would drive who i discovered later, was an adult man, an atheist, a scientist that ceased to beluieve in science as hope long before, to write something almost embarassingly driven by emotion and hyperbole.

I can tell you, but you'll have to rpomise to try and understand what you will accept with an open mind, and give me advice by the end of this.

The man's name is Charles Kane and he isn't talking about humanity and the strength of their beliefs, politics or religion. He isnt talking about ideas.

He is describing what his research institute has grown to name "The Collective Of the Deceased Unconscious".

Or, in a moment of truth, with the name that everyone sues when theyre not addressing the presss, Neuropolis. The invisible city of the dead.

All of you know what i am talking about and possibly know where i am going with this but let's assume none of us know. Let's pretend to be blessed with the gift of ignorance and start from scratch.

Kane's longtime partner, Grant Madison, a neurologist whose name would be reviled and loved equally in the years following his discovery, ha patiently and relentlessly devoted his life to study the very own essence of human  minds. His mother, a famous novelist, whose last years of life werer reduced to a parody of living by Alzheimer's disease was, together with an almost compulsive curiosity towards what amkes people tick oin an organic level, what made Madison discover that the impulses of the brain could actually be preserved and maintained after a person's death.

With a mixture of chemicals, and the correct timing and technology, parts of a person memory, personality and fragments of their thoughts could be kept into existing. If not living.

The ethical aspects of this were grey at best but wait, it gets worse.

When Madison died of leukemia some years aftyer, his partner and husband Charles Kane decided to develop his discoveries and turn what was mostly a faithful dream into one reality.

The key, surprisingly, was interaction.

The impulses of one single being were mostly scraps by themselves, but were much much more when led to interact with the ones from other deceased people. The more varied, different in age, preservation, type of death the impulsers werre, the more they interacted and the more completely uncanny results they created.

And yes, the word created fits perfectly.

The human remains became brick. They created a world. Neuropolis

Their fragments of sensations, memories, jolts of senory conscience joined together and made what were legitimate interactions, voices, faces, sounds. Lives.

The threads of the souls of the deceased made a building that they went to rest in for eternity.

Still, up to then, all of this was mere speculation. No one knew what exactly thsoe interactions were. We coudlò only see that the cobweb was made but not what it implied and what the shape of  iuts movements formed. All we saw was a series of patterns and numbers.

There came technology to help us again.

A software, created a by a renegade governemnt hacker, whose name will be kept unmentioned, with the purpose of deciphering neural impulses during torture and interrogation sessions and make them into intelligible visuals, sounds and words, was taken (with sheer democractic force) , adapted and made into the key for the Neuropolis cypher.

Now we coudl see what happened in there.

they were dreaming eternally. It wasnt a word uttered by a drunkenb èpriesyt at a funeral or a half arsed metaphor used by a childish hack writer like myself. It wads a reality. What was there was the ones we loved and lost creating a tangible, endless loop of moments taken from their past. Memories, sensations, worlds, faces. Sometimes fgrom their own memory of the living, sometimes created by mixing with the others. A life of the unliving that had no boundaries of time. A true, real collective unconscious of the dead.

So the discovery made its biggest leap, or its greatest mistake. It became public.

The tiles of the city grew in numbers while people started to lead their loved ones' neural remains to the system.

As a man that has always believed in the basic indecency and inability of progressing of humanity, i was impressed at how many were glad to join the project, instead of rejecting it in the name of religion of lack of ethic and morals.

Sure, there werte critics and naysayers but generally all it took to move them towards Neuropolis was the special wave of crushing grief that took you over when a person you shared your soul with disappeared.

Mothers made their lost children jpoin the city where there was no aging, soldiers were led to a place where their bodies wouyld not get torn to pieces in the name of possessions.

The crushing, suffocating punishment that life set on us with illness was only an illusion in a land were all were free of a body.

Still, being humans, we had to fall at some point. Our conviction was bound to fail.

It was discovered that lots of people were commiting suicide por refusing medical treatment in case of illness, in the hopes of joining the project.

Why blame them? This was the first time someone was giving them a tangible proof of an afterlife, a form of better world where the chains of living would be lifted.

But, of course, the wrath of medicine and morality and religion came down.

People had no right to join what was perceived as a false idol, a shameful alternative to their "cures" or the very profitable attraction of religious numbness.

Crusade after crusade, they wanted Neuropolis gone. And the afterlife to return to a benevolent fairytale. Why letr reality exist when it endangers the manipualtive power of myth and illusions.

And then another dangerous discovery was made. One that woudl make the axe on Neurpolis' neck real.

Neuropolis wasnt a fully innocent dream. At least not in the sense of our deba5table human morality.

Some people died in violent circumastances. Some had unresolved demons in their heads. Some were plain sick or just evil.

They built their parts of the city too. And being a product of an unbridled subconscious, the world they created was a pure repetition and realization of violence, fear, abuse and feral cruelty.

They relived their moments of violence, the abuse they died for. tehy commited revenge on uynknownb assaailants or sometimes on the living.

There was darkness to the light of their souls. An underbelly.

Few accepted that. Very few. The majority reacted violently.

Now, Neurpolis risks to be turned off. In a few months, the decision will be made and the city of the dead will be burned to the ground in the name of morals or let prosper with its own monsters.

I have been recently diagnose with third stage sarcoma. I will not live.

After this piece is published, i will commit suicide. I have no family left. Nothing.

I will be another citizen of Neuropolis or the last one to walk through its doors.

I leave it to you. You will vote to one of the greatest decision humanity has been asked to make.

All i wanna tell you is, read my words again. Try to udnerstand. And then decide.

mercoledì 26 giugno 2013

A Moment

I dont think people have ever fully realized the power of an Enabler.

Or, more correctly, i do not think people have ever realized fully, especially in the age of black and white emotional filter, where suddenly every single individual is entitled to act in any way they want , as long as they provide some dramatic excuse for it, the absolute , corrupting, viral power that the people called enablers have.

Let me clarify: i hate this blog. After using it as a place to express my emotions and in some case pushing them upwards to put them on display, ive grown to despise the practice.

I moved away from putting thoughts and feelings in the open for everyone to see, even from wrtiting them for myself.

Cause there is one truth that nobody wants to face, these days: the act of "opening up about your feelings" is a fruitless masturbatory game that hasd been severly overhyped after years and years of psychoanalitical mumbo jumbo. It's the end game of years of absence of real proiblems, and the mutation of a noble thign like expressing feelign to few selcted good people into parading them on a virtual screen for everyone to gape at, and possibly expresss unsincere sumpathy for.

That is also enabling. Pushing poeople into the delusion that they have "someone having their back". Someone who "cares" so that in the end they neglect the oens that really matter, in the name of tragedies on steroids. Creating a grotesque Soap Opera where everyoen makes daily monologues on their afflictions but they do not really care for each other and honestly are just waiting for their turn to speak.

In the end , the quiet ones are the onethat really feel.

But, this time i have to speak. Cause yeah, when you go to AA or therapy, people makelong talks about the neablers of substance abuse , or co-dependence or all the fuss that is ok, since magazines talk abotu it. And even more, in the age of the self serving weep blog, everyone is in love with those phantom figures that you can easily put the blame of all your dysfunctions onto. I am not a cunt, i was enabled into being cunty by my passive aggressive daddy.

But i faced it today and ive been facing it daily for months now.

My mother is ill. Seriously ill. For Months ive been trying , if not to help her on aprtactical side, to lift her moods in simple ways.

She is an alcoholic, suiffers from severe depression and is basically a recluse, almost unableto really do much more than getting through the day.

Since she cannot  be forced into rehabilitation or medical attention, because that woudlrequire the law to mark her as unable to take careof herself, which she is, my only main resource, as a son that has never been able toi do much rather than take more trouble to her heart, is to attempt, from a distance to make her slightlyless msierable, and in that feelmless uselss myself.

And i try, constantly, daily, endlessly.

And i tried again today.

I will get you new clothes, mom. I will bring you places. You will havea bit of ahppiness. I wont go away, i promise. Smile

That's all i could do.

And it kinda worked, cause it was true and sincere. I want to hrelp, but she has to want to be helped, she hasto say yes and give me her hand. Which i woudl gladly take,cause she is, after all, the only other person i love, besides the woman that i want to share my life with.

Andthen. after a few hours, everything goes in the toilet.

He isnt evil, my father. I wouldnt dare being one of thsoe spineless people that i keep meeting and seeing, who write horrible tirades on their parents, claming abuses that never happened, crying for injustices that were never there.

They owe you nothing.

So, no, he isnt evil. He was a goodman, he raised me well. he is still occasionally generous, and i know hed help me if i needed, always.

But he is old. He is ill. He is medicated. He is cruel and small and feels powerless. Cause he never amounted to much in years of life and never solved issues that he had that just stayed there and rot. And he saw that things werent working in his wedding and with his son and he got bitter, and popped pills and got worse.

So he enables her sadness cause thats what runs in his blood. He sucks away positivity, not cause he is a bad person but because all that he is is sadness.

So he tells her "No , that will never happen"

So he reminds her that she is an invalid

He reminds her that she isobese and sick.

He says that she will have not long to live.

And she falls back and drinks and allhope is gone again.

And i learn about it and all i can feel is that it was pointless.A gap grows larger and to not feel sad, i become numb, cause numbness is good.

And i know that one day that gap will be all there is. And i am lookign forward to that day, bvecause i will stop feeling like shit. Even if that means being guilty of nto caring.

Cause i wanna not have emotions, cause emotions to me are a burden and everytime i feel sympathy or compassion in the words or eyes of others i feel weak and more pointless.

So we enable each other's loss.

There was a point when this could be solved.

I feel disgusted at myself for writing this down. there is nothing noble into pouring your heart out cause some feelings arent good for anyone. Cause what you end up doing when you do this, whether you want it or not, is just taking your misery out on others. And no matter how they l,ove you, they will grow tired of it. And they will leave.

The only good there is to this is seein what happened and what is going on inside of you.

But that said. I hope ill never do this again.