How the hell did I do that? Here's how: I've lost my sense of humor when it comes to politics. I've been mocking Tea Party people for taking themselves soooooo damnnnnn seriously, and meanwhile, I've just become a member of the Espresso Party - an angry liberal who takes everything soooooo damnnnnn seriously.
I've been blogging about political-type things lately, trying to keep it light and not that hateful or mean. I'm a nerd. I like silly things. And there are parts of politics that are pretty damn silly right now. But lately, if I make the mistake of turning on the news or staying on the Internet too long, something deep down inside me is screaming "JAMIE, ACQUIRE ALCOHOL RIGHT NOW," but it's being drowned out by Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin. And Bill O'Reilly and NPR. And Carl Paladino, MSNBC, Fox 'n' Friends, and all the blogs I read/mainline.
Then this week, Tea Partiers physically assaulted a MoveOn.org activist. Here's exactly how my thought process went: I saw the headline. I was DISTURBED. I watched the video. Lauren Valle was wearing a cheap blonde wig. Wait, really? The Tea Partiers wear costumes, and so the Code Pink ladies. And you know what I think of them? Not much. I've pulled my own stunty shit before, but at least I acknowledged it was stunty. Anyway, she was de-wigged and PULLED TO THE GROUND by several dudes. Then one of them put his FOOT down on her and SHOVED her face into the sidewalk, resulting in a CONCUSSION. Did it remind me of the curbing in "American History X"? YES. Did I really think it was that extreme? No. But did I get nauseous at how these guys felt it was necessary to use that kind of excessive physical force on a 23-year old woman with a stupid wig and a sign? YES.
Everyone totally hulked out. They lost control and got way too angry. An angry activist pulling a dumb stunt rushed a candidate. Is it smart to rush a candidate? No. But is it smart to gang up and shove someone's face into the ground in the age of advanced video technology and viral video? No. Is it smart to go on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" with a big smile on your face when people think you were victimized and have a serious head injury? No. But is it smart to think that the woman whose face you shoved into the ground should apologize to you? No.
Then, like a junkie, I watched the news all day. Was that smart? No. Because then I heard about the guy on an Arkansas school board who said all gay kids should kill themselves. I spent the whole day outraged about people in Kentucky and Arkansas, two states that pretty much nothing to do with me. So what did I do? I pissed and moaned about those guys all day and into the wee hours of the night. I signed a petition. I wrote an email. Is it going to matter? Nope. Not one little bit. No amount of out-of-state outrage is going to change how those guys act or do their jobs.
But you know what? I've written to my own state senator, and he couldn't give a shit about my opinions either. Because he knows I'd never vote for him and give him the money and power he wants, and I don't want to live in his district anyway. I'll vote against him, but he'll still win. That's what happens when you live in a "political stronghold."
Here's why it's been so easy to get so pissed: I have nothing else to do. I'm unemployed. I look for work everyday, find nothing, hear nothing, get nothing accomplished. Nothing, nothing, and more nothing. And there's nothing I can do about it. In order to relieve nothing, I need something.
So I go shopping. I can go into one store and there's a sale on immigration outrage! I can go in another one and find a sale on financial outrage! And in this store I have a coupon - a Tea Party candidate! In my very own legislative district! And like the compulsive spender I am, I buy all of it! And now my credit card/soul is choking and I have all this shit/impotent rage and nowhere to put it.
Of course, I'm not making any money right now. It's something over which I have no control. Like the bangs I just cut because I needed a change. They suck, and there's nothing I can do but wait. So I direct my frustration towards shopping/political pissfights. And you know what? Most of it is useless and none of it looks good on me. Like the bangs I just cut. The Bangs For Change. And now I'm in debt and I look like my ninth-grade class picture. Guess what? About three people talked to me in ninth grade.
While I'm not the only one feeling anger over things I can't control, I have become one of those people who have completely let it get to them. And it feels icky. Lewis Black said on his 2002 album "End of the Universe" that "Without a sense of humor, [things] can get crazy...And we see that in our enemy. That's what happened to the Taliban. That's what the Al Qaeda are all about. These are people who have no sense of humor...You know someone doesn't have a sense of humor when they can stand up in a room and go 'If you commit suicide, for Allah, when you die, you'll immediately be met in heaven by 70 virgins.' And nobody in the room just goes 'BWAAAAAHAHAHA! Son of a bitch, that was GREAT!'" I'm not saying we've become terrorists, but some of us on every part of the political spectrum, including me, forgot how to take a step back and say "BWAHAHA! You so crazy!" And like the aforementioned Hulk, there's anger brewing that's getting the better of me. And it's giving me zits.
People will not wake up November 3rd and immediately find or lose jobs. There won't be Mexican gays making out in their living rooms or Fred Phelps' entire family/church telling them what breakfast cereal to buy. And they're not going to wake up in an apocalyptic nightmare. They're all going to watch clips of "Dancing With the Stars," for whatever reason.
I'm going to the Rally to Restore Sanity this weekend to go back to being part of the 70 to 80 percent of America that only gets merely annoyed by extreme people and then moves on to bigger, better things. I'm over being a stereotypical shrieky liberal. I'm going to return to just being a stereotypical unemployed 30-year old who watches Adult Swim until 3 am. Because I fucking love Adult Swim. And I have more important things to be pissed about.