I Don’t Care.

Double-exposure selfie with the Tetons. Jackson, WY. Shot on Kodak 400TX 35mm.

I’ve been noticing more and more how often I think or say out loud — “I don’t care.”

I’d like to think I’m full of shit when I say “I don’t care,” but I’m also aware that I may be trying to protect my impression of my own character. It’s certainly more satisfying to think I’m caring rather than apathetic. And in many ways, I am caring… but only towards people I care about. So yea, in a general sense, I don’t really give a damn.

I don’t see the point in caring about most things. I suppose that might sound depressing — like I just walk through life with glazed eyes, feeling nothing — but it surely is not. I don’t reap any great joys from not caring, but it’s not depressing. It’s just the classic “meh.”

For example:
 The economy sucks — meh.
 War and stuff — meh.
 Weed is legal — don’t care.
 Weed is illegal — whatever.
 Taxes and global warming and the Grammys — do. not. care.

Now, I’ve considered that a logical explanation for all of this is I’m a self-centered prick

That is true, but mostly in the natural way — I am the closest thing to me, and so I care most about myself. I want to eat when I’m hungry, get money to buy food and fun stuff, and pursue a life that makes me happy and feel productive, fulfilled, and loved. But, as mentioned before, I do care about many people in my life. I like to do nice things for them when I can and I like them to be happy and feel productive, fulfilled, and loved. It’s when we get to talking about the “Topics” — the go-to conversation fodder that turns everyone into raging pundits — that I start to bleed from the eyes.

Take “The Economy” for instance: Holy crap. I don’t care.

I care that people suffer because jobs are scarce and they don’t have the means to access a more fertile market, but those aren’t the people who talk about “The Economy.” Those people are scraping pennies together to eat dinner. They’re walking miles to apply for jobs. They’re getting screwed by the people who talk about “The Economy” — the ones who sell subprime mortgages and spearhead gentrification projects. The people who talk about “The Economy” have nothing else to talk about, except maybe “Politics” or “Foreign Policy.” These humans like to throw around words that ultimately manifest as worthless silence filler or unbelievably narrow-minded opinions about inexplicably massive and complex systems of behavior.

Since I just mentioned it, let’s look at “Foreign Policy” (also approached in conversation or headlines via catchphrases such as “The War on Terror,” “North Korea,” and “Immigration Reform”).

Again, ughhh.

Yes, there are psychotic humans who murder others who don’t share their opinions. We call them terrorists. I certainly don’t want anyone to get murdered, especially over something as trivial as an opinion… but it makes total sense to bomb areas where we suspect those terrorists reside because we’ll only kill a few innocent people. We don’t want them killing Americans after all.

Also, we should definitely push our democratic-capitalistic structure on every other culture in the world, and by force if necessary. It works for us, and we’re the best!
 While we’re at it, I don’t think people should be allowed to just move to America. After all, our white ancestors were the first ones to this land, and that would mean something even if it were true…

Hold up. It almost sounds like I have opinions on these things — like I care or something.

The not caring comes in here: humans are so totally self-absorbed and self-important that none of this will ever stop. Everyone comes from the best culture. And as such, everyone must proclaim their superlative culture to others and have a pissing match if there’s any disagreement with that hard truth. If the pissing match doesn’t resolve the issue, well fuck it, just kill ’em (rape and subjugation works too).

Everyone wants stuff. Everyone needs stuff — like food, shelter, the basics — but in the social realm of individual pissing matches, everyone wants as much stuff as they can get. If you have a bigger house and more shiny pieces of metal, you’re obviously better, right? Obviously. So systems will be created that all but guarantee a few people get more stuff than most people. Even though this is all retarded, it seems par for the course. I guess my mentality is “Live and let live, even if painfully stupid.”

As a great mind by the name of Bookworm once said, “Humans will be humans.” We’re just another group of animals roaming a lump of rock. What makes us different is when we look in the mirror, we see ourselves and not another human looking back at us. We’re aware of ourselves. We’re aware of ourselves to a point where instead of simply getting our share — like a wolf who kills when she’s hungry — we actually need to prove that we’re getting our share. We need to tell others this way or that way is the best way to get your share — not to help them, but so they know we’re the best. And if we make sure we get more stuff and make them dependent upon us, they will know we’re the best.

And that’s the basic vibe I get from most things people talk about: it’s just a bunch of bipedal creatures doing stuff and trying to prove to themselves and others it’s important. Other animals don’t do the crap we do. I’d be shocked to find out there’s been a war between pine trees and oak trees over who has the best leaves. I’d shit my britches if I heard that prairie dogs were leveraging burrows to get monthly payments of wheat, or whatever their currency is. Most stunning would be the news that dogs were voting on whether humping human legs should be legal.

I get that we’re more “socially complex” and all but that’s also our own doing. There is no doubt in my mind that we reap satisfaction from seeing ourselves as sophisticated. But all of these things we do are just diversions, time fillers. I see little gravity in any of it. But humans will be humans. We’ll do whatever it is that makes us feel important, everything else be damned. There’s no point in anyone trying to say, “Hey guys, we gotta do it more like this so things will be better!”

No one cares.

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Originally published at chiefmcfrank.com on February 22, 2015.