I’m Craving School

My boundaries may just be blurring in dangerous ways.

I think I’ve been spending way too long on Reddit. Part of me regrets signing up, because you can subscribe to communities, and they pop up on your Reddit homepage. When you’ve been accustomed in life to having to go out of your way to even get ice cream, Reddit shoving its content into your face tirelessly is a something you’ll readily take. Jokes on me though, I spend way too much time these days.

Reddit may not be the villain here, but it is on the verge of turning me into my own worst nightmare: a mindless content consuming drone. Nightmare? Scratch that. It’s the end of me, my biggest fear.

So I’ve been scrolling through an amount of posts that would put my… ex-math textbook to shame. It was thick. It also put a serious smile on my face to call it my ex-textbook. I’m almost longing for a new one now, three months is the sort of vacation no one should be allowed to have.

If I digress for a minute, just imagine the sort of profits the entertainment industry would make if people had three month long holidays. After a point, people would begin to pay the trashiest posters on Reddit, Instagram, whatever else they use, just to fulfil their daily cravings.
Although, it’s not exactly as if sitting at your desk at work or at school during a quiet moment, you don’t feel the urge to check Buzzfeed. I guess as long as the world has people bored and numbed, the creative industry will soar. The irony is that the creative industry is practically of the Ones Who Broke Away.
But I have resolved to get back onto YouTube. I’ve stayed away from live music recordings for way too long, I can’t lose touch with that!

Anyway, I’ve been mindlessly scrolling for the moment. I guess I didn’t realise how instinctual it had become. This morning, I was reading the newspaper and was on the comics page (no, the actual comics page). I read through a comic I liked, and just for a second, my index finger tensed as if preparing to lift itself up and hit the Upvote button.

Oh shit. The cynical observer in the Man vs Robot war is falling prey to the enemy. This is probably more of the reason I haven’t blogged for so long. I have got to get my brain running again. I’m going to dig out those old physics notebooks.
Jokes on me again, though. The physics notebooks have been out all week, I have sort of been aware of my Reddit (semi?) addiction for a while now. It’s pretty much numbed my mind, killed my wit and is retarding my writing style too. That’s actually why I’ve been afraid to write anything significant for a while. I know I’m going to look back on this and cringe hard.

I never thought you’d hear me say it. I’m craving school right now. I need the school environment to get me interested in learning again. I need a change, I guess.

If I read this post title in isolation, I’d check me into a mental institution, but I guess Stockholm Syndrome’s hit me. After reading this, I’m just fucking ready to check into university, help me.

But the guitar sort of helps. I’m doing almost nothing creative these days, save maybe a three-chord arpeggio riff, nothing major. My other blog’s nearly dead and I haven’t written any poetry in a long while. Even though I nearly die almost every time I walk back home from design class, there’s tons of fodder, but I need to become more receptive to it again. Maybe then I’ll tell you about how awkward it can be to be a science student among art majors. Huh? What is this ‘friend’ you speak of? Is it a new algorithm? A mathematical mnemonic? New drug in the pharmaceutical lab? …Oh, wait.
It’s a long story I will attempt sometime soon when I’m not cringing as I write. I’m really just thinking out loud right now.

The guitar still helps though I’m restricted to only playing it, because like every other muscle in my body, my vocal chords are stiff and I cannot sing to save my life. I’m trying, but sheesh, I’d really rather not do it with anyone around. Things are literally going like this.

Me: (attempts to mumble)
Mum: (mildly concerned looking out of the window) “Is a kid crying in the next building?”
Me: (tries to cover up mouth movements by pretending there’s something stuck in my teeth)
Me: (tries to hit the lower notes)
Mum: (looking out the window) “Bikes can be so noisy.”
Me: (tries to falsetto but vocal chords are in the middle of a union strike over unemployment)
Mum: “alkjmp Darn that construction!”
What?!

So yeah, not my best period. I was trying to play along with my iPod today, and it probably wasn’t a great idea. I’m playing along with the track and Elliott Smith begins to sing, and I forget to play, because it has been a really long time since I’ve heard a real singing voice and one that’s not begging for death. Elliott Smith also just happens to be amazing.

At least so far, my fingers have only been stiff some five times.

Who knows, maybe the truth really is Stockholm syndrome. I kinda miss trashing school.

Cycle of Life

I was reading an article on how the population equilibrium on the planet will be maintained- a cycle of events that supposedly take place, that ensure a balance in human numbers on the planet.

Very roughly, they cycled as follows:
At first, there was a medium-ish population, and a small, hand sowed-and-reaped produce just enough to feed it.
If the population increased, the food supply was the limiting or checking factor, maintaining our population size.

Then came the mechanisation.
All of a sudden, with industrialisation, machines were reaping more crops than ever.

For once, an increasing population had enough, and even surplus food in store. (Cue: the Great Depression of the late ’20s, where the grain produce was so much, it had no more value in the markets.)

With this, and advances in technology and medicine, the so-far tight check on population growth loosened, and what began was the third phase of the cycle: something we call the population explosion.

In this stage, life conditions look relatively hunky dory, people live, live, and keep on living.

We’re accelerating too much, the problem of today.

Well, here’s what the cycle says.
This is where a fourth phase in the cycle kicks in.

There will then follow a stabilisation, wherein, with lower mortality rates and more longevity, humans will start reproducing less.
There simply won’t be a need for people to have as many kids anymore.
[Also, I may add, the lack of a libido, as seen in the Japanese, and the introduction of AI into the sex sphere, may play big roles in bringing down the very need/urge for human sex, and indirectly, reproduction.]

Now, I’m not economist or researcher. But I have another theory.

The human race will advance further in the intelligence sphere, and we’ll soon be delegating our intelligence to algorithms.

We’ll progress to the point where we’ve become far too comfortable.
(And trust me, we’re on our way there.)

The human body was designed for action. We were predators and prey once. Now we prey on the supermarket.
We use to be on the move.

Heaven knows we may adapt to inactivity. But mostly, I think that would fall apart.

Soon, non-movement-related illnesses would begin to take control of the human race, and human numbers will fall, because most likely, we won’t be able to reverse the damage.
Lifestyles mostly only progressively change, not regressively.

Now birth and death rates will balance out, and for all you know, despite improving technology, we may not have the problem of food surplus, because of the growing importance of (and money diverted to the production of) medicinal precautionary drugs, etc. in the human diet.
We come back to Step 1 of the cycle, i.e., balance. (Birth = death ≤ food supply).

There is another way, though.

Human beings’ strongest claim to the top of the hierarchy has always been their superior thinking ability. We’ve outsmarted and ousted almost every other dominant species on the planet. We call it civilisation.

But, of late, we’ve been handing over the reigns to the Golden Age bearers; with a machine to do everything a human can, the human needn’t work anymore. We have submitted to the idea of the Reigner Supreme: the now preferred machine.
Soon enough, the machine takes over the thinking aspect as well. Like a rusting machine, the now-useless human brain rots away in wastefulness.
No longer the well-oiled machine it once was, the evolution of the human brain stops.
With our front running claim to the top, our biggest weapon blunted, we will slide lower. Rationality and logical thinking will be lost, one bad decision will lead to another, till we’ve effectively dwindled down to the last human.
Ain’t that hard to kill the last dodo, is it now?

At last the cycle will end, and the winners, created by the ones they destroyed, the Reigning Machines, the victors, would stand tall, perfect and purposeless.

Hey, I’m only a science fiction writer, but who’s to say that dolphins won’t rule our planet one day?