This is what happens when nothing happens

Gray, rainy days comfort me. Their sadness mirrors mine.

A beautiful day forces you to live up to its beauty. To be worthy of its happiness.

Rainy days ask nothing of you. They let you fall into yourself and forget. Like a drawn out shower on a winter evening. Time doesn’t pass.

4 in the afternoon is the same as 10 in the morning. All the hours of the day are draped in the same grey veil.

You want to get away from the world and sleep. Not because you want to die but because you want to live your life unconsciously. Part of you is always dark. And that part wants to swallow everything else.

Went to work today. It rained. I was inside and watched people come in with wet coats and pants. We talked about how they were wet and those of us who’d been working in the cafe were dry. I made lattes.

Some guy  was setting up a video shoot and I don’t know why. He’s a regular who’d been talking about it for weeks but I never pay attention to things like that. He pointed blazing lights at us. As if we needed more attention and exposure. Everyone already  watches you. Normally, we work in soft lighting that doesn’t draw attention to minor physical flaws, small stains or bits of coffee grounds.

But today all the things you don’t see were highlighted. Grime, dirt, discoloration, herky-jerky movements. I saw myself in one of the cameras and I looked like a corpse who’d been living in a sewer.

It was busy, the lights made me anxious and I worried about serving people poorly made drinks and ruining their day. But no one else thought about it. Later tonight I’ll think about it again.

It rained all day and I thought about writing after work. About Louis ck asking women to watch him masturbate. I was going to write about how he’d confused his private life with his role as a performer. Because his act is an hour of people watching him masturbate. When louis is on stage, people want to see that. When he’s back stage, not so much…

Louis can pack Madison square garden with tens of thousands of people who want to watch him masturbate. They relate and laugh. Not to the man who haltingly asks women if they’d like him to pull on his penis in the green room.

They relate to the act of masturbating on stage for an hour to an admiring audience. The contemporary narcissist isn’t just a sculpted Instagram model,  he’s also a chronically masturbating slob in sweatpants.

All these powerful men making women watch them masturbate, abusing their power, taking advantage, groping, pinching, suggesting, winking and nudging from the crack in the slightly open door of their hotel room where they stand wearing only a loosely tied towel over their penises.

Power is another worn out word that airheads repeat to give weight to their statements. They think of power as the product of a system. An invisible machines gives it out in unequal portions. People are powerful because of their positions in society.

The sacred cause of progressives is correcting this imbalance of power through radical reform of the system. But to reform the system they need to take the power positions for themselves. Progressives are so devoted to this cause that they haven’t noticed it makes no sense and will never work.

Power isn’t just what’s given to you by someone or something else. It’s also who you are, it’s what you give to the world. It’s what you express as yourself, positively, in deciding, in willing and acting.

There’s the power that comes from how other people see you. But there’s a greater power that comes from deciding who you are and then acting in harmony with your chosen character.

Men like Harvey Weinstein and Louis Ck have a power that’s weakly rooted, unstable and dependent on the whims of others.They have a circumstantial power over others. They can make women watch them masturbate. But they can’t make themselves not make women watch them masturbate.

Other people pay for your lack of self control. Always remember this. The system is less important than what you do. Louis still could have been a famous comedian, but he also could have not made those women watch him masturbate. He lacked power when he needed it. So did Weinstein and many others.

You can’t blame louis for wanting to do stupid, harmful things. But you can blame him for doing stupid, harmful things. Actions are more reliable guides to character than the dim dreams rumbling in the basement of a man’s mind. What we do means more than what we want.

Men take power in society. They climb to the top of the hierarchy where they can satisfy their desires. They live where they want and buy anything. Nothing is out of reach.

But they still don’t have power over themselves. Nothing in our culture can give them that. When it comes to making themselves work for money rather than sift through sacks of chicken guts in a dumpster behind a restaurant, some men exercise tremendous power. They can will themselves to write comedy specials and make blockbuster movies but they can’t stop themselves from pulling their dicks out at the wrong time in front of the wrong people.

All the power in the world and their dicks still dominate them.  They have adoring fans, a fawning media, more money than they’ll ever need but they’re still internally weak and defeated.

There are many manifestations of power that we don’t see. It’s not just wealth, fame, talent, charisma, good looks or an interesting personality. It’s not just physical strength or the ability to inflict pain, the intelligence to manipulate or what you can get away with because of your place in a social structure. There are other forms.

There’s the power of decency. The power of restraint, of modesty, deference and respect. Of faith, fidelity, dignity and sacrifice. What about the power of a man who stays true to his wife. What about the man who puts his family before his raging lusts, who does his job without demanding special treatment or preying on people beneath him. Or the man who gives his life in service to something greater than himself.

Are men like this not powerful? Or are we trying to paint an ugly picture of power and masculinity, to define masculine power narrowly and negatively so as to discredit it? If male power were nothing more than a swollen, sweaty executive tugging on his flagging penis in front of interns, then we’d be justified in denouncing and combating it. Better give that power to samoan paraplegics and transgender Mongolians, who we can be sure wouldn’t abuse it.

You don’t want what you want. You jerk off all day to the arousing images swirling around you like a vortex. So many women. You’re so close to having it you can feel it. There are endless ads and shows, programs, friends and strangers on the street telling you to do it, to give in and get it. You want it and so does everyone else.

At 55 you’re no different from who you were when you were 20. You’re cracked and chafed from years of rubbing yourself raw. You made money and a name for yourself but you’re still a compulsive  masturbator, limping towards old age, pleading with women to watch you wring a few drops of stale jizz from your weathered nutsack.

Your desires are working against you. They’ve been against you your entire life. Give them up. You’ll never be satisfied and you’ll make other people miserable as well. You may be irreparably damaged, internally damned; the least you can do is not ruin other people’s lives. If your non-abjectly masturbating self is a lie, it’s better to live the lie.

The beauty of a young woman should inspire you to have children with her. That’s the meaning of feminine beauty. It’s powerful but also fleeting. It doesn’t last forever in a particular woman but it’s also not that rare. Many women are attractive when they’re young.

You don’t evolve or transcend by trying to have sex with hundreds or thousands of women. You piss your time away, risk your physical and emotional health and make people around you sad. It’s broken behavior, not a display of power. When you see women solely as sex objects, they’re all the same. What makes a woman special is the life she shares with you, her history entwined with yours. Not her tits or ass. A woman is special because she sacrifices for you and you do the same for her.

Women are not sex toys or independent, strong individuals. They are parts of a larger social fabric. Sexual waywardness and crass objectification tear this fabric apart. Women are mothers, daughters and sisters, they’re members of families. The disintegration of social ties leaves behind a wasteland of predation.

Nothing is more spiritually corrosive and socially retarding than sexual obsession. It’s the downfall of supposedly powerful men. Let them be a lesson. No success or wealth is worth losing your soul to lust.

Author: The Empty Subject

Born curmudgeon

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