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Paper Machete - 12/15/12 - "Primates"

In my capacity as Dean of Mean for the Machete, I was assigned the Apocalypse. 

This is what came out.

According to fucktards, the Mayan calendar’s tells us that the world will end next Friday, a conclustion that is rooted in shitty scholarship, alarmist fuckwaddery, and a toxic slurry of prejudice, unreason, and unacknowledged despair. 

The shoddy non-scholarship that has led to the Da Vinci Code-caliber bunching of our collective panties is this:

  • The numbers run out of the Mayan Long Form Calendar.
  • White people learning of this, with their rigid, linear mindset draw the conclusion that no more numbers = time has run out. No time = the end of everything.
  • This sloppy interpretation fails is to take into account cultural context. In the European mind, Time is an arrow – let fly by a hand unseen from a long-ago bow. And that arrow flies onward in a single direction. Till the end of forever. The Mayans tradition – like many others – held that Time was cyclical. It’s like believing that because the odometer on your dashboard has turned over to zeroes, your Ford Fiesta has ceased to exist.


Look. I’ll be honest. I had another piece almost ready to go.

I wrote a thing that was a mashup of that Cusack movie 2012 and that REM song The End of the World As We Know It. It was fairly funny. In it, I posed the theory that the song was Michael Stipe’s incredibly repetitive Bucket List for the species, and I did a detailed dissection of that fucking movie, which I watched – IN FULL – and can tell you is easily one of the most bloated slabs of ineptitude every committed to film.

But then yesterday happened.

Look. I know you came here to be entertained. But when I heard the news yesterday, I could not finish that other thing. I couldn’t. Not for want of trying, but I just could not.

Because I’m not just shaken. I’m scalded. I’m scoured out.

Because like the Mayans understood, and which they carved into a stone tablet that we fail again and again to read:

The world. Keeps ending.

Over and over again.

It ended yesterday in Connecticut. And it ended at that movie theater in Aurora. And it ended at Virginia Tech. And it ended at Columbine. And it ends every fucking weekend on the South Side. And it keeps on ending.

The average height of a kindergartner is about 40” – just above waist high, and they weigh about 40 pounds. The average kindergartner is incapable of real harm. The average kindergartner is entirely blameless. The coffin of a kindergartner is only a little taller than a mailbox.

To execute a kindergartner is no difficult task. You can snap their trusting little necks with ease. But to snuff out 20 of them is a job that requires the right tool. And the American toolbox is the most unlatched in the world. The unlatching of the American toolbox ensures that every workplace dispute, every squabble between hillbillies, every run-in with the cops, every argument on a loading dock – or, as in Sandy Hook yesterday or Aurora or Columbine – every switchback on the road of madness, ends in lethal and blood-spattered fashion.

We have ripped the lid off the American toolbox, and there are many among us who will not rest until we have pressed a tool for killing into the hand of every truck driver, green grocer, crossing guard, doorman, and dry cleaner in the nation; who would have us believe that every daycare, food court, and off ramp will be rendered safe when each of us carries our own killing tool from this unlatched and lidless toolbox.

Which is insane.

If you look into a pit filled with frightened and suspicious primates, a pit where the threat of violence is constant and imminent, the solution is not to tip a box full of hammers into that pit. The hammers will only escalate the already volatile situation in the pit. The hammers are the death knell for the primates in the pit.

But the primates cherish their hammers, and they will protest that the Primate in the Sky has imbued them with the Divine Right to wield as many hammers as they like, and that any prohibitions on the possession or use of hammers constitutes tyranny of the basest kind, and preparation for this tyranny, the primates will stockpile hammers.

And they will publish glossy magazines about hammers. And they will form clubs and societies that advance the cause of hammer culture. And elect primates that pledge never to impede the hammer agenda. And these primate constituents will exert constant pressure upon these primates they elected to remove all barriers to hammer ownership. And these hammer societies and clubs will throw their primate money behind the most compliant primate candidates, and before long, hammer ownership comes to viewed as an inviolable primate right.

But every once in a while, there’s an unstable primate who loses his primate shit and starts swinging hammers two-fisted in the crowded confines of the pit. And then he turns the hammer on himself. And in the wake of this rampage, he has left a pile of dead little primates. And the primate pundits in the pit will speculate at length about the bizarre motivations of the berserk primate who killed all those adorable primate kids, but they won’t say a fucking word about the hammers.

And then some out of work primate will swing a hammer at his girlfriend, and the primate pundits will stand astride her lifeless body to talk about the downturn of the primate economy, but they won’t say a fucking word about the hammers.

And then some unpopular primate teen will crush a bunch of skulls in his cafeteria, and the primate pundits will talk about the music and video games the primate teen was into, but they won’t say a fucking word about the hammers he snuck into school that day.

And the primates will shed tears and post on primate facebook that all primates everywhere should hug their primate kids extra hard that day, and should implore the Primate in the Sky for a return to primate sanity.

And these primates in the pit – the same fucking primates who won’t bat an eye when they gotta take off their primate shoes at the primate airport, and can only bring a tiny thing of shampoo on the primate plane, or when they’re no longer permitted to use certain pesticides on their primate farms, or gotta show primate ID to get certain cold medicines at the primate CVS, for fear that they’re cooking primate meth – these primates will howl for the heads of any primate who wonders aloud if maybe the primate love of hammers and how easy hammers are to get might have something to do with all these hammer deaths in the pit.

They will call these primates treasonous faggots who hate primate liberty. And, if these lippy primates persist in this line of questioning, these uppity elitist primates better watch their fucking backs, because who knows when some hammers might start swinging at them. Or their primate wife and kids. Be a real shame if that happened.

And the rational primate, the primate prone to questioning hammer policy in the pit? He freaks out a little bit. Cause he just wants to protect his primate family. From the veiled threat of hammer violence.

So what does he do? He goes and gets himself the biggest goddamn hammer he can get his hands on.

And the uneasy order is restored in the pit.

Until the world ends again.

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