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Ghost in the Machine: A Pop Culture Junkie's Confession

The Mind Outlet

Ghost in the Machine: A Pop Culture Junkie's Confession

Recently I decided that I needed to take a sobering look at my life. In an effort to figure out why I've constructed an impenetrable barrier of genuine feeling, I cleared my mind and went exploring. I thought about my past and how every decision I've made in life has lead up to this exact moment of contemplation. I thought about the future and how completely selfish I am. The next several years seemed to have no consideration of family, friends, or the inkling of a significant woman. That disgusted me. My stomach went into knots and I realized I might be worse off then I thought.

That's when my phone rang and Slash started shredding the solo to Paradise City as my ringtone. All the self-deprivating thoughts I was having prior to the ringer completely melted away as my mind was flooded with sights and sounds of Guns N' Roses. My imagination ran wild as the band rocked sold out arena shows and Slash pounded Jack from a brown bag while sitting on a dark Hollywood sidewalk. I didn't feel bad about myself anymore, I wasn't even thinking about myself anymore. The montage of Guns N' Roses continued until the room became silent, the phone stopped ringing. Suddenly the pit in my stomach didn't ache, the thought of being alone didn't scare me, and the realization of me being a selfish prick didn't bother me as much.

Fantasy is my cocaine. One little dose of alternate reality can make anything in this world good and it transcends into every portion of my life. Pop culture is my Dr. Feelgood who's constantly hooking me up with movies, television, books, blogs, videogames, and music to mentally take me away from my existence. Every aspect of my day is in an effort to leave behind the world I've created for myself, subconsciously or not.

The thought will be completed soon. Well, as soon as I stop daydreaming...

 

UPDATE: Friday, June 7, 2024 – 41Y 0M 21D

When I go back and read something like this now, I'm just filled with sadness for myself? I don't know if sadness is the proper word.

I see myself struggling. I can recognize that then, and now. I am witnessing the world around me bond, fall in love, and build a life – and I can't seem to do any of that. I know something is wrong. I know I am different. I know this stuff is coming much harder for me than everyone else. So much so, that I can't even imagine a future, a life, with anyone else in it. And, that's not out of narcissism. It completely objective. I struggle so hard at forming and maintaining relationships that I have no idea where I'll be in a few years down the road. No vision.

So, what do I do? I run away. I hide in escapism. I immerse myself in fantasy; a fictional realm that is far more entertaining than the one I'm currently in. And I just linger. I play with that idea. I exhaust it. By the time I'm done, whatever I was worried about just doesn't seem so bad any more.

I did this for as long as I humanly could. The problem with adulthood, the more you ignore your problems, the worse they get. The harder they are to solve. And they don't go away. You can't wait them out.

How else do I cope? All I ever did was train myself to ignore reality. Now, how do I even live in it?

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