But then there was the shitty side of 2008. A whole mountain of shit. A pile so putrid, which stank up this country so effectively, that the odorous aftermath of a drunken White Castle binge could be considered an air freshener. I’m speaking of the Sarah Palin supports that slathered the internet with blatant racism in the guise of political activism. I’m speaking of the Corporate greed that became so overwhelming, it collapsed the money markets of the entire world. I’m speaking of the fact that my car got vandalized three different times, and then booted and towed, serving up a serious divot in my savings account. Oh yeah, and I lost my job at the greenhouse. What the fuck, 2008?
This pungent accumulation of sociological feces brings me to my point. Clean Slate Syndrome. Clean Slate Syndrome, or CSS, is when you find yourself in a situation where your past actions and situations no longer have any connection what-so-ever to your current state of affairs and therefore negate any validity or legitimacy of you previous self. Your slate has been sandblasted clean, by or against your will, and you must now completely redefine yourself to the world. It’s my favorite syndrome, Clean Slate Syndrome. To some, it’s the scariest thing on the planet, and I understand this now more than ever. I am currently in the process of being launched into the vast unknown without much besides my white-knuckled, panic-stricken, death-grip-locked hands clenched for dear life onto my butt cheeks. As I am catapulted away from everything that has become routine and normal in my life, an eerie and completely unjustifiable calm overcomes me; I find myself twisting, somersaulting and careening, head-over-ass, through countless unfamiliar situations. No work, no bread, no crutch, no girlfriend, no back up plan, no clear path to success ahead of me. It is simply terrifying. How the hell did this happen. I remember in November asking myself if the economic crisis was effecting my life and I distinctly remember coming up with the solid answer of, “No. Not in the least.” So I asked for a raise so that, at the tender age of 30, I might be making more money than I did stuffing envelopes while I was high as a kite throughout the summer of 1995. I did not get a raise. Instead I was “let go.” in 1995, I had long hair, dull wit, sharp fingernails and drawer after drawer of homemade tie-dyed tee-shirts. Now I have messy hair, a different belt buckle for every day of the week, a beard, and make less money. So why am I so calm? To me, it is yet another shot at being cosmically reborn. I will find work, I will make dough, I don’t need a crutch, that cute girl will totally fall for me, and I will continue to go forward through this quagmire with hubris and self-righteous indignation, because only hard drives and semi trucks back-up. In the meantime, I think I need a haircut.