What I Learned from the U2 Debacle


Something dawned on me that kinda slipped my mind for a minute.

I learn things and then I forget them and I then I relearn them again.  There’s this pattern [I catch myself sounding like Bush, I gulp and spit mouthwash].

Some weird thing happens, and that reminds me of stuff I already know and then I re-learn stuff.  This happened the other day when the whole U2 debacle unfolded.   Nico Lang, with withering aplomb, summed it up over at Salon:  “Bono has spent the last three and a half decades trying to get everyone to like him, but the greatest PR coup he could ever pull is to finally stop caring.”

Reality check.  Lately I’ve been drifting into people-pleaser territory, and that ain’t me.  So I hit myself in the head with that Salon article and instituted a course correction.

I’m never going to be the world’s most popular writer.  My novels are weird and hard to categorize by any clear genre, my martial arts stuff combines the extremely practical with the esoteric (which probably annoys the hard martial artists as well as the soft), and my ‘zines are more produced, and have a completely different vibe, than the ones everybody else shows up with at zinefests.


I detest blind patriotism and when I hear “America, wrong or right!” I get hives. But I think Captain America is a bad-ass super-hero and I feel like the USA is a pretty cool country when she’s hitting on most of her cylinders.

My politics are a 50/50 mix of Deep Green Anarchy and Libertarianism, so I piss off almost everyone I talk to that subject.  I wretch at blind patriotism; yet I love Captain America and I still think America at her best  is friggin’ awesome.

As for religion, I’ve practiced several (Christianity, LDS, Buddhism, Taoism, Shamanism, Wicca).  Eventually I turned away from the idea of adhering to a faith and became a simple mystic with an appreciation for Qabalah.  I’m pretty sure this paragraph contains enough to piss off 2/3 of the entire planet.

And so on.

I gotta be me.  I knew this, I just needed the U2 debacle to signal that I was headed off course.  Conformity has a lot of gravitational pull.  Sometimes you have to check your gauges and make sure you aren’t drifting.

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