Saturday, May 26, 2012

A Moment of Silence In Limboland

Okay so I'm sorry if I have falsely represented the Limboland experience as nothing but non-stop silliness and stupidity, however I would argue that "fear and loathing at the corner 7-11" is probably a broad enough copy platform, or "positioning", to allow for occasional reflection, temporary moments of meaningful observation and even thoughtful analysis. I can think of many times standing in the aisle of a 7-11, or more likely in front of the beer cooler, trying to place that slightly musky, antiseptic odor and having a quiet moment of profound insight. I have also felt waves of unnameable anger and frustration sweep across me as I stood there among the Ho-Hos and the Twinkies, and I've wanted to shout out, curse the injustice of the universe and hopefully scare the shit out of the greasy meathead behind the cash register who thinks he's such an all-powerful badass honey badger in his little convenience store world.

Today is the first anniversary of the death of Ryan Klee aka Ryan Humphries at age 23 from an overdose of alcohol, probably rum and coke and several beers, and oxycontin. I was reminded of this fact as my 24-yr old son headed out for work this morning, and then I came inside and saw his short facebook post: "'s been a long year without you." Ryan and Jack were as close as two guys could be without being lovers.

If you're thinking "wow it's almost impossible for Jeb to open his mouth without being a smartass" you're probably right but that's not for a lack of trying. Ryan had that dubious gift as well, but he made you love him for it, as opposed to me who most people simply want to wallop with a several thousand pound crocodile and move on. Ryan had a great many gifts, and the more you got to know him the more you realized that most of the time he himself was just a big, bright-eyed, crooked-toothed gift. He glowed like silly putty after you held a light to it, and if he started to dim he would simply go get more light. And he would bounce like silly putty when rolled up into a ball, every which way like a Barney Fife bobblehead doll. Yet he was quiet most of the time, content to draw his amazingly complex and psychedelic illustrations on whatever surface he could find: your back, your shoe, his arm, your nose, the wall, the chair and on rare occasions a piece of paper that could actually be hung on the wall. He was studying art, to great acclaim, at the SF Academy when he died.

He was also insatiably curious - the kinda guy that always had to see what was up around the next bend. Combine that with a desire for altered consciousness and people either become enlightened, they die, or both. It could be that God set it up so that curiosity about altered states of consciousness is strictly taboo - doesn't the apple represent that ultimate nugget of wisdom, and didn't God say don't fuck with it? That is if you buy all that, but metaphorically speaking it could be that the general idea is that you, Mr. Human, get one life, one set of eyes, one brain, one body and there are certain parameters that you're supposed to operate within in return for what some would say is just a litany of misery anyway. Be that as it may, if you push it too far, ask too many questions, start eating off-limits fruit, life and all it's various features gets taken away from you.

If Ryan were here today I would say "Dude...what was it about that arrangement - that simple pact - that wasn't good enough for you? Why did you have to push the edge of the envelope and what the fuck did you think that you were going to see?" But even more important I would ask Ryan, just as I would ask every suicide, accidental or intentional: "Did you ever stop to think about the rest of us? Did our love not mean anything to you? Did I not explain to you how pissed off I get when people fuck with my kid's happiness?"

The drug overdose is perhaps the penultimate act of selfish stupidity. I guess it's no wonder it happens more to young people who just haven't had as many years under their belt to see just how close the other side really is.
Jack and Ryan loved to fuck with people's heads

We now return you to our regular programming. (Notice how I am forgoing pimping for a "like" at Hell the book isn't even out until late June. I should shut up already!)

1 comment:

  1. I've never seen a post about suicide (intentional or otherwise) written quite this way. It was refreshing.


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