Support: a word taken for granted

Today I had trouble sleeping. I was thinking about the girl I met in 2013, the year I got fired from the company that taught me most of what I know about corporate culture, team goals, sales, management and of course, teaching. She’s pretty amazing. But since I’ve written songs about her, I think I should talk about something else. It was a tough moment in my life. I didn’t notice the changes. Walking back from work in a rainy evening, meeting my percussionist friend on the way, who now lives on Berlin. Talking to dogs, smoking sitting on the rocks in the campus main square. Listening to so much stuff. The Mars Volta, Tool, Steven Wilson, Opeth, Soen, Puscifer, Queens of the Stone Age, Carina Round. Some of the people are very related. But I was looking at a possibility of being a pedagogical coordinator. And I had a master’s project to write. The document was in my folder: “the research project shows academic maturity and has potential for a master’s degree”. Signed by another professor in the Modern Languages department. But I didn’t know real language. I was studying a question of ethics. Of culture. I always knew trolls were out there, but I thought: “wait, that’s a little too far”. People were treating terrorism as a joke, but actually, that was showing patriotism. And then I got involved. Actually, that’s the how. I lost the job, I also lost my girlfriend in a series of unfortunate events, disguised as support. So let me try to define that.

At work, if you have a new Idea and people are listening to you in a meeting, you expect those people you talk to the most to say you’re right. I mean, yeah, if we live in a city so big, where sometimes you can’t get in or out of a subway because there’s too many people tucked in, or if the street traffic doesn’t help, maybe you can say 30 minutes is a better margin than 15 when it comes to being late. Sure, people will get mad. But you’ll greet them with the best possible version of yourself at 7 in the morning. They didn’t do the homework anyway, they’re pissed cause they’re paying. Their texts suck. They don’t care about pronunciation or the fact that you’re not even correcting them because you want them to participate so the branch keeps the number of students. They don’t read much. Their opinions are very much a copy of mainstream TV discourse, and they’re not bringing anything new to discussion. Maybe a place they visited. A restaurant. A pub. The best car, they know that. How to fry an egg. The word pan is not part of their vocabulary. And guess what, they don’t even cook. But the point is: step one, then this. After that, finally, etc. Don’t forget to do this. Context in use. But the class started 15 minutes late. So you got a warning. On the second, with the new coordinator, you’d be fired. And then that happens. Where were the people you talked to the most, again? Sleeping with your girlfriend. The rest was too busy doing drugs.

Years later, you’d be put in a drug support group. Orphans, disabled people, chronic diseases, prostitution, crime, dyslexia, anxiety, panic, needles, screams, pills, blood pressure checks, hospital sheets in the winter. The World Cup in your country. You spent it in intensive care. And who cares? They came to visit. You didn’t know what to say. And years later, you still recount the stories in fragments. Abortion. Who would talk about that? But we need a support network for women. Sexual harassment. Everybody talks about that, but it’s controversial. Freedom of speech. What do you need help with? That’s different than asking for support. Help is a strong word. Help is a cry. Support is just a thing people should think about in case anyone needs it. If my son wants to be serious about music, I’ll buy him a set of cymbals. Never happened. 16 years later, here we are. I start playing the guitar, I gotta worry about how I walk in the living room after begging for attention, the audacity to play rock scales when your grandma is dying. But she has a health care plan. And other forms of support. I haven’t been a contracted employee since 2015. Got less than 25 dollars in payments for music performances in all these years. There were at least 50. And many studio hours. I paid to play. Until I couldn’t afford it anymore. And some friends were my support. Keeping me grooving.

When it comes to relationships, though, I wonder what people would say they need. I want a future romantic partner to be okay with my internet history. But somebody’s gonna say that’s not support, that’s masochism. And I don’t run my nails in nobody’s back until they bleed, mind you. I just like some pretty faces. And eventually I look at some cams. Who the hell supports these people? What about the support of causes? Count every like and retweet. Facebook’s telling me I’m one of the top fans of an animal shelter started by an American journalist. Who would have guessed? Journalism. Support? From journalists? Sure, some discussions are interesting, but stealing other people’s work is not support. Twisting their life stories and expecting them to be content with the fact that something remotely resemblant of their own lives is being broadcast for everyone to see, well, that’s a little off the line. Actually, there’s laws about fake news now. And copyrights have been updated to preserve human dignity. But who gives a flying fuck?

I don’t have money to buy new socks and underwear. I can’t eat what I like, it’s pork and chicken every week, and I’m a vegetarian. I can’t drink. I can’t go out. I can’t talk to the people I like, I can’t talk to the people I love, and worse if there’s a marriage proposal involved. But what about the kids? Bro, what about the kids? The Common Core. Jesus, man. Where’s the support from the Dutch? That matters. But supporting a ghost, that’s not something anyone’s interested in. A guy who can never go mainstream, but a guy who can never be liked, let alone stand in front of a group of teenagers. What about the kids? They have TikTok role models. Don’t you dare have an opinion. It’s very popular. You’re not. And if you say they should read more, thank you very much, but I can do whatever the fuck I want. Life is funny. But I hope people still read blogs.

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