The Pattern

Phil Collins once wrote:

There’s too many men
Too many people
Making too many problems
And not much love to go around
Can’t you see we’re in a land of confusion?

He wrote that in the 80s but it still rings true to this day.

I’ve never really admitted it to anyone until recently but one of my hobbies is trying to find The Pattern. I’ve been at it since the early nineties.

I first started to identify this ‘thing’, a pattern of behaviour the human race seemed to have. There is no official name for it – I just call it “The Pattern”. It’s little malfunctional practises the human race seems to have regarding society which are slowly destroying it.

At first, I hung around on a BBS with similar minded types who thought the world was going down the toilet. Some of them hippies, some of them commies, some of them tin foil hatters. Still, lots of good ideas there. But as the years went on their numbers dwindled and finally the admin decided to shut the board down. His wife was expecting and he just didn’t have time anymore. His last words to me were “Don’t worry. Keep your head down and stay busy.” Been so long now I don’t even remember his name.

Those words haunt me. I’ve been obsessed with uncovering the riddle of The Pattern ever since. At first you could find plenty of people to talk to, but after a time all I could find were political types, religious goons, nutters, and full-on fucking fuckwits. Now and again you do find someone insightful, but for the most part, people tend to keep their heads down and stay busy. I was effectively working alone.

Look at the world. It is fucked. War. Economic hardship. Pollution. Terrorism. Fanaticism. Quarrelling over diminishing resources. Bailouts. Austerity. Politicians fancying themselves as movie stars. It never seems to get better, why?

You can’t solve the problems of the world, Bob. This is the standard response of a health care provider. I’m sure they even have a name for my ‘condition’ and a bunch of cute little pills to make it go away. It is what they’ve been taught to say and do. Pattern right there. They have to do those things, otherwise they get fired.

I refuse to believe I am wrong. You can’t just ignore it, I want to, everyone wants to, but I can’t. Someone has to at least identify the problem and then maybe a solution can be found.

All kinds of people claim they are trying to fix the world but it’s for politics, religion, power, fame, cash. I don’t want any of those things. I just want to help. But my time on this planet is running out.

For 15 years I’ve poured over reports, news articles, charts, tables and the like and I’ve come up with little. I’m not smart enough. I’m starting to lose the will to go on. It would seem The Pattern is winning. It knows I have doubts. It is taunting me to keep my head down and stay busy just like everyone else.

I talked to an old hippie associate I know and he said it was pointless these days. He didn’t use these exact words but what he basically said was “Just keep your head down and stay busy.” All the heavy shit he went through in the ’60s and he’d given up and figured I should do the same. How bad is that?

I will not stop trying to find a solution. Not until I’m dead.

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2 Responses to The Pattern

  1. Ryan says:

    I don’t want to give up either. I feel like I’m not smart enough and/or that I don’t understand the scope of the world well enough to take on this task, but I do it anyway. You’re not alone.

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