Trigger Warning!
This world is a fucked-up, traumatizing, and hateful place. I live in this world, and so my words, experiences, and thoughts are birthed from within it. Further, it should come to no surprise that this blog will detail many of these fucked-up things in graphic detail. Fortunately, resilience is what I do, and I try my hardest to ferment inspiration from the darkest parts of my life. It's time to confront, it's time to resist, and of course... it's time to win.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Impossible Palm Tree (A Primer on Subversive Golf Course Maintanence, or a Lack Thereof)

I got moved to a new cell--one on the second tier with no bunk--so I get the whole thing to myself. Most of my view from the window is blocked by a palm tree, or actually, a number of them. They are of course exotics, not native to this area. That's a horrible drawing of one of them...

They got me thinking about two things: leverage and breaking points.

Leverage points. This tree is incredibly skinny about half way up its trunk, and when the wind blows, it threatens to snap in two. If it did, it would land right on top of a few cop cars--which is always good to think about. But more to the point, the fragile trunk reminded me of a similarities between the palm tree and interstate highways.

The palm tree is most alive at the top and in the roots, which are dependent on each other. To stay alive they have to exchange nutrients through the trunk, and if the trunk was to break at its thinnest point, the entire tree would die. Cities are the same way. They are large and interdependent on one another (as well as on the destruction of the living world).

Cities rely on highways, which work like trunks. They're the weakest point through which critical resources are exchanged. Highways thin down to the fewest lanes when they are about halfway between cities, just like the trunk between the roots and foliage of a palm tree, so it would be most effective to break or attack a highway between two large urban centers. It would take more time, resources, and work to repair a road the farther it is from the city, and this strategy would maximize the distance from both cities.

Breaking Points. The trees outside my window are particularlyweak and breakable because they are not in native soil. Civilization is the same way: it tries to mimic itself in every area, no matter its surroundings. (Las Vegas; case in point) The same is true for major religions, science, and the English language. All of these, just like civilization, try to have universality with little or no regard to their actual circumstances. It is finding or realizing these breaking points that will help bring a stop to this insane culture.

Civilization tries to impose golf courses everywhere it goes, but a golf course, (although always absurd) would not be as significant a target in Washington State as it would be in Pheonix AZ. On the smallest level, the irrigation system of a golf course would be more crucial in Arizona than in Washington. On a much larger scale, Pheonix's entire water supply would be a much more effective target than anywhere in the northwest.

Taking out a fertilizer company in the midwest would cause more overall damage than attacking one in the southwest. Targetting a rail line in New York or Chicago would have a bigger impact than choosing one in SCL or Houston, because those places aren't as dependent on public commute networks.

Think seasonally. A (displaced, tropical) tree can go without being watered for a longer time during the the wetter months than it can during the summer. Similarly, Pheonix needs and uses elictricity more in the summer than in the winter, and Seattle would be the opposite way. We sometimes get caught up in strategies and tactics that worked well once, or in one place, but--just like civilization demanding a golf course in the desert--some things are not meant to be universally applied. All tactics should be viewed circumstancially.

If what we want is to fight on the same side as nature, using seasonal, regional, and circumstancial thinking will maximize our effectiveness.

I feel I should mention a third strategy that takes both leverage and breaking points into account. Civilization is often extremely limited on a certain product or resource. These can serve as critical target points, which are not always specific to one region or area. If there was, for instance, one supplier that provided some important metal used in making computer processing components, and this metal was stored at just one climate controlled facility, no matter where the facility was in the world it would be a crucial target.

Be as diverse as the wild itself.

Most importantly, strategies are worthless unless enacted, and enacting them is impossible if you are locked up or dead. Be brave and careful, courageous and thoughtful, and let fear be a cautionary process--not a paralyzing endpoint.

Till the last exotic palm tree falls on the head of the last Nueces County Sherriff,

(Transcribed by Ruthie)

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