Supporting Audio Candy:
 The Police “Spirits In The Material World”
 DJ Format “Last Bongo In Brighton (Remix)”
Since Rivers of Grue’s conception several months back, social media has been a tool I have had particularly mixed feelings about. For years beforehand I possessed a Facebook account and, like everyone else in my relatively meager circle, I used it primarily to keep in touch with old school friends whom I was unlikely to ever see again. While I could see the appeal of staying connected, I was also mindful of the downfalls of such a communal domain. All I seemed to see each time I logged on, which was decidedly rare I might add, were relationships being publicly wrecked, truants being bamboozled, and bored folk deciding the entire worldwide web would be riveted to learn that they were “having a latte”. Had it all come to this? Was this really the way forward for humanity? I was as guilty as the next man for ignoring any positives and, to me, social media was desperately lacking in merit.
Meanwhile, I was oblivious to Twitter, which appeared little more than a free ticket for men to pretend they were women. Moreover, here any users were restricted to 140 characters in order to make their feelings known. It just seemed so flimsy and insubstantial; hardly the way I wished to go when introducing my work to the masses. If I’m completely honest, I remain unconvinced about social networking as a medium even now but, since the Rivers of Grue commenced running, I have seen just how wonderful a network it can be if, and I stress if, utilized correctly. The Gruehead family are currently expanding like a blow-dried tampon and each of you reading this now have entered into a tryst of sorts. I’m not speaking of some cunning lobotomy attempt like much of the drivel fed to us by gluttonous media suits. No, this is something far more spiritual and rewarding.
I grew up in a close-knit family, learned the true meaning of affection, felt sheltered and always loved. I count myself very fortunate, blessed if you will, but my life has seen its fair share of downsides. Nevertheless when my personal life is hurtling towards Def Con 5, as it was mere weeks ago, one thing held me together. That one thing is the support of those who have chosen to undertake this pilgrimage alongside me, many of whom are situated over 3000 miles away on the other side of the Atlantic ocean. I like to refer to these fine souls as glue as they share similar adhesive properties and have the same ability to bond. As a direct result of the faith I have been shown, I have unlocked that inner potential which I knew damned well had been swirling around itinerant to that point.
I have now accepted that I possess the kit to unify folk through prose and am absolutely committed to making damned sure that your existence within these Rivers of Grue makes lives that little bit better. I will never be culpable of arrogance or conceit and believe them to be despicable traits which I have no desire to peddle publicly or otherwise. I thank the heavens every solitary morning for the gift of life and flat refuse to allow ignorance and pretentiousness to rear their ugly heads. That’s a mistake so many make when they begin to believe their own hype and not something which Keeper is willing to advocate. Humility is something which I regularly make mention of and is the most effective weapon I possess in my armory. However, it can marry particularly well with good old-fashioned belief should you simply keep your feet planted. It’s ultimately all about striking that delicate balance.
At times, we’re all liable of conveniently forgetting that behind every blogger or tweeter is a real human being. We all laugh, cry, shit, and fuck right? Okay, many of us fuck and, for anyone currently not engaging in such extracurricular activities, I apologize if I touched a nerve. My point being that this isn’t The Matrix; much as it may appear that this is the direction we are headed. To my best knowledge, I’m not currently being harvested, and don’t feel it necessary to don the black shades just yet. However, I am more than aware of both the red and blue pills. “You take the blue pill, the story ends. You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.” Social media presents both options and I know which lozenge I’ll be opting for when such is necessitated. I love me some Wonderland you see.
We connect, share, learn, and love on a daily basis and, better yet, we do it within a media I had previously dismissed as purposeless. Social media isn’t so bad as long as it is handled in the correct manner. That’s a choice we all make every time we log on and for those of us who play it to its exclusive strengths there are few more advantageous ways in which to connect to fellow humanoids. If I were to walk into my local library and admit to some of the debauchery I have held my hands up to so candidly via social networking then I would likely be scribing this essay from within the cuckoo’s nest and the Crimson Quill would be considered too hazardous a piece of apparatus to wield as I enlighten my readership. Yet, I can say whatever the hell I want, within reason, and not face judgement when sharing on the worldwide web. Go figure.
One of the things Grueheads share willingly is the intelligence that we’re all a little unhinged. The thing is, sane isn’t a far cry away from sanitized, in my opinion. I’d prefer to be precisely who I am than hide beneath a thin veil of sanity as, at least, I’m being true to myself. I would rather bring back passion as it exists within us all and often just needs unlocking. So many multimillion dollar corporations make the same gormless error all the time. They become seduced by the allure of money, to the point where they pay pittance to decent hard-working people just to pillage their human rights and rape their dignity. They foolishly buy into their own belief that they don’t need to reward their minions, and not just monetarily. Just a simple “you did really well today” can make someone’s day in a gnat’s heartbeat. One solitary act of kindness yields its own rewards but they sit in their stuffy offices aggravating karma until such time as what goes around, comes back around and bites their apathetic asses. Then they ponder where it all went wrong. Duh!
Where did all the passion go anyhoots? Somewhere along the line these charlatans decided that growth can only be facilitated if it is fast and hard. As they expand, their sentiment filters down to such a diminutive degree that any inevitably overlooked footsoldiers despise the very product they’re peddling. You have to believe in what you’re putting out there and, in many ways, this echoes social media as a whole. I conduct myself in a particular manner when sitting atop the blue bird playing puppet master to my personal feed and passion is never far from my lips at any given moment. Should something inspire me, as has been the case habitually since fashioning my profile, then I am the first to act enthused as I know what to do with such affirmative data. You simply feed it back into the machine and pass the baton. A little passion can therefore go a remarkably long way; we’re talking transcontinental and then some.
The raison d’être for investing my entire being into building the foundations of the Gruehead community so meticulously is that my desire will never likely falter. I was forced to face discontinuation in order to realize my own potential and that’s not a lesson one tends to forget in a hurry. For as long as the heart beats within my chest I will operate with the same degree of passion as I do now and believe that our ever-ballooning network will continue to flourish as a direct result. Through placing a little love out there into the multiverse I can empower others to locate inhuman strength within themselves as love=power don’t you know? Suddenly we no longer regard ourselves as simply “not good enough” and are encouraged to replace such negativity with “bring it punks”. We use such a pitiful amount of our potential and, should Bruce Lee have plied his trade in Copenhagen, then I’m assured that his one-inch punch would possess nothing like the phenomenal impact it did. Granted, we can’t all snap a man’s humerus with a single blow without significant damage to our own phalanges but the cherry is still ripe for the picking. It’s all inside and within every last one of us is a dragon just waiting to embark on its reign of fire.
Right now it is all about the formation as the foundations have needed to be set firmly in place before we bolt the gate like the thoroughbreds we all are. There exist no parameters here and we dance to the beat of our own drums. It’s all about the percussion you see; together we make a merry hullabaloo and, if there’s one thing more rousing than the beat of one’s drum, then it would hands down be collective commotion. Who can tell us that our hopes are pie in the sky? Skeptics? Little more than emotional narcileptics when all is said and done. Digesting that red pill sent me careering down the rabbit-hole which led me to all of you and, for that, I wish to feed the blue bird some breadcrumbs. Hell, while I’m feeling indulgent, I’ll even throw a few Facebook’s way just for good measure. I may drop off the radar from time to time but, make no mistake, the Grueheads are all about that head of steam and this has never been a one man bandstand. I therefore wish to express my gratitude towards social media for providing such a glorious display of lustrous instruments to make a sweet noise with. I’ll keep on banging my drums until I tear the membrane pulled taut across my tom toms. Make of that what you will. Now can I get a Retweet?
Some may suspect I’ve vacated my trolley
for scribing a ditty named Fiddler’s Folly
What hopes to achieve from such inane banter?
One fears for the spirits within this decanter
My reasoning really ought not to sound Russian
it just seems a waste to ignore this percussion
I’ll sing it you play it together we’ll slay it
By courting crescendo we’ll never halfway it
folks will send thanks for enhancing their dancing
no folly is banked if we just keep advancing
there’s no need for this to pose such a great riddle
just give us some hi-hats, cowbell, and a fiddle
The sound that we fashion is riddled with passion
by acting with requisite warmth and compassion
turns out there’s far more going on than the rent
as this big band can jam to our own hearts’ content