April 7, 2017
In the BART, I whitness an overweight, tatooed hispanic man with his girlfriend, unpacking a Blood PRessure Monitor. Every piece is wrapped in plastic. The monitor comes with bluetooth, the package reads. I see a Starbucks 12 oz. canned Mocha Doubleshot Energy expresso soda/coffee in his hand. He’s still wearing his pajamas. He has tattoos on his neck.
The packaging of this product, the resources that went into building this blood pressure monitor, is further destroying the planet so that future people, irrespective of their dietary habits, will have heigher blood pressure. The 90 decibels the BART screams, also increases everyone’s blood pressure, including those little kids sitting with their mom in front of me, and that butch woman listening to her iphone, trying to blot out the sound. Noise-cancelling headphones be damned, the banshee wail of the BART prevents anyone from concentrating for too long, or letting their nervous system relax. This is just the way of things in late capitalism.
This man, destined to die younger because of his drug use and obesity, high sugar intake and hot temper. Where hence the source? What is the cause in this twisted maze of causation? Who or what is to blame? It is here that such questions lose all meaning. Only that he must have come from generations of poverty—not just his family, mind you, but his society. Our society. An impoverished society that teaches that cutting corners and flipping quick tricks is any way to do just by any body, especially one’s own mind-body.
The issues are in the tissues, my late friend Psalm Isadora would say. How do we go about dissolving and remaking from this polluted hummus tissues with the issues long worked out, transmuted, back to where they came from?