Like a stuck pig


I drive to work in the smog, windows down. There is an accident on the freeway. I listen to “Let Down” and “Karma Police.” I feel stuck. I feel connections disappearing. I never go out. I think about just taking the exit to Las Vegas and driving for a while.

I read an article about host bars in South Korea in which women pay men for companionship (and perhaps more).

I sit at lunch with a coworker in the break room. I eat macaroni salad with Ritz crackers.

I pore over OK Computer liner notes trying to pull out all the meaning:

  • I live in a town where you can’t smell a thing.
  • We hope your rules and wisdom choke you.
  • A heart that’s full up like a landfill.

I am “fitter, happier, more productive…A pig, in a cage, on antibiotics.”


The crackle of pigskin


I walk out of work and get into the car. I roll the windows down and put Radiohead’s OK Computer in the CD player. I turn the volume up.

I listen to perhaps the most perfect album of my generation. I sometimes forget how dazzling it is. I try to argue in my head that King of Limbs or In Rainbows or Hail To The Thief are my favourite Radiohead albums. Who am I kidding? Every note, moment and sound is necessary on Ok Computer. It is Graceland for the robotically hopeless.

I drive down the I-15 choking. The constant haze that is the Salt Lake Valley burns my eyes, ears, nose and throat. I pass a woman in a car. Her windows are rolled up and she lights a long cigarette. I wonder if the air in there is any better. The woman wears a visor.

I remember when I first saw Paranoid Android on MTV. I could not believe I was seeing the weirdest cartoon of all time (or so I felt) on television. There was even blurred out nudity. There is no way that Jesus or his bands (Switchfoot, MxPx, DC Talk, even Five Iron Frenzy) could compete.

I go to Stone Mountain, GA and see Radiohead perform live. I don’t understand what I’m seeing. My eyes, ears, nose and throat burn. I don’t know why.