Sunday, March 29, 2020

Ifukube Akira - Godzilla Medley

Ifukube Akira - Godzilla Medley

It only takes the Godzilla foot-falls to get my anxious attention. I still find Godzilla movies completely absorbing and genuinely terrifying. Even after I've seen them all multiple times. I won't tell the story again here, but I believe that what I am doing is recreating my escape from my childhood. 

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Bob Dylan - Murder Most Foul (Official Audio)

No value judgments here. I possess no license to have an opinion. Dylan in general, and this song in particular, are above my pay grade. But everyone should know that it exists; everyone should hear it. It's ambitious, atmospheric, and remarkable. I'd go that far, at least. 

Thursday, March 26, 2020

The Worst Century Ever

Worst century ever? You would think that the 20th Century would be hard to beat. With the Nazis and the Soviets, and the fucking Holocaust being such a stain on the entire human race, and the Soviets with the Kulaks and the Gulag and all, and just the deaths in the Ukraine alone putting the century on the map, and with Mao getting into the action with the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, tens of millions killed, and the creeping death of fascism-light seeping into the American way of life, not to mention World Wars I and II. Not that there haven't been other centuries to give the 20th a run for the title. The 12th and 13th before Augustus straightened out the calendar, often stupidly called, “BC,” as if Yeshua had anything to do with it. That was the Bronze Age Collapse, which made a big dent in people's peace of mind, I can tell you. Or the 4th and 5th Centuries, which led the way into what were justifiably called the Dark Ages and featured a few plagues of their own, plus a lot of sacking and burning. Or the 14th Century, with the Black Plague itself, that was a party. Or the 17th Century, featuring the Thirty Years War, which packed more negativity into those thirty years than the whole fucking Hundred Years War, which just kind of wandered around. The Thirty Years War has been called the first true “world war,” because skirmishes were taking place all around the globe where one stupid empire rubbed up against another in some God forsaken archipelago all the way out in no-man's land.

But this here 21st Century is really working up a run at the title. Oh! Wasn't that a wondrous blast of stupid that put Bush II in the White House! Ralph Nader! The “Supreme” Court! Hanging chads! Does anyone remember that incident where the American nuclear submarine, carrying nuclear missiles, did an emergency breach right into a Japanese oceanographic research ship, sinking it with considerable loss of life? No, I'm sorry, not the kind of thing that most people remember. Did Bush II issue any kind of convincing apology to the Japanese for that nightmare? Why, no, of course he did not. Because until recently, he was the number one or two idiot to have ever occupied the White House. That was right before he squandered the budget surplus that he inherited from Bill Clinton by returning it, mostly to rich Americans. “It's your money!” By now, of course, he, and Warren Harding even, look like geniuses compared to our current Big Top Extravaganza of a Presidential Display Item. That's after the Teapot Dome scandal and the 2007 crash of the entire world economy. It's hard to top those, but our Golfer-in-Chief is working on it.

Why don't we do this? Because President Merde Coyote is such a “big fan of Easter,” why don't we go back outside and get this economy moving again? It would be “great to see the churches packed for Easter Sunday!” Said the man who has had fewer religious impulses than any human to have previously walked the earth. Virus, Schmirus, you can't lock up America!

This COVID-19 throws an additional forest of trees on the bonfire that was already consuming the entire fucking earth. And it's only 2020! What's in the pipeline? AI, climate change, quantum computing (the most dangerous two-edged sword in history), proliferation of nuclear weapons, there's a bunch of stuff. And it's only 2020!

The Bronze Age Collapse, I am sure, was a terrible shock to the civilizations that were destroyed by it. I'd bet that it was a surprise, too, I'd bet that they didn't see it coming. What will future historians call the 21st Century? Probably the “Great Cleansing,” or something equally dramatic.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Desmond Dekker - 007 (Offical Music Video)

Great song; priceless video; you're welcome! 

Calypso-Lion & Donkey- The Mighty Sparrow

See, this is how politics should be done. With gentle humor, and sometimes humor that is not so gentle. In this song, the lion isn't a lion and the donkey isn't a donkey. For that matter, the monkey isn't a monkey either. The song is about an election, and the audience in Trinidad would have recognized all of the animals for who they were. 

How about that Sparrow? Pretty good, 'eh? 

Friday, March 20, 2020

Our Plague Year

Daniel Defoe wrote a book called, “Journal of the Plague Year,” concerning an outbreak of the plague that made life more interesting than usual in London long ago. We're having our own plague year right now, pretty much all over the place. No doubt there are many bloggers succumbing to the temptation to write their little “Blogs of the Plague Year,” as heartfelt contributions to world literature. I will not be joining them. As fascinating as our plague is, I am not convinced that there is any entertainment value in it.

Our plague is in embryonic form at the moment. It exists, it has life, we are beginning to see the outlines of it. At the present time, though, it is like a human embryo. Lots of potential, but very little accomplishment to show for itself. It has our attention, that much is certainly true, and it has seized our fears and our imaginations, but we have no way of knowing which way the thing will turn. It could fizzle out before November's election, or it could rampage through the world for the next two or three years, killing a couple of hundred million people. Somewhere in the middle would be bad enough, and that's where we're probably going with it.

I don't like this Novel Coronavirus one bit, this so-called COVID-19. No sir, not one bit. It is unsportsmanlike. Many people do have it, but you'd never know it. You could observe them for an hour; you could take their temperature (normal) and look in their throats (clear, good color). No matter. You don't know Jack about whether they have the virus or not. You must run a specific test, or series of tests, to discover if a certain person is infected. Right now there is a disastrous shortage of these tests in America, so they're not going to waste one on someone who is asymptomatic. Especially someone unimportant. Unimportant people are getting short shrift in America these days. That person will go about their business, perhaps being waylaid occasionally by someone taking their temperature before they enter a mall. Temperature normal! Welcome to the Monkey Mall! This person is spreading the virus to others. Maybe it's an attractive woman, they are welcome everywhere and people love to engage them in conversation. These agents of the disease are wandering around right now, getting other people sick. It'll go through an incubation period of a couple of weeks and then we'll see who is lucky and who is not, when it comes to symptomology. Some of the newly infected will go blithely forth without symptoms to do the secret work of the virus, while others will be laid low. Quite a few will be laid “six-feet-under” low. It's just damn sneaky is what it is. It's not fair! No, I don't like it one bit.

I find myself in an extremely high risk group, and in a country that is not taking the threat seriously. My host culture has a lot in common with Italy. The people, like the Italians, are friendly and hospitable, and they are mostly interested in hanging out with their friends, eating in restaurants, and spending time with their extended families. We have already seen how those cultural attributes worked out for Italy. And, it is worth noting, Italy is the eighth biggest economy in the world. My host culture does not enjoy such developmental benefits. So I'm up shit's creek, and the question of my having a paddle or not is undecided.

I also find myself with a dangerous mixture of high-risk characteristics. My age is a distinct disadvantage, and the list of my medical conditions includes a couple of serious negatives. That must be balanced out with my natural disinclination to spend money on medical care. My opinion on the subject is that whether you throw money at it or not, the outcome will probably be the same. If you would die without the medical care, the odds are that you will also die in spite of it. So fuck that. Money is for the living; the dead have no use for such things.

This will be a lively time for me. The silver-lining is that I am being told to stay at home and not go out for any but the most critical reasons. This actually fits right in with my preferences in life. I hate going out. I always hated going outside my house in Los Angeles at six in the morning to get the paper. I hated the idea of running into one of the neighbors and having to talk to them. I loved them all, but mostly in the abstract. My social anxiety, from an early age, made every sojourn out of the house a terrible adventure that I would rather forgo. This was one of the reasons that work was such a challenge for me. I never minded the work, but you had to leave the house to go there. Also, there were people there, some of whom were disagreeable.

As it happens, “staying at home and never venturing forth” is a lot harder than it sounds. I have no support system, no army of friends or neighbors who are young and strong and willing to assist me in any way that I may require. I would be at the mercy of Uber to get to the fucking hospital in the middle of the night. Where does that leave one these days? Go to the store; touch nothing; accept no change because money is the dirtiest thing in the world; wear a mask, or not, depending on whom you rely for such information; talk to no one; don't go near anyone; and upon returning home wipe down all of your purchases with disinfectant; burn all of your clothing; and take a long shower. That doesn't seem practical, since prison is almost certainly worse than getting the virus. You'd get virus within a week in prison anyway.

We'll see where this thing goes. Nowhere good, probably. There is always a possibility that Washington will get its wheels on the ground and do a great job of taking care of us. Of somehow mitigating the impending disaster. Raise your hand if you think that there's any chance of that happening. (Looks around the room.) No, I didn't think so.

This is going to raise considerable hell with the world's political and economic order. A disruption this big, this colossal, could lead to big changes. I would say that there are equally huge possibilities for positive or negative changes. What will the world look like in three or four years? Star Trek? 1984? Soylent Green? Logan's Run? Brave New World? Nothing would be too surprising, considering the magnitude of the challenges that our leaders will fail to meet.

So I'll see you on the other side. Or not. Bon chance, mon ami! Viel Gluck! Catch up on your reading and hope for the best. The good news is that young people have very high survival rates so far. Our grandchildren have a good chance of making it through this, even if we don't. I do find that comforting.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Spin Easy Time!: Alert The Media: Andrew Breitbart Still Dead

Spin Easy Time!: Alert The Media: Andrew Breitbart Still Dead: I know, I didn’t believe those rumors that it was all a trick either. He’s dead. I can’t say that I’m broken up about it. Good people die...

So is Gawker, I suppose. But reference to the Gawker quotes featured in this post from 2012 will show that Gawker had writers that were really on the ball, and they weren't even a little bit reticent to ruffle some feathers. Those are good things for journalists. 

Gawker was a blog started by Nick Denton and Elizabeth Spiers, and God bless them for it. They posted a sex tape featuring Hulk Hogan at a time when he was not relevant at all and couldn't have been making much of a living. Bingo! Through the miracle of the unsympathetic defendant, old Hulk was awarded $140 million in damages, payable by Gawker, which of course was impossible by about $139.9 million dollars. So they said, "screw you guys, we're going home." Gawker declared bankruptcy, and that was that. 

After his lawyers were done with him, OLD HULKSTER probably got about $7.25. And the world lost Gawker. The worst part of it is that Good Old Hulk should have paid Gawker to run that sex tape. I'm pretty sure that it didn't hurt his career, if he even still had a career. You know what they say, "any publicity is good publicity." 

I really wish that I could turn phrases like some of these in the Gawker quotes. Those guys were good. 

And on a happier note, Breitbart is still dead. 

Monday, March 16, 2020


General MacArthur would be so proud of the comprehensive way in which Japanese musicians absorbed American culture. 

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Oscar Hammerstein introduces the song "You've Got to be Taught" during B...

Why wouldn't Democrats in the south vote for Bernie? They like his programs. Could it be that he's a Jew from Brooklyn? 

Nobody admits to being prejudiced anymore, but there is still a lot of it going around. People today can always give you a reason why they are ill-disposed to a certain group. Bad hygiene, too noisy, criminal minded, unacceptable political policies, just want free stuff, lazy, drug-addled, hate America, ungodly, bad smelling, overemotional, acquisitive, selfish, it could be anything, but they'll have a reason. Like that makes it okay! 

The reason more likely is the one given in this nice song. They were taught. 

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Nolan Strong and The Diablos "The Wind" - 1954 Fortune Records

It appears that this is the original version of the song. Nolan Strong . . . great name, and a great voice. Way up there in the clouds, or is it fog, or are we dreaming? Ethereal, you might call it. I just did! 

You can barely hear a bit of musical accompaniment in the background. A guitar, definitely, and I think there's also a piano softly playing along. These were still the early days of recorded music, and the mics still left a lot to be desired. To me, the incredible subtlety of the accompaniment plays right into the atmosphere of the song.  

It's no surprise that this record was still drawing the interest of other talented professionals ten years later. 

The Jesters - The Wind (1960)

This is the version that I'm most familiar with. It's on a "Doo Wop Classics" CD that I play frequently. I love the sincerity of it, and the vocal performances are great. It's a good song, and it's not surprising that there are multiple versions around. 

Dropping that "spoken word" section in the middle was a common motif in the black American music of the period. Some observers think of it as proto-rap. 

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Probably Aldous Huxley

I came across this quote as a meme on Facebook, so if it is misattributed to Mr. Huxley, I apologize to his memory.

By means of ever more effective methods of mind-manipulation, the democracies will change their nature; the quaint old forms—elections, parliaments, Supreme Courts and all the rest—will remain.

The underlying substance will be a new kind of totalitarianism. All the traditional names, all the hallowed slogans will remain exactly what they were in the good old days. Democracy and freedom will be the theme of every broadcast and editorial. Meanwhile the ruling oligarchy and its highly trained elite of soldiers, policemen, thought-manufacturers and mind-manipulators will quietly run the show as they see fit.”

Aldous Huxley, or whoever said this in the way-back, turns a nicer phrase than me, but this prediction should sound a bit familiar to dedicated readers of this blog. Why should they change anything? Just rig the power structure in a way more to your liking. The process by which this is occurring started over fifty years ago, around the time that Mr. Huxley was dying (1963). They've just about put it to bed by now. Things are now exactly as they are described in the above quote.

Say goodnight Gracie!

Poet - Sly and the Family Stone

Or maybe just Sly. The rumor in the comments is that Sly put this cut together alone, writing and playing the whole thing. From the album, "There's a Riot Goin' On." It wouldn't surprise me if Sly bunkered up and yelled, "I got this!" if anyone knocked on the door. If I recall, Sly was busy pissing everybody off throughout the sessions for this album. I think that the whole album is a masterpiece. The band kind of broke up in the aftermath, but look for the good. That's how we got Graham Central Station!  

Which proved one thing to me. Cocaine is good for some people, but only for a year or two. Remember that folk song? "Cocaine's for horses, it's not for men. Doctor said it'd kill me, but he didn't say when." Well if you've got the money, about two years ought to do it. After that, any benefit that might have showed up in your art dries up. Sly learned this lesson the hard way. If you weren't careful, your money is gone, your talent it gone, your career is gone, gone, gone, gone. It's a sad story every time. But then again, I'm just sentimental. 

Monday, March 2, 2020

More Than We Can Stand

Admiral Bull Halsey was hit with physical manifestations of stress from time to time, so I'm not the only one. He got such a bad case of eczema right before the battle of Midway that he was hospitalized and missed the show. They hated to lose him, but he was in no shape to fight a major sea battle. So they lathered him up with creams, wrapped him in bandages like a mummy, and put him to bed until he recovered. He was a pretty tough egg, but between Pearl Harbor, the battle of the Coral Sea, watching the Japanese rampaging around everywhere, and personally crossing the Pacific Ocean with two or our very rare aircraft carriers to launch a near suicidal bombing raid on Japan, poor old Halsey's body said, “enough!” He had found the limits of his endurance. It was more than he could stand.

I'm getting a bit jumpy myself these days. No, “jumpy” doesn't begin to cover it. “Jumpy” is baseline for me. I'm becoming hysterical. My own “non-specific dermatitis” has returned with a vengeance. That manifests itself as an an irresistible itch. It first appeared about four years ago, when my father died in the act of lobbing his hand-grenade of a will into my lap, the bastard. Then, and off and on for years, it was limited to my forelegs. A dermatologist gave it that generic name and said, “I don't know, put some cream on it or something.” The recent assault has hit me from my neck to my insteps, and by this week my skin is in shreds. No light colored shirts, and wear long sleeves please, we don't want to frighten the children. Having coffee with a friend this week, I complained about it and pushed up a sleeve. “Oh, shit,” he said, “I had this two years ago. You have scabies!” He explained in horrifying detail how tiny insects were consuming my body as I sat there. I went to the doctor, and, as frequently happens, the doctor made it worse.

She correctly told me that no, I did not have scabies. Then she did what doctors automatically do. She came up with a best guess about what prescriptions would fit the model of perhaps doing some good and at least putting some money in the hospital's bank account. She agreed with me, surprisingly, about the likely chain of causation: stress; auto-immune system response; histamines; generalized itching.

The medicines were quite expensive. Two creams, and two powerful oral antihistamines. One cream mostly for hydration, and another for knocking down the itching more locally. The next day I faithfully followed her recommended procedure. By ten o'clock in the evening, both of my palms had exploded with dangerous looking blisters that itched like crazy and threw heat like a radiator. After a forty minute consultation with Professor Google, I had a four-corners diagnosis. Dyshidrotic eczema, aka pompholyx. (Thanks, Mostly on the right palm, so I knew that it was the hydration cream, which I had applied almost entirely with my right hand palm. The other cream was fingertips only, and I deduced that it was not that product since my fingertips were not involved in the new outbreak in the least.

Now, I am fully aware that these things are of little import when compared to the catalog of horrors that people are enduring in countless countries all over the world. The explosions, the migrations, forced and otherwise, the extremely prejudicial imprisonment of innocent people, the forced separation of families, the religious persecution. But I ask you, please allow that my afflictions are annoying, at least to me. These are only the manifestations that are visible. Who knows what all of this stress is doing to my heart. Yes, I also have stress-related coronary-artery disease. I have suffered from numerous stress manifestations all my life. From the small stuff (headaches; spastic colon; nightmares) to the truly impressive and painful (hidradenitis suppuratura; flesh-eating bacteria). I'm ashamed to admit it, but most of that was just from the stress of being myself. We're facing a lot of dangerous, external threats now, on top of just the challenge of keeping an even keel in our own lives.

We, all of us, live today with a combination of existential threats that would give a saint the heebie-jeebies. I have to laugh at the way some politicians and academics dance around these weird goings on and make pronouncements about related events as though there were no connection at all.

I still had some hope for our future up until the very early days of the Trump administration. The team were not all idiots, and it was possible to believe that there were some forces in Washington that could prevent a new, inexperienced, kind of stupid president from burning down the whole house. Even my slim hope was wildly inappropriate. All of the non-idiots have either abandoned ship or been fired by now, and they have been replaced by a new, younger group of “temporary” idiots. All temporary appointments, to spare the American people the spectacle of congress questioning them in the appointment process, where they would totally embarrass themselves, their families, their universities, and El Presidente. Temporary. None of them were destined to last long anyway.

Could you believe it when Mick Mulvanney said that what America really needed was more immigrants! I'm pretty sure a coconut fell on that guy's head or something. Or Mnuchin, saying that this is a great time to buy stock! Him and his trophy wife. I am loathe to disparage anyone's marriage, but if she's the trophy, what did the loser get? Betsy DeVos! The joke that writes itself! This week it looks like Trump has found the bottom of the barrel, hiring people right out of university for White House hatchet jobs. They are being tasked with finding and firing the disloyal White House employees that you know Trump would deny even existed. Must be the Deep State!

Trump himself, I think it's time for me to stop bothering him. The way the Democrats are throwing this election, it looks like we'll be dealing with Trump being the president until January, 2025. Yeah, I think that I should lay off, because Trump is beginning to frighten me. The only thing that has protected me all these years is the fact that I am such a nobody, such a nonentity. As an unknown blogger, the ants walk along their tunnels well over my head. I'm further down with the worms. But if he gets another term, and since word searches are as easy as they are, even I might get on a dangerous enemies list. The worst part is that he might actually have some money now. I'm sure that when he took office, if you looked at his entire balance sheet, he had more debt than money. For the rest of us, that makes us bankrupt, but for those in the know, they're rich either way. Whether it's debt or money, it's under their control, and they're rich. Don't ask me how it works. But by now I'd say his true net worth has skyrocketed. Don't forget, he can release a Tweet any time he wants, and he controls the content. His Tweets often affect the stock market, or the stocks of individual companies. He can then Tweet again, and send the market, or the stock, back up. I'm sure he's got about a thousand straw-men out there trading on those Trump induced stock movements. My guess is that he makes a couple of billion dollars doing this every year that he remains in office. It makes him a lot more dangerous if he's cash-rich all of a sudden. He can pay for more law suits.

Poor Melania, I'm sure that she has long had a plan to divorce his fat ass about six months after he leaves office, which she has probably computed will be about July, 2021. I'm sure that she's longing for it. Would Trump even care? She's past her expiration date anyway. Let her go, and move some new young honey into the White House. I bet Trump misses Jeffrey Epstein.

We've got a lot to worry about. That's a list I make all the time, so I'll spare you today. Where's your bet on who gets the blame for the COVID-19 virus? Who, or what, is Trump going to blame it on? The Chinese are always a good choice. There may not be any evidence pointing to any intent on their part, but the rumors are hot. This week I heard that Chinese scientists at some bio-war laboratory IN WUHAN were selling lab animals to restaurants. That will make some people's blood boil. Just the fact that Chinese people love to eat weird animals that you've never heard of, and use internal organs of other weird animals as medicine, will sound suspicious to lots of people. What the hell are civets and pangolins anyway? I feel bad for the people in Wuhan, and working people in China in general. I'm afraid a lot of poor people are not being paid until this thing blows over. That'll make people angry.

This latest corona virus is just a wake-up call. This virus has a fatality rate of around 2%, so it's safe to say that this is not “the big one.” Two percent puts it right around the death rate for the Spanish Flu in 1918. Two percent of the people who got hit with that thing came to a total of almost twenty-million people dead, but that was for the whole world, so any individual's chances were still very good. When an even stronger virus hits, and it presents in fifty countries simultaneously, and the death rate is north of 30% or so, what the hell will we do then? Even this little breeze is shaking the foundations of world commerce. What happens when the hurricane of viruses shows up?

How about this: throw a nice, strong virus on top of worldwide failures in the production of wheat or rice. Mix and match, you know? Pick your poisons, one from column A and one from column B. Like a perfect storm, with both A and B being caused by global warming. Governments would struggle to keep up with the catastrophe, but due to limited resources they would only be helping rich people! That's our new motto, “The rich first!” Already this week one of Trump's new temps announced that most Americans won't be able to afford the COVID-19 vaccine. It's all about the rich, baby! They're the “makers!” They're the “job-creators!” For most of the rest of us, it might be no food, no water, no Netflix, no nothing. “Nothing but this pointed stick and my hand around your neck.”

When that day comes, and the odds are pretty good that it will, it'll be official. We will all have found the limits of our endurance. It will all be more than we can stand.

tricot "potage" MV

"Where all men think alike, no one thinks very much." That's a quote from Walter Lippmann, who was a genuine public intellectual back when there were such things. On the surface, Japanese life seems rigidly conventional, and it often appears that many of them do think alike. If contemporary Japanese music is any indication, nothing could be further from the truth. 

This is a currently working band, and I like their music a lot. The music is referred to as "math rock," and I think that that is probably true, much of the time. For a real answer to that question, please ask an expert. 

I have one thing in common with Mr. Lippmann and one of his two wives: I have decided that I will never visit Japan, and that is a comfort to me. That might be two things in common. As much as I love Japanese movies, paintings, language, architecture, and especially Japanese pop music, I have no desire ever to go there. I think that it would be too overwhelming. 

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Young Couple's Edition: More Than We Can Stand

I've been reading about how the birth rate in America has been going down for years, reading about it in articles with titles like, “Why Aren't Young Couples Having Children?” (N.B. Not a real article.) What, you're surprised?

Women get married for companionship, and men get married for sex, and in simpler times, young couples had children because, why not? It was all cheap enough. I enjoyed being a parent, and I don't recall it ever being too much of a financial burden. All of the medical expenses were covered for anyone with a job. Everything was cheap, gas, rent, food, the emergency room, clothes. The kids went to free schools that were mostly safe and they received a decent education. University? Free up into the 1980s anyway, so anyone getting married before that would imagine that the kids could go to university without much trouble. And back then, no one really believed that there was going to be a nuclear war, so no one had to worry that the entire world was on the brink of changes that would end human culture as we knew it. Now we live with a population that is increasing exponentially (more people; faster increase; more people; rinse and repeat), changes of all types coming right on top of one another, and everything is going to hell in a bucket. Global climate change; mass extinctions; Monsanto monocultures. Trump is the president, and he's doing his damnedest to ruin everything. England has committed national suicide, and they're not the only ones. We know that our food sources are increasingly threatened on land and in the seas by the climate thing. We also know for God-damned sure that having babies today is just too bloody expensive! The doctor; the hospital; well baby care; orthodontia! God forbid anything is wrong with the baby. There is no math that can fix that problem.

Let's say a nice young couple gets married this year. They have a baby in 2022. Is there anyone on the earth who can predict with any certainty what it will be like for someone graduating from high school in 2040? Would the young couple like to retire at some point in their lives? Can anyone offer any guidance about what that will look like in 2065 or so? Will it be possible to live on less than one or two million dollars per year? Young people are looking at a huge list of unanswerable questions; they have no reliable way to plan for the future. Is it in any way surprising that so many of them are deciding to face this unknown future without the responsibility of caring for children along the way? They'll be lucky if they can rent an apartment big enough for the two of them. I'd say that it's a miracle that people still get married at all.

I already worry plenty about my ability to pay for the rest of my life. I'd feel even more worried about my future if I were their age. So many decades, so little information to plan with! Has there ever been an older generation on the earth, before now, most of whom would agree that we wouldn't want to young again for anything? Oh, maybe you're a geezer who thinks that he would just learn to code and get a job for Facebook. Good plan, bro! Make a couple of hundred thousand dollars a year, wow, I'm impressed. Then you could spend that money on taxes, a place to live, Uber cars, and sushi while you work hunched over a computer for fifty hours a week. And that's the lucky ones! Not for me, thanks. My train will be coming soon, and I'll be getting on with a smile.

We've got a lot on our minds. Old-timers wondering how long they can hold on before it's time to pull their own plugs; youngsters working two part-time jobs, Air B&B renting their bedroom and sleeping on the couch, driving Uber every spare minute in the week, and wondering how long they can hold on. 

It might be more than we can stand.