by The Usual Suspect
The problem I have seeing eye to eye with the regular people around me is that I wonder if it's me that's all screwy, or if I just had a nice long look at a side of reality that most people are sheltered from.
I understand that a lot of my sentiments, attitudes, and behaviors aren't normal. I get that. Sometimes I just wish I would've taken pictures. I'd post pictures of the mutilated bodies we'd find in Baghdad. Remember the decapitated guy with no flesh on his arm, laying in the middle of the street for days? It wasn't a goddamn monster from under your bed that did that. That's not shit out of a movie, it was fucking REAL, rotting and stinking, and no one dared move the poor bastard because they'd be killed too.
They wanted us to see that shit. Wanted us to know what they'd gladly do to us. Those burnt bodies in Fallujah? But that wouldn't scare you, not from TV. Just make you shake your head a little.
They shot at me. They tried to blow me up. Two different IEDs had my name written all over them, and in each of these cases (and God knows how many more that I'm aware of), I just lucked out. Snipers, suicide bombers, IEDs. We buried our own guys because of these things, that aren't even a reality in the United States. Not for most people anyway.
"YOU DON'T JUST TURN IT OFF!"
Remember that line? Makes a lot more sense to me now. I spent a lot of time looking for "bad guys", with the intent to kill. It's what I wanted, not for the sake of murder, but because that's the FUCKING INFANTRY'S JOB!!!
Now, I'm not an Infantryman. I'm not in Iraq. Not a soldier anymore. Civilian. Free, and happy about it, don't get me wrong. Someone tailgates me, and all I want to do is block the road, get out, rip them out of their car, and beat some fear into them. That's not right.
I'm still scanning, still looking for the enemy. You all might as well be Iraqis, and I'm eyeing all of you suspiciously because my midbrain (animal brain, whatever) knows what people are capable of. Sometimes I feel like the only thing seperating us from them is that we have luxury. Fucked up shit can happen here, too. We're not immune to it. We're sheltered, and that's awesome, don't get me wrong. I don't want to convince you that the world is a terrible place and any random person next to you is going to decapitate you on the bus. That's not my aim. I'm trying to unfuck this mess, sort shit out, and go about my business.
Trust. I'm fresh out. Don't know who to trust or what to believe. Not even talking about the violence alone, either. Even here in the states, you can't do anything without getting lied, cheated, or fucked over. Work from home scams, shit like that. Things you have to deal with all the time, too. It's hard enough as it is for all the normal, non-asshole people out there raising families, earning a living, and just trying to live their lives without a whole bunch of complications that seem to have little to do them. We have tons and tons and tons of shit to worry and stress about.
Beheaded, bound, mutilated, and rotting in the sun. A message. You telling me YOU wouldn't buy a gun after that? Those dudes are sick, and we had no idea who did it, no one was gonna talk to the Yanks, are you insane? Hell, we probably shook hands with atleast one of the dudes responsible, sipped some chai, bullshitted in broken Arabic. I'm not trying to drum up a war frenzy, it's a simple fucking fact: They would have gladly done it to YOU.
But I'm the crazy one. Probably, atleast a little bit. Shouldn't be looking for those guys everywhere I go, but I do. Never stopped viewing every car as a potential threat. I'm not invincible and I'm very, very aware of it. Dunno how to turn it off. Believe me, I GET IT, it's fucking retarded. This shit gets in deeper than your logic though. It gets imprinted into instinct or something, straight to the animalistic part of your brain that doesn't ponder, it's the part of your brain that helps you survive.
That's my report.
In other news, I'm getting fucking awesome at guitar. See that? Looks like a bright side to me.