I’ve always held an unpalatable distaste for hippies of every distinction. Like some buzz shorn grandpa, I can barely stomach the sight of them, with their flowing, free trade garments and soiled bare feet; the girls with their armpit hair and contrived vocal inflections; the boys with their paltry builds and mental anemia; the obsession with peace and love.
Peace and love! A more useless coupling has yet to be realized (with the exception of that Lisa Marie/Michael Jackson thing, which was like trying to pair up two female wall sockets). Peaceful utopia is an idea best left in Kindergarten, right after you’re involved in a vicious fight with your best friend about whose daddy is stronger. My core complaint about hippies and/or their pacifist tendencies is the futility. It’s been over 40 years since that cultural “revolution” and what hath the hippies wrought? Hippiedom’s major contribution thus far has been stifling political correctness, the bane of every thinking person’s existence. These moral calisthenics, which goodly people use for easy identification, accomplish nothing, other than rigging up an unalterable code of conduct similar to atavistic etiquette mores.
Much like religious beliefs, peace-loving ideology is not compatible with modern society. An image of peaceful resistance often heralded is that of the fresh faced young girl sticking a flower into the barrel of a rifle. Oh, my heart is bursting with joyful rainbows! How beautiful! How ignorant. Peace and love don’t come expelling from that barrel, sweetheart; bullets do. Generally, a bullet shot from a rifle can travel almost 4,000 feet per second and is capable of blowing your face clean off. Responding to every negative development in the world by focusing your “good vibes” and spewing patchouli-scented rhetoric will only get you lauded at the vegan picnic. To the rest of the world, it’s a laughable distraction. You continue your endless debate on poverty and violence and aggression over soy lattes and dairy free pastries; I’ll be over here, living it.
Those high ideals that flourished in the 1960s had two revolting outcomes: isolation or assimilation. Many former love children believed they could drop out of society and create communities of their own. We now call these people junkies or hobos, and they effectively forfeited the game when they disappeared into their friends’ basements and low-wage work at the alternative bookstore.
I’ll let you in on a little secret: dumpster diving is not romantic or noble. Squatting in an abandoned house ceases to be sexy as soon as you reach adulthood. There are plenty of people who hold anti-establishment views and opinions, and instead of fleeing with their tails between their legs, they are in the shit daily. They wake up in the morning, work their asses off, then come home to educate their brood with important life lessons, such as self-defense and media literacy. You can’t win a game that you refuse to play, and merely refusing to participate does not render the game nonexistent.
Those choosing the latter option of assimilation kept the peaceable rhetoric yet abandoned the accompanying convictions. It’s amazing how loose one gets after hitting middle age, when those dollar signs start flashing in your eyeballs and the wife is on you for an all expenses paid trip to Jamaica for the “atmosphere” (although I hear the “atmosphere” in Amsterdam is far superior). Every Sunday morning the news shows are bracketed by commercials for insurance planning and stock portfolios aimed at aging hippies, complete with easily identifiable hallmarks, like lava lamps and trippy soundtracks recalling those halcyon days of free love and casual drug use. The dream died (for the millionth time) the day George Carlin agreed to voice a lackadaisical VW van named Fillmore in the Disney crap-fest known as Cars. This is the man who succinctly voiced every anti-establishment viewpoint I’ve ever held decades before I was born, and yet someone was deft enough to trick him into coming over to the other side?