A 50th Anniversary Surfin’ Safari

For those too young to understand, Surfin’ Safari was the title of The Beach Boys debut studio album, circa 1962

I want to take you along on a “Surfin’ Safari” that started with a trip to the International Organization for a Participatory Society (IOPS) which I had previously identified as a nascent organization with which I might have a good deal of common ground. A post by another traveller on a pathway similar to my own led me to his primary idea mill, a WordPress blog titled “What should democracy look like?”. The blogger describes his work this way: “Exploring possibilities of what democracy can be is what this blog is about. It is being written by someone who is an advocate of democratic ways of looking at human potential, who sees everyone’s perspectives as valuable especially for creatively contributing to shaping a new world.” It sounded like we were on parallel routes to a very similar destination so I looked deeper . . . . .

. . . . . His Reprogramming the matrix of culture post made me promise myself I would watch the Matrix series again from a new perspective. As a start, I followed a link from the post to . . . . .

. . . . . a Wikipedia entry for The Matrix (franchise). Before finishing my reading there, I took a side trip . . . . .

. . . . . to an investigation of the meaning and history of utopian and dystopian fiction, the latter being a genre which is looking less and less fictional as the time passes with, as yet, no action to engage the global crises of the 21st century. A read through this entry comfirmed that I would be using “dystopian” as well as “utopian” a lot more in my writing in future. I still believe humanity is on the cusp of an evolutionary jump into a utopian existence . . . but we have to jump. If we sit on our collective cusp for too long we fall and the dystopia in which we would find ourselves is one we would probably not survive. By this point, descriptions of well-known works of dystopian fiction were beginning to look like many of the news items I read every day. I chose . . . . .

. . . . . The Handmaid’s Tale by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, described as “wherein a Christianity-based theocratic regime rules the future United States” – reality really bites. I can even visit the “Republic of Gilead” without so much as a ferry ride off my Canadian island, at least until the next federal election.

I seriously ask you to take a few minutes to ride the same wave I did, I think you will find this instance of Art becoming Life to be uncanny and disturbing. As for me, I now have three films and a book to add to my ‘Buck It’ list – I’d better get at it . . . . .

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