Radio Quarantine -The Frozen Autumn – The Fellow Traveller (2017)

I don’t know if this morning selection from THE FROZEN AUTUMN actually captures the mood of the day, but it’s hard to say exactly what the mood is. You can read the news from Washington DC from yesterday for the full story, but even though it was no surprise, it was still jarring to see the mob breaking into the Capitol Building yesterday, heeding Trump’s call to stop the electoral vote confirmation in the Senate and Congress. There was tear gas in the rotunda. There was a woman shot at the doors to the Senate chamber as they tried to break through the doors. There were apparently a few other casualties but information is still minimal. I’ll need to collect my thoughts to get into it any further. It was ugly-comical. It was absurd. Perhaps the most surreal image was the Q Anon goon with the Sitting Bull cosplay garb standing at the podium usually occupied by the Senate Majority Leader du jour. The biggest surprise to me isn’t that it happened, but that so many people didn’t see this sort of thing coming, or saw it and didn’t believe it could. It’s a little late for clutching the pearls. It’s more than a little ridiculous to say that this doesn’t represent America. It’s probably the most American thing that’s happened in ages. We are a crude, superstitious, violent people.

So no, the music doesn’t capture the mood at all. I’ll gather my thoughts on all of it another time and write something more… complete. Let’s go with the music for now. It’s so 80s it’s got huge shoulder pads and smells of Aquanet. It is echoes of of a time when we thought Ronald Reagan was as strange as we would ever get.

Where do we go from here now in 2021? The riot yesterday did nothing but get someone killed and speed up the confirmation process. Even the Senatorial and Congressional mouthpieces (most of them) that supported the protesters’ claims and had intended to try to block the certification got shrill and panicky and backed down. There are photos of some of them cowering in terror inside the chamber yesterday. That’s the whole thing. It’s really too easy to talk shit but most people have never seen real violence and as it turns out, it’s one thing to watch it on television but quite another thing to be in the way of a mob. One headline, I believe from The Atlantic, put it aptly: The Republican lawmakers met their monster face to face for the first time. They were terrified. Similar to the woman who got shot and killed, what exactly did they think would happen? This is how things go when you pump people into a fearful frenzy for four years. You can’t control the result. You create something bigger and more powerful than yourself. The only person who seemed happy with the outcome was Donald Trump himself. This is as close as he will ever get to glory, a mob terror campaign in his own name. This was his military parade.

I don’t have enough faith in the justice system in this country to think that there will be any widespread, meaningful repercussions for the offenders. They may decide to do the minimal investigation and prosecution for a small handful of the worst of the lot, but who knows? They will probably decide that letting it go is in the best interest of preserving an uncomfortable detente between the right… well, and the middle right. There is no left here anymore. There is, for the most part, a middle right and a far right. Where do I stand? There was a time when I would have said left but these past few years I feel like an alien from a faraway planet, watching the frenzy and asking the obvious question, “What the fuck is wrong with you people?”

I’m again grateful that this coincided with a time when movement was curtailed by the pandemic and there is time to immerse myself in art and music. Find the beauty. Find your joy. Make it a practice, like a religion. Do it daily. Morning, noon and night. Find your joy. It is, for the moment, a synthpop band from Turin. It may take an entirely different direction later in the day. Who knows? I’ll do what it takes to stay level. There is nowhere to hide from the chaos bullshit.

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