Roads Traveled, Thoughts Revealed

I’ve been on the road for the past couple of weeks, driving many miles, seeing many things. Most of which I can’t say that I care for. The destruction caused by man is quite extensive, extending everywhere humans have gone in the quest for ‘progress’ and ‘development’. Endless destruction is a better descriptor.

It’s hard to articulate the emotions I’ve felt as I gazed upon the ruined landscapes seen everywhere. It’s quite clear that humans don’t care about anything. Everybody has gotten in on the game of obtaining a slice of the environmental pie for themselves or for their business and found a way to profit from it. It’s what we do, with little regard to the long-term effects.

I saw very little wildlife on the entire trip. I traveled all the way to northern California, visited some old stomping grounds, which to my dismay, had been utterly destroyed. It was worse then I could have imagined. What was once one of the best blue ribbon trout streams was now a log-choked unfishable tangle of debris. Even the campground was utterly ruined. I took a few sad pictures of what had once been cherished memories of my youth, but vowed I’d never return again.

I then drove on out to the coast, up through Oregon and Washington coasts, and then wound my way back home, taking as many secondary roads as I could, trying to avoid the hordes of idiots behind the wheel. It didn’t work. There was no escaping them.

This is the not the same world that I remembered when I was young. There was virtually no place whatsoever that allowed free camping on the coast. I only found one place in the National Forest that permitted me to camp for free, and that was miles and miles inland. Everywhere else required fees from $21 to a whopping $65 per might to park my truck in an ‘improved’ campsite where ‘camping’ was a joke of asphalt and rented spaces. None of the National Forest campgrounds were open and most of the forest roads were blocked off.

It was more then sticker shock that upset me, it was the crass commercialization of what was once an enjoyable experience. I found myself stuck in RV hell everywhere I went, even in the “off-season”. Paved slots with denuded trees, expensive RV’s “camping” with hook-ups, televisions blaring. Barking dogs, inquisitive ‘neighbors’ and traffic rushing nearby on the highway. It was sad, pathetic and a horrifying reality, replete with mosquitoes and sewer smell. If they could have bottled up the view and sold it, they would have. And idiot Americans would have bought it – hook, line and sinker, just like they do everything else.

It’s really sad what has become of the whole camping experience. In order to get away from cities, towns, people, traffic and commercialization of virtually everything, you need to head as far away from civilization as you can get and the piles of dog shit they leave behind. I had to be careful of every place I put my foot down, but I wasn’t always successful.

A special note to all of those who drive: if you own a Dodge truck, and it’s black, 4×4 and you’re male, you’re almost certainly a dick in a Dodge with a small penis. These are the idiots that obtained their drivers license from a Cracker Jack box they found while dumpster diving. They wield their trucks like weapons, insisting on going as fast as possible or even trying to shove you out of their way. It was insane, despite going faster then the posted speed limits. There was some justice, when I saw one of these road warriors being ticketed by the numerous police presence that prowled the California and Oregon highways. My secret wish however was to see a twisted smoldering wreck with one less moron ruining it for everyone else.

What is it with the coastal highway region and murders and missing people? I saw several posters and newspaper articles reporting murdered and missing people. I don’t know if this is related to the high numbers of homeless and wayward people I saw, but they too were everywhere. Many of the locales I talked to deeply resented this. Their towns were being invaded by outsiders. Allegedly the prisons had been opened and many had been released with no place to go.

The whole ‘tourist’ experience sucked. My wife enjoyed the trip (in general), but we both quickly realized that far too much has been lost, and too much has been commercialized. The sad truth is, tourism has rapidly destroyed the planet. The hordes of people that crowd the highways, camp sites and stores we visited made us feel completely out of place (which we were, we did not belong there). I won’t see the ocean again, most likely, but was glad to get a few photographs. I saw nothing alive there either, except a few seagulls and one sick looking starfish.

There are far, far too many people alive today. If you ever wonder what is ‘wrong’, start there. Humans are trashing the planet, trampling what’s left down faster and faster, voraciously consuming whatever is still left. The sameness of every town, every shop and every road was deadening. Everything was geared for maximum commercial potential and profit. I could have been anywhere, nothing stood out anymore. Every town had exactly the same shops, businesses, stores and ‘sameness’. I was glad to go home.

Try as I might, it was hard to meet people. Eyes glazed over if you broke the ‘code’ and tried to discuss anything of value or importance with anyone. Apparently tourists are supposed to be idiots with wallets, unquestioning zombies who are to be shuffled from one ‘attraction’ to another. Engaging anyone in conversation was taboo, although everyone was friendly. I didn’t encounter any problems other then idiots behind the wheel. But I was glad to go home.

The planet is ruined, of this I have absolutely no doubt at all. The hordes of people I saw, the endless repetition of our fingerprints and footprints over everything have shown me once again that there is virtually no hope for restoration or rescue from the folly of the human enterprise. I was glad to go home.


admin at survivalacres dot com

9 thoughts on “Roads Traveled, Thoughts Revealed

  • May 2, 2016 at 6:04 am
    I often think my experiences in national forests are unique and troubling, but your essay here could’ve been written by me. Each year I visit my sister in CA and we go to the coast or the forests only on weekdays, and even then, the congestion of vehicles and people denatures the experience to a very great degree. We visited the Redwood Forest a few years back-while I appreciated the magnificence and uniqueness of that flora, it was marred by the many voices, often irritated by the lack of ‘connection’ via their smart phones and the passing stench of pot smoking. I guess the experience wasn’t enough for other visitors without clouding their minds with garbage. Personally, I resented the intrusion of their personal into our public. But my sis and I are of the same mindset: good luck to others when things pick up speed… Schadenfreude? Yes.

    Here in my home western state, I don’t do as much hiking as I used to, for reasons noted in your essay. Even the drive through our forests evidences a culture in which too many people don’t give a damn about maintaining the beauty and quality of what we all have. A pathetic combination of ‘me first’ and ‘what’s that?’–selfishness and no working knowledge of ‘wilderness’, as if it’s a dead language to most. It’s the tragedy of the commons, but viewed aesthetically: everyone wants a piece of beauty, until it’s all ‘used up’. (We now all live closer to the end of that sentence than not.) While acknowledging the futility of railing against what is inevitable (numbers don’t lie: Population overshoot), I do follow & support some of the organizations which fight against the larger, corporate enemies of wilderness. There is satisfaction and pride in any victory when some part of our natural world is protected. I do, however, willfully entertain some hopium all the while knowing it’s a placebo. The collective illness remains-too many people.

    • May 3, 2016 at 8:30 am

      I’m (glad) – sort of, that I could do this in spring. The trip was actually necessary (family matters) so we extended this to include the coast. But I won’t be going back. There’s zero possibility that things will improve and what I saw was very disappointing. The lack of birds, deer and wildlife was shocking. There are more animals in my yard in one morning then what I saw in two weeks. Entire forests were still dead and brown, especially the oak trees – they didn’t survive the drought. In a few more years, it’s going to be really ugly as they either fall down or get cut down. The disconnect from why this is happening is also shocking.

      Humans are stupid creatures. In “The Conspiracy Against The Human Race”, Ligotti points out the fault: consciousness, by which all evils, ills, selfishness and hopium emanates, overwhelming everything else – including reality. We are deluded creatures, imagining what isn’t there in order to appease our selfish nature. He makes a lot of valid points, but it’s a heavy read.

  • May 2, 2016 at 5:34 pm
    Yep. That’s Amurika buddy.
    We’re totally and irrevocably FKD,
    on purpose, in every way imaginable and many that are not..
    BTW, My Dodge truck is yellow
    • May 2, 2016 at 6:50 pm

      I’d like to beat these asshole Dodge truck drivers to a bloody pulp. Absolutely sick of their road warrior attitudes. When the Apocalypse finally shows up, I’m going to target them with my .50 – just for the fun of it.

      • May 2, 2016 at 10:58 pm
        Fresh Long-Pig will be exacting a substantial price premium if you can find a market. Why waste a .50 when .30 will do the deed?
        • May 3, 2016 at 8:31 am

          I bought some “Bone Sucking Good” Hot Mustard sauce – will that go well with fresh Long-Pig?

          • May 3, 2016 at 12:43 pm
            I have yet to find anything whatsoever the goes well with Long Pig. TMK no one else has either. I wish you better luck.
  • May 3, 2016 at 12:32 am
    Shaking the Muse’s cage (aka ‘talking to myself’ – again):

    Main Entry: hope – aka Hopium
    Part of Speech: noun
    Definition: dream
    Synonyms: ambition, anticipation, aspiration, assumption, belief, bright side, craving, daydream, dependence, desire, dream, expectancy, expectation, faith, fancy, fool’s paradise, gain, hankering, hopefulness, hunger, longing, lust, optimism, pipe dream, pretension, promise, promised land, prospect, reverie, rosiness, sanguineness, utopia, wish, yearning

    Main Entry: hope [ Hopiate ]
    Part of Speech: verb
    Definition: dream about
    Synonyms: anticipate, aspire, assume, await, avidity, believe, depend, desire, expect, fantasize, feel, have faith, hold, long for, pray, presume, rely, suppose, surmise, suspect, sweat, trust, watch and wait, wish

    Contemporary Hopes That Kill (partial, no particular order)

    Hope that the oil flows continuously faster and faster, so that my ‘ toys’ and whims become ever cheaper with time
    Hope that Life is convenient (just in time crime) and without conflict at the personal level – (all the rest is just on TV anyway, I have a ‘fresh’ battery in the remote if ‘needed’.)
    Hope that by doing the same thing(s) over and over, I will eventually achieve the results that I ‘expect’ (wish, want, imagine)
    Hope that my future will blossom (soon) with the same level of effort, thought, skills, and comfort that I maintain today.
    Hope that (other) people will finally learn/choose to just get along and do the ‘right’ thing most of the time (near me).
    Hope that the climate stabilizes to the benefit of perpetual human expansion (infinite exploitation).
    Hope that the Earth’s biosphere can heal itself whilst 7+ Billion humans simultaneously continue to rape and plunder every possible resource (to the detriment of all other life).
    Hope that Man will learn to consider seriously the Law of Unintended Consequences.
    Hope the the Laws of Physics can be overturned by the collective whim (prayer) of humanity.
    Hope that rationality prevails over panic in the event of (local) conflict/chaos
    Hope for Rapture (me good person, you bad) – aka Hope that ‘my God’ is indeed a wrathful, vengeful God who destroys those who disagree with me).
    Hope for my personal ‘salvation’ from belief in an judgmental infinite Deity of Death irregardless of my own ‘worthiness’ or integrity.
    Hope that compassion and understanding (of others, never me) overwhelm selfish material greed at the ‘heart’ of present reality.
    Hope that my God will consume (smite) your God(s) – forever and ever.
    Hope that rationality and foresight will emerge and florish to dominate the ‘affairs’ of man.
    Hope that ever increasing levels of complexity will resolve the manifold challenges presented by complexity.
    Hope that my dependency on ‘civilzation’ is an illusion I can continue to ignore with out consequnce.
    Hope that the future will be a slightly more intense – but ‘better’, more fulfilling – version of today.
    Hope that what I’m doing right now makes any positive difference in my future at all.
    Hope that my sh*t doesn’t stink up my own house.
    Hope that out of sight, out of mind is as practical a strategy in future as it has been so far.
    Hope that by denying/ignoring a (any) problem (aka reality) actually makes it go away – forever.
    Hope that not standing in the direct path of the oncoming train shields me from the shrapnel of it’s collision with finity
    Hope that ‘other peoples problems’ will not become my own (but that I may still watch them suffer on the nightly TV news, if I so choose).
    Hope that digging faster and ever deeper gets me out of this damn hole – and soon.
    Hope that the current ‘system’ keeps me alive because I’m too selfish, stupid, lazy and greedy to even consider actually doing so for myself.
    Hope that eternal (ultimate) meaning of my life will be gleaned from my temporal interaction with matter and conversion (‘consumption’) of energy.
    Hope that solutions to all my problems will be found in application of the same ‘type’ of thinking (and effort) that created them.
    Hope that fusion reactors come online before the oil wells sour and pucker.
    Hope that corn for biodiesel will grow in abundance with only direct solar gain (energy) inputs.
    Hope that Avian Flu (or other cliff calamity) brings about the demand destruction necessary to allow me to continue my life as before.
    Hope that my neighbors remain calm (docile) and collected (civil) as their children bloat and scream from hunger.
    Hope that my garden over floweth forever and the well never runs dry.
    Hope that my investment portfolio forever expands my capacity to extract/acquire/consume/possess.
    Hope that the hordes will not notice my stash after the lights go off.
    Hope that China and Russia just shrug when Israel nukes Iran.
    Hope that my FRN’s continue to multiply in fractional reserve fantasy-land
    Hope that as the collective toilets all flush, I can somehow not be caught in that sucking vortex.
    Hope that this life is not merely a private singularity (aka existential ‘black hole’)
    Hope that the ceaseless struggle for existence makes sense to me some day (actually, ‘yesterday’).
    Hope that my government is not lying to and manipulating me.
    Hope that since falling doesn’t hurt, that the impact won’t (too much) either.
    Hope that commercial ‘effort’ (aka profit motive) has my best interest at heart and will act responsibly (for me)
    Hope that the ultimate fate of ‘my civilization’ is miraculously at variance with outcomes of every other milieu that has come before.
    Hope that when (as) the dominoes fall, gravity will be suspended – at least locally.
    Hope that if I don’t change (or even care) that the world (my circumstance) will get better (improve for me) anyway.
    Hope that the giant cosmic hoax is merely prelude to my enlightenment (I need actually do nothing except wait for this to be provided to me)
    Hope that refusal to take personal responsibility for my life/existence won’t bite me in the ass (that someone/thing else does assumes responsibility on my behalf).
    Hope than Peter Pan was right and/or that the Big Bad Wolf blows down someone else’s house (of cards).

    Etcetera ad nauseum

    Hope is not happiness. Nor satisfying, meaningful, purposeful, fulfillment, growth, expansion, doing, success, living, being- or even rational (aka sane, consciousness).

    Hope is the veritable antithesis of Being

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