You just can’t believe that your partner, my partner, Lulu doesn’t mind the McDonaldizzation* of another natural wonder. A force of nature fortified by malls, ticket booths, boarder crossing stations, hot-dog carts and parking lots. I went on to suppose by the logic of it all that millions of gallons of water falling every second down a rock face splitting up into tiny particles of moisture and coming back up wasn’t enough of a spectacle for most people. Tour-rides, Ice-cream, and commemorative paraphernalia was in order too.
Lulu felt that a marvel of this proportion should be made accessible to all. One would feel disgrace to admit otherwise, but my displeasure was far more penetrative. Who ever designed this damned tier access fuck-show was a wo/man worthy of a lynching party in their honor.
Let me paint you a picture: The VIP section for certain ticket holders offered the ability to ogle through mounted binoculars for an added fee. Which I could begin to understand if not for the simple fact that the Falls are visible for miles. That is had they not been unobstructed by Wallyworlds* and like constructions.
Maybe if the park had at least a mile buffer zone away from all establishments it would be more bearable, but this is not the case. When I took a moment to breathe it all in, I instantly realized the cheap absurdity of this juxtaposition. I held my breath and filled up with rage, my voice inside my head booming with defiant orders, defiant gestures.
“Plunge your feet into the fucking river. At all costs!”
“At all costs?” I asked back.
“Do it! Do it now! You must.” answered the dialogue.
The “No Swimming Signs” are rampant in my determined way.
I stumble, I mumble under my breath, “At all costs. Lulu will understand that I mean what I say. Fucking bastards! How can they rape! At all costs. At bottom dollar. The utter ignorance. I want to kill everyone!” Some kind of twisted Nine Inch Nails melodramatic industrial tune jazzing me up for the task at hand.
Fucking park rangers policing the coast like vultures full of barbiturates. Full of –tude. That is if they catch me. I’m under the cloak of the Voice. But Lulu is devastated by my behavior, my voice, my words, at odds with me and my spooled up belligerence. Daggers are pocking through my eyeballs, my skins, through everything I find seemingly outrageous with the state parks system of NY: the people that visit these places flock-like thinking that they can buy a better seat to nature by paying extra, the people who take their money and complain that on holidays they should be paid time-and-a-half for their efforts, the efforts that remain lazy and crappy and dumb. I’m even mad about people such as myself who come here in defiance of the circumstances to prove nothing to no one-one more time. Maybe I’m just mad at the world at large, or at myself, or my dad-eternally? Who the devil’s hole knows?
I make my way over to an opening in the guard railing system. I prepare my trajectory between the Rangers. No matter, the Rangers are disturbed by a professional camera crew filming the shit out of a tour bus. One can never have enough b-roll of a tour bus, hence it is my perfect cover.
With Lulu completely distraught by my behavior, but mostly my words and tone thus far, I forcefully jam my feet, pants and all, into the brutal rapids.
There! Ha-ha! In yo-fucking face all of the world. It’s fucking done!
That’s what the Original Hooligans do, we plunge our fucking feet into water as a gesture of commemoration. Why? Just because! Always and forever.
Trust no one!
We were having our biggest, baddest, fight of the trip. With the American Nightmare -Niagra Falls USA far behind us, Lulu was staring out the window with tears streaming down her face.
She wondered if I, Marlo, would continue this motif at say, Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon of all places? This was something I just couldn’t speculate on. At least not in this current state. I had never been to those mysterious places.
She had been to those places and knew in her heart of hearts, her eyes of eyes, that these very places had been molested and bastardized by the paternal hands of development.
My argument was that these places were designed without any concept of nature, they were the worst thing about a free market economy embraced by our capitalist system. These were examples of where gross profit dictates design… How many overfed souls would have to be pushed through the gates to turn the most profit. These calculations preceded even the slightest contemplation of “respect for wonder, for nature.”
Lulu stated that my naive and juvenile views of the world at large were interfering with more prominent concepts of fun and free spirit. It’s true they were and they always have.
But just like you can’t turn your back on rape of humans (can you?), how can you turn your back on the rape of nature. Not even private rape, away from the unguided eye (like the pulp forests, natural gas fields, and oil sanctuaries we were going to encounter later on in the journey) but rape right there in front of you for a fee. I think that we should enact this as mandatory live viewing. Yes, the actual metaphor where the New York Parks system chooses by lottery from the visitors that come and pay to see nature raped. Now, they too stand a decent chance of having themselves publicly splayed and ambushed. Yes, this is a good idea since there is not enough time to meditate anymore on what the hell’s going on around us. We should have all poetic and visual metaphors and allegories available live, for a reasonable cost of course. I wont patent this idea (since I’m too lazy), but you should. It is grossly ambitious.
Lulu stated that, I need to chill the fuck out! It is what it is and I already know that I can’t change it. That was something I never wanted to hear from anyone, yet alone her sultry lips. It hurt me in the worst of ways to hear that.
As we drove we untangled the knots of our conflicting views and agreed that the most dire problem is communication, language itself, and that the only way to fill this chasm was to start with education.
We agreed to work on resolving our issues by dealing with ill-communication, recording our findings, and by demonstrating them to each other and then leaving them up for further discussion.
We knew that challenging each others views, emotionally, physically, sexually, and with desire was of absolute necessity to impregnate each other with the paradoxical point of view that could then circulate without order or meaning.
After we left NY state we could consciously say that the Park system was fucked up; a paid entry parking lot for travelers mostly wheeling around in their over sized homes.
I would have to interject that the obvious idea of leaving most creature comforts at home makes sense when you go into nature. However, I’m sure that I am in the minority when I witness double decker buses with antennas, satellites, and heli-pads, plugged into the parks providing electrical outlets. Most of these people don’t even bother building a fire. They have an electronic fireplace right there in their bedrooms, and living rooms, and toilets.
For anyone on a budget, NY state will run you a fortune if you want to stay in these grassed up parking lots. A sad truth that we hope other states will contradict.
*Wallyworld: any 100,000 square-foot box-like structure that sells commercial goods at rock bottom prices.
*Lulu’s actual point of view as pointed out by her upon hearing this diatribe is that, “it’s not that I don’t mind the McDonaldizzation of these places -it’s that I have accepted it as a sad fact of life.” To which I must remind her of a popular Clash lyric, “When They come to your front door, / how you gonna come? With your hands upon your head?/ or on the trigger of your gun?!” Which is not to accuse her or anybody of anything. But it is a worthy exercise to inform yourself of your intent about who ever, “They” are.