Wednesday, 24 March 2010

2012 - The Truth About The Myth

How much about the Mayan prediction is true? Will the world come to an end like their calendar – or is the calendar an indication of a new beginning? When Nostradamus predicted humanity’s destruction of the planet, was there any truth in his predicament? Or is the increase in natural disasters just our planets way of defending itself against humanity and the way that we treat it? One thing is certain; humanity cannot live without nature, but nature can quite happily live without humanity.

For decades people have been fascinated by Nostradamus’ prophecies. They predicted so many historic events that it’s sometimes frightening to even try to decipher what the future may hold. His visions were depicted in great detail and accuracy in his published four line poems, called quatrains. The philosopher envisioned both world wars, he saw the 9/11 attack on New York and even predicted his own death. Also mentioned was the invention of motors and machines, the French revolution, Napoleon and even Hitler. For someone who lived in the 16th century even a sceptic must admit that there lies some truth in Nostradamus visions.

Over the last 20 years there has been a surge of natural catastrophes. Among them the Indian Ocean earthquake that caused the Sumatran tsunami, costing an estimated 230 000 human lives, not to mention the destruction of land and property in 14 countries. There’s also been an increased number of hurricanes in the Atlantic, including Katrina that completely demolished large parts of New Orleans and now lately the devastating Haitian earthquake that might have killed up towards 300 000 people. Nostradamus described such occurrences in his visions for our time. There are specific predictions about global warming, freak weather and natural disasters. Mentioned are scenes of devastation, upheaval and turmoil followed by disaster, disease and famine. However, they all come with a glimmer of hope and an open ending – giving humanity a chance to take note of the warnings and act accordingly.
Over the course of earths existence our planet has gone through constant changes and adaptations. Humanoids only entered the picture some 200 000 years ago while our world is close to 4.5 billion years old. During this time the look of our planet has changed drastically time and time again, adapting to its surroundings and ever evolving climate. From a free flowing lava lump to a frozen ball of ice to vast dry deserts and back again. The only difference being; humans weren’t there to witness these changes.

Around 3000 B.C. a mathematical clan began to prosper on the Yucatan peninsula of Mesoamerica. The Mayans created a complex calendar based on planetary cycles around earth. When the Spanish invaded during the 16th century they destroyed most of the Mayan literature in an attempt to convert them to Catholicism. A few written scripts remained and it was with their help that the Mayan calendar could finally be understood. In the 19th century it took German scientist Ernst Forstemann over 20 years to decipher. According to their count the calendar ends on which was translated into 21.12.2012, modern day. It was also discovered that the calendar began on 13.08.3114 B.C. – making it a full cycle of roughly 5126 years.

There has been a lot of speculation as to why the calendar seems to be so exact. Combined with Nostradamus prophecies of an ever changing environment many fear the worst possible outcome. There are guesses that Earth’s core will heat up due to extensive and increased solar flares and eventually cause major volcanoes to erupt and possibly shift the magnetic field causing the poles to switch place. Some say that a black hole, probably man made in the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland, will devour our planet and send us into oblivion. Others believe that we might collide with another planet known as Nibiru or Planet X. Terrifyingly all these possibilities inevitably end with the virtual extinction of mankind.

The Maya were expert sky watchers’ says Dr John M. Jenkins, astrophysicist from San Francisco, who has been studying the Mayan culture and their incredible astrological accuracy. ‘After researching the dates in the ancient calendar and comparing it with studies of the sky for the approximate date around December 2012, we have discovered what we believe to be the reason the Maya chose this particular date for their calendar to end.' Dr Jenkins goes on to say ‘Winter Solstice falls on this date, but what’s different to previous ones is that a Galactic Alignment takes place. Galactic Alignment is the alignment of the December solstice sun with the Galactic equator. This alignment occurs as a result of the precession of the equinoxes. Precession is caused by the earth wobbling very slowly on its axis and shifts the position of the equinoxes and solstices one degree every 71.5 years which in turn causes this Galactic Alignment to occur only once every 26,000 years, and this was what the Maya were pointing to with the 2012 end-date of their Long Count calendar.’

Looking into the Maya culture as well as deciphering the prophecies of Nostradamus that leave an open ending to the future of our world, instead of waiting for the world to end, perhaps we should look at it as a New Beginning. In his book The Celestine Prophecy author James Redfield describes nine insights based on ancient scrolls found in Peru. Each insight leads to greater awareness, evolving the human mind. It is thought, that the Maya believed when the new cycle begins mankind will reach a higher state of consciousness, progressing to the next evolutionary step. The ideology is to connect to the planet that feeds and nurtures us. To connect to people we encounter and share the energy instead of conflictingly strive for greatness and power, thus repressing a fellow man. It’s simple yet effective. But the transition is much more complicated than that. In the last couple of centuries modern civilization has evolved at such rapidity that we have been spoiled with technology and lost touch with our own spirituality – especially our connection with mother earth. Instead of nurturing the planet we inhabit, we are set on stripping it of all natural resources and polluting it with all the unnatural ones. The human race is growing at an alarming pace and as a result we are in danger of outgrowing earth’s sustenance. Does it then really come as such a surprise when our planet fights back? If somebody repeatedly kept punching you, unprovoked, would you just sit there and take it or would you fight back and defend yourself?

Natural disasters, illnesses and epidemics almost seem like a necessary evil in order to somehow maintain a natural balance and give us hope for the future of mankind. We need to listen and take note of the messages our planet is sending us. We need to interpret them and act accordingly. Ignoring them will serve no greater good. We need to collectively put our minds together and act as one. After all, we are only one race. We need to connect and help each other instead of only helping ourselves. We need to realise that a new age is coming. There is hope for us still but we need to act now as time is slowly running out. 2012 is literally just around the corner. It is up to us to decide whether it will represent The End or as the Maya believed; a New Beginning.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Hag Fag

A few years ago I received a parcel from one of my closest friends who’d just relocated from London to San Francisco. I’ve received many gifts over the years from dear friends but never one that stood out in this particular way. Basically it sums up the sender so uncannily and upon receiving it I was instantly reminded of why I love her so much.

A soft largish brown envelope arrived in the post and I immediately recognised the handwriting. I couldn’t wait to go home and open it but I was somewhat alarmed by the rustle inside the package. It was squishing and squalping inside. I was curious as to what was in there and rushed home to tear it open. It was sealed well, taped up real good into an inch of its life and I had to dig up a pair of scissors to gain access. Once I cut a corner I yelped in shock as water came pouring out of the bubble padded envelope.
Oh. My. God! What the hell???’ I exclaimed as I tore into the parcel and dug out a book that was soaked through and through. The title read; "Girls who like boys who like boys – True tales of friendship between straight women and gay men". I looked further into the envelope and nearly cut myself trying to fish out a barely readable handwritten note; ‘I found *smudge* and thought *smudge* you! Love *smudge* eternally, *smudge*’. There was actual glass at the bottom. And water. And … glitter??
“Schhhlonkkkk! “
A snow globe base fell to the floor in my room, the Golden Gate Bridge rolling off to one side. I couldn’t stop laughing. ‘Typically Mon’ I thought.

And it was. Throughout our incredible friendship I have laughed many times at Mon’s entertaining ways of doing things and solving problems. But sending a snow globe in a bubble wrapped soft envelope from America to Europe and expect it to arrive in one piece was just delightful to me. It surely brightened up my otherwise gloomy day.
I remember putting the book somewhere to dry and that was the last I saw of it, until a few weeks ago when I was clearing out an old cupboard and suddenly it reappeared. It was a little bent out of shape but still in a readable condition. That morning, instead of trying to combat my daily issue of Metro on an overcrowded District Line, I decided to bring this book. It was a hilarious read but one that reminded me that my favourite hag was on the other side of the globe. The stories brought back memories I’d somehow misplaced somewhere in my mind. Perhaps all those years dedicated to my dear friend Mary Jane took their toll, but being clearheaded and out of the smoke cloud for a few months suddenly it was all coming back to me.

In my life I’ve been fag to many a hag. It all started just before secondary school back home in Sweden. My first real friends were all girls. Even before I knew I was gay I found I didn’t have very much in common with other boys. They wanted to get dirty (no, not in that way) and play football or wrestle or any other boyish type of stuff. Gosh, I was so bad at it I can’t even think of a single thing boys do when they are kids. Instead I much preferred to hang with the girls and do girly stuff like play with dolls and talk about boys. Being a sensitive child I found girls so much easier to relate to.

In the early years there were the two polish sisters from my block, Monika and Patricia Rodziewitcz, the good catholic girls who I corrupted with my obscure interest in pagan rituals and the occult. Then there were Linda, Tina and Annie. Three neighbouring girls that found my dressing up and impersonating Madonna hilarious. Annie and I became really close. I didn’t understand it back then but both our families struggled with the presence of alcohol. I guess that created a sort of bond between us and we could comfort each other when we need it most.
And then there was my first ‘straight’ crush; a pretty girl called Nina. I used to obsess over her and not really knowing how to be a boy’s boy I tried to woo her by stripping off outside her window and shouting obscenities through her letter box. Pretty scary stuff in retrospect. Not to mention embarrassing. How she never throttled me with a bottle or maced my face is beyond me.

Once we started secondary school Annie and I sort of drifted apart. We were placed in different classes and Nina ended up in mine, so naturally we became closer. I was lucky cos Nina was one of the popular girls in school and although at times she made fun of my eccentric ways she also protected me from the perils of the popular boys. As long as I was friends with her they wouldn’t touch me, apart from the occasional slander across the school yard which I didn’t pay much attention to. I even remember one of the jocks asking me if I was a faggot in front of all his mates on my way home from school one day. To which I replied; ‘Why? You wanna piece of my ass?’ A very risqué thing to say but I saw Nina on the other side of the football field and that gave me enough confidence to be bold. In the long run it paid off. Once they realised I wasn’t bothered they stopped. Coincidentally Nina was the first person I ever came out to. It turned out her uncle was gay and once I found out, it was easy to confide in her. After all, she would never judge me. Later on, when I came out to my parents and my mother “nearly died” in an over dramaticised heart attack simulation, Nina and her mom took me in while social services tried to find me a suitable home.

A year later my close circle had also come to include Lindsay, Danielle and Marie. The three Mouseketeers. They were called that cos they always wore the same outfits, just different colours and they all had Mickey Mouse bags. Lindsay was another girl I’d developed a crush on in my confused teen age. Something that in latter days developed into a much deeper friendship. Then of course there was Diane. Diane was a girl with the same background as me. Our parents were from former Yugoslavia and although naturally we should have bonded we actually despised each other to begin with. At least I think she despised me. Personally I found her hilarious. She was outspoken and confident and most of all she was insanely funny. As time progressed we eventually accepted each other and to this day we are still good friends. She inspired me to take up acting in college. We always used to go a bit crazy during class, especially when we had a substitute teacher. We’d pretend we were other people and I vividly remember one time when we actually ‘gave birth’ to a football in the middle of the classroom while the substitute teacher ran off terrified, screaming in tears. Ahhh, hose were the days..

The college years were not that much different. By this time I was fully aware of my sexual orientation but even though there were quite a few gays in college I still stuck to the girls. The thing in our college was that there wasn’t much segregation between popular and unpopular students. It was more about who was the most visible. Everyone was trying to outshine the other, me with fire engine red hair and green eyebrows. Don’t judge. I was still trying to find my inner artiste. After all, it was drama school and that’s what we were there for.
My immediate attention went to a tough but beautiful looking rocker chick named Cat. She donned the Pulp Fiction Uma Thurman look and being a massive Tarantino fan I was automatically drawn to her. It turned out she too had the same heritage as me and we bonded over coffee and cigarettes, skipping only the boring classes. Cat was a year older than everyone else in class. She’d repeated a year and as such seemingly had more authority amongst her peers. Hanging out with her I sought that status too.
By this time I was placed in an open juvenile home. I was too young to live on my own and too old to be placed in a foster home. Maybe not the smartest of moves considering that up until this point I’d been a ‘good girl’ and suddenly I was sharing a home with troubled kids of which some even had drug related problems. Here I befriended Becky, a street smart pretty girl with a tough exterior. I openly confessed my status during our first meeting and she looked me in the eye, deep and serious, and said; ‘One day I’ll fuck your brains out!’ A year later, she did. It was a drunken summer night while we were out camping. We were both lying by the log fire, missing our respective boyfriends when suddenly one thing led to another. It was my first time with a girl, but not my last.
Needless to say our relationship was never the same after that moment even though we tried to pretend it was. I cared deeply for her but she spiralled out of control and after a few months moved away to a more secure institution.

Her replacement, Johnny, happened to become my closest and best friend, ‘sister’ and partner in many of the crimes our lives would influence us to commit. We entered a life shaping period together and shared a few hags between us. Enter Michaela, Jessie and Jen. These girls were fun loving and up for ANYTHING. Although harbouring, what we thought at the time, unhealthy feelings towards my ex boyfriend Jessie was the ‘mother’ of the group. Easily persuaded to partake in the most ludicrous of things she still maintained a sense of right and wrong and at times acted as our collective conscience. Like having a guardian angel on your shoulder. The devil in this instance would have to be Jen. She always came up with the craziest ideas and wasn’t afraid of anything. The ironic thing is that her overconfidence made sure she also got away with just about everything.

These relationships proved vital for my future survival and taught me how to get what I want simply by batting my eye lashes. Essentially it worked a hell of a lot better for the girls, but whoever was on the receiving end of my batting lashes was generally so freaked out that they gave in without much of a fight.

At the age of 17 I was hungry for more. I decided to leave Gothenburg and, with Madonna as my inspiration, try my luck in a metropolitan city. I ended up in London. On the way here I met Chanelle, a girl I recognised from college, and we instantly clicked. My first 3 months was spent with her and her five sisters in a one bedroom apartment. Although it was somewhat cramped it was also a lot of fun. It was like living in a doll house. Being Caribbean Chanelle, Meeryam, Neemah, L’Wonda, LaKesha and Star taught me everything I ever wanted to know about hair extensions, fake nails and black men. It was an important chapter in my life. One that would have huge significance when I finally met my No 1 fag hag; Mon.


To be continued...

Dan K.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Oh damn..

..I didn't have a chance to post anything all of february!!?

How the hell did that happen?

OK, I better get my act together and make sure to be more productive in March!

Bare with me..