"looking at the end - what time is it?"
(photo from a cnet story on the new Apple watch roll-out April 10)
"So asking 'What time is it?' as you're looking at the end, is like traveling in a car, over a road with history in time and space," Kelsey says, sitting in the passenger seat of Long Down's '87 Ford pickup.
Windows down, their outboard arms and shoulders are set like breeze diverters, channeling the fragrant morning air through and out the rear, truck cab sliding window. They're doing 30 on the dusty road to Sugarland -- 50 acres, a cabin and a barn in the scrub-oak, grass-rolled hills of the California central coast range mountains -- 35 winding miles west of Greenfield, a city of 16,000 in the vineyard and truck garden, lettuce-lands of the Salinas Valley.
It's late-morning in a drought-dry April, with the grass along the roadsides now as brown and stiff as it normally gets in mid-July. Kels and LD are returning from their quarterly provisions run to a warehouse grocery store in town. The truck is half-full of chicken- and goat-feed, long-keep human staples and short-term treats like Mary Anne's famous ice cream, See's Bordeaux dark-chocolate candy, and a local craft beer ale that passes the meridian to a complex vinegar after a brief four weeks.
"And what you see, both before you on the road and sliding past the windows on the sides, like a movie playing out on the screen that is your life, is a moving picture of just where the fuck you're headed."
"Where the fuck, indeed," LD echoes, both hands still at 10:00 and 2:00 on the steering wheel of Lucille, a truck he's had since she was Dearborn birthed from an assembly line in Michigan 28 years ago.
Beyond the rural agriculture-centered economy of Greenfield, the big über-culture news this Friday morning is the roll-out of the latest electro-bauble, the new Apple watch -- the latest merchandise fetish from a state where electronic fetishes became a big, economic deal in the last half of the 20c. With the zero-sum real value of the new, fetish-driven economy being the same -- whether the econo-fetishes are pricey initial public offerings of stock in a business idea that has yet to turn a profit, or a wristwatch that is set to sell for between 350 and 17,000 US dollars.
"I'm thinking I might make a life change," LD says, still looking at the road ahead. "Would you like me better if I traded in my indie drawers and became a social fashionista?"
"Probably not," Kels answers, as they both briefly turn their heads in a smile exchange. "You don't really have the mirror-gaze character for it. I mean, you could fake it. But being superficial with an impressive me-me strut takes some time to get right. Frankly, you've never put in the personal time and effort for a social-image role."
"Yes. I know you'd love to be a culture-bubble dancer. But sometimes you just have to suck it up and face the fantasy-reality. She pauses then says "Here," slipping the top off and holding out the See's candy box.
"Thanks. I might need two."
20150410 22:45 (557 words)
- "It'll Get You There" by Jenny Lewis, from the Rilo Kiley album "Rkives" 2013
- "Everything You Need" by The Lonely Wild, from the album "The Sun as it Comes Up" 2013, performed live at The Echo in L.A. Dec. 2012
- "Rock & Roll is Cold" by Matthew E. White, from the album "Fresh Blood" 2015, performed live at BRIC House Mar. 2015
- KCSN, 88.5 FM L.A., Mo-Fr 06:00-11:00 a.m. the Morning Show w/Nic Harcourt