Soma 2.

It’s not that I like to be cruel, or to love the darkness. It’s a strange addiction I have with love, and war and the things that our hearts find as extremes. The extremes of American life today where everything is at the touch of a finger on a piece of metal and glass, the iPhone and love and war. Games we play, swiping right and left. Like it’s a solution to our age old problem of love and war. I mean love is madness, as war is madness. Love and war are really not all that different, I mean one is micro and one is micro. The same. The same struggle over ideals, or what is right. I mean to share a bed is to trust your enemy, the other sex. The one you don’t know, or understand. I swiped right on MuzMatch and got here, some strange new Muslim only dating app. God, what is this thing we’ve done giving Muslims access to Tinder, what a recipe for disaster. What a mistake, to mix two cultures that don’t understand each other. This mess, this hot mess is not really that surprising or unheard of. I struggle with identity and face in this country who wishes to deport and wall. I get neck deep into a situation, read her my Grady Hospital records with hopes of an understanding of this thing we call bipolar disorder. This thing we call in this country manic depression, with little bit of PTSD on the side from all the police and psychiatric commitments, and all the drugs. All the pills, as they say:

All the advantages of Christianity and alcohol; none of their defects.”

…there is always soma, delicious soma, half a gramme for a half-holiday, a gramme for a week-end, two grammes for a trip to the gorgeous East, three for a dark eternity on the moon…

Benito was notoriously good-natured. People said of him that he could have got through life without ever touching soma. The malice and bad tempers from which other people had to take holidays never afflicted him. Reality for Benito was always sunny.”

  • Brave New World, Aldous Huxley

Yup, so where are mine, I cannot afford them. Traveling from state to state lost in an activist haze. Trying to save a world that should not be saved, alive but not fully rational. This strange mix of madness and sanity, I mean I avoided the conflict today at home by working a full day and returning to the keyboard at night outside a coffee shop open 24 hours for people like me. I am of the devil she said, perhaps but what if this struggle is beyond her scope. Do they know about American psychiatry in Iraq? Probably not, and for that reason it’s best to stay away. What a mistake to marry into this mess. I wish I had not, but at least I am alive and awake to write and struggle back to a sense of sanity and balance after years homeless and on the road. After years of struggle and loss, after burning every trace of past to the ground what is left but to walk forward. To where I don’t know, this may sound like quite a ramble, and it is. However, I am coming around and wishing that I could do better. How does one teach another to step back and listen in the face of doubt and pain, and realize that love is slow like a graceful river now for me. I don’t want a rollercoaster or a raging river, or class V rapids. I’ve done all that before, several times and I am tired, exhausted in fact from the very fact that I’ve made it here alive to struggle one more day. One more fight, they say in the Guardian:

Bruni’s taps deliver poison to its poor, largely Hispanic residents but other rural towns in the state suffer with water that is black, brown or stinks of rotten eggs…

Julio Perez sprayed his yard with water from a garden hose. While the flowers were no doubt grateful for the refreshment on a warm afternoon, there was no chance of him quenching his own thirst with a gulp of tap water.

The 66-year-old lives in Bruni, a tiny Texas town notable for a very unwelcome reason: the quantity of arsenic in its water. In 2014-15 the average concentration of the carcinogen was 79.6 parts per billion: almost eight times the federal limit.

This was a mild improvement on the long-term average of 85.3 ppb since 2002, but Bruni was the runaway leader at the top of the Texas arsenic standings in a report compiled by the Environmental Integrity Project. The next-worst rate was 56.2 ppb in a district serving the 5,000-strong ranching community of Hebbronville, 13 miles from Bruni.

Using data from the state agency, the Texas commission on environmental quality (TCEQ), the report identified 65 Texas community water systems, serving over 82,000 people, which over the past two years have exceeded the arsenic standard set by the Safe Drinking Water Act. It found that some 51,000 of them in 34 communities have been exposed to drinking water with excessive levels of arsenic for at least a decade.

This is not news to the residents of Bruni, a poor, mostly Hispanic place 45 miles east of the border with Mexico. “Most of the people don’t drink the water any more,” said Perez, who has lived there for more than 25 years. “It looks cloudy,” said a woman in town who declined to give her name. “We don’t drink it,” said another.

The borderlands are replete with small, underresourced towns like Bruni where many residents have given up on using the water.


Well, I am here mind as well be of service. I should not get to close and look for love, I mean this is business. Never fall in love with your charity cases, you don’t understand their culture or their ways. It’s more science and exploration and the journey into the unknown for me than anything else at this point. This strange on the road life, living like Kerouac, is not seems to be. I never read the book, I was forced here. I could not afford my soma. So be it, let’s live out the war, and forget the peace. This is a war, a war on the poor waged by me driving around too much. A life afraid of connection, of silence and of peace.

Thank God Divorce in Texas is painless and easy, God Bless America.  God Bless Texas, and Georgia.  God Bless you, and God Bless Jesus.

About kayaerbil

I am a Berkeley educated chemistry Ph.D. who is moving into the area of working on developing appropriate technology for communities that are subjected to socio-economic oppression. The goal is to use simple and effective designs to empower people to live better lives. Currently, I am working with Native Americans on Pine Ridge, the Lakota reservation in South Dakota. I am working with a Native owned and run solar energy company. We are currently working on building a compressed earth block (CEB) house that showcases many of the technologies that the company has developed. The CEB house is made of locally derived resources, earth from the reservation. The blocks are naturally thermally insulating, keeping the house cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Eventually, a solar air heater and photovoltaic panels will be installed into the house to power the home and keep it warm, while preserving the house off the grid. A side project while in Pine Ridge is a solar computer. I hope to learn about blockchain encryption software for building microgrids. In addition, it is an immediate interest of mine to involve local youth in technology education.
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