Dear Mudge, A mindful youth

Hi Mudge,

How’s your vet-tech pursuit coming along? Save any hamsters or poodles yet? My son and his girlfriend have an African hedgehog as a pet they named “Kitty” (what?). Strange creature. Didn’t the Red Queen play croquet using hedgehogs as balls? Will you be specializing in a subset of species? Curious minds…

I see you’re back at your quantum existential possibility questions. As I mentioned in comments, I prefer simplicity. What’s the most likely scenario as to what we are, why we’re here, is my existence part of a larger whole or a singular occurrence where my so called consciousness manifests all that I see around me? In my mind the simplest answer applies: we’re animated bags of chemicals being the result of emergent behavior stemming from both the vast chaos and fundamental atomic rules that govern the cosmos; that is, happy/traumatic accidents. But, such an answer seems a let down, so humanity contrives more complicated scenarios that provide an elevated basis for existence. Bah! DNA and its core raison d’etre—that of persistence—emerged from chaos, the result being us.


This morning I awoke thinking of her. But after she melted away from my subconscious I considered my formative years and how different they were from those of today’s youth. In this letter I’m talking about portable technology. At age 10, I walked out the door, on a warm summer’s morning and didn’t return until hunger or darkness insisted, a pocketknife and a bicycle my only accoutrements. Even up into my 20’s a set of keys, a pocketknife, and a wallet was all I carried. The only technology available at that time being a radio in a car or truck. During those years I was engaged with the world. It filled my senses. And if the world proved dull, my own mind entertained me. I’m certain my best thinking time was had riding a motorcycle hellbent along meandering coastal roads.

Will today’s youth lament that which they never had?

All their thinking is done for them—in the cloud, by strangers.

I consider that society won’t truly know what happens to folks, constantly plugged in, until the ’00’s generation is in their 40’s. Those children, raised with an “i”… in their hands, their eyes and ears immersed in virtual worlds, what will have become of their minds by age forty? Is there any way back from this conversion to a digital consciousness?

I only use a phone as an occasional information tool and annoying alarm system: “Honey, are you coming home yet?” But my kids, I’m certain they would become inconsolably distraught at the loss of their phones. I suspect they would survive as they enjoyed their early years sans-technology, catching lizards, picking berries, beach combing and whatnot—no insidious technology around.

When the CME finally strikes triggering the End of Electricity, what of the ’00’s who know nothing but the net? Will they descend into catatonic digital-detox?

What endearing youthful stories do you have that personify who you’ve become today?

Your friend,



19 thoughts on “Dear Mudge, A mindful youth

  1. Call me ridiculous but I like the ubiquity of tech. I suppose my favorite thing to get comfort as a youth was to pretend I had a device in my hand that could simultaneously summon others and act as an all-knowing computer. I guess you could say I’m living my best life now. 😁

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  2. “Mr. Huston finally succeeded in taking all the fun out of this with his self-important bloviating in response to my last post, which means that my last post will be my last post here. ” OMG! I had the exact same experience with Mr Houston and nearly the same response…However, I ended up banning him forever from commenting on my blog and continued dropping my turds on WP only because it amused me to do so, still amuses me, and I prefer to live with the delusion that one day I will publish a book and I know the book is not going to write itself so lunge forward I must. If you, the ‘Mudge, cease to blog because of the demented Mr Houston (who must have something to say worth listening to, but it’s difficult to overcome his ‘tude…) then I am going to liken WP to a bad corporate job…where all the good people leave because management hired evil assholes. I know the Mole understands evil assholes being in position of management. Hope to read more of you Mole.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. …and all this time I was beating myself up for being an “over-sensitive, thinned-skinned, snow-flake fairy” by banning Mr. Houston when I am a big believer in free-speech. How could I be so hypocritical?

        Liked by 3 people

          1. Some of what he says still resonates within me because I know he hit a kernel of truth. However, if I dwell on his comments too long, I will stop writing and give it up forever. The alternative to occupy my time? I dunno. Drinking. Smoking. Hookers. Shit like that. Eventually I’d collapse from over-stimulation. Heart attack. Stroke. Car accident. I know me. Writing keeps me in one place, thinking, trying. My reach may exceed my grasp, but looks like I’ll have it no other way.

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  3. My happiest memories were riding through woods and fields alone on my bicycle.

    I’m glad there was no all-encompassing technology around in my childhood, teens and twenties.

    An EMP will certainly produce massive PTSD.

    And hedgehogs will need to be far away lest they be used as croquet balls in the resulting insanity- they’ll need to be far from the madd’ng crowd.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It might be considered psychopathic, but I yearn daily for the apocalypse, of any sort, to descend upon humanity — if only to witness people’s incredulous behavior. If I die before it happens I’ll be greatly disappointed.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. A fitting opus to our published correspondence. I’ll answer a couple of your questions here because Mr. Huston finally succeeded in taking all the fun out of this with his self-important bloviating in response to my last post, which means that my last post will be my last post here. I haven’t aided in the saving of any animal lives yet because I’m still just taking the course to get certified — eta for completion is July. In my youth, I had a curious resistance to authority before I even interacted with authorities who weren’t my parents. In my teen years, this became an image-conscious rebellion, a knee-jerk hatred of cops, etc. In other words, my understanding of the world was nearly nil and my expressions of disgust were juvenile, but I still knew that I had a deep-rooted inability to accept anyone with a power trip. I am still just as disgusted at the lust for power over others as ever, though I no longer have a knee-jerk hatred of authorities. In fact, I’ve never been a bigger supporter of law enforcement figures with integrity than I am today. Scorn of the decent ones is what gave us Trump, of course. Thanks for letting me post to your page, my friend — it was great until it wasn’t, but the timing is fortunate: I’ve got a story to write, don’t I?

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