7pm The First Mammal To Wear Pants

My Dad is visiting and has decided to join me for tonight’s outing. It’s always cool to have company and having my Dad out is especially nice because he’s always supportive of what I’m doing.

Don’t get me wrong: I know you’re out there reading. He just tells me that he’s reading and that’s pretty cool.

We have arrived on an Event Night: Anderson Valley is being spotlit so I’ve tried the sampler of their beers. I’ve only finished one so far but it is not boding well…there’s nothing wrong with it but there isn’t anything distinctive either. Why would I order a pint of it when there’s so many other choices?

Portland version of first world problems, I know. Bite me.

Dad’s been focused on evolution, lately. The evolution of consciousness, to be precise: he believes that for us to move forward as a species, we’re going to have to have the kind of leap that took us away from the gorillas and bonobos and set us toward being humans. Distinct humans, that is.

I’m drinking something that might be a golden sour ale, now. An evolution, I suppose but I don’t know that I’d call it an advancement.

Having your parents visit is always a strange thing. All the stuff that you were comes out, all the stuff that you are both conflicts and cooperates with it and you’re in a middle ground, usually in front of friends and lovers, where there’s multiple dimensions of yourself all occurring at once. A time problem worth of Hawking, a personality problem evoked by Sybil. What to do?

But it’s not a bad thing, just awkward sometimes. I suppose a similar thing happens when old friends visit and there’s an evocation of the old days, even though it’s the days that are young and you who are old, now. A clash between the past and the now.

My third beer is a bit like a raspberry, chocolate sour ale. Nothing like the Duchesse, understand, but mining a similar hope. The finish is a little to harsh though, with this beer being (however fairly or not) judged against one of the best beers ever. I can’t object to it but I don’t know that I can recommend more than small doses of this one–it’s the Grand Cru.

In the meantime, we talk about evolving. One of the more interesting clashes is my point of view, where evolution happens in increments over time, and his which has a sudden leap happening. (Note: I’m simplifying for the reader. The discussion is much more involved.)

I have a feeling that both of us are right; leaps are precluded by a number of steps to support a springboard and then, Mario-like, we jump to the next level, suddenly baffled by the ability to work tools in ways we never thought of. That said, from what (little) I know, his version where a mutation sets off on it’s own in the timeline somewhere, a Prodigal Son made good, seems to be easier to prove. Once upon a time, we had brains that were smaller. Then they were bigger, like ‘ta-dah!’ Something may have led up to that–and my guess is that a great many things did–but at some point a wild mutation branched us off.

It is my Dad’s contention that this is what will happen to the human race but on at a consciousness level, if we’re going to survive. I like that idea for a lot of reasons, not least important being that I like survival. I also like that the language is inclusive; a higher consciousness doesn’t care if you’re religious or not. Misses the point: it’s strictly about you, only better. More successful, evolutionarily, than before.

And what (little) I’ve been told about evolution is that frequently, the species that gets along the best, is the most successful.

My forth sample is a let down. Something dirty on the back, maybe just too high a bitterness? Not much in the nose to speak of. Pass. I can’t get behind it.

He’s heading out tomorrow, off to do a work thing then back to Nevada where he’s currently residing. I hope he gets out of there. Nevada is no place for a higher consciousness to develop.

And I don’t care what you say: Fuck Las Vegas. It’s ugly and encourages the ugliest traits in us. It is a microcosm of what’s worst about America right now: a place where the rich get richer and the poor get fucked. Going to Vegas is a bit like living in the best part of a futuristic sci-fi movie, until you realize that nobody’s really happy and everyone’s trying to sodomize you and you’re really living Mad Max instead of Star Trek. Sure, you can manage there for a little while, until you see how nobody is really having fun or any fun they are having is coming at the expense of someone else’s dignity or is happening in the strange personal vaccum that one could get anywhere seedy…and is frequently condemned, like gay bathhouses.

Not that it should be: I think we’d all be happier if we could get laid in humane, positive, fun ways more often but I’m going entirely off the rails at this point, or quite near doing so. Let’s just move on.

My final taster, this is the prize. Creamy and carmely, like a liquid candy apple, I like it quite a bit. It’s the Summer Solstice Cerveza and I’m totally willing to say you should try this. It’s good.

Dad wants peanuts. I want another beer. I think it’s a good time to say goodnight. You have a safe trip Dad. Glad to have you around.

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5 thoughts on “7pm The First Mammal To Wear Pants”

  1. A little deeper than I was anticipating, but the great reference to Pearl Jam in the title (you were referencing PJ, we’t you?) kept me engaged. Wish I had the optimism of your father, but I think our species are not as long for this world as we think. Guess I better pop a home brew and enjoy the beer while I can!

  2. Really a good post. Nice flips between our conversation and the samples. Only issue is that my ideas about evolution are more complex than you presented. I gree that, for the most part, evolution happens in tiny increments. It is also true that there are instances of, seemingly, “instant” evolutionary leaps in some species – like clams or something. I also said that, in terms of consciousness evolution – and it all is, is you read Campbell – there may be persons who made huge consciousness leaps far beyond the incremental pace of the rest of mankind. People like Jesus, Buddha, Francis of Assisi, Ghandi. In any case, the complexities of evolution are a sidetrack issue to the idea tha consciousness is, in all cases, what is evolving. And that is better understood by reading My Big TOE.

    And is it a reference to Pearl Jam? Too cool, if so. Even if it was sub-conscious.

    1. Not subconscious at all: I even linked to the song so it would be clear.

      And I’m sorry for not accurately representing your ideas; lots of stuff to try and get down that night.

  3. Don’t feel bad. I didn’t represent my ideas all that well. As I said before: This was my first opportunity to articulate what is brewing in my head so I was trying to do a lot of intellectual things simultaneously. Never a good idea for my brain to attempt such a feat. What it really means is that I have to tighten up the presentation so that the interlocutor does not get lead down a sidetrack. But I also do not want to “lecture”. I like the give and take of a conversation.

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