Thursday, March 31, 2016

LEAVING CALIFORNIA REDUX


I originally wrote this piece almost two years ago. A few months later, I returned to California for an abbreviated stay. I deleted this entry at the time and then headed out again, and again. I currently call Las Vegas home. I would like to say that happiness comes from within, but it usually comes from whatever is in a 10-mile radius of me.

If I were a building, it would be a luxury high rise that rents outs the penthouse for porno. This is the death of a teenage dream: a dream that ran its long mile with brutal delusions, stuttered impulsiveness, and not-so-glamorous dares of death always in the air. The insidious narcissism and superficiality that burn bright in the Los Angeles County sky operate like an amoral compass. Something was missing in my quest for unending seediness and uncensored relationships. I was chasing an illusion, the famous one that used to lead struggling creative types to hang themselves from the Hollywood sign.

I wasn’t comfortable with the suicide thing because I have so many places and people to meet, but not in Long Beach or Los Angeles. Empty relationships are considered business or networking possibilities. All the while, you’re slowly losing your mind while trying to follow the lead of overachievers, workaholics, irritating alpha males, and poor little rich girls. I couldn’t take the loneliness of it all. What fucking happened to me? Why does purgatory seem like such a good idea? I realized I didn’t have much in common with these people or many other people in the various cities I had lived in.

I had been in and out of a bitter and twisted marriage for five years or so. I was trying to align my visions of a bloodthirsty gypsy existence with a world of heavy money, fast cars, false egos, and deadly doses of OCD. At the end of the day, my only accomplishments were primarily auspicious beginnings. But that’s just the thing, you know? Aspiring this and aspiring that, potential and possibility, pieces of an unreality that embraces you with betrayal and psychic vampires.

My psyche was maxed out, my libido was in limbo, and my passion was rotting away. I packed my clothes, records, laptop, and two guitars into my small two-door cruiser. It was time to travel into the unknown, the direction of wherever, that would be the starting point. Goodbye California and goodbye yellow brick road. Goodbye to the good times I wouldn’t let go of and the bad times I used for repetitive stagnation. Goodbye to the dreams of living in a Bret Easton Ellis novel and goodbye to the imaginary city that should’ve been overcrowded with classy decay and punk rockers worshipping at the altar of the Masque.

It all made sense as I finally crossed the California state line to depart into the future. Those ambitions and goals were based upon someone else’s scene, someone else’s memory, and someone else’s retelling of history. I have my own history, my own memories, and my own scene. My own scene is whatever I want it to be, and it exists when it’s supposed to. I’m a slacker, a writer, a musician, sometimes-scumbag, and I have some of the coolest friends in the world. You can react to reality or create your own. I like unknown destinations and my favorite place to live is between somewhere here and somewhere there.
-Kevin McGovern--

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