misfits in paradise
I spent a week with a family our society stigmatizes as outsiders, just because their way of life does not fit into a system, we choose to live in – they are some of the most wonderful people I’ve ever met.
everybody is running around, with their mask on the giant theatre stage, we call life, just to find a tiny glance of the spotlight.
you are so important with what you do. get your education, learn what the elites tell you.
leave one system, join another, find work, make money and buy a bigger house than your best friend. join a church, join a community, protect your neighbourhood. the spotlight is on you, waiting to reward you for the achievements in your life.
you go to work, wearing the appropriate attire. there’s a code for everything. even for the poor. you leave the subway, passing by 15 homeless, begging for a dollar. you’d be broke by the time you sit in front of your desk, so you decide not too give. understandable, you can’t supply the demand, you can’t feed them all. what you see and think is what you want to see. why don’t they work in our system? no one has to freeze, to starve to suffer, right?
what you don’t see is, that you’re leaving the dream, the dream of a big illusion – your life. how can you every question or judge, why buddy is sitting on a piece of cardboard, wearing worn out shoes, if you never experienced the ‘rough’ life. you think you’re strong, but you’re weak. as long as the system you chose protects you, you feel safe, but what if the cosy bubble implodes? you loose your truckm, your job, your wife, your house, your kids?
the only thing your system cannot take away from you is the alcohol. trained as a socially accepted drinker, if you function. at some point you fall, and you keep falling, once you hit the ground you’re dead. your suit is long rotten and you’ll be in pain until the end comes.
or you die slowly, from the moment you stopped living, have you ever lived?
most follow a beaten path, along the values and norms that determine your existence and place in the system. few people leave that path, but how can you appreciate the good times, when you barely had the bad?
people judge people, always. I’ve been trying to change that almost my entire life, but I still find myself imagining what a person is up to, if he or she is a good or a bad person. I proved myself wrong dozens of time and it still happens. people don’t care about other people. they pretend they do, but they don’t. they barely care about the ones next to them. you set up flags, borders around your comfort zone and you decide who to let in and who not.
tyler, the father of this family, is a magician with his drum sticks, and he carries them wherever he goes, even to the supermarket. they swirl along his fingers. he’s a passionate drummer and he doesn’t want to show off, he ‘doesn’t give a fuck’. waiting lines are some of the most boring and terrible inventions in our world of wisdom and wealth. keeping up the line is important, don’t step out of the line, wait for your turn and don’t talk. tyler always stands next to the waiting line, moves parallel to it, until he gets served. he knows he has to do it, to follow for a while, but he’s not part of the herd, he observes it and people just see him as a freak, a misfit, a mad man.
they don’t see, they can’t see, that this man has established an environment for his family with five children, most kids dream of.
168 acres of land, surrounded by a river and a mountain. if you wanna get lost, just keep walking, choose a direction and follow a silent path to yourself.
I’m 28 years old and I felt like being back in time. he built a two story high, soft blue, tree fort. the best ‘do-it-yourself tree house’ I’ve ever seen. it’s solid, beautiful and warm, you can live in it, it can be your home, if you need it – even over the winter. tyler is not a carpenter, but he is more talented than many carpenters, you now what I mean.
I’m writing this text, laying on a big cosy bed under the roof, underneath the canopy of a long wall of pine trees. I came up the stairway and I can go down the slide. what do you dream about?
tyler can barely read, he can’t write, he said he went to school five times and hit the road when he was eleven. he went through different hells I can’t name, but during long discussion I got to know this guy, although just a little bit and I’m still impressed.
you can study for years, get yourself a nice and well paid job, but you’re not even close to meeting his intellect. how can you? tranquillized and conditioned for your whole life. I generalize, I want to offend someone, I’m trying to turn your world around. I can’t do it, but I want to. I’ve met thousands of people, talked to even more, to people of any kind and this man showed me a world, in which the government, the society, the community tries to let them suffer and they think they succeed – they don’t, they cannot take away from this family what they never gave to them.
love, trust, loyalty. help without question doesn’t compete with money or any other type of currency we established to keep this collapsing world operating. slowly walking towards the slaughterhouse and they would not even laugh about you. you feel sorry for them? start feeling sorry for yourself?
we are sheep, scared to death, staying by ourselves, isolated, but conformed in the herd. we’re all wearing the same uniform, a white coat and we don’t realize how much dirt runs down on our existence.
they might be the last, but they never waited in line, they are the black sheep, but they fuckin’ rock!
[all photographs taken with Nikon D300]View other posts by Muli Muli