Litany: Interview Archive

Garcia, Sandra A. "Skinny Puppy: Wild at Art." B Side, December 1990 / January 1991, vol. 4, no. 6.

The world will end not with a bang but with a whimper. What shall the whimper be? Is the popular thought we'll all suffocate in our own waste? Or that the air will become so foul that breathing just isn't on the agenda anymore. Perhaps starvation slowly will take over when the soil will no longer support growth due to depletion: maybe dehydration from lack of clean water will end it all. Maybe the end will be a bang from some very nice nuclear warheads landing in the front yard. That could ruin the lawn, don't you think? And that's just on the physical side. On the spiritual side, or shall we say cultural side, the division between one person's reality being another's worst nightmare is becoming an interestingly sick problem. Should people sing of rape & violence & claim this is the reality where they live? What type of society allows this to be a reality for anyone? The same type of society that will ultimately try & halt people from speaking out. With a festering mess stewing across the globe & seeping down into the growing cracks created by ignorance, it's time to recognize the enemies both mental & physical. Let's start at the top of the body: the mental war for thought control. First agenda, an item for artists trying to strive for understanding: censorship, also known as Jesse Helms's second favorite hobby after racism.

"What's scary is the States is getting into this weird mood. That's why I'm worried about the films on this tour. We could be slapped with obscenity charges. I'm weirded out, especially since that 2 Live Crew thing. I honestly don't think they should have been charged, for one thing, but at the same time the American government used 2 Live Crew as a focal point for the whole censorship thing & what a poor example! There's Mapplethorpe, there's a lot of other examples to use but they focused in on a black band that says 'fuck me, fuck me, girls are horny': it's the fuckin' worst example to use to say, 'oh, this is why we need censorship.' It is so gross 'cause now it's like a blanket over everyone else. It's too bad that had to be the focal point cause it's going to be hard to overcome. The American government is so smart, they found someone who obviously will offend everybody somehow."

Kevin Ogilvie, nee Ogre, lead vocalist/visualist for the Canadian performance group Skinny Puppy isn't pleased with the state of the world circa late 1990. But that's not to say he's strictly a solemn songwriter wallowing in doom & gloom. Far from depressing, the off stage Ogre takes his matters seriously but he's going to keep his sanity for the time being, as well as his dry sense of humor. Coming across like the sarcastically intelligent musician at a party whom you end up discussing art & politics with in the kitchen for hours. Ogre wisely remembers you still gotta laugh before you attack.

With the world both heating up & melting down, bands like Skinny Puppy wouldn't exist if our planet was a perfect place with happiness & justice for all. Skinny Puppy is a band that likes to hold matters up to reality's glare & say "see, this is how it is, now what are you going to do?" They won't tell you what to do or how to do it. Ogre, cEvin Key, & Dwayne Goettel aren't operating on that simplistic egotistical level. Skinny Puppy is a reaction & they hope that you as their audience will react instead of being reacted upon by vulturous politicians & greedy warmongers.

The newest reaction to the world & its secrets is the superb recording Too Dark Park. Skinny Puppy has been steadily churning a wake of mayhem since 1983, & this seventh epic is another weapon in the arsenal of language & images they've amassed to use in the musical attack on ignorance. Matter of fact, Too Dark Park is a step regained after 1989's Rabies. And that's not just one person's opinion... it's direct from one of its creators. "Rabies..." as Ogre hesitates, muttering, "Rabies speaks for itself." A rough laugh wells up after this, he openly admitting, "It is not one of my favorite albums. I was on the verge of possible psychological problems when I look back on it now. I was going into the studio really worried about the fact that I couldn't do anything. There's a lot of mismanagement... the whole thing was bad timing for all of us. Now we came back with this album to try & correct the mistakes made there & make some starts & ends. Rabies goes all over the place. There's points in it where I cringe!" he despairs in annoyance. "I'm going 'I can remember being in the studio in a state of panic.' I've always had the fear that [with] the next album I won't be able to do anything different, that I'm not going to progress. Cause... well, I'm not really a... a talented musician, I have to work for everything that I get out of it, cause my range, my voice is not great." A nervous little laugh accompanies this admission. Huge displays of overweening egotism certainly isn't Ogre's style. I like this guy. "I am always worried about that, and last album I reached a pinnacle of paranoia. It was nice to come back with this album & see that with a little bit of time, & a rethinking of things you can come out with something far more pleasing."

Ogre's straightforward admission confirmed my suspicions about Rabies. Rabies was an album that further listenings allowed its very real incoherence to sink in, as it was the first Puppy album that never clicked as a whole experience. Yet those around the band kept going 'this is the one that's going to do it for them.' Do what? Put them on the cover of the Rolling Stone? Not quite.

Ogre gives into deep, sarcastic laughter. "Oh, I know. Yeah, I doubt it. More like put us in the classifieds. Needed: bar band!" he chuckles. "All the record company, all the management & all the hype that goes out... but I don't think I did any interviews for Rabies. And after a year we've come back with Too Dark Park which is a pleasure to deal with & talk about. It works as a whole."

He adds, "The reason I'm so happy about it--lyrically at the time of writing I was like 'oooo, I dunno, is this really what I wanna say?" And with events that came after that, it was gratifying to see that a lot of things were coming true in a way. I don't know if that was just subconscious on my behalf but not really cause these events were in other people's hands & it was cool to see that music can precede the events. That means we're back on track."

Too Dark Park does live up to its name. Dark & dense, the album is full of wildly sonic experiments & intense textures that take the experience Skinny Puppy delivers to the listener another dimension further. There's the immense sense that the band is back in total control in the delirious lack of control. The assaults of 'Convulsion', 'T.F.W.O.' & 'Grave Wisdom' sound like explosions in the cranium scraping against haunting songs like 'Morpheus Laughing' & "Nature's Revenge' leading finally to 'Reclamation', a definitely ending. It's not pretty. Ogre decides, "There are some really different sides to it. It's getting back to... I think it's more us, and not dealing with outside influences, do you know what I mean?"

Oh do I! We both know who was very influential on Rabies' over-all sound. A very dynamically influenced fellow indeed, whom we know & love. Knowing laughs follow, we naming no names out of sincere respect. "Oh yeah. But it's back to our own sound & taking it one step further that that, hopefully. We did a lot of songs in the studio-we dumped a lot of what they [cEvin/Dwayne] had written before & just did quite a bit of it in the studio cause we had the time. On Rabies we wasted time on... bad emotions, really. It just got worse & worse," he recalls bleakly.

"This album had a way more relaxed atmosphere, & we spent eight to ten hours recording things without anybody weirding out," Ogre explains."

What of hidden reserves did Ogre draw on for this all important album? His creative soul had to be a bit battered...

Ogre gives another sharp laugh, jesting, "It was actually a year of having to listen to Rabies & going 'oh, God, give me one more chance, God, please, if there is an album God, something, give me another chance!" And when the time came, I think we were all really ready to focus. Everyone had the same feeling that the last album wasn't right, not fully ourselves. It actually sold more then our other records which is something we look upon with like," as he grates out, "ohhhh ARRGGH!! And so going into this we were all excited & it worked. There were moments of those slight panics, but I think overall we sat down & no one has a problem with it at all. There was focus!"

An area that Ogre focuses on personally is his growth as a vocalist. The album's creation can be hard on him as he has a surprising lack of security about his range. "I don't really want to be just a screamer. The thing I want to try & do is challenge myself each time, & this album works well for me 'cause I was able to layer in harmonies & work things out. That came from touring with Ministry & singing with them. That kind of exercise moved me along."

"It was hard, & it is hard but at the same time I think... the last 2 years, I've had more problems cause I've been a little too fucked up on various things, so now I'm a little less fucked up than I was then. It's getting a lot easier to generate imagery in my mind then it was before when I was confused. It wasn't very honest," he admits, his voice reflecting his disgust, "especially during Rabies-it was just ca-ca," he deadpans. "I mean a lot of it was cool but some things you shouldn't bother to listen to cause they don't have any meaning at all. This album has a lot more meaning for me."

Skinny Puppy's lyrical focus has been shifting over the albums from the nucleus revolving around Ogre's tortured self to the tortured world. "It was a progression-I didn't want to keep talking about myself!" he laughs. "I'm sure people get sick of hearing about me. But you can keep doing that, that's fine, cause you can write lyrics & work them out so it's a little more ambiguous as to who you're talking about & you can bring across a lot of things so that the person listening to it can apply it to themselves. I'm all for that. But at the same time I feel lyrics should be broader based, & yet very descriptive of both elements of people & events. And even yourself. And I think this album, as well as describing a lot of things about myself, without really saying it openly there's other stuff going on too, that deals with things going on around me & my way of looking at it, like oil shortages, things like that."

"I also wanted to deal with the earth as a living organism, trying to bring across this almost mystical way of looking at what's happening to the earth now, & putting it into story form. And at the same time deal with my own demons!"

Too Dark Park does come across as a cry of frustration for the lack of respect the earth has received from mankind, yet it still hammers on a personal level, the listener knowing this is an experience far beyond the casual sound recording. Some may dismiss it as pretentious noise bullshit, but some also advocate jailing for people selling certain records so you decide what really is bullshit in the day & age.

But the live audience will be able to decide for themselves who's really aware. There's a tour brewing in the North, & the mighty Puppy machine is geared up for the assault to come. "This is fucking nuts right now!" exclaims Ogre. I won't dispute that. "We've gotten a bit more money but it's not like fuckin' Alice Cooper or anything!" he snickers, "but it isn't me digging through dumpsters this year, you know! So it's cool. I have this make-up artist doing stuff. I'm just left to put a lot more time into the films. We're going to really have some fucking amazing stuff. But the stuff we've done so far we're probably going to get arrested for!" he laughs anew, immediately growing serious. "No seriously, there are some things... I'm a little worried. It's pretty sick. But we'll see, right," he adopting a mockingly stern tone, "I'm willing to take it on!"

Being arrested is nothing new for Puppy. It falls to reason that Cincinnati, home of the free & prime contender along with Miami in the race to persecute art & artists, have already proved their support of Puppy's music on the last tour. The band was arrested... & here's the punchline, folks: for suspected animal abuse. They really understood the show, eh?

Ogre snorts, "Oh yeah. Totally." This facet worries me. As I look at the tour dates why the hell is the tour beginning in the Midwest?

"I'm wondering about that cause I'm afraid we'll be pulled off for obscenity. I am worried. Third or fourth show we're in Indiana: bad place to be," he jokes with deadly seriousness, "And when we hit Cincinnati; that will be the tell-tale thing."

Make sure you personally invite the police who so love you so. They'll be there anyway! "I do have the feeling that they're gonna be there. But I don't care, man, I'm gonna take this head on. All the images, we're not using anything you'd consider pornographic, or maybe slightly pornographic in a theatrical sense. It's just the way we've it together & kind of the manipulation of it that could appear to be a little more subversive than what they might like to see," he tersely scoffs.

No arrests reported yet & they're past Cincinnati! So the Puppy is going to take things one step further with this tour. Sounds very intriguing: tales of terror are sure to follow. Especially since the tour sounds like it's a lengthy one. "It's really extreme in that it's quite compact. We're doing it 5 & 6 days a week, then one day off. It's gonna be gross!" he laughs. "I'm not even thinking about that now. I'm not thinking about the weeks where I'll have cuts all over my fucking body & someone's always putting hydrogen peroxide on them. It's like I'm dating hydrogen peroxide!"

Is that the same as a bottle baby? Hmmm! But what a strenuous idea: 6 days a week of being the onstage Ogre. Quite different from being part of a more traditional (dare I use that word) band like the flexible Ministry hit parade. That had to be like a vacation for Ogre. "It was, yeah. On one hand it was great for that reason but on the other hand I didn't feel fulfilled just going up & standing & sweating from the drugs I was on, more than anything I was doing. I mean nothing against what they do at all, but it's really different. It was nice to have a taste of that rock idealist thing where it's just you there physically & that's what people are trained to, with music. You don't really have to do anything. But it was good for me cause it got me focused on what I should be doing, in a weird way. It's totally different, it's like right & left. It sent me back to rework what I want to do with this tour," he reasons, suddenly exclaiming, "But I have to sweat. I don't feel good for some reason-I think that's cause all the years in Skinny Puppy I've come off stage soaked & this is gonna sound silly but I've felt like I've done an honest days' work! he declares with drama, relenting to laugh anew. "I hope I still can do it... I am getting older, y'know! But I'm ready for it this year."

Ogre still had to throw in that little qualifying "I hope." Even with Skinny Puppy's impressive live track record, Ogre is willing to admit that perhaps the new challenges he's attempting won't work. We have faith. But again Ogre isn't the egotist who confidently laughs it off... "It's harder cause it has to be better each time, & especially in the live shows. I think we can... well, I am worried about this one." He keeps needling this issue like a child picking a scab on his knee, repeating, "I worry about this show. Last tour we dealt directly with vivisection & I tried to bring across a positive reinforcement message about vivisection. If you educated yourself you can change things, as far as that goes. If you learn to speak out..."

Ogre finally gets to the root of what's bothering him. "This tour I was trying to think about, should I be positive, should I be some messenger of this new age that's upon us & I was going through all the elements in the show I've presented & I realize it's not a positive show & it shouldn't fool anybody, saying 'oh yes, if we all recycle our cans, & seperate our plastics & fucking seperate our paper the world will be so great.' But it's 'no, I am sorry, it just doesn't work out that way,'" His deep voice pauses in his rapid fire assessment, he continuing, "When I came to that realization that yeah, it's going to be one of our darkest shows ever, I felt happy. The cool thing is I have the support from people whom I talked to about it cause I was weirding myself out thinking 'I shouldn't be that negative' but at the same time the show follows this person through a number of experiences down this path that he chooses, & if a person takes that path it ultimately is going to lead to the finality of what the show is, & that's not a positive thing. And in that sense a positive message comes out of it, for anybody watching, in that you know not to go down that road yourself. Sure, we're all gonna die of cancer but you don't have to listen to their bullshit. Within it there's this spark of positive hope but it won't be the positive hope that 'yes, the world's going to be a better place,' but 'yes, there are other people who think the same way as me.'"

The hardest challenge that Skinny Puppy has set up for themselves is the interpretation of the messages that run through their performances. Last tour there were many who took the message as mere blood 'n gore theater, as after the show morons were going 'Ah shit, I can get up there & do that, big deal.'

Ogre considers, "Some people think it's just too much. It is really a hyperbole, isn't it. It is sensational, I'll admit to all those things. It's a gross exaggeration but people will have to realize that. And hopefully with each show I do I can bridge the gap with people who think, 'Oh, I can do that.' I'm always trying to come up with things that are balancing on the impossible, & this show has a few of those things. Hopefully it will change those people, but you can't convince everybody."

But even through a large part of the show is exaggerated theater for effect, the emotional impact is very real. The first time I saw Skinny Puppy I had no doubt the emotion was authentic. "I hope people realize that," he stresses. "Although it is an act, it's not. It is, but it isn't, because it's an amplified part of my own personality, my own psyche that's confused. It's a way for me of dealing with that. I--to be totally honest with you, I don't know how I got to this point!" he laughs. "I look back in my childhood & there's this little introverted kid who just listened to people & looked at people & never got involved. I don't know what I'm doing here now but in that sense it's quite liberating."

If most people could get up onstage & experience even the tiniest bit of what you do... get even a fraction of the torment you grind out, it would help them cope with their own demons. "Oh totally. I mean I used to stutter really bad, I used to have all these problems. They're not all gone but they're a lot better then they were, that's for sure."

Well there you go then, getting paid for being an entertainer & getting your own self-help all at once.

"Fuck yeah, I don't need a shrink!" Ogre declares. "There have been moments onstage where I've come to some of the greatest revelations & some of the worst too, which is cool. But it's all in that initial confrontation & that's the whole point of Skinny Puppy, just confronting topics & issues in really abstract ways & trying to show juxtaposition in that, trying to bring an expression that isn't in human form, & put it into human form so people can experience it. That's my biggest goal. The whole thing with VIVIsectVI was to give an animal human qualities & show people how a human would react if they were in the same position. Hopefully it will keep going from there. If we can get that in there, have people taking the info & responding to it, without thinking about it, that's the whole point," he concludes.

Being that Ogre is around the same age as I, there's a certainty that the older he's getting the more disgusted he's becoming with all he sees & hears. I can understand why people give up & become hermits.

"Oh totally. 100%," is the not expected answer. "It weirds me out. I don't know... it weirds me out more & more that people are duped into believing certain things & are led down the path. With all these things, for years & years they're still doing it, & duping people. And the lack of concern for things that are totally destructive, like with this Middle East crisis... it's so ridiculous! It's like pack it up we're no longer living in an imperialist world, it's much smaller now, & it's gotten to the point where they've opened Pandora box & things are starting to come back in their faces with all this stuff.

"I don't support Moslem countries. I don't believe in it at all, but they have a right to believe what they want to believe. At the same time, you can almost see how they view the Western world as being Satanic & greedy & gross. Disgusting!"

"This seems to be more or less an unending circle that's never gonna turn the other way cause people are too caught up in greed & material things, throw away everything. No one really truly cares about the forests, no one really cares about anything but their union jobs," he scoffs.

That reminds me of the most recent clean air bill where different states & industries are all lobbying against each other... because of jobs. There's always more air, right? Wrong. But will Bush send representatives to the international conference on global warming? No. Then take the Amazon, when the technology-ridden countries said "now you must stop developing down there!" Brazil replied: "You've already screwed up so badly so go to hell, we'll do what we like." And the rest went "right, oooppps! What now!"

Ogre gives a bitter laugh, "And now they're like saying 'take your bleeding heart attitude home. You guys fucking destroyed your part of the environment already.' I have to admit, the world bank really fucked up when they gave the Amazon all that money to fucking build a highway through the jungle! I think Brazil is one of the greediest nations around."

"They took all this land, burnt down the rainforest, spent 2-3 years to get a crop to grow, couldn't grow anything, & now it's wasted land. The idea was to give these people their own land where they'll be growing these wonderful products like coffee & things that are really beneficial to the world," his voice generating much disgust, finally halting in anger. "The amount of waste is ridiculous! It's the decade of destruction. That was a great special on PBS."

Doesn't this scenerio sound like the 1890's in the US? Destroy the land, kill off the native inhabitants already there & sit back & look at the wasteland now taking up vast acres. That's why we know better, we've had practice.

And now we're getting practice in cultural suicide, with locking up people for selling records & putting rock bands on trial for the suicide of completely strung-out, violent, abused, sociopathic teenagers who were society's throwaways. Blame a rock band for society's ills? That makes sense too.

Ogre gives a derisive, "Oh right, look to your own home first, eh? That's where that all comes from." He grows far more animated & positive as he describes, "That's the great thing about Wild at Heart-the great part, to really commend David Lynch, is whne they're going down the highway, & she turns on the radio & all she can get is 'Mutant child born, 15 burn in car crash, death, death..... ARRRRGH!' And she goes nuts, screams, hops out & he tunes it in to some hard-assed music & there's this relief for a while. That was fuckin' cool. It's the first time I've ever seen anyone totally use music in that way, use hard music, cause that's the way it is, & that's the first time someone has interpreted that & shown that's why people listen to that kind of music!"

I didn't analyze that scene quite that far. But Ogre would see it more that way. Discussing David Lynch & his work gives us both an entertainment break. "It was weird that he was locked out of the Emmys, eh? I saw this thing at Cannes & he was giving the award at Cannes & half the people in the audience fuckin' booed him, for Wild at Heart. Isn't that weird? It's a brilliant movie, it uses all these real people, almost anti-heroes, there's no real protagonist, there's no people who are goody-goody..."

And you realize that's who you've met or come in contact with those people. They can even be friends...

"Totally! And it deals with a lot of current issues & really presents them in an entertaining way. But people seem to want the same old formula. That's what weirds me out with the States & Canada, this turn back towards repressive horrible attitudes."

But then Skinny Puppy as a band has always been against that. I certainly don't see their videos swamping the US videoways.

"I knew there was no way they'd play "Worlock' there. But I went out to make that video so no one would play it!" he laughs dismissively. "It has to do with censorship & with rating things with movies & how they've used horror movies, for example, with the graphic gore & violence, they've used those as a stepping stone to open the door for censorship of people's creative ideas. And that's scary. The movie Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is excellent. It's fuckin' brilliant. If there's a little bit taken out of it, it could be shown in schools & be really effective for kids nowadays. I think that's what a lot of these old farts don't realize, it is different now. You can't scare little kids with little fairy tales, & that's what horror movies are, the modern extension of the classic fairy tale. And they're censoring all these movies & giving them ratings that classifies them as pornography. It allows them to open the door further to say 'I DON'T like that idea, that idea shouldn't be presented." And that is sick, & that's why if even we get arrested on this tour I'm just gonna use it as a forum to say, 'hey, look, you shouldn't let other people decide what you can or can't see. Decide for yourself.' If people say I'm crossing boundaries where I shouldn't then fine, I'll step back, apologize & say ok. But there's no way I'll back down to an institution or a governing body saying what I do is wrong, cause that's not right. That's out & out blatant censorship. To it's fullest degree," he ends with cold finality.

There's this odd sense that civilization should be advancing, not closing in & acting more repressive. The technology should breed advancement, not control.

Ogre points out, "But they're using all these things that are happening through advancement. They're still furthering all the technology that's going to kill us. On the surface, they're casting all the guilt of their mistakes on the people, & making the people feel guilty & dirty & bad."

Let's all focus on something else & ignore the sly moves. Ignore that we're spending billions on warfare & weapons. It's the Wizard of Oz syndrome--ignore the man behind the curtain!

"The war is a great way of not having to deal with the environment. Let's kick some ass, man!" he mocks. "It takes people's minds off the fact that their ground water is causing mutations at a high rate, & all of the air is bad, it's getting hotter & hotter, there's no more topsoil, there's deserts that are growing."

What follows is our greatest hits involving ignorant pollution & chemical waste, we trade opinions until Ogre concludes with one of his favorite horror stories, discovered when he was researching 'VX Gas Attack' (from VIVIsectVI): "After the 2nd world war, when the English & the Americans decided to get rid of their stockpile of chemical weapons, the Americans encased them in concrete, put them in a boat, took them off New York & sunk the boat. But listen to this... the British did the same thing, put them in the boat, sunk them, but they didn't encase them in concrete!" he exclaims with dark amusement. "So they're still finding these rusted shells that leaked out all this poison..."

That ranks with my favorite new Olympic event: how to hide those pesky still deadly active cores from defunct nuclear reactors. Can we play this in your backyard?

"That's a good one!" laughs Ogre. "It's so fuckin weird! That's getting back to what we said before--I don't feel very good about what's going on."

And the longer we talk about it the harder the realization hits that so much has gone totally out of control long before we were born. "It isn't going to happen in our lifetime & a lot of people say why are but at the same time I don't want to be a part of that. But you can see how mother earth is being diseased. It's hit the perimeters now, it's reached a toxification point. It's really dangerous. And what can we do?" he bluntly questions. That's the worst part. It's already botched up in a serious way. Tireless, dedicated people protest & work for change but too large a marjority aren't active nor vocal enough.

"It's scary. That's how they're always dealt with things. Like with the major news stories. It really pisses me off. People will accept what happened at the moment, then you'll find out 20 years from now on a Now & Then show, & then they'll tell people what really happened. The intensity of the issue will have died down then. It's not important anymore. But maybe that will change if people start catching politicians in lies more."

That would be an advancement! Or closely examine who you're putting in from the start. It does come down to the people paying more attention & being suspicious enough to be aware of the lies & deceptions. But who got re-elected? You bet, our good friend Jesse "Humanitarian" Helms. Very bad news indeed.

"That's one of the things that's cool about this medium that we as musicians have, we have a chance, if we're not too fucked up on drugs," mockingly laughing, "and too weirded out, or too into this going on the road & into the excessive part of this lifestyle, we have a chance to really put some thoughts into kid's heads. I can look back on my childhood & I can see that, man, I was indoctrinated, man, I was fuckin' sucked into the system so bad." When we were younger we all were much more innocent, believing that the government was a benevolent entity that was supposed to do no wrong... we know that's far from the truth...

"Oh totally. So if you can take some of these kids & say 'look, this is what they say but that's not necessarily the way it is, & you should think & research for yourself, & don't believe it all..' and maybe in that sense you could contribute to a change overall. I think the whole world is changing but I think it's all cosmetic & that's why with this show we're dealing with a lot of stuff that has some social relevance, but at the same time I don't want to be out there standing up on my soapbox preaching--nobody wants to see that."

Musicians who deal with issues in too cut & dry a way should just go be honest politicians. Work at it directly. People don't want to hear truths too clearly when they go out for a night.

"Totally. I might not know better, I'm just as fucked up by this as anybody else & that's what I want to show by this show, a person consumed with all these things, what eventually happened to them as a person. I've seen it happen to people who are close to me. I want to touch on some of those things, but it's not anti-this & anti-that, it's just really a pro-choice. Figure it out for yourself & set your own limitations & perimeters to what you want to do. I mean living is destruction, basically, we all live to die."

I can't help it, we've been so serious. That's the ultimate insult: you start with that limited number of brain cells you're ever going to have & kill them off from day one. That's not fair! Talk about conservation!

Ogre's laughter wells up, he exclaiming, "They're depleting by the fuckin' billions! I think I'm working on my lower cortex! I'm into the reserves!"

But aside from killing off even more brain cells worrying about this worldwide disaster occurring, Ogre offers up this advice. "We can each make this better for ourselves. In that case we're all contributing. What all these things have done, what is destroying us now, the earth goes through these cycles. But we've quickened the cycle & the whole idea is to slow it down. There's no way to alleviate it, but slow it down..." as he pauses, finally giving a doubting laugh, "but I sorta think that's impossible too! But at the same time there's things we don't need anymore, & it's time for the government to put their money into things that are beneficial for people [rather] then putting them into producing bigger & better output & more & more... that doesn't make a healthy nation, it's been proven wrong. Totally."

Sometime more is less & there will be more left if we start making less. Less stealth bombers, less nuclear warheads, less dependency on fossil fuels, less... yep, you can get a little paranoid when you get in that mindset but so much has already happened in the past...

"You can't help it. It's weird, you have all these conspiracy theories & you start realizing, 'whoa, they're probably true. It's not just me.'.."

Like Ogre said, in 20 years we'll have those now & then programs & we'll find out the truth about what's going down now... if we're still around to hear it!

Ogre gives a rich dark laugh, agreeing. "Exactly! Maybe that's what they're counting on! We'll all be gone!" His laughter continues as he jests, "They'll put some stuff in the drug supplies!"

That could unfortunetly take out plenty of active musicians & artists & a number of mothers & athletes &... when will they learn! But i somehow think we'll still be here fighting. Come what may. As long as there are bands like Puppy shaking those mental cages, the contingent scratching their heads will do more than find dandruff & perhaps the remaining brain cells will spring to much needed action. Only you can prevent apathy. And maybe bands like Skinny Puppy can get you motivated, if you let them. As long as they can stay out of jail!

And by the way, did you vote this year? That may be your only legal weapon!

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