Accidia occidere

Follow the adventures of a lone nerd as he fights a losing battle against Apathy.

Tag Archives: birthyear

Filling yer boxes since 1989.

See that picture? It’s placed to the right, isn’t it? Why?  That’s not important. Here something that is, at least to me; I was born in 1989. Before continuing I’d like to mention that this post is entirely pointless in most ways. It is written purely as a way to process the reflections and all the meta that my brain is processing at the moment. If you’re easily bored, move on to some other piece of the internets.

1989. Having been washed over by media from all over the world since I was a child, I have found that some significance seems to reside in that number. You’ll see it here and there, kind of like 1969, just not as big. I currently have a jeans jacket with 1989 texted on the back (did not notice when I bought it). The jacket comes from Japan, it was part of a batch of second-hand clothes imported by Tokyo Stop in Stockholm.

Today I looked up 1989 on wikipedia and at first I found it to be a profoundly boring year. I saw tons of boring trivia like the electrocution of ted bundy and the brandishing of a cocaine bag by president bush. BIG fun. I soon started just scrolling up an down at speeds rendering the text almost unreadable, and it was like this that I picked out a couple of events that my sore and bored eyes had previously missed.  I had prior knowledge of both these events, but I never connected them to my own birthyear. It was Woodstock ’89 – an event of goodness and love, and the Tiananmen square massacre – an event of fear, anger and violence. Or maybe it was mainly sorrow, that was after all the reason of the protest.

My mind worked it’s usual strange magic and, ignoring the storyline, sought out the specs. 100k people were present and involved at the massacre, 30k people were attending the woodstock festival. The initial estimation of the massacre was about 3k dead, although later analysis says that it might be as low as 400-800.  The only number which cannot be found on wikipedia is a number measuring the balance of good vs bad between these two events. Good<bad? Is that the end result of the year when I was born I wonder? I guess you cannot quantify something as unstable as the emotional response as the human race when it comes to such events, though you might be able to quantify the backlash in everyday life with carefully taken statistics.

The one thing I keep wondering is whether the 1989 print on my jacket represents something completely random, or if it represents one of these events. Further digging (wikipedia) tells me that the brand was initially founded in manhattan before it spread to japan, which means in all likelyhood the print signifies Woodstock which is all American. I wish to be certain so I look it over again and I find something that, while not surprising, changes things. “Made in china”. So this jacket is sown in china. This jacket is sporting the print 1989 which was a relatively good year in America, but it was sown in china where the year brings to mind a national tragedy that still changes the world-view of anyone who reads about it for the first time. Heh, weird right? Did the person who assembled the textiles of this jacket ever reflect on the strangeness of this? Probably not. Did he or she reflect on the meaning of 1989 for them, and if so was he or she aware of whatever significance it might have for the designer, who was probably and American? Who knows. My mind is still stuck on this, trying to perform crude imitations of asimov’s psychoanalysis. Woodstock ’89 Vs Tiananmen Square massacre, Happines Vs Sorrow, Agner Vs Love and so on.

How did the two events shape the coming years, did their impact somehow show in the environment where I grew up and could it have had had some subtle effect on the way I turned out? Probably not, and even if it did the whole point with psychoanalysis is that it cannot determine specific events in an individuals life. I could not find out using math. I have another tool though, and this tool already gave me the answer in a way. I always felt that 1989 held some sort of significance in culture, and looking back it always gave the impressions of something bad. My mammal brain and it’s intuition strikes again. Interesting, to me at least.

Oh and the picture is unrelated, it’s a stick man trying and failing to make it out of the box.