Oh To Storm The Beach At Normandy

by Warren Robertson

People don’t really ever think about the consequences of their actions. Every day all of us do things that may one day, unknown to us, cause untold misery to people of the future. For instance, did the neolithic cave person who first picked up a stick and started beating out the rhythm of a song ever consider that he was one day going to be responsible for Noot Vir Noot? Probably not.

Likewise did the first person who offered to carry something for someone else in exchange for one of his cabbages envisage the modern work environment of cramped desks, medical aid, and a 60 hour working week? If he did then I hope he is in the special hell alongside Judas, Gert Van Rooyen and Speckles from Pumpkin Patch.

In the end it was probably a few dozen of these well intentioned, but ultimately crushing decisions that lead to the world, and the lives, we now live, and it seems none of us want to go back despite being in a state of near constant misery propped up by anti-depression pills, alcohol and that “Britain’s Got Talent” video of the disabled woman getting a standing ovation.

We hate it so much that the way we relax is to connect to virtual realities where we imagine we live in a series of post apocalyptic nightmares. The deeper humanity finds themselves trapped by reality, the more popular entertainment centred on fantasy, and science fiction becomes. “The Walking Dead” isn’t a horror show it’s a vision board. We would rather spend our time pretending to wander a maze full of undead than face another day in our cubicle selling insurance, or connecting with loved ones over a lukewarm Woolworths lasagne.

Life is one long unskippable cut scene and the tedium is only relieved when we get home, switch on our alternate reality machines and pretend we are storming the beach at Normandy. What was once your grandfather’s greatest nightmare has become what we look forward to at the end of a long day. And why not? For the rest of the day we are just waiting for death by endlessly switching between the same three websites anyway. 

The best motivational speakers would end this piece by telling you, your chains are all of your own making, and that at any point you can throw them off and travel the world with nothing but an Instagram account, but then those guys are all in the only category of people capable of doing that – the mega rich, and I am not paid to make anyone think they can be their best selves. What I can do however is point you in the direction of the game Horizon Zero Dawn. As the lead character Aloy you get to be both primitive and live in a post-apocalyptic scenario. It’s basically our collective dream, and you almost never get stuck in traffic.

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