The Summer Of My Discontent

Every few months, I like to take stock of my life. It keeps things in order and allows me to set newer and higher expectations for myself. Those all important life questions flutter aimlessly through my mind, usually around 2 or 3 a.m.


I don’t have the answers to any of these questions. Not yet, anyways.

“Spirit in the Sky” is blaring in the background on repeat in my mind. It started in March. I was trapped in the DMV and then it happened, “Spirit in the Sky” came over the speakers as they said they were locking the doors. They were closing. Their logical explanation didn’t comfort my dramatic, over-active imagination. I immediately sent out a series of text messages to my husband.


I didn’t die in case you’re wondering. They made us exit through a creepy stairway and go through what I am sure is a haunted part of the DMV. Because the DMV is fun like that. Get a ticket and stand in line folks!

The weather grew hotter and more humid in West Virginia over the next few months. It grew uncomfortable. The news became alarming. I’d never seen anyone bleed out and die on Facebook Live until this summer. A nation laid down on a bed of hot coals. Every so often, society and a government will fan the flames and then they go cold again. Nothing changes though. No one has yet to throw water on our flaming bed and say “ENOUGH.” We keep laying here roasting like a scorched marshmallow on a campfire. Hung out on a sharpened stick wondering if anyone notices.

Hard to be noticed with all the yelling going on. How can the media cover real life when a narcissist sits on top of his stage degrading women, immigrants, disabled reporters, and mocking an infant? Real life can’t compare to his extreme circus of dystopian fear-mongering. “We’re gonna be great again”, or at least that is what the rhetoric keeps telling me. I’ve heard enough realness to last me a few years now.

“7 strangers picked to live in a house.”

The Real World was never real, was it? 

Mama used to fuss, “The real world has jobs and bills and car payments and mortgages.” She never much cared for MTV’s reality of the real world.

Growing up while being force fed “reality” television has made comprehending what is “real” and what is Laguna Beach almost near impossible to decipher.


All summer I’ve worked. Took four days off to take my husband and our toddler to the beach. Two days driving. Three days spent in a hotel room. Didn’t eat one decent meal the entire time. On the day I arrived home, I published again. And again. All words I’d written an eternity ago. Enough to tide over the summer quelling. Meager bits to square away the extra work I’m supposed to do on top of the other 2 or 3 jobs I’m paid a pauper’s salary to do.

Mama was right, real world does have bills and car payments and mortgages and responsibilities. And there ain’t no camera following you around wanting to pay you to air your life, nor would I want them to. Besides, they’d rather showcase billionaires blasting promises than real life.

Real life gets their few moments of airtime and then we go back to the paid programming. The meat to all media is advertising. Don’t forget that. Flip through any magazine laying on your coffee table, count the ads. Political agendas on nightly news, they are bought hook, line, and sinker. More money, more coverage. Rich assholes been buying elections since the beginning. Monarchs inherited, democracy stands on the almighty dollar. Poor people can’t buy shit. Sure as hell can’t afford that luxurious American dream.

Here’s your American dream if you’re lucky: a house, some food, the hope of eventually paying back the government for a student loan you can’t use because there isn’t any jobs to cover what you owe the man. And death. Death is a sure fucking bet.

When you die and they lay you to rest
You’re gonna go to the place that’s the best

Norman Greenbaum – Spirit In The Sky

Maybe that’s what this haunting song has been trying to tell me. Discontent Summer Of An American Dream. We are born, we have a moment where we’re trapped in the DMV, we get out, we live, we see some shit, and we scrape by. We wake up one morning and we’re old, and we die.

God, I hope I’m wrong.

Creative Drawing Imagination Girl Blackboard Concept

Leave a Reply

2 Comments on "The Summer Of My Discontent"

Notify of

“There must be more than this…” – the endless question. So much of life seems so uphill, so much of the time. And yet, we’re still so privileged. Makes you wonder about the poverty and liberty of those unencumbered by it.

I hope the last days of summer look up for you.

Darla Halyk
I just want you to know I love you. And maybe there are all the bills and all the things, and all the bullshit media, but in that lies connection. Connection with people and their souls. I know, I now, I am forever a dreamy soul but these rose coloured glasses are smudged somedays. But you my dear, help me wipe them clean and feel connect. I am not sure any of this made sense to you, but I guess I just wanted you to know, we all feel this way, and you have helped me through those days. All… Read more »
%d bloggers like this: