The defiant joy of kicking ice under the fridge.
I don’t code, but I know algorithms. I was raised with many. Most notably, “Don’t do X, or Y will happen.” You remember it well, I’m sure. Don’t run with scissors, you’ll poke your eye out, don’t open an umbrella in the house, it’s bad luck, don’t cut the crusts off, it’s where the “vitamins are,” and so forth. Are we not simply a generation of people raised by threats? Heaven forbid I got caught kicking an errant ice cube under the fridge, like a human being, instead of picking it up and putting it in the sink to melt into memory. Then you’d really get a show.
These things haunt me with regularity. All the things I was trained to do, and trained not to do, just so I could make life easier for other people. What really bothers me about this is how consequence-less the things I was trained to skirt my life around actually are. Nothing happens when you open an umbrella indoors. Cutting off crusts takes seven seconds and affects no one, except for the child who doesn’t like them. Who fucking runs with scissors?!
…You can read the rest of this essay, from 1982, a newsletter by Shani Silver, here.