Fed Up (Ep. 53)

Today is essentially just a rant about the state of things. If you don’t care why I am pissed off by the world at the moment, I’m publishing another episode tomorrow.

I am fed up. Honestly, I’ve been fed up with the state of things for a while. It’s like you run and run, but get nowhere, like you scream at the top of your lungs in the middle of a crowd, but no one can hear you.

And, fuck, I’d like to literally scream. These times, I often wish I was the lead singer of a Heavy Metal band. All that screaming sounds oddly therapeutic. Too bad I can’t sing to save my life. My friend lives at one of the dorms, and they have a music room there. Soundproof, and apparently mostly used by people who need a good scream.

So, what am I this fed up with? Let’s see. In no particular order I am fed up with the weather. I am fed up with studying. I am fed up with financials. I am fed up with technology. I am fed up with my living situation. I am fed up with humanity. Yeah, that about covers it.

I wrote the first exam of the semester this morning. Pretty sure I passed but everything else depends a lot on lucky/educated guesswork. As there is currently a complaint running against the teacher, our exams are reviewed by two people, so things take longer, and we won’t get the grades for a while.

In the meantime, I’ll be studying for the remaining two exams this semester: Biodiversity and Plankton and Climate. I’ll be dividing my time between actually understanding the subject matter, and memorizing outdated and incorrect versions for my teacher. Between one teacher who doesn’t teach and a teacher who teaches wrong and outdated things, where am I actually supposed to get an education? I mean, sure, I learn a lot by getting pissed off by all the mistakes (and explaining the correct version to anyone who will listen), but education is supposed to educate, and that’s just not happening.

Hence, I am fucking fed up with studying.

Meanwhile, there’s my podcast, my writing, my outlet. Last week, the trusted editing tool completely failed me. The current version is unusable, and I couldn’t get any work done. So, instead of studying for my exams or recording and publishing podcast episodes, I had to search for alternative software to download, install, figure out, and use. Great. Well, my podcast was done.

Yesterday, I sat down to edit the podcast I wanted to publish this week. I had recorded it in GarageBand for testing, just like the one I released last week. But, for whatever fucking reason, this one has a metronome tic-toc in it throughout the entire thing. Unusable. So, not only will I need to purchase new software but I also need to re-record all the work from last week.

Meanwhile, both my headphones are crapping out on me. So, soon I’ll either have to magically make more money appear for a new set of headphone, or I’ll have to survive without both my handy in-ear headphones and the noise-canceling headphones that make daily life possible.

Hence, I’m fucking fed up with technology.

Then there’s the fact that our apartment is rotting away. We moved into a new building to have fewer issues, but that backfired spectacularly. It’s like we are the beta testers to see if this place is inhabitable. Everything is falling apart, and now there’s mold on one of our windows. The landlord’s helper suggested that the humidity indoors should not get above 40%. Yeah, right. For reference, 40-60% is the suggested range and values lower than that can be unhealthy to people and animals living there. But sure, let’s blame the renters, right? Can’t I just sell everything and move onto a sailboat right now? I hate all the stuff, and the rooms, and the cleaning, and everything.

Hence, I’m fed up with my living situation.

And then it doesn’t even get bright enough to do anything. We have storm after storm blowing everything outside around. Seriously, last weekend we had 40 knot winds. I lay awake the entire night convinced our motorcycles would fall over and onto the neighbors’ car. But the worst thing is the lack of sunlight and the lack of intensity of the sun when it’s there. I would need to eat Vitamin D supplements by the mouthful to even out how little I see of the sun. Most days, we have perpetual gray outside. It’s like someone tried to make 50 Shades of Gray happen with the sky. (No, I haven’t actually red that cod-awful book. I tried when it first got hyped, but hated every second of it… It’s a total riddle me how that book became anything but really bad fanfiction.)

And hence, I am fucking fed up with the weather. Seriously, who chooses to live like this? Actual question: anyone here like gray weather on a very regular basis?

So, I’m studying, and working, and doing household-type things all day long, sometimes squeezing in an hour or two of writing my romance novel or a videogame, and nothing feels like it’s moving forward. I had to give up my Youtube channel, because I was wearing too many hats, so subscriber and view numbers there are naturally going downhill—fast! And despite all of that work, my only income is the less than a hundred bucks a months from my books. Okay, admittedly, mostly the children’s book I never wanted to publish. I have one wonderful supporter on Patron, and a few anonymous souls sent one-time donations—or one of you awesome people sent anonymously multiple times which is just as awesome! Writing and my podcasts are what keep me going, so I’d do them without earning a single cent, but if I want to change my living situation at any point in the future, I need to actually earn a living at some point. And currently, I have no clue how to do that, as the thing I really want to do is to move onto a sailboat and to publish videos, articles, podcasts, and photos from my travels, to show off all the diversity, as well as the human impact to the ecosystems. But how the fuck am I supposed to earn the necessary starting money to buy an all-electric sailboat? Yeah, I know.

Hence, I’m fucking fed up with financials.

But most of all, I’m fucking fed up with humanity. Why can’t we all just treat each other like humans? Why do people put so much thought into status, race, gender, orientation, identification? Why do we care so much what other people wear or don’t wear, like or don’t like? Why can’t we all just accept each other as humans? And why do we think we are entitled to this planet? We are fucking animals and it’s time we stop pretending we’re better than the rest of the natural world. Humanity is a fucking parasite, and I am so fucking fed up with all of it.

How aren’t we all just screaming all day? The situation is pretty fucked, and if we don’t act NOW, we are all royally fucked. And somehow, we are still focusing on who wears what dress to some fancy event, how much money Jeff Bezos owns, and who kisses whom. Standing in line at the local grocery store shows one thing clearly: at least here in Germany, no one gives a fuck about the environment—or rather: here in Germany no one knows that they don’t give a fuck about the environment.

As long as companies like Spontex get to sell their fucking “100% recycled-fiber” sponges, people will feel like they are environmentally friendly. After all, the fucking sponges come in green packaging and you need a map to find all the footnotes. Yeah, the footnotes, right. You know how much of that sponge is actually from recycled fiber? Imagine any sponge: there’s the soft side you hold onto and there’s the scratchy thin layer on the other side. That scratch thin layer is the only part of those sponges made from recycled fibers. Oh, and another footnote reveals that the packaging is also not 100% recycled cardboard. I mean, to be fair, it’s 95%, which is something, but the fact remains that consumers buy the green-packaged sponges that claim to be 100% recycled. Oh yeah, I definitely reported the company.

Apple gets away with publishing an unusable update to Final Cut Pro X (and disabling their support!!). Spontex gets away with charging more for sponges that aren’t even remotely environmentally friendly. Our teachers get away with repeating the same lecture every year, no matter how outdated, or with canceling more than half the lectures, and not teaching at all. The oil lobbies get away with delaying climate change measures by spreading misinformation—on fucking purpose. The pharma lobbies get away with driving people into opioid addiction and delaying natural alternatives. Doctors get away with not listening to their patients—and a nice paycheck or vacation bonus from the pharma lobbies. Jeff Bezos gets away with essentially owning everything. The richest people get away with not doing anything useful with that much money. Assholes all over the world get away with racism, sexism, intolerance, and narcissism. Everyone gets away with everything. And no one even fucking seems to notice?

So, I’m pretty fed up. I admit this is more a rant than anything useful. To give you some actual content this week, I’ll publish the rest of that first chapter of Out of Hiding tomorrow. And next week, we’ll continue talking about nature.

Kate Hildenbrand

Kate Hildenbrand

Kate Hildenbrand is the writer behind the essays here, author of fiction novels, the creator of the Kate Hildenbrand podcast, and a student of marine ecology. At least, that's her on the surface.