The Philosophy of Harold and Kumar

“A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it.”
— John Steinbeck

I am currently watching Harold and Kumar: Escape from Guantanamo Bay, more specifically the moment right before the two wits drop from the plane into Crawford, Texas and smoke weed with President Bush. While watching the two span the country, I had two interesting thoughts:

1. The idea of travelling across the country is a very appealing one at the moment.

2. I’ve seen this movie probably a dozen times. Each time, Harold and Kumar have no idea what is in store for them, even though I do.

I’m reminded of one of my favorite albums when I think about my wanderlust: Modest Mouse’s epic masterpiece, We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank. The strong nautical themes, Shoegaze-inspired instrumentation, and Issac Brock’s surreal, yet provocative vocals seem to fuel my desire to be uncertain in my locations.

It also appeals to my long-standing desire to be a pirate.


3. I really want to go B.A.S.E. jumping.

There is something beautiful about the idea of the open road — new frontiers, if you will. I feel like here, North Texas, has become stagnant. I need a change, to give my eyes something new, so I can find something glimmering in the destitution that has become my life. I want to feel excitement again.

Since everything that has transpired in the last few months, I have been left hollow in a lot of ways. The idea of being in love with someone is all of a sudden frightening, crippling even. I realized my hypocrisies and idiosyncrasies as they related to certain people, and as such, feel completely foolish and emotionally compromised.

I made the reference to seeing this movie several times because being a spectator is something I wish I could have done with my life several times. I wish I already knew the outcome of certain choices I made before I made them, or in a separate, but similar analogy, I wish I could go back and make a different choice.

However, this idea runs with the Grandfather Paradox:

“A man goes back in time to kill his grandfather, before the conception of any biological descendant. If they succeed, one of their parents would never exist, and by consequence, the time-traveler would not exist, and not be able to go back in time. This makes the time-traveler unable to go back in time and kill his grandfather, thus his grandfather still lives, has a biological descendant (either the mother or father of the time-traveler), who in turn has a biological descendant (the time-traveler), who is able to go back in time and attempt to kill his grandfather before he has a biological descendant, restarting the process.”
— The Grandfather Paradox

I suppose it’s reasonable to assume that if things had not transpired the way they have in the last few months, I would not have come to the realization that I could not handle the stresses of my life any longer on my own. I probably would have never sought the help I am receiving, and benefiting from, now, or it’s also possible that I could have done something completely reckless, like abandoned my life or committed suicide.

I have lost many people over the last few months, a significant portion over the last eight or so weeks. I have barely spoken to one of my dearest friends since a cold, rainy night when she bailed me out of a stressful encounter with my ex-girlfriend two days before Thanksgiving. In many ways, everything that’s happened has taken a drastic toll on my relationship with my son’s mother, but that’s another tale for another day.

But through the emotional decay, there is a silver lining. I run toward it, hoping that when all is said and done, I will no longer bleed the stars I have become so fond of. I leave you all tonight with this:

“Cheer up, baby. It wasn’t always quite so bad. For every bit of venom that came out, the antidote was had.”
— Modest Mouse, “Spitting Venom” 


About Robert L. Franklin

Ah, the About Me section - social networking's excuse for you sounding like an elitist prick. Hmm... what to say? What to say?
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