The Codger column: Caspar Greeff

GUNS don’t kill people. People kill people. I fully endorse that. One time ek sê. The way to stop people killing people is to kill all the people and then the guns will be at peace, free to dream their ballistic dreams of velocity and trajectory, their gunmetal dreams of muzzle-flash and smoke, their hair-trigger dreams of detonation and calibration.

(You may not believe that guns dream, but I know they do. Know it for a fact. For the past 10 days I have been on a vision quest in the Cederberg. All that I had to drink was the blood of lizards that I stalked at noon, and all I had to eat was the nourishment that the wind whispered into my nostrils. The merciless sun seared the truth into my pineal gland. The truth is that guns dream, and that without human beings there will be no problems on this planet –beloved Pachamama, beautiful Gaia. One time ek sê.)

Of course, to kill all the people so that the people stop killing the people, the people can use guns. But. This will be very messy, and after a certain amount of people are killed, the ones still alive will have all the land, all the gold, all the women, all the recreational drugs, all the beer and all the electronic goods, and they will call a halt to the killing and they will call it peace. And there will still be problems on the planet.

The way to stop these problems is to make death attractive. The fact is that death has been given a bad press; death’s spin doctors have done a shoddy job, death is in urgent need of good pee are.

Before the Germans gave them a haircut, those old Greek dudes skiemed that life was a constant battle between sex and death, what they called Eros and Thanatos. Despite the fact that Thanatos always triumphs over Eros, sex has become sexy and death has become deathly.

The church tried to make death sexier with its tales of paradise, but unfortunately it included the concepts of “sin” and “judgement” and “hell” in the package, and nobody is prepared to take the chance on a one-way ticket to heaven, when the fiery pit looms. Nobody believes they are without “sin”.

Even the pope has his doubts, which is why he has opted to be put out to stud in a cloister with 666 nuns before he shuffles off the mortal coil.

However, most people have lost faith in heaven and hell, and the main reason they don’t like death is because they believe there’s no social media after they die. Most people think that when you’re dead you can’t use Facebook or Twitter, and if you can’t use Facebook or Twitter life’s just not worth living and death’s just not worth dying.

That is complete nonsense. You can Facebook after death, and you can tweet after death. Or you soon will be able to.

Next month two revolutionary programs are launching in cyberspace that will make the transition from life to death a seamless and effortless segue. The first program, LivesOn (www.liveson.org) is billed as “your social afterlife”. Its Twitter bots analyse your tweets while you are alive. Once you are dead, and your executor has notified the LivesOn people that you are dead, you will continue tweeting. And in the same style and with the same frequency that you tweeted when you were alive. OMG, how amazing is that!!! Dead cool, my bru.

The second program is called DeadSocial (http://deadsoci.al/). You send them a stash of status updates, pictures, videos, audio recordings, and when they have been notified that you are dead, DeadSocial will slow-release these on Facebook.

So your Facebook friends can see you having a huge amount of fun, despite the fact that you are dead. You can Photoshop pictures of yourself partying with people like Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and Lenny Bruce, and update your status on a daily basis on the lines of “Having a wicked time in hell”.

If enough people send enough titillating tweets and fabulous Facebook posts from beyond the grave (or the crematorium), death will soon become sought-after and everyone will want to die and all the problems on this planet will be solved.

The mainframes that power Facebook and Twitter can be housed deep underground and powered by perpetual electricity from sun, wind and waves, so that even after all humans have taken the oh-so-attractive death option and the whales sing their songs unhunted and guns dream in peace, even after this we will all be tweeting and updating our statuses and commenting and liking and enjoying life to the full.

Ghosts in the machine.


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