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By any measure, Noam Chomsky is a legend of the left. Between his sharp, insightful social criticism, his keen understanding and contextualization of American history, and his dedication to studying and elevating the English language and modern communication, there are few people who have shaped radical politics, and the conversations around it, in our collective lifetimes.
Thanks to his birth in 1928, he’s also really fucking old. We should treasure this man while we have him, and tell him so.
So, imagine our excitement when Noam kindly accepted our invite to smoke him out. In preparation for the big day, we got his favorite strain (Critical Mass, naturally), prepped it in his favorite way to partake (a joint, because… classic), and grabbed his favorite munchies (an orange, a hot coffee, and a bag of Fisherman’s Friend). You can’t imagine how pumped we were to share a joint with someone of Chomsky’s stature and intelligence.
And now, he’s asleep.
Look, I’m as disappointed as you are that we didn’t actually get to talk about the devolution of American democracy, about how we might be able to understand political tribalism and the rise of White nationalism and modern fascism through the prism of outlets like Facebook, or how Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is a direct result of the unchecked aggression of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
But on the other hand, we got to smoke out Noam. Fucking. Chomsky. Yes, it would’ve been great to learn from him, but honestly… the man’s worked hard enough in his life, and there’s probably not a lot more to say beyond the piles of books and essays he’s written in an eminently simple yet comprehensive fashion.
Nobody was sounding the bells of the fallacy of the U.S. prison system and the “war on drugs” and the false choice of a two-party system beholden to capitalism for as long, nor as eloquently, as he has. And having him napping in our recliner, mouth open and lightly snoring, draped in a woven wool blanket our grandma — who was born after him, and died before him — made while Thelonious Monk (again, his choice) plays softly in the background is one of the most peaceful moments of our life. The fact that we were able to give him this moment, and that he’s comfortable enough to fall asleep here, feels incredible.
We never served in the armed forces. But we served Noam Chomsky, and that, to us, is way more fulfilling and medal-worthy.
Oh, fuck. He just woke up and really wants to talk about Cartesian linguistics, and we are waaaay too fucking high for that right now. Fuck.
Ian Fishman is a contributing writer to Oregano, the Hard Times, and 30Watt. He is a human puppy and a very good eater. Follow him on Instagram @fishsoundsvo.
Disclaimer: This Article Is a Joke
Speaking of absurdity, did you know there are still over 40,000 people locked up on nonviolent cannabis-related charges around the US? It’s time to let them out.