Melancholy Predator
"Sing me a new song; the world is transfigured and all the heavens are full of joy." - F.Nietzsche

Volume 3, Issue 2
15 Sep 96
MP Logo Illustrations
Ecstasy is often viewed as a diversion to the normal daily intricacies of life. Sadly, those who view it as a diversion are generally frustrated weasels with a marked ecstasy deficiency in their lives.* Most people lead mild lives, not passionate ones; ecstasy is an unusual exception in their biorhythms. This biorhythmic alteration is an upping of the tempo from circadian mean time to tachycardia, or maybe the rhythm of a cheesy 70's porno soundtrack.
When harnessed, the passions of life are what drives us beyond the oatmeal-grey work-a-day world. The corporate wage slaves act primarily out of necessity; the actions of the world's creative geniuses are governed by passion. And the ubiquitous morons simply react. Passion yields ecstasy: passion sublimates (you know, like dry ice) into ecstasy, the mental rush leading to a physical sense of pleasure.
When the passion's a bit more subtle than skin-on-skin creativity, like Mozarting with a violin, Lloyd-Wrighting with architecture, or Watson and Cricking with your favorite polymeric helix, the invasion of intellectual ecstasy can indeed be disruptive if not funneled into something useful. When recognized and used, most often simply by being observant, this time of heightened sensitivity can be inspirational (like those cute little HallmarkTM cards). Some of the most fantastic connections (3...2...1... Contact!) can be seen to be feasible and useful where before they'd have seemed extraneous even to the Bloodhound Gang.
This is the time of insight that has led, in the past, to such inventions as the hand-powered helicopter and the alkaline battery; outrageous ideas that were seized upon in a "moment of enlightenment" and became tangible realities in the hands of a creatively powerful human being. OK, so the hand-powered helicopter never made the cover of Popular Mechanics, but we can still see its effects in the toy world: Puddle Jumpers. a
Ecstasy, in a physiological sense, is doled out in the currency of adrenaline. Flying a kite may make you happy, but skydiving thrills you. Bike riding may bring good feelings, but the rapturous high of hurtling down a mountainside with only two rubber tires and an ultrathin metal frame between you and the packed dirt of the trail makes you really contemplate your mortality (after you suck your water-bottle or CamelbakTM dry and check out your cool new scabs). Essentially, adrenaline is a response to risk or to pain. When your mind realizes danger (like the rapidly rising earth as those two innocent-looking tires decide to skid sideways and leave absolutely nothing between your chin and the nearest rock except time...) or, in fact, when it even realizes the possibility of danger, it responds by stimulating the production of adrenaline. Your body also produces adrenaline when you feel pain, because it acts as a painkiller. So, to complete the loop (I usually prefer to think in Moebius strips, but for your sake...): Ecstasy is based on danger and pain; your most delightful moments stem from your deepest fears.m

Continued on p.2

* You may laugh, but ecstasy deficiency is not a condition to be taken lightly. It works similarly to diabetes, and its only effective treatment is daily infusions of 0.5 molar pleasure.
a Remember those whirlygig hand-spun toys that always seem to hit you in the face when you are not paying attention, and fly too far away when you are? Ah, nostalgia...
m The best rushes come from the biggest risks. You know, like jumping out of a perfectly good airplane, or pointing your bike down that twisty downhill singletrackq, or for those of you who partake, trying a new mood-altering phamac eutical...
q We at the Predator have a certain fondness for mountain biking. Check us out in the next few weeks for suggestions and reviews of places to ride in and around Rochester.
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