Since the launch of the Swellco & Swellco project and it’s site, Swellco 2000, there seems to have been one burning question in everyone’s mind:
What IS this?
We get a steady stream of emails asking this question. We’ve seen arms-length threads on message boards where people debate the answer. We’ve been accosted in the street. “I love what you are doing, but I don’t know what it is.” The staff has been instructed to be vague. In all honesty, some lower down the ladder ask the question themselves. I, myself, have frustrated people to the point of watching them storm away in anger.
But I haven’t refused to answer the question because I don’t have one, or because I revel in exasperating people. (However, I often do). I don’t answer because it’s the wrong question.
The question isn’t “WHAT is this?”
The question is “WHY is this?”
Why do we revel in the most twisted and bizarre? Why do we encourage the most ridiculous ideas and ludicrous fantasies? Why do we propose that aging drag queens are role models and pornstars are saints?
Because we believe the world is dying, and we’ve gone through the 5 stages of grief – Denial – Anger- Bargaining – Depression – Acceptance… and Swellco & Swellco is a direct result of this 5th step. We see the dark times ahead as the Empire begins to burn, and we have made peace with that.
The overwhelming hordes of literal and figurative barbarians are at the gate, and we think it’s time to hand out fiddles.
Swellco 2000, the Video Circus, Cinema Barbare, Hard Times, the Go Underground Newsletters and all departments of Swellco & Swellco currently under development are being constructed as a hospice during the great decline we are witnessing. We feel a lot of people need protection from the cold.
We recognize the American Dream is no longer in our grasp by playing their game. The game is truly rigged and there is no way to win by their rules. But if you can’t win, why even play? Why not honestly create a new reality?
In our world, there are no market researchers trying to dissect us in order to water down and wash out our passions. In our world, there are no corporations steam-shoveling our futures into their pockets as Judas politicians give excuses. In our world, there are no religious fanatics trying to beat us down with their dogma and rules. Maybe those things are all still there, but we no longer allow them to affect us.
Here there are no whores, there are no losers, there are no judgments. There is joy in the realm of honest consent and, within that realm, anything is possible. Straight, gay, master, slave, clown, goddess, nerd, twenty-year-old or senior citizen, everyone comes to our party. There is only us and them.
We take the blind ignorant narcissism and excess that is the national symbol of their control and make it a conscious insolent act. Our hedonism is an act of defiance. We loot the buffet as the ship starts to sink, and we give the finger as we drink from the last bottle of champagne.
Why do we do this?
Because there is no reason to cry when you can laugh, and there is no reason to stress about your life when you can run away and join the circus.
-R.E. Brown, Executive Director
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