I am Sun Tzu, creator of The Art of War. My principles have survived over two millennia and are regarded as a spiritual path through the inevitable conflict of life.

I am distressed. My landlord has slipped a letter under my door about a rent increase again. It’s the second time this year. I fear he is trying to get rid of me.

Again, I contemplate:

  • Do I know my enemy?
  • Do I know myself?
  • Can this form of earth be used to do battle?
  • Which of the nine grounds is this suite?
  • Is my neighbor a spy?

I shall not waste time and energy with resource-depleting actions, and I will not hang out with those pricks down at the tenant’s union again. I must transform my approach to conflict. After all, I literally wrote the book on the Tao of survival or extinction (tao, heaven, earth, humankind, and method). I must weigh the relativity of all actions of war (strength vs weakness, self vs other, etc.) and see their mutable qualities. I must seek out the true nature of this conflict.

I’m just getting a little tired of it. Especially since my jam space was already turned into a craft beer joint last year and I can’t close my bathroom door because of the way my amp is stored in there. I’ve moved six times in five years!

I didn’t think I would ever have to employ my strategies on Attack By Fire. I kind of just threw that in there in case someone needed it. Believe me, I have already done the usual tactics (I lawyered up last time — pro bono, of course — and we used the rent control laws to ward off his last rent increase). And I’m always front and centre at the rallies (“Homes Before Profits” and “Fight Back Against Class Ware,” etc). But I guess now I need to take a look at which of the five fire attacks would be best in this situation (“setting fire to people” or “ setting fire to baggage trains” seem like the two best options). I just wouldn’t want to “set fire to stores” because I think that would actually help the developers in this neighborhood.

Ugh! This is all so stressful. I don’t even know when I have time to light these fires anyway. I have to cover for Ned at the Java Hut again tonight. That’s three shifts in the last month alone and I’m only doing it because I’m saving up for another loop pedal. Yeah, I can’t just go and spend all this money on lighter fuel and rags.

I can’t believe this is happening again. I was one of those kids that came to the city to find my people, to make art, to write, to play in bands and to escape the trappings of my youth. And now I look around and all my friends are gone, pushed out by developers and corrupt civic politicians and all those other assholes. You can’t even find a good chariot anymore, they just don’t exist!

And do you know what the problem is? I don’t have time to think, let alone act. When it was a feudal dynastic system we just sat around in the emperor’s court and talked to each other all day. Like really talked, man — that’s how we came up with all that brilliant stuff. We weren’t worried about losing our homes or our communities. We were onto higher consciousness and solving our problems without ever needing to go into battle. For a few great moments in time, everything was zen. We were this close, I tell you. This. Close.

But now no one wants to hear it. We’ve been subdued by The Man. Dude, we’re so repressed we can’t even imagine luring him into an estuary at exactly the right time to see him washed away. We wouldn’t even try to surround his fortress and starve him out. Man, we don’t even know who The Man is and where to find the estuary. We’re fucking lost. We’re totally fucking lost.

I am the Sun Tzu. My status is: “Hey Peeps! Let me know of any suites for rent and PM me details. Craigslist is dry! Thanks a bunch!”