There are many things in the world today that serve to remind us that, as a modern society, we still have our heads quite firmly installed in our posteriors.

One of the greatest examples of this is that, despite the fact that we are all pretty much in the same place as human beings, we feel the urge to separate ourselves out into little subcultures.

I suppose this works, for a while... but then, eventually, someone has to go and mess it up by attaching stereotypes to people for the little subculture they belong to, not really paying attention to who they really are.

I happen to come from a very strange (in my opinion) family. They are, for the most part, massively conservative, but they will not admit to not agreeing with anything I do directly. No, instead, they must attempt to coerce me with months of nagging.

Recently I've been in a weird situation, seeing members of my family who I thought I never would again, and they cannot stand how I have changed since they knew me so long ago. All it took was them seeing me dressed in my usual black attire for them to fly completely off the handle. I do consider myself to be part of the goth subculture now, but I didn't even have to tell them this. A lucky guess it was, perhaps. I just wish they'd ended the guessing game right there, for I hated having to put up with what followed.

Apparently, to these distant, clueless members of my family, the goth culture is one of unspeakable supernatural evil, abuse of mind altering drugs, and totally promiscuous sex.

It's no secret that my family sucks. The usual patterns of coercion go on at all levels. Thusly, something my grandparents want to nag me to do can, by simply nagging my parents, become something my parents nag me to do.

In this case, though, I just about died laughing, then suddenly felt the urge to commit suicide via microwaveable breakfast food product, for these members of my distant family apparently think I need to begin the process of "recovery" from who I have become.

Yes. For some reason, this culture I have become a part of is apparently a disease, which needs to be ripped from my mind and body.

I guess this whole experience could be universal. It could happen to a goth, a punk... even a hyperactive N'Sync fan, dare I say.

Okay, so here's the deal... I don't sleep around, I don't drink or use any other weird substances, and the strangest magical rituals I perform only include nudity and computer hardware.

Does this fit their definition of "goth"? See if I care.

This document created June 27, 2003, under a waning moon and near a malfunctioning toilet.

Alright, I want out of here...