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Thrasymachus blog post
This Time, Last Year

Woke

by Thrasymachus, Apr/13/2022
I woke up this morning at 3:30 am and couldn't get back to sleep.
I remember when that was how 'woke' was used in a sentence.
A little metaphorically, you could say "well that woke me up to such and such...", but it's still in the same grammatical position in the sentence.
The first time I heard the term "woke" in its new grammatical usage it was around 10 or 15 years ago and I was at pool party BBQ in Bakersfield CA with a buncha people I'd never met before who were mostly co-workers and their friends of the dude who I did know, who lived there, and over on the patio there was a big weird conversation going on between some people and an open believer that the Earth is flat (no shit), and he proudly proclaimed that his position was called being woke.
When I walked up he asked me if I'm woke.
I answered that I think I'm awake, but it is possible that I'm dreaming this; are you sure that you're real?
I lit a joint and passed it to my left.
He laughed and said yeah man, you're woke as fuck.
His nearest ally in the conversation was making his case as to why he himself was even more woke than the flat-earther guy, because he was an Earth shape agnostic, so he was of course even more woke for not being fooled by globe-Earthers or flat-Earthers.
Most everyone else over there on that part of the patio was pushing their own (what seemed to me crazy) conspiracy theories, but they were laughing at the idea of flat Earth, and they were making it clear with their horse-laughs that they thought they were the wokest folks in the whole backyard, and just in case that didn't make it clear, just then one of those guys pointed a thumb at himself, then gestured with it to a couple of his friends and said, we're the woke ones.
The joint was about to make its way back to me, so I stood there (having gleaned that woke meant believing crazy shit and thinking everyone else was asleep to what you thought was reality, but the most striking change was the strange and stupid sounding grammatical one, but woke was supposed to be a good thing, and it was something most often said of one's self) wondering if there weren't better conversational opportunities to be had in this backyard..
I don't know when the term changed meanings (a second time?), or if that idiotic conspiracy woke-ism was strictly some Bakersfield bullshit, but I was really confused when I first started hearing woke used to describe liberals, and even more confused when I heard what people thought liberalism included, like pretty much anything that's been a hot topic for the culture wars doesn't seem to me even to be on the ballot.
I don't know of anyone who calls themselves woke now.
I wish it would just go back to its original grammar.
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