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  • Writer's pictureSkinny Bane

Impaled on a White Picket Fence: Rebelling to Redefining the American Dream

When you're known as Skinny Bane, the guitarist of a band like WoeTorch, people tend to have certain expectations. They see the costumes and hear the music and immediately assume you're just another rebellious spirit, lost in a maze of angst and defiance. But, what they fail to realize is that rebellion is often a path to finding oneself, a journey that I, Skinny Bane, traversed and found myself standing on the other side of the American Dream.

Growing up, I was just another teenager wanting to "stick it to the man". I wanted to break free from the chains of societal expectations and norms. I ran away from the concrete jungles and lived in an RV, basking in my newfound freedom. But as life progressed, I found myself working a 9-5 job, supporting a family, and living a life that seemed to mirror the very norms I once rebelled against.

But, that's where most people get it wrong. Just because I moved into a structured life doesn't mean I embraced the societal pressures that come with it. I still question the norms, especially the ones associated with the American Dream and the pressures of consumerism.

I've discovered that limiting my engagement with news and commercial culture has allowed me to focus on personal fulfillment and meaningful relationships instead of material successes. I've started volunteering and donating to organizations that prioritize social and environmental responsibility. This shift has not only allowed me to contribute positively to my local community but has also made me feel more connected to the people and the places around me.

I've also learned the value of reducing household consumption and frivolous spending. Finding joy in work, creating connections rather than merely collecting paychecks has helped me see beyond the materialistic success that our society often prioritizes. I've been able to build deeper, more meaningful relationships with those around me, and focus on my own well-being and happiness.

Living principles of love, tolerance, and helpfulness at home, at work, and in life has been a key factor in my ability to reject the narrow definition of success associated with the American Dream. I've learned to value my family and relationships, to understand them in their authenticity rather than trying to fit them into societal expectations.

Now, I want to touch upon our song, "Impaled on a White Picket Fence". Based on the lyrics, "Impaled on a White Picket Fence" by WoeTorch appears to be a critique of the American Dream. The song questions the validity of this dream and suggests that it is just another money-making scheme designed to keep people in a cycle of consumerism and fear. The white picket fence and two-point-two children are symbols of the idealized American suburban lifestyle, which the song suggests is not achievable or desirable for everyone.

The chorus of the song, "What is this American dream? Just another money-making scheme." points out the hollow promise that the American Dream often is. The lyrics reflect a struggle with self-worth and survival in a society that values conformity over individuality.

The lyrics also touch on themes of worthiness, survival, and fear. The lines "I'm worthy of being here, worthy of some lies / Tryin to die (or try to survive)" suggest that the speaker is struggling with self-worth and trying to find a way to survive in a society that values conformity over individuality. The repeated phrase "I don't know you" may be a commentary on the isolation and disconnection that many people feel in modern society.

In sum, my journey has been one of rejecting and redefining the American Dream. My rebellion was not against the structure of life, but against the societal pressures and norms dictating how that life should be lived. Through my lifestyle choices, I've chosen a path grounded in community, sustainability, and meaningful relationships. And through our music, WoeTorch continues to question, to rebel, and to inspire others to find their own path, just as I did.

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