Hate Jack if you gotta (you'll have to stand in line, as I've noted I was there first), but a world without relationships, or a world without men, ain't all it's cracked up to be.
Despite all my clamor, and the recent dismissal of two of my supposedly closest friends after what was to be a very happy holiday turned to mud, I have always and will always yearn for the trusting, giving, mutually satisfying relationship, on either level, friendshipping or loveresque. I've always desired what I've understood as the near perfect union of Will and Ariel Durant, authors of that multivolumed set of THE HISTORY OF CIVILIZATION.
Won't burden you with the details here as you may already know the tale, but they really set the standard for all time. The other (one I'm seriously considering) is the 12th love tragedy of Abélard and Heloise. Yes, I'm thinking of castration, end of lust, fixation on the feminine, finish the task started by nature with the cryptorchidism I suffered as a youth, commiserate with the pets who suffered the blade, just to allow myself to focus more in working out the philosophies and poetries I know the world needs to hear JUST ONE MORE TIME, no, I know that's not the case, but I just want to explore the terrain. The surgery might actually lead to an improvement in the direction of my thinking about the clutches of gender and guts, but chances are this sentence will probably end any further discussion of it. Read it how you will.
Glad to hear you're back in the saddle (the workplace, not Jack's cockadoodledoo). I was beginning to worry about you.
WELL...since everyone else is spilling all in declaring the spikes and spokes of their past and present journalkeeping habits, I may as well add my own finer edges, having kept a rather informal text of this sort rather irregularly over the years in old-fashioned notebooks and later, on disk.
After giving up the traditional journal task several times I've come to recognize that I don't really appreciate the form as much as I do the E-mail discipline. I suspect my need for instant gratification by way of external response, plus a general distaste for maintaining secrecies result in a preference for calling the bluff on private thought processes and identify the latter form as my own favored form of natural journal. Fortunately for me in this case, ever since the spring of 1992 when I first logged on to AOL and Prodigy, I've always had at least one equally prolific correspondent with whom I have been able to vent any issues of the hour mixed with any general ponderances which the modern mind might tend to address. And presently I can boast that "pour moi" this softly fluctuating group buoyed by Steve Taylor and Lynn Landry in a bicoastal cheek to cheek is indeed the golden age of "writing to keep writing" form the journal has traditionally meant to its creators.
That said, of course all my journals of the past and E-mail are in custody, hardcopies alphabetized and filed according to the name of my correspondent. My computerphobe but oh so revolutionary pal Len Bracken and a few other hanging-wit know-it-alls have taken me to task for my energies focused in this area. Death by explanation. What is that? Why must I explain every detail of the literary approach to those who taunt me as if they even care. My autodidactic education speaks for itself, and so I have no qualms gathering forces by exploiting my own preparatory habits. There's nothing really original about it. Writers major and minor will be writers great and small whether and wherever they write tedious volumes or short declaratives. Style is always experimental until it sticks and becomes habit. I really don't cotton to these arrogant tones toward E-mail and my own exercises in linguistic riffing, but to utilize a line from a long forgotten poem I once wrote might be a propos:
Ignorance and virtue STILL suck on the same straw...
Thanks Landry for the personal update. Been swamped with Bracken's biography of Guy Debord, that Situationist International revolutionary Frenchy fellow I've namedropped a few times in your direction. A decent book I must say, if only because it is the first so-called biography in ANY language of this rather famous dialectician, according to its author, although Greil Marcus writes about him extensively in LIPSTICK TRACES, a book with which I believe you are somewhat familiar.
Still haven't even begun to compose the New Year's Day, the Day After Massacre tale of Tim, Jennifer, Steve and all the 1980s throwbacks, but it's right there waiting for me when I get my breath back from Bracken. Ninety-nine photos have been scanned, 400 pages of text converted from Windows to Mac, and all laid carefully into PageMaker.
Currently busy proofreading with an interested eye; although I loathe the man's politics, his philosophical insights are pure poetry. Beaucoup typos, misspellings, missing words, et cetera, so gotta keep my eye on the ball. I also designed the cover. Bracken's hip to it, so all things are hunky dorey. Will get paid (underpaid but satisfied) and appropriate acknowledgements.The publisher is Feral Books, currently of Portland, Oregon soon to be moving to sunny LA. Whew! Be glad when all this REAL WORK is behind me...
Bracken just spilled outa here. Using MacLink Plus to convert his DOS MS Works pages into Mac MS Word docs. We added an extra step taking his Works to Word 2.0 DOS, but we've been losing quite a bit of formatting, and Len isn't looking forward to handsetting it again. By staying in Works, we are hoping the trip straight to Mac Word 5.0a will take hours off our stress times and put smiles in all the right places.
Hey Landry, just a short one to tide me by. Hope your spirits are just where you want them. I'm afraid my friends are beating me up again with their shit for sherlock behaviors. Tim's hanging on by a thread. I asked Steve to stay away. Jennifer will be arriving Saturday for a romp until January 3rd. I wonder how much of her delightful self I will be able to gratify without cracking under the strain of the "oh so coy" gone beserk! Thanks for the card, and merry mucking to all concerned. Hey, I've got Jack's autograph stashed somewhere in a stack of cards. Why would you need it?
I loathe bitterness in any creature, but why do these [punk] actors continue to abuse my natural good humors? What am I doing about it? I guess I'm trying to shake free with an abrupt refusal to step into their fly splat worlds anymore. I gain nothing but aggravation working either side of the equation as I have been known to do, neatest of the neat, noisiest of the noisy. But day after day, year after year, I am forced to choose between an "in my face boredom" and the "sheer terror of the bingeing without consequences".
But the consequences DO EXIST, and even now the Tattooed Elephant is buckling under the weight of these riotous friendships with little or no solid justification, just the dead weight of momentary blather sticking to our ribs. I'm sick of it all, exhaustion confirmed, and them who have or will continue to pursue it...
(and the buzzard winks trying to get a piece of her. She's enjoying the attention, but she's not as easy a target as they might beg to think, and will make them work for every inch.)
We are supposed to be taking a limo out for New Year's Eve, courtesy of Skip Bafalis, a partner at Sue's firm. Two potential complications: no driver has been found, and Skip the owner was rushed to the hospital Christmas Eve, spent the whole next day having exploratory tests run to no conclusive end. He was released sometime yesterday. Still no solid lead on a driver, but bangedup Sue has a maybe or two up her sleeve.
Steve was originally invited, well, he sorta presumed he was invited by default, but last weekend he brought much chaos to this house, and has perpetuated it by further examples of his mute reckonings. Say anything, do nothing. A mile a minute flows off his tongue, uh, followup, what's that?
But neither Sue or I are in our middle to late 20s, or even 30s. Get a grip people, get a gashwhipping grip upon yourselves, and know that you are talking to someone who knows what it is all about. This is a private home and studio apparently shy of staff beyond the principles. Keep the puns in the pants. I can't care anymore. There is no other interpretation.
Tim has been cashing in on street crack, bringing crack dealers and cracked friends to the D-house. A fucking idiot, pimping that shit here after I had made it clearly an uncool deal! The handwriting's in the till that I will probably smack him with the pink slip by early spring if not sooner. He doesn't want to leave, and he doesn't want to lose his lifestyle. I can't blame him, but nobody can plug Tim's life better than himself. And you know me, "I'm a very possessive asshole. I'm trying to bring order to this mess I call my life of peers and all I get from this friendship ring is a future filled with agitation, no no no no peace essence at all."
I am scheduled for a battery of five or six tests in the new year, including brainwave and brain physiogomy scans. Full blood work. Doctor seems to think my problems are neurological in nature, neck and nerve pinchings rather than a brain tumor, but I'm testing the whole noodle kaboodle to rule out the latter. Brain cancer is dropping folk in high numbers in the late 90s it seems. I may or may not be one of them. Most relative I suppose is mother's younger sister Kitty, who died in February at 52 of said vermin.
So all in all, things are rather normal with the Dollhouse ground zero gang. Abused by friendship, alienated from most of the family where it really counts, I only find comfort, despite our plethora of well-inventoried flaws, in my baby baby baby sue...
Lynn, why do I despise the noise when so many seem to embrace it? The problem is not the noise and chaos itself. That I handle quite well in dosages I administer to myself with the greatest of ease. Achievements GT are legendary. But I know I can no longer riot as persistently as this class of 1996, and I want out. Of course Sue loves Tim, Tom, Steve, Jack, Mouse and whomever no less than I, and she DOES LOVE rent day, but something has got to give, me or the outside world. And she said three times denied, three wishes granted. I mean, what is the meaning of meaning if we scat in our own master's house, and act like, uh, catch ya next time, anywaze?
Many times I have asked folk to arrive on a date and at a time I specify. Many are the times when playing it by ear is the only game friends will play. Well, I've rolled that carpet over. I've had my fill with self-gonads at the expense of my own overwhelming desires that I continue to put aside in order to entertain yet another stiff torture at the wiles of the wolfpack.
That’s the way it is among all of us, bound by handshake uselessness & special moting, too offcentered to get much more done than self obliteration one adult beverage after another, word gaming for prizes void in several states, and ogling sessions that defy a national screening; we, the slurfish leisurely class, spamming the spectacle dot dot dot.
I played the idiot punk quite fantastically. That role is a part of me, now. The world will not soon forget that part of me, but geez Louise, this ain't a bar, or a hotel anymore, although I'm not exactly sure when we were penciled in for those tours of duty, it is certainly a reality checkpoint. But neither Sue or I are in our middle to late 20s, or even 30s. Get a grip people, get a gashwhipping grip upon yourselves, and know that you are talking to someone who knows what it is all about. This is a private home and studio apparently shy of staff beyond the principles. Keep the puns in the pants. I can't care anymore. There is no other interpretation.
Do I sound mad as a Mississippi monk on morphine? dear pets? After all these words of banishment I now contemplate staying home in exile even should limosine wax available, wave as the gag orders go their own chauffered way, as I stay back to protect my dwindling investments and bruised heels, aching heads and breaking shoulders, keeping my own puns to the grindstone...yuck what a miser of energy, spirit, and tailwind. But conservative reckoning is a day I must endure, and will embrace as a grand homecoming, despite all the kidz who would steal my middle age thunders kicking me in the shins when it's my pain they can't stifle.
Bottom line: I am tired of being treated as if I were both deaf and mute as my memory reviles and reputes the waste of conversation which never engages real meaning for longer than any particular drunk and hangover harry. At least when I remake the bed in the morning I know I feel better for it, and meaning is multiplied into dividends. No so with a three day drunk where nothing is everything and reality quotients are deemed counterfeit in a fuzzy display of carelessness and forgot me knots...
Bitter blizzard of sins my own carelessness purchased on credit and oops, a ditch. The barge of Bob's party proved that friendship resolutions are best kept at room temperature. Tilting ambition quotas task me as I crumple, long too busy with luck sucking. Periphery bucks buckling. File jitters fluttering. Poor judgement furniture. Pass or fail remarks. D-house or bust. Ain't got the holy chimes to tell everybody everything I know about them, and ain't got the battle bones to listen to all their own rants and riddles about it. Too tight. Too loose. That’s the way it is among all of us, bound by handshake uselessness & special moting, too offcentered to get much more done than self obliteration one adult beverage after another, word gaming for prizes void in several states, and ogling sessions that defy a national screening; we, the slurfish leisurely class, spamming the spectacle dot dot dot.
Sick and tired of the never-yielding pap. Oh I love my spanking fresh weekdays. Short? You betcha, but my sanctuary for creative work that makes sense to me as I lay in store against the coming weekend of friendship madness.
Bracken just spilled outa here. Using MacLink Plus to convert his DOS MS Works pages into Mac MS Word docs. We added an extra step taking his Works to Word 2.0 DOS, but we've been losing quite a bit of formatting, and Len isn't looking forward to handsetting it again. By staying in Works, we are hoping the trip straight to Mac Word 5.0a will take hours off our stress times and put smiles in all the right places.
I'll keep you all jigged on the fleet fool nostril. Which reminds me of then and now. What do you call a fool in the mirror? A loof...
Built up into nothing short of some kind of Greek or Latin classicist of the short line, Bukowski farts to Mozart and Bach, and takes his toast butter side down, unless he's in a jam where the first movement is the quick jump he's been waiting for to launch his assault on an adversary or tart, so to finish up with this friendly exercise in mastiff-taunting wordslurp, I point to another fine stroke of congeniality from the just side of the near postal toastmaster of LA himself:
"Good Times? There were never good times. There were bad times and times not as bad. People like to talk about the Brotherhood of Man. Two types: those who have nothing and would like a Brotherhood because they THINK that would bring them something; and those who have everything (materially) and speak of the Brotherhood of Man as NOW because they think it's working for them at the moment..."
It's amazing how closely Bukowski almost to the word mimics the vibrant Henry Miller prospective. Of course Miller writes circles around CB. Bukowski begrudgingly even admitted this in a letter to Miller's son (he calls him Larry in the letters, but I think his name was Tony) who had written praising him for reinstating his belief in the literary scheme as the best writer around. Bukowski told him to look over his shoulder at the old man if he wanted to see the greatest writer alive.
Anywaze, you now have plenty of fodder from which to launch a Landry war on words. Today is my 41st bird day. My weeklong depression is kaput, but my week shot to hell, having done little other than soak up the sofa reading like a banshee (do banshees read?) but what a good read it was. By the way. That Guy Kawasaki book is not at all what I expected. Rather than a book about the Macintosh way (which was the title of an early book he authored) this book is about business in general, interesting enough, but I put it down about half way to engage in other reading. I do plan to finish it, but I am now wondering if you would find it relevant. My Power Mac is on a 2-3 week backorder, so I've put my excitement on hold while Sue is peeing her panties with anticipation. My web building has stalled due to earlier mentioned technical difficulties, but a week off has strengthened my resolve.
Iusually hide during a holiday, but tonight I am feeling a strong urge to fly off the handle, and will probably go grab a few beers out the refrigerator to read my day's mail which I postponed from my usual first thing until the last thing today for some odd reason. Oh I know. I read something else. And didn't want to get bogged down into letterwriting until this afternoon. All things considered I've have a pretty good bird day already. Now to check me mail, and pop a Black Label. Until next time,
Thanks Landry once again for appreciating my posts. Just what this discussion was originally supposed to be about is still up for debate! Go figure!
Jacques Derrida & Schrodinger's cat, not chickens, somebody else piped in, but for my money I don't know why these people think a topic can't or won't stray a few fuzzy threads away from the narrowness of whatever it is they think THEY are ranting on about. After all, these snits aren't even in charge of the group. I simply jumped in where I had something to say after being bombarded with a bunch of notes yesterday from this Derrida group I guess I joined a few weeks ago because I haven't joined one recently...
How's it going? My back between my shoulder blades has been bothering me the past few days. Tonight Sue & I are traipsing out past Bailey's Crossroads to Borders to catch the Guy Kawasaki booksigning. Guy is the original MacEvangelist, again working for Apple. Hope to get a snapshot of the Mac Guy & yours truly. Later we'll stop for dinner, then cruise back into town for one of Guy Debord's Situationist International flicks, from the 1960s, I would suppose. Len Bracken issued the invite. Tonight in the WPA artspace...whoopee! He breathed his signature Bracken's breath over the phone with a hint of desperation at Gabriel's indifference, "Uh, nine o'clock's probably a little too late for you, right?" But I said that this time he was in luck. We were going to be out, and would certainly try to swing by to catch his idol philosopher in action.
And yes, I noticed that this would be a two Guy (actually a GYE & a GUEE, but who's counting these days?) evening...
"Create like a God, Command like a King, and Work like a Slave..." Brancusi
Sorry more words than you called for. Guess that in and of itself supports the subject of this little piece. Was that your ploy all along? To mock the amateur wordsmith? Now, if I could have just emailed you a painting, that would have said it all in a flash.
Painters can make an honest (or lazy) attempt to pass ANYTHING as art. They don't have to worry about the confines of structure in the way that a composer or a writer must. Let's face it, I can squat down on a canvas, smear a big corn filled turd around on a spatula, glue on a crucifix, and immediately get a reaction from born again christeeeans, derelicts, intellectual bull shit artists and the like who don't even have to be literate. But, if I write a story about blowing a big chocolate corn stuffed stain on a piece of fabric and shoving a cross on top, first, I must construct a sentence in some grammatical form that even people who can read can understand. Then, I have to get people to read it. Since most people, even with some college education, refuse to read on principle, only a small percentage of the population will read it. Out of this group, most people will read it just to fill up some time on the john, some won't get through it because they will be bored, some will laugh but forget it immediately. . .basically only a smidgen of people will caresome whacko born again Christeeean who will want to make sure the piece will be censored, a few people who think anything that couples shit and Christ in the same piece to be important, a zealous ACLU lawyer, and the writer (maybe on this one).
And, in order to be taken seriously as a writer (whether you need it or not) you are REQUIRED to have an editor and your writing is only worth something if SOMEONE ELSE (in particular a BIG PUBLISHER) likes it and prints it and sells it. Quite different from celebrating independent artists, filmmakers and musicians who can gain credibility precisely IF they shun the BIG GUYS.
Now to address the points:
1. Painters as a demographic rarely stop working on a piece until they are finished.
If they do stop before they are finished they lie and say they ARE finished. If I turn in a manuscript finished or not, people can put their two cents in and change shit. How come I can't go up to a painting and blot on a hint o#196# yellow here and there? Hunh???
2. Writers are a driven but inherently lazy bunch, and are inclined to need a proper correcting of their pomposity since word manipulation rules are finite.
OH, does this hit the mark. Does this mean that a writer who paints is also a lazy painter? My painting and writing instructors both said "Miss Landry, you are very talented, but very lazy!" No fair that a writer can't use words like paint, layering and layering for effect. Well, you can do it, but who would read it?
3. Wordlovers are a different crowd from artlovers with slightly different motives and therefore require a middleman.
Yes Yes Yes. Sort of like a conductor in an orchestra. Otherwise, chaos.
8. It's easier to dismiss a single canvas than a truckload of books in boxes.
#8 True, in a way. But, I think the modern computer/internet age is presenting a dilemma for old school visual artists. Electronic visual art is now on the same intangible level as the written word or music. Think about it. I am an artist (alive or dead). I sit in my studio drinking, fucking young boys and going insane from syphilis. I buy paint and drugs from my so-called friends, have a vision and do a painting. Since I am well known in my village or on the left bank of pareeeeeee, a few bored no-talent rich people bid for my painting. The painting. The only one. Mr. Booger wins and buys it for $3 million and takes it home to hang it over the fireplace in his boudoir and whacks off to it every night. No one else sees it until his death. Then, his lover gives it to some museum and the only way you can see the actual painting is if you spend lots of money to go to the city that contains the museum that houses the painting.
But, if I'm, say, Emily Dickinson, I write, I die, and years later all these people read my books. At the most, they spend, what, $10 on a collection. After a certain time, the more valuable the words become (named "classic") the easier it is to buy a piece of paper with the words on it. (I'm at work, so I apologize for how disjointed this is). In a nutshell, writing was and is always existing in a virtual world. You can't own the writing in the same way you can own a piece of art. But, with the Internet, I can do some visual art, scan it in my computer (or do it on the computer), put it on the Internet and it becomes just as unreal and intangible as words. Everyone can own it. Everyone can borrow bits and pieces of it. This will do more damage to the artist's ego than STDs. Writers have always known this and that is why a writer embraces the modern world before a visual artist.
This reminds me of an argument I had with my friend Brad who is a painter. He said that painting is art and writing is craft. What do you think?
Finished the Bukowski book, and and 75% finished with D'Sousa's 650 page tome which I unabashedly declare as the most thorough and well-adjusted look at racial intelligence in the literature to date. But let's finish first with that old egotistical drunk with a few passages I either am forced to admit reflect my own struggles, or are simply savvy lines I find fascinating for a variety of reasons, lines upon which I suppose I'll remark in the appropriate pauses as I stretch like a svelte Nottingham cat I know for another shot at literary credentials, may God forgive me. So have a laugh, attack of superiority, goof, or gaff. Be assured that I'm not trying to browbeat you with anything particularly profound, but am simply exercising the most available form of verbal flatulence not essentially my own:
"...as per a 'literary conspiracy' against me, I suppose that a great many do hate memuch of it caused by my writing style which is rather unpoetic, also in my drinking moments I have caused difficult feelings, I suppose. No excuses, man, also in my own short stories I am often the bastard villan of the pieces. I guess I am convincing. Also I don't mingle much with the literati (sic)...no New York City or North Beach up at Frisco, none of that. I am the loner. People come around here, I beer-up, and I have a tendency to run them out the door. All in all I suppose I have given off rays that I am a son of a bitch. They almost have me believing it myself."
I tattooed my body, not in a dim jones to appear chic and confrontational but because a navajo wanted to mark me and because I dared toss away any hope of worldly respectability my native intelligence and white skin supposedly entitles me to receive by throwing in with the foolish and the irresponsible, blackening it, and to prove something else to the sterile. I fattened up to escape the hype of my earlier thinness, and to test the women who claimed to love me for my mind when time has proven it was my body these older women desired.
Well, the Buk nailed me on this one, although I believe my own grammatical intuition is in lot less need of an editor than CB's, who throughout this book of letters was found railing against the "gross impertinences" of that particular class of literary befrienders, and yet appears as sloppy a writer as I've ever seen in print, much less world famous. (GT)
"Well, the female is a clever creature. She knows how to regulate her affairs. Most often it is the man who falls apart; it's the man who jumps off the bridge. When we give over our feelings they run off with us. There's no regulating them. I give over my feelings too easily, and it's not all regulated to suck and fuck (as the sculptress calls it). I get as much or more, out of other parts. Small talk. Breakfast together. Sleeping while touching. Waiting while the other goes to the toilet. Lovemaking after a stupid argument. Drinking beer with maddened friends. Hundreds of tiny things. I am never bored when I am with my women. I get bored in large formless crowds. Bored, hell, I get desperate, I lather and blather at the mouth, my eyes roll, the sky shakes. What am I talking about here?"
Uh, Gabriel. You're talking about Gabriel...
"I think that what has happened with Hal is that he has put total importance upon POETICS and what a poet is supposed to be. A good poet never knows what he is, he's a dime from the edge, but there's nothing holy about it. It's a job. Like mopping a bar floor. I can't rail too much about him; I suppose that the things he has imagined in his mind seem very true to him. Who is to judge? I rattled around his place in Venice a couple of nights drunk but it was more in energy and clowning than malice or a wish to destroy. I'm an asshole in many ways, I even enjoy my assholeness. I can tear a man in half in a short story; I can also tear myself in half, but I'm no knifer, I don't whisper things into editors' ears. I'm no destroyer. Nothing can be destroyed that has the power to move forward into its own thing. Fame or acceptance or politics or power has nothing to do with it. Nothing is needed but self going-on as self must. One only need realize this small realization."
Well, so far I have done nothing but quote what I presume to mirror my own thoughts, but this brings me to a question about the language you used in your last letter, Landry.
Your individuality schtick as an artist and a human being is very interesting. For one thing, I think that you are one of the few people I know who really is asserting their individuality. So many people think they are doing it when all they do is change uniforms.
INTERESTING? Does your usage of this word best translate to clever, queer, peculiar, noteworthy, what?
However, I do not think that whenever me or anyone else brings up generalizations about minorities or women they should be dismissed as bunk. I think that white males (at least in Western Culture) are socialized into a world that allows them to see the world differently. It must feel pretty good to come in on top. Then, if you fail, you only have yourself to blame. While I don't think anyone should use their group's oppression as a crutch or an excuse for any flaw they may have, I don't think the general population of blacks, Asians, women, Hispanics can escape some of the hardships put upon them throughout history by white men.
But enough of this blather, this is not the stuff of Email where it simply sounds like histrionic self-rationalizing apochrypha (hey, how did Howellnyms sneak into this perfectly good snatch of self-criticism), but the iron truth is in God's own pocket calculator, and as long as my memories sustain me, I will not relinquish the justification of my own experience any more than a thousand subsets of humanity do with their own Pontius Pilate slant, following after their own fashion.
Now we are tiptoeing into the pond best swam within the context of D'Sousa's book. I just got off the phone with Len Bracken who does not share my enthusiasm for D'Sousa's points of view, he having heard him on a radio talk show (I caught him on Phil Donahue), although I challenged him to read the book before dismissing him out of hand. I am thoroughly convinced of the integrity of D'Sousa's work, perceptions, and remedies for what ails us as a culture,although admitting it will take a cold day in hell to convince the Boasian liberal establishment to nudge an inch off its pedastal, but I'd rather postpone that commentary until a more appropriate time. Now back to the asshole of the hour:
"Norse? I understand his viewpoint. We simply come out of different poetic backgrounds. And when I'm drunk I am generally rude and boorish and stupid to everybody alike. I don't just select Hal. If he could understand this he might feel better. Before a man can ever meet the gods he must learn to forgive the drunks. Alta? I understand her viewpoint, and it must certainly seem plausible and right to her, but creation, art, is the breakthrough. We hardly do what is proper or kind, though often, in life, we are kinder than most, much more. Without flying flags about it. Alta does not know how to write a sentence down. It hurts her pitch. I don't want to rape Alta. I don't want to rape anybody. I never have. But if an artist wants to go into the mind of a rapist or a murderer and look out of that mind and write down that mind, I don't think that is criminal. Furthermore, I didn't say my stories in NOLA were "sarcastic." I don't apologize for my work. If I write a story about a shitty woman then that shitty woman did exist. One form or another. Blacks can also be shitty as can whites. I refuse to be restricted in the materials I can paint with. It's really all so ridiculous to defend anything as JUST that thing, can't they even understand that? Oh Alta, I HAVE love...that's why I can write other things..."
Ditto again. Hence my niggard reputation. A capsule rant of the reality of a consciousness which has predicted me since a child, if I may: I presumed at the insidious sterile age of seventeen to wreck my whiteness, my elitehood, my natural intelligence by lowering my standards to the world's din. I have refused time and time again the higher education the world says I must have in order to achieve the level native intelligence requires. I have stated on several occasions and to surprising acclaim that I drink to excess so I can be as stupid and as forgetful as the rest of the world. I tattooed my body, not in a dim jones to appear chic and confrontational but because a navajo wanted to mark me and because I dared toss away any hope of worldly respectability my native intelligence and white skin supposedly entitles me to receive by throwing in with the foolish and the irresponsible, blackening it, and to prove something else to the sterile. I fattened up to escape the hype of my earlier thinness, and to test the women who claimed to love me for my mind when time has proven it was my body these older women desired. I dare to remain jobless so as not to take a job from those who claim the system is rigged in my favor. In my pure uneducated but highly observant 20s back in the 1970s I was popular and hung with the gay population, and also infiltrated the hispanic and black cultures, and as a result often had projected onto me what I was reading was the sole domain of my own kind, the white male...et cetera et cetera. But enough of this blather, this is not the stuff of Email where it simply sounds like histrionic self-rationalizing apochrypha (hey, how did Howellnyms sneak into this perfectly good snatch of self-criticism), but the iron truth is in God's own pocket calculator, and as long as my memories sustain me, I will not relinquish the justification of my own experience any more than a thousand subsets of humanity do with their own Pontius Pilate slant, following after their own fashion.
This has gotten rather long, and I have three more bookmarks to exploit for your perusal, so until next time....
Not to beat a dead horse into dog food, Landry, but I am nevertheless still interested in digging deeper into this resistance topic, in exploring what you as a female writer deem appropriate sexual language and conduct, specifically at the social or public level. As a (willing/unwilling) member of the freelance pseudo-liberated Generation X think tank, how can we expect to defy this irrational political correctness now dominating the landscape, without bloodying the field, without ignoring the differences whereby how men and women perceive the sexual arena, and their respective roles within that arena, even as it appears that the gender roles continue to evolve? For despite my own mental gymnastics, I am somewhat of a prude in this matter, myself, and actually seek liberty from the constraints of my own background.
First a few definitions: pseudo-liberated. You touched on this concept by admitting your awareness of blatant contradictions in what your own spirit in liberty tells you versus what your reality-checking brain dutifully informs you is necessary to remain in control of what can soon degenerate into a chaotic and unrewarding sensual killing field if unchecked because of the very nature of individuality. The plain fact is that every person of every generation is genetically (both physically & psychologically) predisposed to a certain level of what passes in the popular mind as freedom and the lessening buffers to loose-lipped vulgarity.
This freedom is then tested in the sexual marketplace. Gains and losses accumulate. Winners, losers, predators, victims, survivors, casualties. That's the real dirt in the sex game. The sexual elite? Without too much rehashing of old literature we both know that one person's freedom is often another person's enslavement. Each camp seeks its own reflection in the mirror of its ideological yearnings. We each, male & female, across the entire corpus of human identities use different tools to plow the field, sow the seed, and harvest the fruit of our lusts and loves, fetishes and fixes. Individual tastes are formed by a complex matrix of genetics and environmental influences working within us at every turn.
The point is, they are strong sexual warriors with no pity for the serfs and only seek upward mobility, just as men do, and women always have, albeit in different mutations of the basic idea throughout generations and cultures.
Often over the course of a life we change to meet the ever-mutating challenges of sensuality and desire. Common sense and societal mores of the day often intrude upon what others might find more to their own liking, as common sense can often be as wrong as the public powers. Thus few of us can in truth boast that we are truly liberated simply because we do not know what it means to be liberated.
Classes who arguably at that point of sexual liberty live to pursue this sexual freedom to their own accumulative advantage while the many are still left to fend for themselves in the heat of the old torturous battles between moral agency and libertinism. Freedom or liberty in this case can only mean freedom of opportunity to succeed or fail at getting what we desire...
Great thinkers of antiquity, realizing this imbalance and opening for societal failure suggested suppression of the urges rather than chasing a false rainbow corrupting the loins with the tricks of envy and abuse, forced by success and especially, persistent failure. Failure is disease, disease is failure. I observe women with their hypertextual sense of liberal guilt for the masses rarely take pity on hordes of men delegated by natural order to mere pawns of the sexual princes and princesses ruling the sexual arena. But consistent with their incumbent sexual and business tools, battle plans, and gains to be made, they are often cold taskmasters, subtle manipulators, starving their opponents and thwarting their competition by any means necessary in order to control the field. The point is, they are strong sexual warriors with no pity for the serfs and only seek upward mobility, just as men do, and women always have, albeit in different mutations of the basic idea throughout generations and cultures.
Because we have willingly accepted this bartered state as a necessary compromise to what we collectively can manage to squeeze from life, having failed at any number of dry nuances over the years, a truce has settled upon us.
I realize many of the above statements can and will infuriate many a feminine perspective. None of my postulates are meant to pacify female anger for the brutality men have set upon them throughout history. I am grievously sick with self-loathing turned against the gender sporting cock, balls, upper body strength, and this so-called social power everyone in the PC generation is always raving about. Pure madness.
But finally after 32 or 33 years of apotheosizing the feminine component of humanity, and weaned from this generalized self-loathing by the redemptive notions of writer Camille Paglia, I am equally stricken with a loathing that spreads out beyond that primitive misogyny men are often accused of, often rightfully so, to encompass my own effeminate strains the radical feminists carp so much about when lacking a fair shade of the same themselves. We all need to face a few facts. Few of us are ever given a fair shake. Male or female. Games are played with romantically inclined lies in the name of spectacular truth. Only once this false game of shadows and overwrought sentimentality has been diminished and replaced with a more intrinsic set of values will equality even find its true voice in the war between the sexes.
It was only a few weeks ago I last threatened another Tolstoyto leave the manor in hopes of reasserting myself as I used to be, as I want to be, but I am not the same flesh and bones I once was, and the chances my new independence would prove futile and an idiot's folly are astronomically high.
I am not advocating the overthrow of anything. I simply know that what passes for love in this country is little more than mercantile power wearing a mask of fair weather friendship, lust, or loosely formed business arrangements. Those vows most mouth are garbage lines not worth the paper they are written on or the God they are supposedly supplicating. And lust if not outright ridiculed is still spoken of insincerely in most pseudo-liberated circles propped up by double standards and power negotiations. So let's not be coy, sweet idealists. It's time to throw off the blinders, and realize that true equality between the sexes is a war of give and take...
Most will finally settle for a truce and whatever accommodations their current market value will warrant. I am fortunate my own loved one still finds a measure of grace in my own strengths, raw intelligence and wit. And I in her, her own steady delivery of basic goods and compassion for my weaknesses in return for the strengths I bring which have nothing to do with sexual etiquette. Ours has nearly ceased as a sexual bond, but we freely and frequently commit to hugging often, an act Ann Landers would have us believe is the best love has to offer, and we suffer in each other's absence, so attached are we to each other. Because we have willingly accepted this bartered state as a necessary compromise to what we collectively can manage to squeeze from life, having failed at any number of dry nuances over the years, a truce has settled upon us. The presence and care of children should, but sadly do not often enough, deepen those mutually accommodating bonds of any union.
Too many people possessing usually fine minds find this sort of language an insult to their self-images, despite even more failure these self-images often play out to be.
But you seem to recognize yourself at this juncture of life quite clearly, as I did ten years ago. A lot of superstition and subsequent poor choices can change a person in a decade. It was only a few weeks ago I last threatened another Tolstoyto leave the manor in hopes of reasserting myself as I used to be, as I want to be, but I am not the same flesh and bones I once was, and the chances my new independence would prove futile and an idiot's folly are astronomically high. My marriage while generally sexless (a decade of frustration leads to great changes in the heart, the mind, and the body) is certainly not loveless, and in our case, love and social stability won out over sex. Those who neither possess but over or under emphasize love, social stability, OR SEX, are given to great tragedy, and dangerous lives, although nothing I have written on this topic can resolve a damned thing in the world beyond my own need to articulate my innermost thoughts on the topic.
I don't think this letter is very well written but breaking into the breeze, my friends, go the three fickle fingers of low resistance, least resistance and no resistance at all.
Why Don't I write more often? Maybe a nice innocent game of canasta for the 4th 'o' July weekend. I can simulate retirement in a Boca Raton Condo-village.Blum
With this weather who knows what will come next? Another Checkpoint Charlie. Just saying hi. Busy as usual, working like madness on my bad poetry pages, Blowpoets Ad Nauseum I call them. Love being busy, having purpose, even if no one else gets the punchline. After all, I never really cared for Elvis, and look how many people did and do. My life is a little like crunchy peanut butter. It tastes good even if its not in good taste at white glove affairs.
Were you serious about perhaps throwing in your two cents on an ALL-CANASTA WEEKEND? It's either too wet or too hot, but maybe one salty day soonoh stutters, I don't know, with all due respect to secret sauces and special spices, time was when making high meld, even more so than laying in a stack of canastas, or books as Pops called them, was a stealth orgasmic move...
In my case it was six kids and an alky dad on a rare dry spell sprawled around a huge converted door now table where for hours upon days those cards were shuffled, reshuffled, dealt and played out hand after hand. So perhaps that weekend may prove fertile for a game or two. Cards are more relaxing, therefore more productive than TV because of the mild competition among flesh and blood. The brain and central nervous system allow adrenalin junkies to reassert themselves, to push back, to win and to lose, to earn exhilaration, to taste the humility of defeat, and in general, as a result, life just seems rosier. Don't smirk. Life is just killing time, after all, waiting for the greyhound messiah from Hialeah to kick the filthy door down on all our petty miseries, with no room for killjoy surveillance or biopics....
Landry is Jack's girlfriend. You met her in October at the crabfuss I reckon. I know Byron & Buck through Tom Howell, digital video artist & poet, respectively. I know you as some guy, my neighbor. The rest of this string of linear howls is too much work to exert here, and will be divulged only on a need to know basis. A few of these people would like to see you, some guy, grace the Biograph with an appearance. Previous engagements and life-threatening emergencies of course take precedence. If boredom and that low tired feeling of inertia sag your bones, then likewise, a quick, "Go away, I'm Rick," will suffice.
Had to shake Steve off eleven days ago, late Sunday night, after guest status had worn thin from too much Steve. You know me. I like aloneness and pay the piper in loneliness sometimes, but not nearly as much as others seem to fear being alone. And true to form he's vanished and except for a quickie E-mail from his dad's account when he was visiting Bloomsburg last weekend I haven't heard from him since his AOL service was disrupted after he bolted for higher ground to rethink this career thing over once more from scratch. For six months or so we wrote volumes to each other every day, now nothing.
Target 2%. Bad drugs induce female breasts. Obviously a spectacular flaw in this maam's rodeo to favor with fine lace and loose cotton. Making that list, sir. Frivolous lawsuits to follow like homeless mutts. Where spending is allowed, law is prepared. And somebody always takes a hit. There are no limits in the field. Gozloc carefully disagrees.
Yep, you predicted it Bob. I snatched up a couple of toadstools from the backyard yesterday. The almighty rains are a curious colonial girl with awfully straight hair. And still more on its way. We aren't even close to the oracular Mississippi Delta where heavy rains fall like thrones, nearly 867 miles as the Chevy flies from one ballgame to the next, scout to scout, so we, Space and I, might pitch a tent. Yet...
Quite hilarious, Bob, your ironclad Arthurian handmaiden's tale, Gallahad, the guillotine and missing tongue. I forwarded it to all the usual suspects. Sure, they'll laugh, then what? Nostrils flared, eyeballs cued, Tennessee cured hams in my two dollar pockets, hardly an Artic fox on the steal, but hell or high water I'll stand with you on your neckline meat corner any day, against those rogue troops, holding my silent "H" low, sir. It's only out in Forestville Minor that apartments continue to explode into epic flames and eventual freedom, letting the blazing cat out of the bag for outside investigators to flag, and if the Western wind is right, restore the catalogue of pet projects to its original condition, shaving points off the tail, insisting the catastrophe was meant to be, for undisclosed reasons. This is not an evolutionary outlook, so the objections are many. Trusses are weak. The chemical makeup of certain fibers woven into a little blue dress found on the scene is the likely determinant in the novel procedure invented by a Ukrainian viceroy who claims his ecological orbit has earned him enough status to make a play for a starring role in a Hollywood motion picture, his words. Gozloc's procedure is said to defy dysfunction. The residents there have poisoned themselves by intentionally swallowing room temperature detergents better suited for the cleansing powers required in rarely admitted top secret transnational scarcity matters. But some say, using Gozloc's procedure, their own awesome lineup will finally start to take a good look at the cracks in the vats of the system next February. Target 2%. Bad drugs induce female breasts. Obviously a spectacular flaw in this maam's rodeo to favor with fine lace and loose cotton. Making that list, sir. Frivolous lawsuits to follow like homeless mutts. Where spending is allowed, law is prepared. And somebody always takes a hit. There are no limits in the field. Gozloc carefully disagrees.
That damned George Cantor did a pitiful job on your back lawn. I caught him banging on your front door one morning looking for his money. I peeked out from the computer room window and gave him your message concerning your weekend trek, and payment when you returned. He swore you were home because last night the fan was not on, and this morning in question it was. I argued a couple of volleys until finally shouting, "Fine George, fine! Fine, Just fine!" and slammed my window shut. He then left.
GT is RSN
"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""