Friday, July 12, 2013

There's a Jolt, Quasi-Electric, When One of Our Myths Reverts to Abstraction

  • Went to sleep with that Sonic Youth song in my head.
  • That novel I posted a photo of yesterday? It failed me, I didn't fail it, I gave a hundred pages, fifty more than I should have because I thought it was my fault the novel sucked, it wasn't, the novel sucked. Baal save me from first novels written in the first person in which every character in every dialogue competes to be the smartest and most cuttingly ironically detached social observer. Sure, it's like twitter, or Stringtown, or your staff lounge, it's me, doesn't mean I want to read it. I can't tell you how liberating it is to know in this one case with this one novel it wasn't me at fault. Best SHAZAM! that's happened to me since the last until the next. An unshackling.
  • We talked about trolls last night at Thursday Night Pints. Analog trolls, digital trolls, trolls at work, trolls in real life, trolls in Stringtown. The trolls we are, to others, to ourselves. There were details in the stories I can't talk about (analog trolls) and details in the stories I could talk about (digital trolls) but only the first is interesting, the second, fuck that. The history of trolling - there's always been trolling - and technological innovations in trolling. Fuckwads in our lives, how we can avoid being fuckwads in return. And fail.
  • Contained selvesIn the machinery of social media, none of this experience need be particularly transgressive to be felt as transformative. Posting videos of one’s cat is sufficient to tremble the network. The contradictions and intensities and dangers of attempting to write the truth about oneself are made accessible to anyone with a Tumblr, and at the same time, new resources other than opaque language are readily available to convey affect on social-media sites. These resources (gifs, links, images, likes, screen grabs, serial selfies, cut-and-paste collages, etc.) can seem to express the self without the same limits brought about by the imprecision or, maybe more often, the overprecision of one’s own words, which come from some posited central location of the “I.” That “I” is a transcendental trap, binding one to the posited position of the speaking subject.


Rae Armantrout

If sadness
is akin to patience

                            we're back!

Pattern recognition
was our first response

to loneliness.

Here and there were like
one place.

But we need to triangulate
for someone to show.


There's a jolt, quasi-electric,
when one of our myths
reverts to abstraction.

Now we all know
every name's Eurydice,
briefly returned
from blankness

and the way back
won't bear scrutiny.

High voices
over rapid-pulsing synthesizers
inton, "without you"---

which is soothing.

We prefer meta-significance:

the way the clouds exchange
white scraps
in glory.

No more wishes.

No more bungalows
behind car-washes
painted the color of
swimming pools.


  1. Fuckwads in our lives, how we can avoid being fuckwads in return.

    i'm reading a longer book by the same author, but something that is small, easy to carry, and very worthwhile is

    Buddha's Little Instruction Book by Jack Kornfield

  2. What, no Fleabus tag? WTF?!! Thanks to you and Planet for the Fleabus Action. There cannot be too much Fleabus Action.

  3. No, you mean SHAZAM!

    (ask terre t.)