Thursday, August 18, 2022

The Milk Was Poisoned and Forty-Two Babies Died, She Laughed

Today marks thirty-four years at Hilltop, the same job for more than half my life (and the rest of my life, probably), lordy, no one would have predicted this for twenty-five year old me. Two free degrees and my share of the mortgage and utilities and food and raising a daughter. The first link below Jeff Sisyphus covers what I had planned to type here better than I had yet formatted, my old judo matches with my complicity and the ever-worsening clusterfuck that has yet to directly affect me and mine (beyond my 401K's 2022 plunge (and why I will be working at Hilltop the remainder of my capable days). Here is a portrait of me as cat named K'mpec, he's leader of the Klingon High Council. Full disclosure: I've added black watercolor to my palette of only primary colors, forgive me. The new department head starts September 5, he can't be worse than Bookkeeper, can he? K'mpec was poisoned (in the blood wine), my mithridatism poisons my mitridatism, not as fun as it should be

Don’t make the world worse by suffering when your suffering doesn’t help
What do we lose when we lose our trees?
Cancel Culture has victims, but you're not one of them
Final CollapseNo sex for you
Our interest is conflict of interest
Closing down the billionaire factory?
Corporate does nothing out of the goodnesss of its heart
Fossil Capitalism continues to win big
Roberto Clemente born 88 years ago today
Hey, long time digibud Weldon has a new joint!
I, for one, have never liked the name *Jeff*
My daughter tells me Jeff is the male Karen but I've yet to encounter that
Quin's *Passages*On new ONEIDA!
New Bill Callahan album in October!
Joyelle McSweeney's *Necropastoral* mixtape!
There is a new Todd Rundgren song?


Daniel Borzutzky

Here the readers gather to watch the books die. They die suddenly, as if thrown from an airplane, or from spontaneous cardiac arrest. They live, and then suddenly they die, and the reader who watches this is at the moment of the books' death bombarded with images documented through the smiling lipstick face of a journalist who has shown up to report on the death of the books. The milk was poisoned and forty-two babies died, she laughs, as she fondles the ashes of the dead books. And the death of forty-two babies is equal in value to the death of this book which is equal in value to the ninety-year old woman who shot herself while the sheriff waited at her door with an eviction notice which is equal in value to the collapsing of the global economy which is equal to the military in country XYZ seizing the land of the semi-nomadic hunters and cultivators of crops who have lived in the local rain forest for thousands of years. The reader opens a dead book and finds an infinite amount of burnt ash between the bindings, and when the ash blows in the wind the lipstick says that every death in the world is equal to every other death in the world which is equal to every birth in the world which is equal to every act of dismemberment which is equal to the death of a jungle which is equal to the collapse of the global economy; and hey look there’s another lady falling out of a window; she looks about equal to the poet hurled out of his country for words he wrote but which did not belong to him and whose death is about equal to the girl who was shot on the bus on her way to school this morning which is just about the same as the bearded man whose head was shoved into a sac while water was dumped over it and he died for an instant and came back to life and talked and talked and that’s about equal to the steroid illegally injected into the arm of a beautiful man who makes forty million dollars a year for injecting his arms with steroids so he can more skillfully wave a wooden stick at a ball, and in the ash we see the truest democracy there ever was: hey look it’s a little baby found in a dumpster how equal you are says the smiling lipstick to the civilized nation whose citizens walk the flooded streets looking for their homes, and in the ashes of the dead book the dead streets are equal to the eating disorders of movie stars which are equal to the dead soldiers who are equal to the homeruns which are equal to the bomb dropped by country ABC over weddings in the village of country XYZ which is equal to the earth swallowing up and devouring all of its foreigners which is just about equal to the decline in literacy in the most educated nation in the planet. There is no end to this book. There are no paragraph breaks to interrupt the smiling lipstick that goes on and on in one string of ashy words about how the declaration of peace is equal to the resumption of war and how the bodies that fall are equal to the birds that ascend and how the bomb in the Eiffel Tower is equal to the rising cost of natural gas, and the murmurs of the voices in the mud are equal to the murmurs of the expensive suits falling out of buildings and these are equal to the silence that kills with one breath and coddles life with another.                 

1 comment:

  1. 1/i'm glad todd rundgren has a new album coming out - i'll probably buy it

    2/i was writing to a college buddy of mine earlier this week about chris hedges' "the final collapse", linked to here - i said

    i read a lot of science fiction prior to my age of legal majority and i can imagine sequences of events in the rest of this century over a wide range - from events that result in

    1/our species disappearing - very extreme, hard to arrange, unlikely but not completely impossible -

    2/ the end of advanced technology - too bad, because we are nearing the capability to ward off extinction-level meteorite impacts, and if it is lost now it may never be regained - this is more probable, but i hope it is not the most probable

    3/a relatively "soft landing" that preserves technology, learning, human habitability of much of the world despite serious climate change, maintenance of a substantial fraction of the current human population, transition to non-fossil fuels, peace, justice, and potentially sentient ways to minimize suffering and/or maximize well-being - and everyone gets a pony, or at least gets to watch movies about ponies - one of my nieces really did have a pony, but her mother is a lobbyist for big pharma, so that pony was paid for out of the rather-too-large slice of the pie that goes to that economic sector - as the saying puts it - did will rogers say this? - we have the best congress that money can buy

    chris hedges seems to be predicting scenario 2 - i hope that's too pessimistic - but i think there is a chance that's he's right -

    which reminds me of a song from Seatrain's Marblehead Messenger album, said to be the second album George Martin produced after producing the Beatles

    Have pity, cried the Protestant Preacher
    Listen to these lonesome words I sell
    From inside the fire someone is trying to reach you
    The secret is - but only time can tell
    The secret is - but only time will tell

    hedges is, in fact, a protestant preacher