IF YOU DON'T REVIEW YOU DON'T REMEMBER. STOP. AND IF YOU DON'T REMEMBER YOU END UP BEING THE SAME OLD SHITHEAD OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN. STOP.
(The difference between traum and trauma? If remembering be the tracing of the trace, the attention that fingers the rut, the stroking of the groove or the wound -- and we admit all experience to be embodied thus traceable -- then there can be no difference.)
CHANGE HAPPENS FROM EITHER SPEEDING UP OR SLOWING DOWN. STOP.
("Again, Ingmar Bergman may have meant the tank rumbling down the empty night street in 'The Silence' as a phallic symbol. But if he did, it was a foolish thought. ("Never trust the teller, trust the tale," said Lawrence.) Taken as a brute object, as an immediate sensory equivalent for the mysterious abrupt armored happenings going on inside the hotel, that sequence with the tank is the most striking moment in the film. Those who reach for a Freudian interpretation of the tank are only expressing their lack of response to what is there on the screen.
"It is always the case that interpretation of this type indicates a dissatisfaction (conscious or unconscious) with the work, a wish to replace it by something else.
"Interpretation, based on the highly dubious theory that a work of art is composed of items of content, violates art. It makes art into an article for use, for arrangement into a mental scheme of categories."
-- Susan Sontag, Against Interpretation, 1964.)
VENTRILOQUISM IS AN ART FORM. STOP.
(Confessing to the vagina.)
TIME SEPARATES EVERYTHING. STOP.
("They walk. They look at the trunk of a redwood tree covered with historical dates. She pronounces an English name he doesn't understand. As in a dream, he shows her a point beyond the tree, hears himself say, "This is where I come from ..." - and falls back, exhausted. Then another wave of Time washes over him. The result of another injection perhaps.")
The full transcript of Chris Marker's La Jetée, thanks to R.T., who also pointed out the connection between the redwood scene in Marker's film and the sequoia scene in Vertigo:
[Novak pointing] "Somewhere in here I was born."
[Pointing again] "And there I died... a moment for you... you took no notice."
PROVENANCE. STOP. MEANING HE WHO OWNED THE BODY BEFORE YOU. STOP. AND WILL AFTER YOU. STOP.
("Who said time heals all wounds? It would be better to say that time heals everything except wounds. With time the hurt of separation loses its real limits. With time the desired body will soon disappear. And if the desiring body has already ceased to exist for the other then what remains is a wound; disembodied."
-- attributed to a Japanese source in Marker's film Sans Soleil, 1982.)
AT WHAT AGE DOES IT BEGIN. STOP. THIS COMPULSION OF THOUGHT. STOP. WHO BENEFITS. STOP.
(On his 290'th morning.)
TRANCE. STOP. PROCRASTINATION. STOP. RECALCITRANCE. STOP.
(frozen, enervated, immobilized)
(Literary immobilization, exhibit A: a tale of one artist's bid to create the perfect masterpiece, Henry James' The Madonna of the Future (1879):
"My dear young man"--and he laid his hand on my arm--"I am worthy of respect. Whatever my talents may be, I am honest. There is nothing grotesque in a pure ambition, or in a life devoted to it.")
"...his ten-year-long attempt to write the perfect opening sentence...")
YOU WHO PUSH INFORMATION AT ME. STOP.
"The telegram no longer bears the badge of emergency and the sight of a messenger approaching your home need no longer raise feelings of foreboding. There are hundreds of telegrams which bring tidings of joy, congratulation or good will, or convey social messages of infinite variety and there are still other thousands which deal with the myriad phases of business operations...
"...Two of the fundamental merits of the telegram are that it annihilates distance and commands immediate attention. These advantages make it readily adaptable to almost every phrase of social, industrial and commercial intercourse. If you are alive to the need of making every minute count in this modern, high speed age, you will often have occasion to avail yourself of the facilities of the highly organized institutions which have succeeded the old time operator bent over his telegraph key in the little dingy telegraph office of a few generations ago.")
STRESS AND OTHER BODILY PREMONITIONS. STOP.
(References: W.S. Merwin, For the Anniversary of my Death, plus 2 Toufic refs: 'Who will warn us about the warning?' and 'Thresholds and imaginary lines.'
Concerning that mis-step on the tennis court this morning, (i.e. the sudden shock of twisting, falling and spraining my foot, followed with, more than a minute later and now resting in a chair on the court sideline, the unpleasant after-shock of dizziness and nausea) in what way did I know this was going to happen/about to occur? In other words in what way did I know it (but partly didn't know it) last night at dinner with Jouke and lying awake in bed this morning (massaging my foot)?
(Here's to looking/longing for the zone, the room with the view, the space outside of time, the containment contained within the cone of silence. Here's to all the time spent doing this. Here's to *the idea* of taking refuge.)
(The space described, for example, in the opening scenes of Antonioni's Beyond the Clouds (1994):
"When I'm very tired after finishing a film, I start thinking of the next one. That's the only thing left for me to do. And which I know how to do. I begin by trying to define the film I will make after the one I've just finished.
"The most difficult thing is to refrain from taking an interest in anything, not to read, not to allow myself any distraction. To reach silence and darkness. It is in the darkness that reality lights up. And in the silence the voices arrive from the outside.")
(Or hinted at in the T.V. series 'Get Smart':
"Chief I think we need to use the cone of silence."
BEHAVIOUR: THE CONTROL OF PERCEPTION. STOP.
(Or how, as a young person, I learned a good many of my words *epithetically.* Maudlin? "You know... like... like a bongo player." Ephemeral? "...like a butterfly!"
From the preface of his 1973 book:
"The result of this approach is a model nearly devoid of specific behavioral content. I once felt that it was my duty to supply the model with content as well as form, but I am wiser now, and much more impressed with my ignorance. What is up to me is in this book. What I do best is in this book. Others who know more about behavior and many other subjects are the ones to put the content in. Where I have tried to make the form more comprehensible by suggesting content I have stepped over the bounds of my knowledge and have probably made mistakes. I trust that they can be corrected without obscuring what is most important about this model -- and that is this: Behavior is the process by which organisms control their input sensory data. For human beings, behavior is the control of perception. That is what is important about the model -- that, and all that is implied by it.")
(Elsewhere, Mitsu Hadeishi "our very own swordsman" on the vicissitudes, nay the evolutionary arms race, of human thrill seeking:
"It occurred to me that these rides, exciting today, might be tame in the future; what could we do in the far future that might qualify as exciting enough to keep our interest? A ride that amputated your limbs and then quickly reattached them with laser surgery? And what could top that?"
And in case you are wondering, yes, my foot is better. So much so that I went shopping for trees today.)
PROOF POSITIVE. STOP.
(That it can still get really dark around this time of year.)
CRITICALITY. STOP. BOILING POINT. STOP.
"Sometimes one came near to my window, attracted by my light, barked a vulpine curse at me, and then retreated." (Vulpine being the word of the day, the example is from Thoreau.)
('Ab-use it 3 times and it's yours':
DEATH TO ALL HOLDING PATTERNS. STOP.
(Yesterday was a day filled with promise.)
BE CAREFUL. STOP. THIS VIRUS CAN BE A WARNING. STOP. AND THIS WARNING CAN BE A VIRUS. STOP.
(In a world where almost everything is competing for our dwindling attention, almost everything is porn.
The latest step in virus engineering: email messages which instruct you to find and delete files which are not viruses but important system resources. "And for God's sake, tell your loved ones..."
Host manipulation, is what viruses do, and the current bevy of viruses do it excellently.
Via David Chess, a benign example:
(In a world where almost everything is competing for our dwindling attention, almost everything is porn.
(Jalal Toufic: 'Who will warn us about the warning?')
And now the
De Geuzen's Renee Turner tells about Oleg Kulik, the priapic artist and dog fucker who haunts the same international art events that she does.
(Alamut's own Smokey Red Light.)
WARNING. STOP. RE: WHAT YOU FIND IN THE MAILBOX. STOP. DO NOT ACCEPT ANONYMOUS NOTES AS TELEGRAMS. STOP.
("Aso" bewoner van NR. 49
Als je met planten loopt te slepen,
je woont niet in een achterbuurt.)
REMINDER. STOP. HEAT DISSIPATION. STOP. MANUEL DE LANDA SAYS (IN HIS BOOK WAR IN THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES) THAT HEAT DISSIPATION IS THE WAY THAT COMPLEX MACHINES MANAGE TO MAINTAIN THEIR IDENTITY IN THE MIDDLE OF TURMOIL. STOP.
(Heat dissipation example A:
Neslo = Olsen backwards...
"Around 1863 some 10,000 family names had to be created. One way was to use an existing name and reverse it to create a new family name in Suriname. Kramer - Remark, Desse - Essed, Amsterdam - Madretsma, Muller - Rellum, Gieter - Reteig, Salmijn - Mijnals, Leurs - Sleur, Fortuin - Tuinfort..."
(Heat dissipation example B:
Poet laureate Robert Pinsky, The Childhood of Jesus.)
PAY ATTENTION. STOP. QUESTION. STOP. WHEN WILL YOU BE ABLE TO READ THE SIGNS. STOP. QUESTION. STOP. IS YOUR SYNCHRONOCITY A SIGN OF OUR SINGULARITY. STOP. QUESTION. STOP. IS ALL ONE. STOP.
(Some species of taking refuge.  Self-dissolution (as in Darshan a.k.a. becoming distracted to extinction (25.11.99, 26.11.99) ) versus  withdrawal-into-self (as in bathysphere, concentration camp, cone of silence).  Everywhere else, as in: Limbo + bardo = Limbardo.)
(Re: the action list (or rather the non-existence of an action list)... I am constantly amazed by the number of knots/problems/issues that are willing to un-tie (or solve) themselves -- given enough time (ie. when left alone long enough). This is not how things are supposed to be. How can this be?)
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN. STOP. I AM WAITING. STOP. AND WILL CONTINUE TO WAIT UNTIL YOUR COMMAND BECOMES MY WISH. STOP.
(Witnessed on the train: a discussion between two strangers, a Christian missionary (holding both bible and commentary on his lap) and a Moslim mathematician (holding nothing on his lap). The Christian, while expounding the doctrine of original sin, keeps correcting the Moslem's Dutch. The Moslem -- in perfectly passable Dutch -- quietly pokes holes in his opponent's logic while tracing the etymology of his opponent's arguments... in Latin, Arabic, Italian, French and English.)
"Most jobs under challenge the artist. Most art world contexts do. The media do. A lot of artists do under challenge themselves."
"At the end of the day, the best challenge to an artist is by other artists, historical or contemporary alike. Respect buys challenge.")
THE MOST HUMAN OF APHRODISIACS. STOP. THE DRIVE TO HELP. STOP. THE DRIVE TO MAKE THINGS BETTER. STOP. THE DRIVE TO GIVE SHELTER AND SUPPORT. STOP. THE DRIVE TO EDUCATE. STOP. THE DRIVE TO SPREAD THE GENES. STOP. THE DRIVE TO SPREAD THE IDEAS. STOP. THE DRIVE TO COERCE. STOP. TO PROSELYTIZE. STOP. TO PYGMALION. STOP.
(The flower girl, distraught and mobbed, breaks through them to the gentleman, crying wildly...
" Oh, sir, don't let him charge me. You dunno what it means to me. They'll take away my character and drive me on the streets for speaking to gentlemen. They--"
Bernard Shaw. Pygmalion. 1916.)
JUST SAY YES. STOP.
(The lights come on, the speaker crackles to life, the engine tenses and a moment later, the train lurches forward on its tracks. Suddenly 18 months of standstill, of immobilization, (agitated, not resting; drowning, not waving) comes to an end. And the first question that springs to mind is: 'Why now?')
(Was this the warning?)
(Acid trip. Friday, December 3, 1999. The sign shows the seasonal opening times of a Parisian park. Her (secret) first name was Marie (a name she didn't use). An hour earlier, in the cafe, I took a little bit more acid than she did. (Why did I do that?) The time was 10 minutes past 12.)
RETROSPECT SCRIPTS. STOP.
(Or was this the warning?)
(Acid trip. Friday, December 3, 1999. A few hours after the park I photograph her, laughing and holding a copy of the Rough Guide, descending the escalator at the National Library. It's odd, but I remember (the precise motion of) her descent as if it was preserved on video.)
HIBERNATION. STOP. END OF AN IDENTITY. STOP.
(So I ask once again, 'What's happened? Why now?' and call one of my oldest friends to find out what she thinks and to ask her why I suddenly feel -- when nothing has really changed -- this abrupt shift of attitude. She says to me, "Because you are more than one person."
Does "more than one person" mean no more than one Paul at one time? Does it mean that Paul has to steal (Paul's memory away) from Paul? Does it mean rethinking the note made on the 18th of October 1999:
For he who checks on the state of his own shadow (or wakes his own sleepwalker, or kisses his own Snow-White, or rouses his own Zombie, or raises his own Lazarus), does he not fall himself into a Rip van Winkle sleep?)
GOOD MORNING. STOP. PLEASE FIND ENCLOSED TWO PULL QUOTES AND A JOKE. STOP.
(Quote one. Susan Sontag. Against Interpretation. 1964.
"Interpretation is a radical strategy for conserving an old text, which is thought too precious to repudiate, by revamping it. The interpreter, without actually erasing or rewriting the text, *is* altering it. But he can't admit to doing this. He claims to be only making it intelligible, by disclosing its true meaning. However far the interpreters alter the text (another notorious example is the Rabbinic and Christian 'spiritual' interpretations of the clearly erotic Song of Songs), they must claim to be reading off a sense that is already there.
"Interpretation in our time time, however, is even more complex. For the contemporary zeal for the project of interpretation is often prompted not by piety toward the troublesome text (which may conceal an aggression), but by an open aggressiveness, an overt contempt for appearances. The old style of interpretation was insistent, but respectful; it erected another meaning on top of the literal one. The modern style of interpretation excavates, and as it excavates, destroys; it digs "behind" the text, to find a sub-text which is the true one. The most celebrated and influential modern doctrines, those of Marx and Freud, actually amount to elaborate systems of hermeneutics, aggressive and impious theories of interpretation. All observable phenomena are bracketed, in Freud's phrase, as *manifest content.* This manifest content must be probed and pushed aside to find the true meaning -- the latent content -- beneath. For Marx, social events like revolutions and wars; for Freud, the events of individual lives (like neurotic symptoms and slips of the tongue) as well as texts (like a dream or a work of art) -- all are treated as occasions for interpretation. According to Marx and Freud, these events only *seem* to be intelligble. Actually they have no meaning without interpretation. To understand is to interpret. And to interpret is to restate the phenomenon, in effect to find an equivalent for it."
Quote two. Jalal Toufic. Over-Sensitivity. 1996.
"It is not enough to find an artwork beautiful; with artworks as with other objects (I am less proficient than Buddhists at doing this with the latter), it is a matter of letting the 'object' *self-liberate*, and to attain that one often has to pass by the allonym of the object and hence also by one's own allonym (the danger here is the encounter with the double, the latter insididiously trying to pass his name for the allonym), *only then* reaching the failure of interpellation. All this takes (*and gives*) time.")
SUPER-SATURATION MEANS FALLOUT. STOP.
(Space filled with thought becomes space littered with thought.
"Love is a puppy that grows up and says goodbye."
"Change is a puppy born into the lap of truth."
(After watching 'The Seventh Seal' for the second time in over twenty years.)
If death is nothingness, oblivion, then life is one long near-death experience. For me the experience begins in 1956, which coincidently is the year that Ingmar Bergman made The Seventh Seal, a film where life (reality, the film reality) is turned inside out the moment actor Max von Sydow (playing the returned crusader Antonious Block) says:
"This morning I met death, we are playing chess."
and we, the audience, understand that what we are watching is not what it appears -- is not what we had assumed --, the life in the film (the film's characters and their stories) are nothing more than emblems of Von Sydow/Block's reprieve from death. It is at this moment we wake up to the hyper-reality the situation, to Von Sydow/Block's NDE, (and if we are lucky, to our own).
CHANGE IS WHERE YOU FIND IT. STOP.
(Change is difference. Difference is good. Refrain.)
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