Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

dunkelaesthetik: Elven Warrior von n-nyx, skull jewellery…



dunkelaesthetik:

is this too dark for Thanksgiving? yes? good. 

gothbats: Vampire Bat Shaped Purse. Buy it here:…



gothbats:

Vampire Bat Shaped Purse. Buy it here: http://amzn.to/1idDw6M

November 26, 2014



November 26, 2014

“A writer never takes a vacation.  For a writer life consists of either writing or thinking about writing.” Which makes me a bit of a bore.  I know I should take an interest in other people’s lives or at the very least, pretend that I’m interested in their lives.  The truth is I find my world absolutely fascinating, because … well, me.   My work is basically focusing on the one thing that I know, or I “think” I know.   Surely there is not anyone out there in the world, who could write a full bodied biography on yours truly.  Therefore it is my responsibility to write, and to write what I know of - which again, is basically, me.



My entire life before I started writing, was to please others.  As the boyfriend I had to tell the girlfriend that she’s the one, and when I worked for my various bosses, I told them that they were the one, and I had to consistently bite my lips so I won’t tell them my true desire.   The only time where I felt at home, was when I read a book.   Reading text on a page is probably the most satisfying series of moments in one’s life.  The relationship is pure.  The writer and the reader.  Eventually as a reader, I decided to promote myself as a writer.  Now, for the past three or four years I read nothing but my own writings.




I have two books out now.  I read them many times.  I try to imagine myself as a reader, who doesn’t know me.   Would I still like the books?  Surprisingly I do!   “I’m almost never serious, and I’m always too serious.  Too deep, too shallow.  Too sensitive, too cold hearted. I’m like a collection of paradoxes.” Which I think makes me unique in today’s world.  Everyone is so black and white.  Truth or lies.  Left or Right.  Soldier or terrorist.   Everyone has a role and they play that role as if it was a vehicle going down a straight highway from point A to point B. As for myself, I like to explore the mystery and the paradoxes that are truly me.  Even though I have been thinking about myself for numerous years, there are still things I don ’t understand.



I often feel that language alone does not describe my world.  My basic struggle every day is to provide a description of my condition, but I often feel limited by my knowledge or use of language.  “Without language, thought is a vague, uncharted nebula.” When I walk down Waverly Drive, I think of what is it about the street that makes it so unique.  The only thing I can think of is that it is because I’m walking down this specific street.  Me being at a location makes it significant.  Without the “me, ” then it is just a street or location.  “I’ve always been suspicious of collective truths.” The only process I can truly trust, is what I see, and then there’s the art of writing down what you see - but can one ever do that?  “Sometimes I lie awake at night and I ask, “Is life a multiple choice test or is it a true or false test?… Then a voice comes to me out of the dark and says, ‘we hate to tell you this but life is a thousand word essay.’”

Photo



Photo





The writing on the wall

I had fun last night lecturing on Beckett and Adorno: I was having slight qualms about having assigned such a difficult piece, but I think it was worthwhile (you never up your intellectual game if you don't read the really hard stuff sometimes, and it is in my view a genuinely revelatory essay - here's the JSTOR link for "Trying to Understand Endgame" though I'm not sure if that's gated for Columbia users only).

Here's a bit I really like (in an effort to get across the true force of Adorno's point, I was elsewhere in lecture describing the disgusting stretch of track where you wait for the front car of the uptown 1 train at 14th St. - I am not sure why, but it is always full of the most revolting detritus, all sorts of trash in several inches of water - it prompts me to think how glad I am it is not my job to clean it up):
What becomes of the absurd, after the characters of the meaning of existence have been torn down, is no longer a universal--the absurd would then be yet again an idea--but only pathetic details which ridicule conceptuality, a stratum of utensils as in an emergency refuge: ice boxes, lameness, blindness, and unappetizing bodily functions. Everything awaits evacuation.
Next year I really will have to put "The Waste Land" on the syllabus as I am so often alluding to it: will move around "The Death of the Author" and "The Intentional Fallacy" to put with it, and will probably also add "Tradition and the Individual Talent" somewhere although that would be too many different things for one week of class....

Bonus link: most enjoyable Wikipedia entry I came across while checking out a few of the allusions in the Endgame passage I worked through in class (I really had no idea it was a dog biscuit!): "Spratt's medium"!

Also: mene mene! I have a probably annoying habit of asking students to gloss things that might be worthwhile to pursue (the meaning of a word, the substance of an allusion), and it is often difficult to tell in a big lecture course whether it's that students know the answer but are shy about uttering it or whether they genuinely don't know and I should go ahead and say it. I was surprised that "mene mene" and the Rembrandt painting of the scene were not more widely familiar. But it is also clear to me that it's not just that I delve most deeply into things because I am the professor and responsible for the material (it is incumbent on you if you're teaching properly to have really done your utmost to have pursued details in passages you're actually actively reading in class), but that what one editor I worked with a long time ago called my "terrier-like" inability not to try and get to the bottom of things is a good part of the reason that I am a professor in the first place!

(It is idle curiosity, often, but especially given the thematic connection of biscuits, I was reminded of the "empire biscuit" internet rabbit hole I went down after seeing Brave with B. and wondering what exactly those iced biscuits with glace cherries on top actually were. I must confess to having a minor obsession with biscuits. Hmmm, biscuits in literature: that is what I should write for the editor I'd like to work with but have been too busy to think of anything for....)

Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate the holiday. I had a funny conversation at the doctor's office the other day with the very nice young man who works at the front desk: he said that a well-intentioned but possibly misguided adult had given a dismaying lecture about Thanksgiving as holiday of genocide to his twin five-year-old nieces, and that while he agreed with the substance of the critique, he thought they were really too young to be given much beyond the fantastical story of Pilgrims and Indians joining together to celebrate....

Googling Freedom – an album on Flickr A question from Tassos…











Googling Freedom - an album on Flickr

A question from Tassos Stevens: “What do you get if you google image search ‘FREEDOM’? Are we same or different?”

Although the question is about how individual browsing data affects what is seen, these images test how location, without other data, affects it.

These are the image search results using a Tunnelbear VPN (virtual private network) to access Google from 13 different countries. A VPN allows you to send your internet traffic privately to another place before it is visible on the internet, so you appear to be located elsewhere. All browsing data was erased between connections.

For each country, the word “freedom” was used as a search term. In countries where English is not the first language, the local translation for “freedom” was also used. This distinction is made in the image titles (e.g. “Freedom France” v “Freedom French”).

In almost all cases, google.com auto-directed to the local site (google.de, google.co.uk, google.ca etc). The exceptions to this were the Netherlands endpoint, which stayed with google.com, and the French endpoint, which redirected to google.be (Belgium).

Some notes:

- In Australia, “freedom” is closely associated with a brand of furniture.

- In Japan, the Japanese word for “freedom” is closely associated with America.

- In Switzerland, the Romansch word for “freedom” was used, as Italian, French and German were tested elsewhere. This is “libertad”, which is the same as the Spanish word for “freedom”, resulting in almost identical results.

- The Irish word for “freedom” is the first name of a popular actress.

See the album “Googling Freedom” for the complete set.

Fidelity’s Oculus App Lets You Fly Through Your Investments |…



Fidelity’s Oculus App Lets You Fly Through Your Investments | MIT Technology Review

Hedging the possibility that Oculus Rift’s immersive goggles might someday become useful beyond video games, Fidelity Investments has mocked up a way for you to don the clunky eyewear and fly through your money. In Fidelity’s prototype virtual environment—which it says is the first financial services app written for Oculus—stocks are represented as office towers and lumped together in sector “neighborhoods.” The buildings’ footprints are shaped by trading volume and their rooftops are red or green depending on changes in price. In Fidelity’s prototype app, there are some other heavy-handed metaphors: when the market’s open, it appears to be daytime in the virtual city; when the market is closed, it’s night. Sunshine or rain indicates the general direction of the market. No word yet on what kind of weather graphics would have been used during the last financial crisis, but Stern joked: “Tornadoes?”

Norbert Wiener

wiener-cart-corner-1He foresaw the evils lurking in cybernetic command and control.

delightfulderelict: Tom Hiddleston in Only Lovers Left…



delightfulderelict:

Tom Hiddleston in Only Lovers Left Alive

pour vous, mon amie

this one’s for Wally.



this one’s for Wally.

bullit1987: I like this …  goth to her fingertips…



bullit1987:

I like this … 

goth to her fingertips…

drbmbay: ready to fight for right… against wrong. Gigantor, The…



drbmbay:

ready to fight for right… against wrong.

Gigantor, The Space Age Robot Theme, performed by the Dickies (1980)
 via YouTube

wiki: “The series is set in the year 2000. The show follows the exploits of Little Jimmy Sparks, a 12-year-old boy who controls Gigantor, a huge flying robot, with a remote control. The robot is made of steel and has a rocket-powered backpack for flight, a pointy nose, eyes that never move, and incredible strength, but no intelligence (although he started to tap his head as if trying to think in one episode). Whoever has the remote control controls Gigantor.”

I remember seeing the Dickies in LA. they made me laugh and laugh. Gigantor was one of my favorite flicks. 

drbmbay: I’m gonna let you out, baby. that’s what I’m gonna…



drbmbay:

I’m gonna let you out, baby. that’s what I’m gonna do.

Rosco Gordon-No More Doggin (high Quality) (by Carlos Rasool)

about: “Maybe the least expected of the factors that went into making ska in those years, and the one many would argue that most nearly approached it in sound, leading most directly to its birth, came not from Jamaica at all, or even from the Caribbean, but from West Tennessee, and more specifically from South Memphis, and more specifically than that, from the band called the Beale Streeters, and most specifically of all from the right hand of their pianist and sometime singer-songwriter, a Memphis native named Rosco Gordon…. Several of Rosco’s songs had second lives in Jamaica. These were cuts that had been hits in the States in ’52 or so, entering the charts in Jamaica a half-decade later or more.”

sandhyalalune: Kali Ma manifestation of today’s mood



sandhyalalune:

Kali Ma

manifestation of today’s mood

theartofanimation: Marie-Rose Boisson











theartofanimation:

Marie-Rose Boisson

museumuesum: Michael Ray Charles The Target of Opportunity…



museumuesum:

Michael Ray Charles

The Target of Opportunity Gameboard, 1995

specialnights: “We know the road to freedom has always been…



specialnights:

"We know the road to freedom has always been stalked by death." - Angela Davis

Photo



postgraduategoth: Who else would I invite to Thanksgiving…



postgraduategoth:

Who else would I invite to Thanksgiving dinner?

And I summon the Creature from the Black Lagoon…to do the dishes!

Photo



#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38 Download and Own for…



#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38
Download and Own for http://bit.ly/DBM_38 ISSUE 38 features works from Lindsay Adler, Camilla Lobo, Dianne Baars,Breanne Marie, Fabrice Meuwissen, Jürgen Angelow, Alex Saint, Donna Lewis, Mohsin Khawar, Dedalus&Crane, Jennifer MacDonald, Andrei Gonciulea, Kerp Photography, Asia Ray, Tom Lau, Kyle Weaver, Sequoia Emmanuelle, Jodie Mann, Laurie-Lou, Luke Schneider, Lori Cicchini, Hartmut Nörenberg, Tim Engle, Emily Payne, Rudy Shoushany Qrude, StevieChris, Spoiled Cherry, Steve White, Debra Lamb, and many other talents.

#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38 Download and Own for…



#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38
Download and Own for http://bit.ly/DBM_38 ISSUE 38 features works from Lindsay Adler, Camilla Lobo, Dianne Baars,Breanne Marie, Fabrice Meuwissen, Jürgen Angelow, Alex Saint, Donna Lewis, Mohsin Khawar, Dedalus&Crane, Jennifer MacDonald, Andrei Gonciulea, Kerp Photography, Asia Ray, Tom Lau, Kyle Weaver, Sequoia Emmanuelle, Jodie Mann, Laurie-Lou, Luke Schneider, Lori Cicchini, Hartmut Nörenberg, Tim Engle, Emily Payne, Rudy Shoushany Qrude, StevieChris, Spoiled Cherry, Steve White, Debra Lamb, and many other talents.

I die. #ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38 Download and Own for…



I die. #ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38
Download and Own for http://bit.ly/DBM_38 ISSUE 38 features works from Lindsay Adler, Camilla Lobo, Dianne Baars,Breanne Marie, Fabrice Meuwissen, Jürgen Angelow, Alex Saint, Donna Lewis, Mohsin Khawar, Dedalus&Crane, Jennifer MacDonald, Andrei Gonciulea, Kerp Photography, Asia Ray, Tom Lau, Kyle Weaver, Sequoia Emmanuelle, Jodie Mann, Laurie-Lou, Luke Schneider, Lori Cicchini, Hartmut Nörenberg, Tim Engle, Emily Payne, Rudy Shoushany Qrude, StevieChris, Spoiled Cherry, Steve White, Debra Lamb, and many other talents.

#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38 Download and Own for…



#ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38
Download and Own for http://bit.ly/DBM_38 ISSUE 38 features works from Lindsay Adler, Camilla Lobo, Dianne Baars,Breanne Marie, Fabrice Meuwissen, Jürgen Angelow, Alex Saint, Donna Lewis, Mohsin Khawar, Dedalus&Crane, Jennifer MacDonald, Andrei Gonciulea, Kerp Photography, Asia Ray, Tom Lau, Kyle Weaver, Sequoia Emmanuelle, Jodie Mann, Laurie-Lou, Luke Schneider, Lori Cicchini, Hartmut Nörenberg, Tim Engle, Emily Payne, Rudy Shoushany Qrude, StevieChris, Spoiled Cherry, Steve White, Debra Lamb, and many other talents.

owl be seeing you…. #ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38 …



owl be seeing you…. #ClippedOnIssuu from ISSUE 38
Download and Own for http://bit.ly/DBM_38 ISSUE 38 features works from Lindsay Adler, Camilla Lobo, Dianne Baars,Breanne Marie, Fabrice Meuwissen, Jürgen Angelow, Alex Saint, Donna Lewis, Mohsin Khawar, Dedalus&Crane, Jennifer MacDonald, Andrei Gonciulea, Kerp Photography, Asia Ray, Tom Lau, Kyle Weaver, Sequoia Emmanuelle, Jodie Mann, Laurie-Lou, Luke Schneider, Lori Cicchini, Hartmut Nörenberg, Tim Engle, Emily Payne, Rudy Shoushany Qrude, StevieChris, Spoiled Cherry, Steve White, Debra Lamb, and many other talents.

(via Miyu Decay Sterling Silver Bat Skeleton Necklace by…



(via Miyu Decay Sterling Silver Bat Skeleton Necklace by MiyuDecay)

November 25, 2014



November 25, 2014

Seppuku (“stomach-cutting”) is a ritual suicide by disembowelment.  Traditionally only the samurai can do this act of suicide.  Mostly it was used voluntarily by samurai to die with honor, rather than be captured and perhaps tortured to death.  The noteworthy aspect of this practice is that it must be done in front of spectators, and the act of Seppuku is to put a sharp blade into one’s abdomen and moving the blade from left to right in a slicing motion.   For me, this is difficult because I’m left-handed, and it seems more natural for me to move from the right to the left.  Nevertheless, rules are the rules, and I must follow them.



I have always been attracted to the Right than the Left.  The reasons are I hate chaos and firmly believe that there should be an order, and within what limitations there is direction, hope, and freedom.  The Left to me seems to be based on emotion, while the Right has the logic - and it is hard for me to break away from what I find logical in a world that is truly illogical.  The indifference of the suffering and those willing to accept fate as a wind from the East, West, South and North  - I feel can be changed by a certain amount of will and passion.   For this reason I joined the Tatenokai.  It is the Shield Society that is devoted to traditional values and justice.  I used to write and work for a college journal, “Ronso Journal," but it faltered due to lack of readership and therefore finances.   The best thing working for the journal was meeting Yukio Mishima.  I never met a famous man before and his charm, personality, and determination almost over-whelmed me.  It was at this point, that I decided to join the Tatenokai, and devote my life to the man as well as to this organization.



Through Mishima’s connection we were able to train with the armed forces, and eventually Mishima commissioned a tailor to make us uniforms.  I never wore anything other than clothes from a department store or from the mall.   To have a designer measure my body in such great detail, made me proud to be part of this group.  Once the uniform was finished, Mishima told us that we must put it all on at the same time.  We were like children opening up presents at an orphanage.   Once we put the uniform on, Mishima made us appear in front of a huge mirror.  Our beauty shined through the clothing.

Of the ninety members of the Tatenokai, there were only four of us who were close to Mishima.  We were Hiroyasu Koga, Masatoshi Koga, Masahiro Ogawa and yours truly.  Mishima brought us to a meeting and we were told not to tell anyone about this meeting.  It is there, that he told us about the plan to take charge of the office of a general and make our demands for traditional values.  He asked each one of us if we are prepared to die for the cause.  We all said “yes.” He then let us know that we must prepare for death through the act of Seppuku.   We looked straight at him with tears in our eyes and said “of course.” He then took a knife, cut his index finger and squeezed out a bit of blood in a glass, and told us to do the same.  We did, and each one of us drank a sip of the blood in that glass.  This was the bond that couldn’t be broken.  We swore that we would not say anything to anyone about this meeting.



Eventually Mishima pulled me aside to tell me that he wanted me to do the honor of beheading him.  I said “yes of course.” A month later the told the rest of us that it will be him and me and the other two must remain alive.  Of course, they were disappointed.   I then ask Hiroyasu if he would behead me when the time comes.  He said yes.   The performance was set!



Throughout my life, I have never done anything of great importance.  Now, this will be the final act where I clearly stand for something.   I never felt more alive.  Once a decision is made, I can feel the pressure coming off my shoulders.   The happiness I felt that morning as we left for our appointment was intense.  I was extremely nervous, but I also know that there is no turning back, and going forward was something beatific.  Not only do I understand, but I truly embrace what Mishima told me in that “perfect purity is possible if you turn your life into a line of poetry written with a splash of blood. ”

installator: “[Exposition] En attendant l’ouverture de Jeff…



installator:

"[Exposition] En attendant l’ouverture de Jeff Koons, le Balloon Dog monte la garde. http://goo.gl/SUcoqd #jourdefermeture.” (Centre Pompidou)

installator: “LYON.- A picture shows stuffed animals wrapped in…



installator:

"LYON.- A picture shows stuffed animals wrapped in plastic bags in a stockroom at the ‘Musee des Confluences’ science centre and anthropology museum still under construction in Lyon on November 4, 2014 ahead of its December opening. AFP PHOTO / JEFF PACHOUD." (artdaily.org)

beautiesofafrique: Female retainers of Swahili household in…



beautiesofafrique:

Female retainers of Swahili household in gala dress, photographed by Sir John Kirk. in Zanzibar || Africa

“Today, consumers buy kitchen appliances, and then take them home and do whatever they want with…”

“Today, consumers buy kitchen appliances, and then take them home and do whatever they want with them. But if that product is “connected,” chances are it’s been pre-loaded with someone else’s idea of what a person should be doing with it. And no matter how well meaning that someone else is, when the objects we own contradict us, that’s going to be a frustrating experience.”

Radium Age: Context (17)

6217563735_339b1da4bb_oFemme à la moto

Lewis Thomas

lewis-thomas-2Mistakes, waste, the meandering of intricate systems!

“I am president of the TV and there’s nun’ you can do about it,…





"I am president of the TV and there’s nun’ you can do about it, Pussy."

ageofdestruction: wunderkammer: Comets, planets, and stars,…



ageofdestruction:

wunderkammer: Comets, planets, and stars, photographed by STEREO, November 2013.

Comet ISON moves left-to-right. Comet Encke (smaller) moves downward across its path. In the background are Mercury (left) and Earth (right). The cloud that blows right-to-left across the image is matter ejected from the Sun (out of frame right).

30 images taken by STEREO A, 1 every 4 hours 22nd-26th November.

Image credit: NASA/STEREO. Animation: AgeOfDestruction.

Minor medical woes!

I really was OK when I ran yesterday afternoon, but woke up at 4am and was coughing so much that I couldn't go back to sleep at all: or at least not until about 8:30, when I drifted off for an hour or so (then a team of workers arrived to replace the gas meter in the kitchen as I scrambled for sweatpants and tried to create the impression that I had not still been asleep when they rang the doorbell). Day not off to a good start!

Nighttime coughing sufficiently alarmed me that I thought I'd better get myself in to the doctor's office, though I was pretty sure I didn't need antibiotics; I am growing soft in middle age, clearly, as I cannot remember the last time I canceled a class for illness, but it was the only way to make sure I got in before the holiday, and with this trip to Paris early next week I did not want to take any chances.

And now indeed I have a good answer as to why I was fine while running and not fine in bed. It is one of those phrases where you can only say "apt diagnosis," airway hyperreactivity syndrome in the wake of the two respiratory ailments that have been dogging me these last five weeks. Doc recommends liberal use of albuterol, which I already have for asthma (I take it as a precaution before running, to avoid wheezing, thus no particular respiratory distress with exertion - but bed is full of allergens), plus Claritin and a prescription for a serious cough suppressant called benzonatate. Woo-hoo!

I don't think this will magically clear things up, but I am relieved that doctor finds lungs otherwise clear and that I now have a good explanation for respiratory distress of the last few weeks. Should be able to spot this one more quickly next time, now that I have a name for it....

Minor medical woes!

I really was OK when I ran yesterday afternoon, but woke up at 4am and was coughing so much that I couldn't go back to sleep at all: or at least not until about 8:30, when I drifted off for an hour or so (then a team of workers arrived to replace the gas meter in the kitchen as I scrambled for sweatpants and tried to create the impression that I had not still been asleep when they rang the doorbell). Day not off to a good start!

Nighttime coughing sufficiently alarmed me that I thought I'd better get myself in to the doctor's office, though I was pretty sure I didn't need antibiotics; I am growing soft in middle age, clearly, as I cannot remember the last time I canceled a class for illness, but it was the only way to make sure I got in before the holiday, and with this trip to Paris early next week I did not want to take any chances.

And now indeed I have a good answer as to why I was fine while running and not fine in bed. It is one of those phrases where you can only say "apt diagnosis," airway hyperreactivity syndrome in the wake of the two respiratory ailments that have been dogging me these last five weeks. Doc recommends liberal use of albuterol, which I already have for asthma (I take it as a precaution before running, to avoid wheezing, thus no particular respiratory distress with exertion - but bed is full of allergens), plus Claritin and a prescription for a serious cough suppressant called benzonatate. Woo-hoo!

I don't think this will magically clear things up, but I am relieved that doctor finds lungs otherwise clear and that I now have a good explanation for respiratory distress of the last few weeks. Should be able to spot this one more quickly next time, now that I have a name for it....

November 24, 2014



November 4, 2014

Depression is a bitch.  As well as a bastard.  Nevertheless nothing is worse than waking up and realizing that someone or something enforced a steel framed dark cloud over you.  The weather outside my window is beautiful, but with my little friend “Depresso, ” here by my side, it seems to mock, more than to please me.   I would laugh, but it’s too painful.   Lately my life does not appear to have a beginning, but just a long delayed ending.  It’s akin to being in quicksand, and you’re sinking slowly.  You try to grab an object to pull yourself out, but it seems that object, structure, a limb is greased with oil.  I just slip back to my place in the mud of shit.  Nevertheless, it is Monday, a day of the week that doesn’t have that many fans, and I just have to get on with it.

“Develop success from failures.  Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success.” Since I’m at the bottom today, and I’m in the position to gasp for fresh air, I need in order to remind myself that once you’re on the bottom, there is nothing lower than that - except death.   Also today being Monday, I had to live on six or so days of misery to get to this point.   The last six days I have been dodging and running away from “Depresso,” but he always catches up with me on Monday.   In the Netherlands, it seems more people commit suicide, or call in sick, or even worse, surf the Internet on Mondays.  I think my source of depression is the fear of wasting time.  Time is money, and therefore I do not have money.  And “Depresso” always remind me of that fact.   I just have to keep in mind that “most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.” The big question right now, am I one of those people who can keep on trying?



The hours drag on, and I’m too anxious to be bored.  I feel the day can exist without me, and that alarms me the most.  I sit here and have a cup of coffee with “Depresso,” and it seems he wants to embrace me with his arms.  I can’t bare the thought of “Depresso” touching me, especially to be trapped in his hold.  I know he doesn’t exist as a person, but somehow making him into a 3D figure, it becomes more real to me.  Otherwise I am just facing a huge void.   I can feel that void sucking me into its entrance, and once entrapped in that non-world, what will become of me?  I obsess about the silliest things.  When my neighbor Forrest J. Ackerman passed away, I was concerned about his collection.  What will become of it?  It only made sense when it was put in place in his Los Feliz home. If it was sold, piece-by-piece, his collection will become meaningless.   The thought of spending one’s life in obtaining objects, books, and …well, stuff and then what happens when you die?  I have a full music and book library, but it’s only significant when the collection is intact.  Once removed, it becomes just another item.  It is only important when someone attaches themselves to that object.



“I begin with writing the first sentence - and trusting to Almighty God for the second.” My life is from one sentence to another.  The fear of not coming up with that sentence is deathly to me.  “You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so.  For I must remember, fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind.” Since I can’t change my fortunes, I can only write, and hopefully write myself out of my despair.   “Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.” So perhaps all of this will pass… or not.

glamidols: Iggy Pop photographed by Mick Rock, 1972.



glamidols:

Iggy Pop photographed by Mick Rock, 1972.

myjetpack: My book of cartoons ‘You’re All Just Jealous of my…



myjetpack:

My book of cartoons ‘You’re All Just Jealous of my Jetpack’ is available now:
US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/1770461043
UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1770461043
Other stockists and info at www.tomgauld.com
(you can also buy prints there).

Hasbrow (9)

1465572910_0f873045e6_oGI Joe vs. ISIS

Closing tabs

A long-overdue post to close some tabs. I am finally running again this weekend, very slowly, though lungs are still impaired. In work as opposed to lung capacity, though the two may be loosely aligned, I am at the point of the semester where I am barely functioning at 60% capacity - teaching Heart of Midlothian and associated criticism tomorrow just overwhelmed me with a desire to write JEDEDIAH CLEISHBOTHAM on all forms of social media, and I must also, alarmingly, write a lecture on Endgame and Adorno for Tuesday evening!

A wonderful personal assistant from my friend Jill's company Lambent Services helped me clean up my work office so that I have lots of room for NEW PROJECTS (about which more anon at some more leisurely moment probably about a month from now). This service is highly recommended - that office has always been a chaotic and neglected enclave, to the point of functionality being impaired, and I am going to make sure to have regular tune-ups to keep it in good nick.

Liz had an extra ticket to this for Thursday: Black Mountain Songs. Enjoyable, interesting, thought-provoking: I had some pangs of guilt that though I am a dedicated teacher with considerable meta-interest in teaching, I have never (yet) been involved in a really utopian teaching scheme. I wouldn't rule it out, only in reality such things probably happen mostly in summers and I am not sure I would survive year-round teaching! Deep Springs has always interested me as a possibility: now I think they either have gone or about to go co-ed, it might be an actual opportunity?

Other bits of interest:

On founding your own country. (Via I.H.D.)

Helen DeWitt's personal library.

Lottje Sodderland on recovery from a stroke.

The Tingle Alley bear report.

Himalayan marmots! (Via B.) Also, an eagle's view of London.

Slight obsession with this historic food site, especially the ices... (Original link possibly via Teri D.?)

Last but not least, pygmy marmoset loves being brushed with a toothbrush and a short history of the black pug.

I must log the light reading or it will be forever lost in the dim mists of history. It has mostly been a very large number of werewolf-vampire-type novels that I think I will not log individually - Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels novels, which I thought were really very good (I should not have then read the first couple of the Edge series, they are not so much suited to my taste); Stephen King, Revival (suffered for me in comparison to The Shining and sequel, which I read last year, but certainly worth the time); two crime novels by the Israeli writer D. A. Mishani, The Missing File and A Possibility of Violence, both very much the kind of thing I enjoy reading; a reread of a favorite novel of mine by Diana Wynne Jones, Deep Secret, now happily available for Kindle (this caused me to think I should write a long essay or a short book about her); Heather Abel's fascinating and troubling Gut Instincts, an excellent Kindle Single about celiac and mysterious gut woes (could be paired with Leslie Jamison's Morgellon's essay and Sarah Manguso on illness for an interesting trio); Dorothy Hughes' The Expendable Man; then Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson novels en masse (still finishing the last few of these - it is mighty soothing to have such a good flow of high-quality light reading).

Also I remembered during grumpy desperate non-exercising binge of book acquisition that I very much wanted to read my longtime digital correspondent Robert Hudson's second novel, and finally got around to obtaining a copy: it is called The Dazzle, and I enjoyed it hugely. Recommended in particular to readers of Peter Dickinson and good interwar period pastiche, but really it's just very appealing (good use of epistolary format!): I am going to pass it on to my mother now, in confidence that she will enjoy it as much as I did.

Closing tabs

A long-overdue post to close some tabs. I am finally running again this weekend, very slowly, though lungs are still impaired. In work as opposed to lung capacity, though the two may be loosely aligned, I am at the point of the semester where I am barely functioning at 60% capacity - teaching Heart of Midlothian and associated criticism tomorrow just overwhelmed me with a desire to write JEDEDIAH CLEISHBOTHAM on all forms of social media, and I must also, alarmingly, write a lecture on Endgame and Adorno for Tuesday evening!

A wonderful personal assistant from my friend Jill's company Lambent Services helped me clean up my work office so that I have lots of room for NEW PROJECTS (about which more anon at some more leisurely moment probably about a month from now). This service is highly recommended - that office has always been a chaotic and neglected enclave, to the point of functionality being impaired, and I am going to make sure to have regular tune-ups to keep it in good nick.

Liz had an extra ticket to this for Thursday: Black Mountain Songs. Enjoyable, interesting, thought-provoking: I had some pangs of guilt that though I am a dedicated teacher with considerable meta-interest in teaching, I have never (yet) been involved in a really utopian teaching scheme. I wouldn't rule it out, only in reality such things probably happen mostly in summers and I am not sure I would survive year-round teaching! Deep Springs has always interested me as a possibility: now I think they either have gone or about to go co-ed, it might be an actual opportunity?

Other bits of interest:

On founding your own country. (Via I.H.D.)

Helen DeWitt's personal library.

Lottje Sodderland on recovery from a stroke.

The Tingle Alley bear report.

Himalayan marmots! (Via B.) Also, an eagle's view of London.

Slight obsession with this historic food site, especially the ices... (Original link possibly via Teri D.?)

Last but not least, pygmy marmoset loves being brushed with a toothbrush and a short history of the black pug.

I must log the light reading or it will be forever lost in the dim mists of history. It has mostly been a very large number of werewolf-vampire-type novels that I think I will not log individually - Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels novels, which I thought were really very good (I should not have then read the first couple of the Edge series, they are not so much suited to my taste); Stephen King, Revival (suffered for me in comparison to The Shining and sequel, which I read last year, but certainly worth the time); two crime novels by the Israeli writer D. A. Mishani, The Missing File and A Possibility of Violence, both very much the kind of thing I enjoy reading; a reread of a favorite novel of mine by Diana Wynne Jones, Deep Secret, now happily available for Kindle (this caused me to think I should write a long essay or a short book about her); Heather Abel's fascinating and troubling Gut Instincts, an excellent Kindle Single about celiac and mysterious gut woes (could be paired with Leslie Jamison's Morgellon's essay and Sarah Manguso on illness for an interesting trio); Dorothy Hughes' The Expendable Man; then Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson novels en masse (still finishing the last few of these - it is mighty soothing to have such a good flow of high-quality light reading).

Also I remembered during grumpy desperate non-exercising binge of book acquisition that I very much wanted to read my longtime digital correspondent Robert Hudson's second novel, and finally got around to obtaining a copy: it is called The Dazzle, and I enjoyed it hugely. Recommended in particular to readers of Peter Dickinson and good interwar period pastiche, but really it's just very appealing (good use of epistolary format!): I am going to pass it on to my mother now, in confidence that she will enjoy it as much as I did.

hyperallergic: (via Art That Was Always Meant to Be Hidden) The…



hyperallergic:

(via Art That Was Always Meant to Be Hidden)

The portraits in Oliver Jeffers Dipped Paintings series exist as wholes only in the memories of those who witnessed their submersion. Last night, after gathering at a rendez-vous point and walking to an undisclosed location, small groups descended into a Manhattan basement and watched as Jeffers lowered portraits into vats filled with vibrant, opaque paint.

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November 23, 2014



November 23, 2014

I like sweets, but I tend not to like the taste of sweets.  Instead, I like to look at sweets.  For reasons I am not totally clear on, the visual aspects of certain foods, I greatly admire, but I have no urge to eat them.  Instead I like the image of food much better than eating that food.  If you wonder what my favorite film is, I with all honesty would have to say a Burger King commercial, where they show in detail, a sandwich about to be eaten.  I can’t even remember the actor/model who is about to bite into the sandwich.  Or if it is taking place on a real or imagined location.  My only focus is on the sandwich itself.  I’m the commercial wants that effect, but also, I have no memory where that sandwich came from.  Burger King, McDonald’s, In N’ Out - all of them are the same to me.  I can’t imagine I would go to a fast-food place to eat anything, and I have no urge to see these foods in real time.  No, I prefer the photograph or even painting of food than the real thing.



If you’re on Facebook or Instagram, one can’t avoid the pictures of people’s meals before eating it.  I would like to say these images are spiritual, but they’re more about consuming than anything else.  Or is it even that?  Wouldn’t it be better to show an empty plate, which in turn, strongly suggests that the eater really loved that meal?  So why are photographs of food or a meal before it is eaten?  On one level, I can see it as a journal for the eater - he or she can look at the picture and be reminded that they had that meal at so and so place and time, but what does it mean to the viewer?  

The best sweets are the one’s that look the most complicated to make.  We admire the skills and how that plate of food is made.   The portion has to be just right (usually in America, at the very least, there’s a lot of food on that plate) and the setting should be seductive as well.  As a viewer it doesn’t make me hungry, but I guess a touch of jealousy does come into the picture.  Not only are these images pornography of sorts, but it also a statement that “I’m living better than you, because look at this food I’m about to eat.” In essence not that far off from a model/actress in a porn film being interviewed about her sexual habits before being fucked by the photographer.   There is something creepy about seeing a young girl being used in such a fashion in front of a camera, and I feel the same way at looking at someone’s image of their meal.  I too want to have sex with that girl in the film, in that same exact situation, but I can’t. The same as when I look at a picture of someone’s decadent desert, I can’t eat it due to health issues.  It is almost like the photographer is going out of his or her’s way to show off that they can eat this dish of food, while you sit there and fantasize about it.




I’m a fan of Wayne Thiebaud’s paintings of various sweets.  On one level, it does make me desire to reach out and taste the painting or drawing.  On the other hand, there is something so cold about how the food is displayed in such a fashion.  It is almost like the ice creams and cakes are stand-in’s for a photograph of the Nazis in Nuremberg.  One is totally seduced in the image of a series of soldiers lined up so perfectly and so many.   Why they are there, and who they are - doesn’t make much sense, except in the visual experience of having such perfect sense of order in front of your eyes.   Food photography, from the viewpoint of a professional photographer, artist, or even more seductive, by an amateur image maker with Instagram, exposes the need for a moment or two of perfection.  I don’t think Thiebaud’s paintings are about fascism or even order, but that is how I view his work.  They’re beautiful to me.



Ironically enough I also admire the images of his daughter Twinka, who posed many times in the nude for various fine art photographers.  Like the images of beautiful food, I too have a visual need to look at her. I don’t need to know her, and even though I feel erotic feelings for her, I surely don’t need to penetrate her. In any fashion or form.  Nevertheless the eros that melts off her skin onto the viewer’s gaze is such a wonder.   On a different level looking at her images, I feel that there is a landscape that is not logical or restricted, with respect to the images of food.   There is a specific logic when you see a painting or a photo of a desert.  You can taste it if you have the imagination to do so.  I don’t think it serves any purpose beyond that the food is there, and perhaps it is used to mark a specific time in one’s life as well as for its location.  In a nutshell, Twinka gives me layers of meaning, that is hard for me to penetrate (no pun intended) -yet, I’m drawn to her beauty and the way she exposes her sensual body.   Food is also sensual, so I guess at the end of the day, we should just accept that for some, a plate of food is bliss, as well as a photograph of Twinka Thiebaud.

“American Beat writer Jack Kerouac leans closer to a radio…



American Beat writer Jack Kerouac leans closer to a radio to hear himself on a broadcast, 1959.”

Photograph: John Cohen/Getty Images /via the guardian

coeursfideles: Jean-Pierre Léaud arriving at Cannes



coeursfideles:

Jean-Pierre Léaud arriving at Cannes

biblioklept: Interior — William Rothenstein 1891



biblioklept:

Interior — William Rothenstein 1891

El Lissitzky

62703848_129184747254Abstract shapes in black and red collide in empty space.

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