Saturday, March 28, 2009

Therapy (from concentrate)...

You think you can turn down the volume on life and it will be ok. And of course you can. People do it all the time. But "forgetting" that it was your choice to reduce the intensity, to lessen the experience, to deny the present and not take full responsibility for this willful denial is the most disrespectful crime one can commit against the gift of life. After all, all it wants is for us to accept the gift in full.

You've come up with all sorts of mini-experiences and distractions in your shut down world and you've given them all sorts of relevances. But what you refuse to look at is the mirror right in front of you that reflects this truth: You are afraid of life. You have disengaged from it, and protecting yourself from this regrettable fact has made your exhausted. And now you are lazy. And Afraid. And this is the reality you have chosen, even though you can't see your choice. Are fear and laziness the qualities you want to remember on your deathbed? Or are you shamefully strong enough to deny, deny, deny, right until the curtains are pulled?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Deus ex machina...

In general the spirit wants to express itself. It has a will to power. For some, organized religion provides a vessel, many of them beautifully crafted to reinforce higher values and provide shelter from chaos. (Jesus, for one, was a carpenter after all.) But the organized religions aren't for everyone in this modern world. One hears this quite often on the coastal cities: I'm a spiritual person but I'm not religious. For these souls, there can be a pull to the New Age with all it's bendy rules and rainbow sparkles. Personally, I'd skip this dead end. The real wisdom for the non-religious individual comes from acknowledging the lack of a vessel. It is good that our spirit is restless. It rightfully haunts our days, reminding us that economies and to-do lists are false prophets in our short experience of life.

(photo by Nick Veasey)

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Appreciator's loss...

How many of the great appreciators forsake participation in the thing they appreciate? Howard Cosell did not box. Peggy Guggenheim did not paint. Charlotte Cotton doesn't own a camera. What exactly is gained from abstaining I wonder? What does doing do to observation? Are you in it or are you around it?

Friday, March 20, 2009

How come?

How can it be that I find myself humiliated and saddened every six months or so by spending moments in public spaces where Michel Gondry is talking and holding court? How come he gets to live that life? How didn't I learn to interface my apparatus with the world in such a way? Do you envy others because they are your non-blood brothers? At any rate Tokyo! is pretty damn good.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Is my vacuum cleaner gay?

Sarah: Herbert Hoover was gay.
Paul: The 31st President of the United States?
Sarah: Yes.
Paul: Are you sure you don't mean the FBI guy?
Sarah: RADM Roscoe H. Hillenkoetter, USN?
Paul: No, J. Edgar.
Sarah: The cross-dresser?
Paul: Yes, J. Edgar Hoover the cross-dresser...
Sarah: was gay?
Paul: Well, possibly more gay than Herbert Hoover.
Sarah: His brother?
Paul: No. The vacuum cleaner magnate.
Sarah: Was the 31st President?
Paul: Correct. The 31st president of the United States was a gay, cross-dressing vacuum cleaner salesman.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Figured it out...

The natural fulfillment of any human civilization hinges on two phases. Phase 1, to evolve far enough in order to create weapons and other toxic systems that can destroy all life. Phase 2, to evolve further so that the civilization may discover very good reasons not to use these phase 1 creations.

The time in between the completion of phase 1 and the start of phase 2 is generally regarded as a golden age by those who have lived through them and come out the other side. Funny thing, you can't tell that to the people living in this transformational era. They generally just don't see it.

(The City by Lori Nix)

Sunday, March 08, 2009

The stuff of swimming...

Most of us are familiar with the practice of swimming in water. What I wonder is how we might fare as swimmers in other liquids. For example, could we do the Australian Crawl through a swimming pool filled with olive oil? Could we doggy paddle our way across a lake of honey? Could we backstroke through pancake batter? Could we dive beneath the surface of an ocean of liquid mercury and pluck pearls from their shells?

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Rainbows are relative...

For those of you who were driving East on the 10 freeway at approximately 4:20 on Wednesday, you saw it. The biggest, brightest, gay as a daisy rainbow shamelessly straddling the motorway with one end anchored on a gleaming white tower in Century City and the other settling somewhere in Compton or thereabouts. The dark emptying clouds provided a perfect backdrop and amplified the colors tenfold. I've never seen anything so amazingly fake-looking in my life. Spielberg would have rejected it as kitsch.

I called Sarah and told her to go outside for a viewing (she's on Wilshire). But then I wondered - are rainbows fixed physical entities or are they strictly viewer centric?

Oh Wikipedia, what did we do without you?

A rainbow does not actually exist at a particular location in the sky. Its apparent position depends on the observer's location and the position of the sun. All raindrops refract and reflect the sunlight in the same way, but only the light from some raindrops reaches the observer's eye. This light is what constitutes the rainbow for that observer. The position of a rainbow in the sky is always in the opposite direction of the Sun with respect to the observer, and the interior is always slightly brighter than the exterior.

Incidentally, Chris Burden's pot of gold at Gagosian was canceled. Did you hear?

("The City" by Liz Hickok)

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Thanks Eve...

(MM by Andre de Dienes)

Monday, March 02, 2009

Thanks Adam...