29 August 2007

In Memoriam

D.R.O. (Aug. 25, 1959 - Aug. 29, 1995)

"[T]he beauty of the world which is so soon to perish, has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder."
~ Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own

"Grief itself is transformative. It is a process of disassembly. The bereaved must let go of the selves they were, as well as the loved ones they have lost. The dreams we have while grieving are an important part of that process."
~ Rebecca Cathcart, "Winding Through 'Big Dreams' Are the Threads of Our Lives" (NYT, 7/3/07)

Q: What is the privilege of the dead?
A: To die no more.
~ Jean-Luc Godard's Alphaville

Elegiac Stanza on a Photograph of
Ethel Rosenberg in Her Kitchen

It sits on top my desk, but it is faced
So that the sun will not cause it to fade:
The photographs we save are like the taste
Of honey on a sharpened razor blade.

~ John A. Wood

25 August 2007

The Grinder

3: Coarse
The deepest determinant of contemporary social psychology is not mass unbelief but mass production. Industrialism has decisively undermined the republican ideals of independence, self-sufficiency, and proprietorship -- the "modest competence" postulated by early democratic theorists as the basis of civic virtue and civil equality. It is the practice of demanding skills, rather than fragmented and routinized drudgery, that disciplines us and makes mutual respect and sympathy possible. Work that provides scope for the exercise of virtues and talents; a physical, social, and political environment commensurate in scale with our authentic, non-manufactured needs and appetites; and a much greater degree of equality, with fewer status distinctions, and those resting on inner qualities rather than money -- these are the requirements of psychic health at present. The alternative is infantilism and authoritarianism, compensated -- at least until the earth's ecology breaks down -- by frantic consumption.
~ George Scialabba, "The Curse of Modernity"

2: Medium
Jenny Holzer's Truisms (1977--):
and here

1: Fine
Do you want to know who you are? Don't ask. Act. Action will delineate and define you. You will find out from your actions. But you must act as an "I," as an individual, because you can be certain only of your own needs, inclinations, passions, necessities. Only this kind of action is direct and is a genuine extricating of yourself from chaos, self-creation. As for the rest: isn't it mere recitation, execution of a preordained plan, rubbish, kitsch?
~ Witold Gombrowicz

12 August 2007

Summer School

(S+M) x (L+F)/T - O
Likewise, a man who answers "you could lose a hand in here" with regard to his caboose's firmness gets one point, whereas one whose bum feels like "a cricket ball covered in latex" gets the maximum five.

Pues, Nada
Art schools should have core curriculum include classes on artifice and the occupational hazards and safe handling of nihilism and narcissism.

Reasonable Awe
Birth, copulation and death are the moments when time stands still, when we look on the world from a point at its edge, when we experience our dependence and contingency, and when we are apt to be filled with an entirely reasonable awe. It is from such moments, replete with emotional knowledge, that religion begins.

[Calvin Klein, Inc.] spokesmen say the fragrance for this new generation is designed to be, as its members are, fast-acting, direct, and seductive. This is achieved, for women, with the scents of pink grapefruit, bergamot, red currant, and neon amber; for men, with lime, cocoa, and musk.

"Get Away From City Lights"
Got a calendar? Circle this date: Sunday, August 12th. Next to the circle write "all night" and "Meteors!" Attach the above to your refrigerator in plain view so you won't miss the 2007 Perseid meteor shower.

04 August 2007

Just passing through...

Best line in the book: "Many Hipsters let things grow naturally and brag that their vaginas are 'old school.'"

My advice: Take a tape recorder out into the world. Listen to people. Read more fiction not involving boy wizards.

...bored, officious goons who will make you suffer if you don't pretend they are the beloved guardians of your safety.

Christianity: The belief that some cosmic Jewish Zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree.

Photo Essays by Herman Krieger


The dietary laws of kashrut are designed to differentiate and distance the observant person from the rest of the world.

Often the demands of the outside world become so great that we lose track of what we really want in life and spend our time trying to live up to someone else's expectations. Even worse, we internalize those expectations and convince ourselves that they are our own.

The professor said, "photograph what you know or what you want to know."

A shrink I met at a party a while back told me that crying is perhaps the only proper response to what is going on now.

Here's the plain truth, folks: Hope is not a consumer product. You have to generate your own hope. You do that by demonstrating to yourself that you are brave enough to face reality and competent enough to deal with the circumstances that it presents.