What i read today…

Heather Cox Richardson, Letters from an American, December 07, 2021… the heroism and death of Messman Doris Miller, a black man, in WW II… he was on board the U.S.S. West Virginia in Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attacked… he survived the sinking of the West Virginia but later perished when the U.S.S. Liscome Bay was sunk by a Japanese Torpedo, November 24, 1943…

I hear a lot these days about how American democracy is doomed and the reactionaries will win. Maybe. But the beauty of our system is that it gives us people like Doris Miller. Even better, it makes us people like Doris Miller.

In Defense—God Help Us—of Lauren Boebert, Chris True… i read the article and understand the point being made, but on the fence about whether i agree… my great frustration is that individuals that “no decent person … should give the time of day” get the time of day, get traction, take cover behind the protections of the system they are working towards dismantling… it puts those of us who want to stop them at a great disadvantage… we may be at a place where lines have to be drawn… on the other hand, it is a slippery slope…

No decent person should give Lauren Boebert the time of day. Congresswoman Boebert, however, is a different story. Congresswoman Boebert is representing over 700,000 people and those 700,000 people deserve the same representation in Congress as everyone else, even if that makes Democrats feel unsafe. Sticking to your principles often does._  International Court of Justice Rules Azerbaijan Must Stop Destroying Armenian Cultural Heritage in Artsakh, Yelena Ambartsumian… the ICJ apparently has the authority to refer its decisions to the UN Security Council which has the authority to do something about it… i am in sympathy based on what the article tells me, but wonder how straightforward the issue really is… last night Rachel Maddow’s opening monologue talked about the taking down of monuments to war heroes of the Confederacy… would the Confederacy, such as it exists today, have the right to appeal to the ICJ for relief?…

… a cartoon by Guy Richards Smit in Hyperallergic… last week, on Deadline Washington, Donny Deutsch lamented that the people he talked to in his crowd (he’s pretty wealthy) weren’t particularly concerned with whether democracy survives or not…

The Power of the Dog Is a Different Kind of Western Film, Ela Bittencourt, Hyperallergic…

In Jane Campion’s elegant adaptation of Thomas Savage’s novel The Power of the Dog, nature is an instrument of both wonder and violence.

The audacity of the original book comes from Savage combining a heated sibling rivalry, an illicit love story, the Western myths of male virility, and a murder mystery all within its slim pages.

How Marisol, “the True Trailblazer,” Paved the Way for Andy Warhol, Karen Chernick… “Behind every great man there’s a great woman.”… Marisol was quite well recognized at the time, so, not living in the shadows… but… an interesting exhibition…

Marisol, “Andy” (1962–63) (Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, image © Acquavella LLC (1962-63), © 2021 Estate of Marisol / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

The Hungry Eye: Eating, Drinking, and European Culture from Rome to the Renaissance, Leonard Barkan, review by Lauren Moya Ford, Hyperallergic… for art lover epicureans… there don’t appear to be recipes, but i suppose we can find our own…

… this image from the book catches my attention in particular… so many layers to dig through…

Joos van Cleve, “The Holy Family” (c. 1512-13) (the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)

New Study on NFTs Deflates the “Democratic” Potential for the Medium, Jasmine Liu, Hyperallergic… yesterday i upgraded my micro.com subscription to premium to take advantage of the new email signup feature and begin posting short videos which i call video stills… i was ambivalent about doing this because i have viewed these video stills as ideal for the NFTA world… it is interesting to see that the market is shaping up to be a reflection of the physical art world system of value creation and art distribution, where there are taste makers serving as intermediaries advising the well to do on their art purchases… i struggle with this system because it is exploitative and elitist and a direct reflection of the power structure in which art is created… artists don’t often make out well trying to participate in this system… i don’t have to make money from my art at present, so i don’t have to participate in the system if i don’t want to, and lately, i don’t want to… right now, i create my art and offer it for free on a platform that isn’t profiting from my free content…

Beginning the day… i wake at 2:30 AM… stay in bed… get up at 3:30 AM… Fiona comes with me… i weigh myself, 230.8 lbs, get dressed, go down stairs, let Fiona out, fill the kettle, put it on the stove, take my meds and vitamins, feed the cat, let Fiona in, read HCR, which depresses me… she’s struggling with the idea that the game may be lost already, democracy may be on its way out… she is trying to have hope… i make the coffee, put a little cold water into my thermal mug, add a pinch of cinnamon, add a little agave, pour coffee into the mug, screw the top on, return to my studio/dressing room upstairs… Fiona is waiting for me on the studio bed… i start to settle down but Chas whines… i let him out of the bedroom where H is sleeping… Chas, Fiona and i return downstairs… i let them out… i read an article in The Bulwark arguing that Lauren Boebert should not be stripped of her committee assignments because of her Islamophobic comments aimed at representative Ilhan Omar… i am on the fence as to whether i agree or not… the author argues we should deplore and ignore citizen Boebert but we should not block congressperson Boebert from representing her 700K constituents… the dogs come back in, i give them and the cat treats, the dogs and i return upstairs… i let the dogs into the bedroom where H is sleeping and return to my desk… i spend the first 45 minutes organizing my journal… i have been reading through it at the rate of two weeks per day, which should have me finished by the end of the year…

Walking… a man with a boxer dog… as we pass the dog lunges, grazing the back of my legs… the man restrains the dog which continues to lunge at me… no! he says to the dog… sorry he says to me… it’s not enough… as i walk away i wonder if i should have taken a picture of the man and his dog for Facebook…

Kitchen and Coffee… i do some Christmas shopping via the www and purchase gifts for H, J and R… still wondering about fruitcakes and whether i will get any… S worrying me a bit as they seem to be lagging on their business presentation for the holidays…

… the cafe is filling up so i will leave shortly… don’t like being with so many people… this leads me to recall a video posted from within a dance club this morning… oh my, packed to the gills and no masks… really?… was everyone was vetted as vaccinated…

… a gay couple sits across from me… a fellow with beard, glasses, knit cap, sits across and up a little bit… he is packing up his computer to go… i follow his example…

What i read today…

  • Letters from an American, December 06, 2021, Heather Cox Richardson… a little less depressing than the December 05 post, she discusses the Biden/Harris administration’s upcoming conversation with Vladimir Putin, the Summit for Democracy, and the administration’s comprehensive strategy for combating corruption around the globe which undermines democracy and allows illiberal governments to flourish… she discusses the West’s ability to hold Putin accountable should he invade Ukraine, which a troop buildup along the border suggests he might do… she then circles back to the problems we are having at home with a right bent on authoritarianism…
  • a review of Instructional Photography: Learning How to Live Now… the review is very positive… i am much more interested in I Am My Lover (1978) by Joan Blank and Honey Lee Cottrell, a book on female masturbation referenced in the article… i find i can have a copy for $65… hmmm says primal me… i learn more about Carmen Winant
  • Paradise, by Daniel Dorsa… i like the photography in this spread, excerpts from a new book…
  • my December horoscope by Lorelai Kude on Chronogram:
    • Intensity is still the name of the game this month, which starts out with a literal bang when Mars sextiles Pluto December 6, with Capricorn Moon square your Sun. Unless you are an active-duty combat soldier, resist all urges to engage in battle. The spectrum of aggression ranges from petulant pugnaciousness at best to punitive pyromania at worst. If power is your priority, Mars square Jupiter December 8 will supersize the struggles and their consequences. Align yourself with higher thoughts and broader horizons when Mars enter Sagittarius December 13. To whom do you owe your fiery allegiance, after all?
  • A Look Back at Art News in 2021, From NFTs to Restitution… in reviewing the art stories of the year presented by Hyperallergic, i found myself more hopeful… in many ways, the art world seems to be progressing and promoting liberal causes better than the discouraging mainstream news would seem to suggest… from protesting the Sacklers to unionizing museum staffs to repatriation of stolen cultural heritage, the news seems good…

Introducing video stills…

First thoughts…

229.8

… i am in a run where 6 to 6 ½ hours of sleep is sufficient… at some point i will need more, but for now, it’s good… i like getting up a little earlier… being at my desk by 4 AM…

… hotel bookings for the trip to Florida are complete… we found a cheap Red Roof Inn room in Savanah Georgia and booked it for two nights on the way back so we have a chance to see a little something of the city… looking forward to that…

… looking forward to visiting M except that i am increasingly anxious and angry about efforts of the far right to undermine democracy… lots of news stories yesterday proclaiming we are nearing the “break glass in case of emergency” point… some are saying we are past that… returning to M, as far as i can tell, they get their information entirely, or almost entirely from Fox News… i won’t be able to have a conversation with anyone who gets their information solely from Fox… most of my knowledge of the news comes from reading and i have both liberal and conservative sources…

… made a delicious mushroom cream soup last night… it turns out to be H’s favorite…

… after dinner we watched LoveHard and agreed it gets added to the Christmas rotation… it’s plot is predictable, it spoofs Love Actually a bit and is not as good, but, in the end, a satisfying Christmas romcom… i told H i was feeling a jones to watch Lars and the Real Girl and Hugo… she agreed with Hugo, was skeptical about LATRG as Christmas fare…

First thoughts…

… morning did not start well… very depressing post from Heather Cox Richardson, stopping just short of saying Democracy is dead in the United States… the urgency to protect Democracy that should be there, just isn’t… she quotes someone or writes that we need to imagine what actions are needed in a break the glass emergency… Democrats are faltering in a crucial moment… will they kill the filibuster and pass voting rights legislation?…

… and then there is this image from Representative Thomas Massie, ®KY:

… in what world, on what planet, is this an acceptable way to celebrate this Christmas Holiday?… i am not Christian, but i always thought this holiday was about peace and good will towards humankind?… no more…

… the best i have been able to do on break the glass planning is to consider how i might leave the country… immigrate just over the border to Canada, or something…

… i calmly think, ok, there is one voter in my life that i might have a chance to turn… how many of us turning one voter away from the authoritarian march would it take to halt the march?… not that many… so… i must try… but how to do it?… it largely consists in turning that person away from Fox News… i wonder if i can have a conversation with them that asks the question, what are you afraid of?…

What i read today…

  • Heather Cox Richardson, Letters from an American, December 5, 2021… HCR sounding the alarm about failing democracy in this country in the most strident way to date…
    • The problem is this: “Democrats…need to win every single election from here to prevent the destruction of democracy, while Republicans only need to win one. And the American system is set up so that Republicans will win sooner or later, whether fairly or by cheating.” Atkins urges the American people to “start thinking about and planning for what ‘Break glass in case of emergency’ measures look like—because it’s more likely a matter of when, not if. It not only can happen here; it probably will happen here. Conservatives are guaranteed to make every attempt to turn America into the next Russia or Hungary. It will take coordinated, overlapping solidarity among both regular people and elites across various institutions to stop it.”1
  • The Plague Legends… Emily Urquhart writes about plague legends and the early days of the pandemic… she captures well the feelings so many of us had and the struggle to preserve sanity and well being…
  • Ron DeSantis and His State Guard Aren’t Happening in a Vacuum
    • Again: Political grandstanding is the most innocent possible explanation. But not the only possible explanation. DeSantis’s private force cannot reasonably be viewed in isolation from the other challenges Republican governors and legislatures have been raising—not only with their National Guards, but by probing every possible weak point in the Constitution when it comes to vaccines, voting, vote counting, and more.2
  • Winter Trees as a Portal to Aliveness, Maria Popova, The Marginalian
    • In winter, we are prone to regard our trees as cold, bare, and dreary; and we bid them wait until they are again clothed in verdure before we may accord to them comradeship. However, it is during this winter resting time that the tree stands revealed to the uttermost, ready to give its most intimate confidences to those who love it. It is indeed a superficial acquaintance that depends upon the garb worn for half the year; and to those who know them, the trees display even more individuality in the winter than in the summer. The summer is the tree’s period of reticence, when, behind its mysterious veil of green, it is so busy with its own life processes that it has no time for confidences, and may only now and then fling us a friendly greeting.3
  • Ursula K. Le Guin on Being a Man
    • That’s who I am. I am the generic he, as in, “If anybody needs an abortion he will have to go to another state,” or “A writer knows which side his bread is buttered on.” That’s me, the writer, him. I am a man. Not maybe a first-rate man. I’m perfectly willing to admit that I may be in fact a kind of second-rate or imitation man, a Pretend-a-Him. As a him, I am to a genuine male him as a microwaved fish stick is to a whole grilled Chinook salmon.4

What i read today…

  • Donny Deutsch wikipedia article… i know about DD through Nicolle Wallace’s show… he is a frequent commentator and says things that do make sense to me… he appears to have grown up with a silver spoon in his mouth, as they say…
  • Nicolle Wallace wikipedia article… NW seems to have come from a solidly middle class background which makes me appreciate her more… she is my current favorite news anchor anywhere…
  • Where’s My Stuff?… a condensed education on the global supply chain, what ails it and what might or might not be helpful in strengthening it… argued from the point of view that globalization is good, protectionism is bad… i think about this in reference to the Small Is Beautiful local economies approach and against the question of whether the unending growth paradigm, which is what has brought us to globalize our production, is a sustainable one… it seems to me that global supply chains should tend to products that require it, like smart phone, cars, etc., and that local supply chains should tend to the production of goods that can be made in a quality way that potentially exceeds what the global supply chain can offer… food, crafts of all sorts, art, local culture, etc… i am far from understanding all of this, but this article made me a little more knowledgeable…
  • about the Rorschach Test on Wikipedia… i do this because i am also at this moment reading…
  • Life: A User’s Manual… i have landed on a chapter titled Rorschach 1, and before i dive into the chapter i wonder if Perec is making a deliberate reference to the Rorschach test… i read the chapter and the Rorschach character has nothing to do with psychological testing of any kind… but i still wonder if it is a reference…

First thoughts…

230.0

… i am up at 2:30 AM for the bathroom… back to bed… up again at 4:30 AM… a brief check of FB for comments on my post about our first viewing of Love Actually this holiday season… two comments about the same thing… i omitted a hyphen which transformed a comment centered around my second wife into a comment centered around my first wife… the first one to call it out was B, who rarely comments on anything i post… i am slightly annoyed because i think it slightly obnoxious… the second one is a pile on to B’s comment from an acquaintance who also happens to be a word nerd… both are annoying as they bypass the sentiment of the post and go straight to demonstrating how smart they are and (by inference) i am not… except their emotional intelligence is sadly lacking… everyone else ignored, if they even noticed, and dove into the spirit of the post… the hyphen comments have me thinking a little about my first wife and, for some reason, about the abortion we got when we were married… it was a sad day for us… i believe she came to blame me for it… for all kinds of things in the end… i hope she is doing well and found happiness… i have…

… i had a quasi productive day… things didn’t go together the way i hoped and i wound up with a couple of hours of unproductive time in the late afternoon… H needed some cookie tins, we went looking for them at Michael’s… didn’t find them… went to Adams… came home… i also wound up having to invest time in reprogramming my smart fixtures into smart home because it came undone for reasons i don’t quite understand, except an update to the app disconnected me from my account and i had no record of my account in my password app, so, new account requiring that fixtures be reconnected… the upside is that we are one or two lightbulbs short of having the basement lights on voice command… new bulbs are arriving today, along with a new dimmer switch for the dining room which will, i hope, put the dining room on voice command…

… a moment to get my studio lighting reconnected…

… HCR took the night off… on the politics side of things, a comment by Donny Deutsch on the Nicolle Wallace show has been spinning around in my mind… he did an informal survey of the crowd he travels with and discovered that they are not concerned with wether democracy lives or dies, only with how one thing or another hurts or helps them economically… DD travels with the wealthy, so, we know where the wealthy stand… the problem is, i don’t think enough of the rest of us who should care really think there is a major threat to democracy in this country… they either don’t believe it, are sticking their heads in the sand because it is too difficult to contemplate, or, they are part of the 25%-35% of us that think oligarchic/authoritarian/fascist government is what protects their interests and beliefs the best… it should be noted that this is largely the white patriarchal crowd…

… as i read DD’s Wikipedia article i wonder if the man can possibly be in touch with any kind of reality the majority of us live with… i agree with his views generally… at least the ones i know about… but it makes me mindful of “the club” of the wealthy that has a lot to say about how things will go in this country…

First Thoughts…

229.4

… when i weighed myself this morning i thought, we had soup for dinner last night… left over turkey soup… i thought, hmmm, soup, a good way to eat lightly for dinner, maybe i will develop my soup chops this winter… there is lots of variety and one can make lovely stocks to be the base of them…

… our new suitcases arrived yesterday… they seem like the perfect things… now we just need to be able to distinguish them… color coded luggage tags?…

… i listened to podcasts on the way up and back from Woodstock yesterday… one from Believer magazine and one from OnBeing, Krista Tippet’s production which used to be, Speaking of Faith… i have begun to dislike KT… i used to love her, but there is a kind of arrogance that has crept into her work… she has developed herself as a nexus of human wisdom and seems more caught up in that exalted position than in delivering meaningful understandings to people…

… the podcast i was listening to was positing that the key to wellness, planetary and otherwise, was to transform our hatred into love… i thought to myself, John Lennon had that astute observation decades ago, and of course, the New Testament teaches one to love their neighbors as themselves… the two guests on the program, one the Surgeon General of the United States, the other a neurologist and psychologist/psychiatrist… the program came across as a sort of new age babble that appeals to a well off and elitist sort of crowd but is a bunch of meaningless platitudes and politeness being offered up… all this new agey thinking and what does the world have to show for it?… right now, everything looks to be going to “hell in a hand basket” if i may appropriate a cliche… there is so much anger, resentment and outright hatred in the US alone… no wellness guru/program is remotely making a dent in it…

… the question is, how do you make a dent in it?… the people that presently matter… the people with power… don’t seem to give a damn so long as their wealth and power continues to accumulate…

… i have the impression of a volcano getting ready to blow… is it really that it must blow?… that thousands, hundreds of thousands, millions of people must perish before there is any kind of coming to the senses?… is this the only way to break the white euro-patriarchy (or establish it hegemony once and for all)?… how do we kill the euro-patriarchal beast once and for all?… i am afraid we will find out in the coming three years… why are we unable to stop raping and pillaging the planet and its peoples?… is it really as bad as it looks?…

… just now, the thought comes to me… we are looking at a world built on the mythology of mountain climbing… the mythic ideal of human success built around conquering mountains (literal and figurative) and then dismantling them for their raw materials and starting the next higher climb… i have written before that this is one mythic model that humanity follows… is is the one western civilization is built on… it operates on the principle of unending growth, the greedy and often violent appropriation of resources and the literal or virtual enslavement of people to extract, move and process those raw materials…

… another mythic principle we could operate on is the tail devouring snake… the ouroboros… the tail devouring snake… the ouroboros model is one of the continuous replenishing cycle of, birth, life, death, birth, life, death… a continuous cycle of consumption and replenishment… the ouroboric system is one of local economies, living in mutually beneficial relationship to the land and to other people…

… the odd thing is, we know we have lost our way, but we can’t help ourselves… something there is about a human being that doesn’t love regenerative cycles… we wish, above all other wishes, to escape them… prefers… prefers baubles, bangles, and power…

… and yet… and yet…

… i have the nagging feeling that humanity is inconsequential to the plans the cosmos has for intelligence… that we are a way station on the journey to some higher form of being… fodder really… some alternative and superseding intelligence… is that possible?… is my despair one that is trapped in the limitations of my species?… is it possible for me to understand what comes next as it may well be a level of intelligence that i can’t know, being composed of the billions of minds slinking around the planet?… is it that the choice is between annihilation and subsumption which is itself a kind of annihilation?… whither humanity?…

This Past Wednesday…

… i was coming back from grocery shopping and arrived at the intersection of uRoute 52 and Main Street, Beacon, NY…

… there was a commotion of vehicles and people going on at the opposite side of the intersection and i made out a human figure lying on the road as i turned the corner and continued on my way…

… as i drove slowly down Main Street thinking about what it was i had seen, the police, and then a fire truck, with sirens going, raced by…

… the following day H read to me from an article on the incident… a woman had been hit by a jeep making a left turn as she crossed in the crosswalk… she later succumbed to her injuries…

… this morning i passed by the intersection and this bouquet of flowers was stuck into the utility pole between the buttons one pushes to cross the road… i have no idea if she had pushed one or not before she crossed… as often as not, pedestrians don’t push the buttons…

… i was sad thinking about a woman who’s life was prematurely ended… saddened by the thought of loved ones mourning rather than celebrating this holiday season…

… the cosmic unwinding of forces is cruel sometimes… not from its point of view, but from ours… it is we who must receive and cope with its unyielding dispensations…

… i have had my own near misses at this intersection… i don’t believe in pedestrian controlled crossing lights… i believe they promote bad behavior in motorists… my own experience has shown that some motorists assume that when the walk signal isn’t lighted, pedestrians don’t have the right of way… NYS law says otherwise… pedestrians always have the right of way regardless of the disposition of traffic lights… pedestrian crossing lights should be automatic… i don’t know if the woman had pressed the button or, if not, whether it would have made a difference… i do know that motorists can be quite aggressive to pedestrians in their way…

What I Read Today…

  • Letters from an American, December 02, 2021: the government got funded last night and Heather Cox Richardson explains why that strengthens our hand on the international stage…
  • Ridley Scott’s Dyspeptic Disposition: a review of Ridley Scott’s film making career… a promise that Raised by Wolves will be released winter 2022…
  • my journal entries from weeks 5 & 6 of 2021… i am trying to review my journal for the year… two weeks a day should get me through the entire 2021 journal by Christmas… certainly before the new year… i am making sure everything is tagged so that i can filter content into significant people, reading and thought trends… in weeks 5 and 6 i continue to make my way through Simone de Beauvoir’s _The Second Sex_…
  • Dinaya Waeyaert Come Closer: i read the review, written by Brad Feuerhelm and glean that it is a photobook about two women who love each other… one is the photographer… it is a book about intimacy which BF’s hyper-intellectual style barely is able to crack into… i go to the photographer’s website which has a full presentation of the project, opening with a short film… it is a beautiful testament of one young human being’s love of (obsession with?) another young human being, with it’s all enveloping sexual attraction, action and reaction bubble… how well i remember those days in my own relationship with H… this appears to be a beautifully done project… i put it on my to get list…
  • A Conversation With 10x10 Photobooks: in which i am reminded of a book i would like to own, What They Saw: Historical Photobooks by Women, which Colberg points out was in part put together to address the dearth of women in The Photobook: A History, volumes 1 and 2, which i own copies of… what they saw is also on my to get list…

First Thoughts…

… our evening came to an abrupt end last night when, as H put it, a puff of wind came through and knocked out the power… we scrambled around a bit reorienting ourselves… i replaced the battery in the gas fire stove, found the camp lantern and determined it’s battery was not dead and thought to myself that i needed to do an inventory of preparedness for storm outages…

… when i got up this morning the lights were on again… the oven clock showed the power had been out for only 15 minutes… but not sure how that could have been… H came to bed saying the gas stove was not reigniting as i had hoped it would… it is our heat source when the power fails… it is our main heat source for most of the winter…

… this morning i will drive up to CPW to help them pack… they are moving from Woodstock to Kingston… one wonders if they will have to change their name as a result… i will work for about five hours helping them pack boxes and earn some credit towards future programming…

… the coffee tastes good this morning… it doesn’t always… more the result of a variability in my taste bud’s willingness to receive coffee than a variability in the coffee itself, which is made the same way with the same beans every morning…

… our new luggage system will arrive today… a couple of carry on bags from Timbuk2 and a couple of waterproof duffle bags from Mies for the top of the car… this should be enough capacity to get us to Florida and back with dogs and crates in the car…

… i miss some of the features of Feedly, one of them being the ability to set up boards around topic interest… but then i realize i can do that by clipping to Evernote and poof… desire met… i have been using Evernote practically from the day it arrived on the app scene… nothing has come close to replacing it… it’s had its ups and downs… but it has been reliable and the ability to have a clip shortcut on the browser tool bar is everything…

The Journals of Denton Welch

… DW says not to worry what people will think about his journal writing, time will eradicate what it needs to and embrace the rest… he thinks people will blush reading the journal, not in 200 years time, maybe a little in 100 years time… well, it is not quite 80 years time that i am reading it… no blushing here… i suppose he might have been referring to some of his remarks about people he met… he sometimes wasn’t kind… people who knew the people might blush…

… DW is more and more often sick… all of this flows from the accident he had when 20… i wonder what got so messed up the it should become a slow but steady decline until he dies in his early 30’s… what the cosmos serves up to people… it’s a crap shoot really… by any measure, the cosmic forces that be have smiled on me… i wish i felt better about it all… i still want to find that fundamental truth that makes it all ok…

Life, A User’s Manual, Georges Perec

… a very curious book describing in minute detail characters that the world might generally pass by, but who are exceptional and deeply contoured in their own obscure ways… it reminds me of the realm of true outsider artists, not the posers, but the people who make art just to make… that there might be a market for their creations in the art world is not of consequence to them… they just make… this seems a great deal like the characters in Perec’s novel… they come and go… they contribute what they contribute which is ignored by most of the world…

… in this passage Perec anticipates the ability to tag items digitally, which came with the age of personal computing:

What he would have liked would be to link each label to the next, but each time in respect of something else: for example, they could have some detail in common, a mountain, or volcano, an illuminated bay, some particular flower, the same red and gold edging, the beaming face of a groom, or the same dimensions, or the same typeface or similar slogans (“Pearl oof the Ocean”, “Diamond of the Coast”), or a relationship based not on similarity but on opposition or a fragile, almost arbitrary association: a minute village bay an Italian lake followed by the skyscrapers of Manhattan, skiers followed by swimmers, fireworks by candlelit dinner, railway by aeroplane, baccarat table by chemin de fer, etc. It’s not just hard, Winckler added, above all it’s useless: if you leave the labels unsorted and take two at random, you can be sure they’ll have at least three things in common.1

… and here i consider the extensive tagging system that i am developing for my journal…


  1. Perec, Georges, Life, a Users’s Manual [return]

Pictures from 12.01.2021

Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization

… i read two articles this AM on this case before the Supreme Court:

… there will be many more articles written on the subject in the next few days… then we wait for three months to find out how much the court will unwind Roe v. Wade…

… having fathered a child that my then wife and i decided to abort due to the horrid state of our relationship, i can tell you that the emotional issues run deep and there is trauma no matter what you do… a pro life friend once said to me that they were pretty sure abortion was violence… so is carrying an unwanted pregnancy to term… it’s violence of a different sort… a civil society will have many options for dealing with the situation… i am pretty sure one of them should be abortion…

First Thoughts

231.2

…HCR meter, depressing… the white patriarchy is winning… what can we do about it?… voting rights legislation would help… abortion rights legislation would help… none of that seems set to happen…

… i keep thinking about M… i keep thinking that they generally only watch Fox news and that because of that they have a very narrow view of the situation… they are only being told bits and pieces of the story with an overall picture painted that just isn’t what anyone would call truth… to some degree all news outlets offer up partial truths… they may be very factual in the stories they write, but story selection is another matter… there is no way to have an intelligent conversation with anyone about social and political issues if both parties aren’t taking in multiple sources of information… and who has time?… i barely have time and i have no job in the traditional sense… i will, rather than having political conversations, challenge M to get their information more broadly… then maybe we can have a conversation…

… i resent all this crap going on at this time in my life… but who gets to choose the crap that may or may not be going on during their lifetimes… what i am tasked with coping with pales in comparison to what many around the globe cope with…

… oral arguments on a case that challenges Roe v. Wade were heard by the Supreme Court yesterday… it seems likely that the law in question will be allowed to stand and that the standard for when the right to an abortion kicks in will become “undue burden” as opposed to setting the age of viability as the current court decisions in place do… so, undue burden will become that point at which a majority of women will recognize they are pregnant and are able to abort should they choose… in the case before the court, this rolls fetal age back to fifteen weeks, a little over three months… this is the point by which most women in the state of (Mississippi?, Missouri?) obtain an abortion… honestly, if this is the compromise we reach and even this Supreme Court upholds the right to an abortion, then i think we are as well off on the issue as we will be under the current juridical situation…

… it is still possible that Roe v. Wade will be completely undone, but it doesn’t sound like it to me… and then a string of cases from states across the country will refine the new conditions and the law will be settled at this level…

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I have recently joined Literal and am finding my way around. I am @mbkriegh if there are any fellow users here. Will connect with anyone who wishes to.

Also, I was trying to log on with my desktop web browser which was refusing to accept my credentials. Anyone know what that might be about?