The influence of gaslight or electric light on the growth of paraheliotropic trees

bonebrushing the edges of the res interna (upper transcend)

Month: April, 2012

The Enemy Named

“That said, I like that the greatest enemy this season is almost the passage of time itself. As things go on, we change and evolve. We become ever so slightly different, and maybe the people around us don’t see us in quite the same ways as they did. Right after Don realizes that Megan could be gone forever, he briefly remembers a time when the two of them were far happier, when he was returning from the trip to California with her and his kids, and she got the Beatles’ “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” stuck in his head. (This would have made a great closing credits song if I believed for a second this show could have afforded the rights.) That’s increasingly a memory in the distant past for him. No matter how the rest of their relationship proceeds—even if they stay married until one of them dies—they’re never going to be as happy as they were in that moment again. If they attain happiness, it’ll be a different kind of happiness. You fall in love. You learn more about each other. And then comes the first fight. And then another and another. Pretty soon, you don’t feel as flush with newness as you once did. And that’s when the true test of whether you’re going to stick the relationship out comes. Don and Megan are rapidly entering that stage, and it has both of them just a bit discombobulated.”

Todd VanDerWerff, 4.23.12,72637/


I’ve begun to …

I’ve begun to repeat myself. I need stories. New stories. Mine or someone else’s. 

I’ve begun to …

I’ve begun to repeat myself. I need stories. New stories. Mine or someone else’s. 

Behind the Face

Laying in my bed on this saturday morning in the year that the world is supposed to end. Thinking about the infinity I feel when I turn inward — the endless spaces, thought without limit, well and truly equal to the abyssal reaches that stretch down in a bottomless pit that appears to rise above my head (but only because I’m standing upside down) every time I leave my fourwalls — just like that, it is, lying in bed, now sitting at my computer, before that on my couch, working, not working, reading, not reading, talking, in it, the endless spaces —

A world, verily, a veritable world. In the original, means the same as Old Man. The Oldness of Men. The Ages of Men. Microcosmos and macrocosmos. The inner and the outer. Verily.

And all that. Hidden and totally occluded from the universe, no more visible than the face of the sun — less visible — hidden behind a face, an infinity of size & purpose & possibility & appearing in a small frame, a three pound piece of slop and water with appendages attached — and then a face, and a mouth, and the vibrating air that tries (but fails) to prove to the world the universe within.

And so we go out into the world, and confront these other universes, but we cannot see into them, they are always hidden from us, and of what we cannot know, we cannot speak, and of what we cannot speak, we must be silent, and yet we know, and to those who accept the reality of the world, and the worlds beyond — — —

And perhaps that there then is both the faith and the love and the difference — dwellers in our own universe, we look out at the world, and see the res externa as just one more extension of the res interna, with the edge of the universe stopping at the faces of others, being silent as to what’s beyond — when in fact, the situation is reversed, and all our res internas are simply extensions of the one great res externa, the one great world —

How easy it is to forget about others, to ignore them, to pass over, because they are unknown and unknowable and alien —

How easy to see the world as it isn’t, and how impossible to see it as it is.

Death of the Artist, R. Barthes

Death of the Artist:

“We shall never know, for the good reason that writing is the destruction of every voice, of every paint of origin. Writing is that neutral, composite, oblique space where our subject slips away, the negative where all identity is lost, starting with the very identity of the body writing.

No doubt it has always been that way. As soon as a fact is narrated no longer with a view to acting directly on reality but intransitively, that is to say, finally outside of any function other than that of the very practice of the symbol itself, this disconnection occurs, the voice loses its origin, the author enters into his own death, writing begins.”

Roland Barthes, “Death of the Artist”

Re: Five Years Later

I also wrote this, a little more than five years ago, as part of the First Post:

This afternoon, the girl from way back when, the one with the false start, called me on the phone. She said she had come to Philadelphia on a whim, and she wanted to see me.

We went to get coffee, and then we walked through the park. I smoked a cigarette, and a homeless man came to bum one and then proceeded to talk to us for the rest of our time there. He told us he was the only leprechan in America. He asked us our birthdays and read us our signs. He was the same sign as me, a Cancer.

I told him I had always thought Cancer was the worst sign. He disagreed, but told us how if you accept something from a Cancer, and it goes poorly, or something like that, the Cancer will then hurt you, mentally or emotionally. It’s funny – it’s true. It’s what I had done to this girl, all those years ago, when it had ended badly.

I regretted that so much. She wouldn’t talk to me, and I began to realize that I would never see her again, that she was out of my life forever. The whole think stank of a kind of death.

I went on with life, knowing what loss was, knowing what regret was.

And now my girl is in South America, at the ends of the Earth, and I may never see that one again, and I know loss, and I know regret.

Since then, I’ve been waiting. Waiting for the narrative to continue. Waiting for “Six Months Later” to flash across the title card.

I guess life has a way of surprising everyone, even me.

And that’s how a chapter ends. That’s how a book gets written. That’s how a life gets lived.

So strange.




Five Years Ago Today

The AV Club review of Mad Men asked me to consider where I was five years ago today, what I was doing, what I remembered; I looked; I had just started writing this blog;

The post from five years ago today was this:

On Postsecret this morning, this message:

”whenever I want to kill myself, I write letters to Van Gogh instead.”

Curiouser and curiouser. I went to a calendar. It was a Monday. Just like this April 16th is a Monday. Where was I? Are there emails?
What was I doing? I was making plans to go to Europe, and then law school. I was living in a one room studio a block from Rittenhouse Square. And getting ready to leave Philadelphia, for what would turn out to be years.

I had not met the love of my life/this life. I had a small crush on A.Smith, which was a valiant attempt to overcome a large crush on my Ex at the time, A.Steins.

(Five years ago was 1827 days ago) (I fell in love, broke up, became a lawyer, and moved through three cities during this time – but in all that time, was I sleeping? Lying to myself? Kent denying he was Superman?)

I was trying to get out of my lease; maybe sublet for the last month while I was going to be in Europe.

The Virginia Tech massacre had just happened. I had a conversation with A.Steins on gchat. J.Steins emailed me to ask me to lunch, though I do not know if I ever responded.

These were the headlines in the NYTimes Headline Emails I got back then:

‘Nothing to Hide,’ Attorney General Insists
In testimony prepared for a Senate hearing, Alberto R. Gonzales offered a measured apology for mistakes in the dismissal of U.S. attorneys.

Negotiators Say Sallie Mae to Be Sold for $25 Billion
The nation’s largest education lender agreed to be sold to JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America and two private equity firms.

Donors Linked to the Clintons Shift to Obama
The shifting of loyalties is lending the early stages of the Democratic campaign the feeling of a family feud.

I saw !!! in May 2007. I am seeing !!! tonight. Still difficult to search for on the Internet.

I had bought my brother the Stand on DVD for his birthday.

Also, E.LaT had sent me an email, and I met for her coffee on one of those days right around 5 years ago. But we did not turn out to have that much to talk about.

Basically, I was searching then, and I am searching still, though I would say I am farther along, and may have found my life, but I am still not one hundred and thirty thousand percent sure.

Crisis to Crisis

Loving her has been like moving from crisis to crisis
Peak to peak;
One adventure, after another;
Like some old radio serial;
Or Saturday morning cartoon,
In which every evening the villain hatches
some new plan
that risks the very existence of the world
and at the end
crisis averted
the villain remains
and says “Next time, Thundercats,
Next time.”