Monthly Archives: April 2007

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Howdy, quoinstone

so says wordpress–it doesn’t know how I feel! Reading those words is like picking up a giant corded telephone and setting it on a skillet until it switches to that “hang me up” flustered-stutter tone and then mashing it against my ear. Reader, it is 8 a.m., my resolve is dwindling, my ear is pinking, somewhere MG is working my accent into his video-art script. Should I… should I write a video-art script?

[a birth canal. CT is asleep.]

okay, good, we’ll shoot that on friday. I might as well be trying to write on an abandoned hubcap with a retractable trash spear, on a highway median that is really a carpool lane. My community-service supervisor sent me there out of pure amoral curiosity. He stopped the city van in the road and told me to get out and I did, and now I’m crouching down, my trash spear retracted, trying to inscribe something worthwhile on a scratch-resistant hubcap. In a minute I’ll be run over by a modular home, or a boat; I can only see the truck, and the veiled shape behind it could be anything. Googling trash spear I remind myself that I’ve lost my ability to understand plot summary (“Part of Hammer’s scheme to get Ann back and to satisfy his personal antipathy towards all the inhabitants of the Bronx is to start a big gang war. To this end, he recruits Ice, with the promise that with Trash out of the way he can assume his rightful role as leader of the Riders. Ice gives him Trash’s spear because Hammer knows that Trash is going to Ogre for help in locating Ann (she went and got herself captured by the Zombies, after they were able to drop a cargo net on Trash)”–what?? Is this real? Every time I try to read it I feel like I’m being annoyed by a piece of op-art, or attempting to walk up one of those Escherian staircases that math and science classrooms made sure I understood to be relevant to precollegiate academics. “Chris’s craggy face is familiar from his roles in Django Strikes Again and Manhattan Baby, the Fat Man and Little Boy of his career.” Is that good or bad?).

Let’s talk, instead, about the November 2006 issue of artforum that’s in the bathroom: “How were heretofore undetectable elements going to emerge, disappear, reemerge, and coalesce to become truths, the always provisional, procedural, multiple truths of politics, science, art, and love?” Can Bronx Warriors help us answer this question? I need help, seriously.

make a frame of your house

when you’re proofreading, it’s good to think about how best to combine quotes from the DeLillo novel you have with you with lines from the Jeezy songs you’re listening to. [CMS 6.63]

“The island illusion, that solitude and wisdom invented each other, is a very convincing one. Day by day I seem to grow more profound. Often I feel I am on the verge of some great philosophical discovery. Man. War. Truth. Time. Fortunately, I always return to myself. I cruise the city by my lonesome, open invitation for anybody wants some.”

“I took B.G. into the living room. It was a party and we didn’t want to talk to each other. The whole point was to separate for the evening and find exciting people to talk to and then at the very end to meet again and tell each other how terrible it had been and how glad we were to be together again. This is the essence of Western civilization. We don’t talk in the bedroom, we whisper in the kitchen. Call me paranoid, I think the walls is listenin’.”

“Taste and smell can safecrack memory in the shadow of an instant, and in that pantry, nibbling dry cookies with the compulsive fervor of a penitent seeking the message of his past, I returned to a tight hot room in another town, the kitchen fumed up, jamming Tupac, my Benihana on, working two pots. I turned off the lights and went upstairs.”

I am not depressed, either

1

Just awake. Yesterday, at 10:52 p.m., unbeknownst to me as I sat admiring a haphazardly mustachioed Quilty eat a cheese sandwich (right? Was it?), somebody sent me an email saying that my prior message to him was “nice but doesn’t tell [him] anything.” He pushed right past my niceness like it was a floor-to-ceiling segmented curtain separating him from a pen he’d lent me, he slapped it away from his face like he would a cobweb, like it was me leaning in to kiss his angry Wyomingite lips and leave a fusty gloss on them. I wrote him back a minute ago but won’t send my message until tomorrow, when I am restored to my impenetrable den of niceness and cannot be seen to be reading emails at weird hours. Right now there’s an 85 percent chance that my reply will agitate him so greatly that he will storm out onto the streets of Cheyenne, BlackBerry in hand, and cast that impassive messenger at the nearest reminder of the nebulous pleastantness that I embody and he eschews, so maybe I’ll rewrite it in the morning. If you hit a living thing in a High Plains state with an electronic instrument, they shun you for one month. You’re sent out onto the most lonesome snowmobile trail with a hand axe and a sack of apples and you wait. The snowmobilers are told to avoid the trail and it’s mined, just in case. Sometimes at dawn you’re awakened by a distant blast, as you’ve wisely retreated well away from the access paths and their buried dangers, but even out there you can hear it when some unthinking Canadian sneaks out of the lodge before the trail markers are replaced (at night kids steal the minefield signs) and rides past the last redemptive turnoff onto a bad spot and goes up in a dull puff of ski-pants stuffing. It’s a crazy horrible waste, sure, but this is how society is maintained.

After a month you can come back and for every apple you have left the state’ll pay you a thousand dollars. Most people who saved them keep them, though, handling them like talismans inside the too-big jackets they’ve been given back, offering up the hand axe instead, saying don’t you want the axe, I had to cut a toe off with it in the second week, an ugly frostbitten toe that looked ready to drag me after it like a black beetle towing one hundred times its own weight across the soft dry crumbly earth toward a burrow you don’t return from, but the state won’t take an axe back.

2

I am not depressed.

Nothing bad has ever happened to me so for me to tell you (here in the verdant greenhouse that has a full-service bar café and rock stage) that I’m depressed would be “literally unconscionable.” I sometimes feel like “I can do anything.” My dreams are fully realizable. In fact, oh lucky jealous double of mine, resentfully chainsmoking Winstons and glaring at us from behind a giant bouganville, some of my dreams are already fully realized, or are in a state of constant realization, like the thirty-month extended orgasm that Steve Martin included in his list of things he would wish for in a funny Saturday Night Live sketch thirty-odd (and, Maurgueruethe, how very odd they’ve been, ¿no?) years ago. Last night was a chance to take a leap (one of those leaps from a standstill we did in middle school amid the other Presidential Fitness Test excercizes like the humiliating recording of the time one could manage to remain hanging from a horizontal metal pole) toward another (“professional”) dream. The difficulty with leaping toward dreams, especially from standstills, is that it’s hard and you will fail. At first, at least. And then it’s easy to rigorously don the turban of self-pity, the scrum [WORD CHOICE?] -kicking solo nightwalking Tenderloin pitywalk of the privileged, lazy, and fearful. Nothing bad has ever happened to me. They’ll make a movie about it, and there will be some big breasts in the movie. On my pseudomournful scuffly stroll through Nob Hill I looked up suddenly into the chest of a mannequin wearing a wool sweater. I had the urge to tumble into the mannequin’s perfect breasts and nuzzle them, and then extrude a cigarette from my anus. I did smoke a cigarette on the walk back, a kindly fellow traveler I had met that night, a man I was sure was going to be laid by a beautiful woman that very night, responded swiftly and MATERIALLY to my bogus bloviations about cigarettes. This is an annoying way of saying that a handsome man on a date gave me a cigarette after I mentioned wanting one. Waiting for the bus wasn’t fun. I should have stopped at a bar, but instead I went home, ate the food, watched the best of Soul Train. Billy Preston’s afro was soothing and encouraging.

billy-preston.jpg

I can do anything I want to, including write something that someone more intelligent, sensitive, and patient than I am will read and be enriched by. If you set my writing before a glass of pure soymilk for a few hours — wait for it — the milk will become enriched.

My saliva is bathed in nicotine, and carbohydrates are surging through my adorable corpulence. I’m writing this with you in mind. This is written for you. And for me. If I had a sedan with leather seats, would you eat until you were overweight and sit in my passenger seat, chainsmoking alternate Winstons and spliffs until we arrived at Santiago? Is that even possible? It doesn’t seem possible. Can one just drive south like that, beardless, helpless, terrified, with a huge amount of U.S. cash in the front pocket of fetid, stonewashed jeans until one arrives (by night in) Chile? And if your favorite and most talented filmmaker-uncle made a film about it, wouldn’t you smoke alternate fags and spliffs until you arrived at the Embarcadero to view it? Meet me at the high-end stationery in the mall and I’ll write your name in a leatherbound journal. I’ll press a pocket protector to your neck, smile (with adorable doublenecked corpulence) and say, “this will protect your neck” with a bogus knowingness, not breaking eye-contact for a moment. My tattoo, as you know, is of two flaccid and hyperelongated penises interlaced like snakes around the 8.5 English Towne emblem Stay Hungry.