Daily Archives: December 5, 2008

guerreros de journalismo

yo soy el blogger la mas borracho. no tengo español. No hablo español. I loathe only the parts of me that speak of loathing. The bar/restaurant we went to had a colossal Lichtenstein hanging. People were smoking indoors. I felt the smoke damaging the Lichtenstein — I felt the damage in my hair, somehow. (This is a lie. I am courting you.) I continued with my horrible Spanish. Peru means turkey in Portuguese. I ate a Peru sandwich. It was fucking amazing, even though it could have been easily produced in los estados unidos. Where was the Lichtenstein produced? It depicted a couch and a carpet reflected in a wall-length mirror or window. It was phenomenal. There was aura just pouring out of the thing, onto the diners. More fucking aura than I’ve seen pouring out of a painting in a while. Art needs to be freed from museums, and set free in really expensive restaurants. It wasn’t that expensive. I paid R 22 for two nice beers and a phenomenal sandwich.

Here is an approximation in English of some things I might have shouted tonight, as heard by a fluent Spanish ear:

[Shouting, because of the loud bar]

WHAT IS YOU SAY WITH YOUR JOBBING?

HOW ARE THING YOU SAYING?

IT IS AN ANCIENT CUSTOM! THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY!

MCSWEENEY’S IS PRINTED A STORY WITH AN SUBJECTS OF  YOUR NOT IDEAS!

HA HA HA! I DON’T HAVE THIS AGAINS! I WELCOME! THESE BEER IS THE SAME!

ETC.

ETC!!

Advertisements

naufrago

I have to leave in 20 minutes. The debate went fine. I ate another coca candy, and drank several cups of coffee. J. and I were wearing headphones, and there were translators translating what the moderator was saying, in Portuguese, to J., in Spanish, and to me, in English. Right at the outset as J. began speaking, though, I heard the translator say, “I’m sorry, I’m not getting sound.” and then “I’m still not getting sound” and then “well, I’ll just try to translate from the board” or something like that. So the spanish–> english translation was pretty bad, so when J. started really cooking, which luckily meant he slowed way down and enunciated and used powerful but easy words like … “literatura”, or whatever, I would take my headphones off and just listen really intensely and sort of understand. At one point he was talking about an article he published about an Italian stripper-politician I think and I heard him say “tetas” and then a moment later I heard the translator in my earphones say “she showed her… body” and then I heard her reconsider a little, maybe even look at my quizzical face, and she said “…her… teats.”  I almost broke out, laughing hysterically.

Teats!!!!

Otherwise it was good. Coca Candy is for real, dudes. (So is coffee after not drinking it for a few months. So is not eating all day.) The moderator was an awesome writer who has twice now made me feel like a monumental dumbass for not staying an extra week and going with him and J. to Rio. Oh well; my gift horse’s face has never been gazed into, and a felt blanket is draped luxuriously over its back.

Several excited brazilian journalism students/workers (TV and print) came up afterward and demanded magazines. I felt like an ass for I had already given all my copies away to the folks who brought me here. I gave them my email address as some weak penance. I kept talking about David Foster Wallace whenever I spoke during the “debate”, and my voice cracked in grief, weirdly, the second time I mentioned him.  I had to keep slowing down because the Japanese woman who was translating my English into portuguese for the audience’s headphones told me beforehand that portuguese (And spanish) are both much ‘longer” languages than English, e.g. it would take her 1 min. to say in portuguese what it took me 30 seconds to say in English. I think. So I kept speaking weird hypercaffienated slowed-down sentences, trying to avoid deranged untranslatable locutions. At one point I did say “mush-headed hippies,” and then immediately apologized. Everyone was kind, I think it went fine. Now we’re going to go to that “literary bar” that Quoinstone and Bread Stixxxxxx went told me about. UPDATE: we’re going somwhere else.  hopefully I’ll take up steev’s excellent/terrifying street food suggestions. steev you should write a visitor’s guide to brazil for crude futures. I would pay a subscription fee if your brazil travel guide tips were behind a salon.com-style subscription wall.

naufragos y besos platonicos

–A.

The “debate”

welcome back to our story. when we left off, the floating, disembodied vagina was weeping over a “floating pond,” and the cameramen all started crying. Let’s start by going around the room and answering some of your discussion-questions from last night’s tarea. Javier? What the fuck do you think?

JAVIER: I think you are vain. I think that you have an inflated sense of self. I think it is impossible for you to think of the word self without thinking about your – self. Which is sucks. Which is lame. I think you are big pussy. I hate you.

Cool, Javier, good one. Nice. Cut me to the quick. Anyone else have a response to the first discussion question?

LATHEY: Hey, I’m Patricia’s cat. I used to be the CEO of Amazon punto com but then una bruja cast a hex upon me and I was transmogrified into a cute little cat. I am a leedle pussy, in other words. The “Jeff Bezos” you see alive and at the helm of amazon dot com today is some other fuckface the bruja selected — in a different but related hex — to get turned into Jeff Bezos. I cannot say if this new Bezos  prefers being his old self. Also  no idea who he was before. Maybe he was, as you say, “a floating, disembodied vagina.”

Nice one, Beez. You are truly “tha teacher’s pet.” OK, next question: Really? Dialogic jam sessions from Brazil? Shouldn’t you be reporting new-new journalistically re: the plight of indigenous peoples? Lula do favela? Uploading high-res pix of food?

BALKY: Whoooah!!!!!

THE OTHER GUY FROM PERFECT STRANGERS: Balky!!!!

[my internet is too slow to look up the name of the other guy from perfect strangers. but my “mental internet” just offered me a suggestion — it came in the form of a little hoja de papel in an unsealed envelope, like in the oscars. NOTE: If I were a producer on the Oscars, I would make them seal those envelopes, and make someone make a joke about the decision to seal those envelopes.]

PRETTY TINY FACELESS WOMAN: I am pretty, though I have no face.

THE WATCHER: So how, then, are you pretty? Are we saying that it is your body which is pretty?

P.T.F.W.: No, I can still be pretty without a face. Watch this… [She leans over to drink luxuriously from a water fountain. When she resumes her standing posture, there are full red lips on her face.] This water is cold. [She has beautiful brown hair.]

THE WATCHER: I feel resistant to describing my day on my blog. Doesn’t this count?

PTFW: Don’t look at the camera. Look at me. [She is unbuttoning her blouse. What if this blog became an erotica website? If you can see any reason I should not publish erotica on this website, please leave a comment with a hypercogent, respectfully argued reason. Otherwise, my pen will begin to resemble a boner, and sexual narratives will flow freely from the mouths of my typing fingers. Which fingers shall be, in turn, fed to the mouths of exquisite, faceless beauties. Kiss my fingers. Kiss my fingers, PTFW (hereafter, “Tina”). Kiss my fingers, and let your facial features be revealed.] I am becoming fed up with you. If you don’t look at me and not the camera or your little adorable stomach, I will get more pissed and say harsh things to you. Things like, “you are a sorryfuck, and I loathe you. You have the talents of a grub bringing itself to climax in an empty, used compost bin. You are a British person alone in a fallout shelter, with nothing but every issue of Cracked magazine from 1997. You suck.”

THE WATCHER: I’m lookin at you baby, I’m looking. Just relax. It’s cool. I’m in Brazil. Say it with me. [A pause.] I’m in Brazil. [Another pause.] C’mon.

TINA: I’m… in Brazil. [She begins weeping.]

[A third and totally sweet pause. There is a chocolate cake lit with candles at the front of the stage. A single bed covered in a patchwork quilt is also on stage. Both characters sit down and stand up from this bed while they speak. Some people you went to college with are in the audience. Some of them are super high on marijuana. Others ate crazy snacks and have been suppressing farts throughout the first act. One dude feels his blackberry vibrate in the pocket of his khakis and he gets a boner. He begins composing free-verse erotica in his head. The voice in his head grows louder and louder until he finds that he is speaking helplessly aloud. He has the dramatic, inexorable actorly inspirational face of an actor in a contemporary musical. Think Rent. His hair is messy in the way that hair product can make messy, dirty blond hair look great. A collared shirt peeks out of a sweater. He is fit, and his jeans are expensive. Cool sneakers. At first he speaks, standing up from his seat, walking down the aisle, but by the time he gets to the stage, he is singing, in a rich, awesome, unpolished off-broadway tenor. His name is Zachary.]

ZACHARY:

Don’t fight the feeling
It’s a crazy bullshit machine
Tiny faceless lady, please don’t cry.
I stood up to help you dream!

I could be your sexy robot
I’ve got nearly six-THOUSAND CDs
I created Napster
I’m a sexy bullshit machine

[FASTER] My PDA sent a PDF to
The sexiest lady I’ve ever seen
She said “honey well a humma humma only PDA a humma
I want
[totally cookin free-jazz ensemble, which until now has been playing VERY quiet straight-ahead broadway-type arrangement, now launches into screeching, careening chaos]
Is a public smooch with a bullshit machine”

[with intensity] I said “momma that’s me” and then “momma that’s rare” and then “momma do want to hit a churrascaria with me”
And she said “if this don’t get erotic
At the drop of a hat
I’m a drop a couple drawers
And etc etc
[It’s OK if the actors, who should have all gone to Yale, not necessarily in drama but they do  need to have matriculated, begin freestyling this song. They can half-memorize these lyrics or they can just freestyle from the outset.]

[an orgy ensues onstage. erotica.]

END OF SCENE 1