The one topic of this post is the numerous things about which I want to blog

20 Oct

I know I haven’t blogged in a few months. It’s just that now that I am a professional stationer, one of the unexpected side effects is that I work all summer on stuff because everyone wants to have their parties, their weddings, their events, etc. in the summer.

Now that it’s calmed down, I have some time to myself and I can think about some of the things that I’ve wanted to blog to you all about, and it’s a bit of a list.

First, Bronies. You need to be ashamed of yourselves, internet.

Second, I am finding it increasingly difficult to communicate with people who do not share my meme-space. I find that even simple sentences go awry. For example my wife might say to me, “Eekyo”, meaning “let’s go”, and I might respond with “D’accord” meaning “agreed” or “OK”. Or I might use a crack like, “I’ll call up Bob Avakian for him.” whenever I hear someone complain about one of the fundamental properties of capitalism (and it’s often someone who claims to be a strident supporter of capitalism who is doing it). And I don’t think anyone would get that except maybe my wife (because she’s heard me make that crack before) or my best friend’s girlfriend (just because she’s also a hippy revolutionary). When my best friends end a statement with the phrase, “That is the conclusion I have come to.” this sites William Burroughs, David Cronenberg, and says something about the trustworthiness of that particular point of view, but it is also irrelevant noise to someone unexposed to the film, Naked Lunch.

Third, I apparently have strange age-related prejudices. Or is it Strange-age related prejudices?

Fourth, do normal people who are incidentally in a minority have a duty to make noise, to remind everyone that the minorities you belong to need not be strange? Or is being normal a condition that is by definition un-news-worthy? Once you choose to be conspicuous you are no longer normal? As an example: if you are inconspicuous in your Judaism, and you happen to live near a town with a large Chabadnick community, would you also take effort to remind people you are Jewish, to try to kind of cut off anti-semitism, like, “Hey, anti-semitism also applies to me, so don’t even start.” For another example, “Should ordinary Muslims speak out against terrorism carried out in the name of Islam? Or does the act of drawing attention to yourself make you unordinary, by definition?”

Fifth, Epistolary Games. A friend just turned me onto De Profundis and for a number of my own personal circumstances, my wife’s multiple sclerosis, the demands of my chosen profession, my distaste for city living since my mugging, etc. I find this to be very interesting. In my opinion, De Profundis is not just another role-playing game, but possibly the first in a new type of game altogether, which I would like to call Epistolary Games.

Sixth, is the act of branding an ethnic group to which you belong also an act of racism? For example if I create art and media commentary that communicates the idea that Polish Americans are kind, generous, tolerant, and easy going (or at least drunk), am I creating a positive identity for Polish Americans such that when a Polish American acts in a way that is cruel, stingy, intolerant, or stressed out (or at least sober), then we can call that person out as not acting Polish enough, or am I characterizing all other ethnicities as less kind, generous, tolerant, and easy going (or at least drunk)?

Seventh, I find that I live an almost Walter Mitty-ish existence from my underground lair at an undisclosed location in New Jersey. My question is, how do other super villains ever manage to get out and commit villainy? An underground lair is actually kind of a sweet deal. All I need is a sidekick to run out for groceries for me and I will be set. “Harley, pick up some curry rotis on your way into the subterranean lair, today.” Considering that this underground lair also contains my stationery workshop I could realistically get an intern or two.

And how relevant is my active fantasy life? Think about how much of our actual reality goes absolutely unnoticed because we go through our lives with filters on. I mean, if you know some old person who hates homosexuals and angrily opposes the rights of gays to marry each other, it is likely that person goes through their whole life unaware of all the gay people they depend upon in their own community. C’mon there is almost nowhere in the United States where you are out of walking distance of a church that wants to offer the sacrament of marriage for even their same sex paired parishioners. Something about your mind has to keep you unaware of that fact. Otherwise you see immediately that opposing gay marriage is religious persecution and a violation of the first amendment. Their ideas have to somehow edit the gayness out of their awareness.

If these people can be said to have a decent grasp of reality, then I should be able to be considered completely sane even if I convince myself that every one in five people I meet is an alien and I need to be careful before Roddy Piper comes around the corner and beats me up for an absurdly long time in order to get me to wear his crazy sunglasses. I am not complaining about my government and media seriously considering the ideas of crazy people when deciding what laws to pass or stories to cover. I am excited by what delusions of awesomeness I can pass off as reasonable ways to look at reality.

Eighth, the philosopher Daniel Quinn laments many of the characteristics of modern society and attributes our unquestioning acceptance of these characteristics to what he calls, “The Great Forgetting” which he dates to 10,000 years ago, about the time of our agricultural revolution. But I wonder if part of the great forgetting is misleading us about how long ago it happened. Perhaps the first seeds of The Great Forgetting were planted 10,000 years ago, but I can’t say for certain what they were other than to grow crops. For example, the idea that every inch of the globe should be owned by someone and governed by some state probably doesn’t go back that far. I’m willing to bet that in Prussia, before Otto von Bismarck, there were large areas of Prussia that were kind of lawless, not under the authority of any of the Prussian principalities. The same could probably be said of Italy prior to Garibaldi, and this is not ancient history by any means. The idea of living tribally isn’t restricted to cults, pirate ships, or traveling circuses. People have lived lives that were more tribal, like on a ranch or hacienda, to lives that were less tribal or even almost completely isolated and materialistic, like a pope, king, or industrialist. I’m even willing to bet that in pre-agricultural times there were those who lived isolated and materialistic lives, hermits, oracles, sages, scholars, artists, shamen, etc.

In fact the only thing I can place at the beginning of our agricultural revolution with any confidence at all might be the idea that there is a positive social value to be gained from suffering, like you will be blessed or rewarded in heaven for working hard at something you do not enjoy, or that it builds character or something, or that arduous tapasya, prolonged meditation, or painful martial arts training will gain you spiritual super powers. Fasting and denial are awesome and praiseworthy (unless you’re rich). You hear it in normal conversation, “He works in the sewers? God bless him. Someone has to.” when it would seem to me that a more reasonable statement would be, “He works in the sewers? How horrible. We need to find other ways of removing waste from our homes that do not involve someone having to do such an unpleasant job.” People started having unpleasant jobs 10,000 years ago, but I’m not sure that any of the other aspects of The Great Forgetting go back that far.

Ninth, are they making Care Bear cartoons again? And is it just me or does Grumpy Bear get more attention from the lady care bears than any of the other boy care bears? Alright, maybe you don’t need to be too embarrassed about the bronie thing.

Oh I’ve been tinkering with a new Mandombe font, and designing cool Mandombe calligraphy with which to write the names of Congolese celebrities. For example:

This could be used as a sash that Papa Wemba could wear over one of his fabulous suits. Or it could just go across the chest of a T-shirt if you could ever get Papa Wemba to wear a T-shirt.

I have also been watching and re-watching René LaLoux cartoons, unless that is a metaphor for taking some sort of drugs. (It seems like it would be.) Because I have actually been watching René LaLoux cartoons.

I just want you all to know that I think about you and I have interesting things to say to you, I just haven’t had the time. I’ll try to give each of these a proper blog entry, although the Mandombe one will probably be in French.

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One Response to “The one topic of this post is the numerous things about which I want to blog”

  1. Lebone Lumbu 25 January 2013 at 10:53 am #

    love your mandombe art. I’m a (South African) follower of Kimbangu, the initiator of the script, and glad to see your creativity, unlike the Congolese people who take it for granted. it’s also the first time to read your block, but enjoyed it. keep well!

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