In the wake of Knausgaard’s My Struggle, it would be easy to pull a Person of the Year and inaugurate “the self” as the exemplary character of contemporary narrative. But this maneuver would too readily stoke the rage that lies beneath the widespread claim that we are all narcissists now.
A: I will admit I had to be told don’t ever use torture— B: —Well, to torture in the cold light of day… A: —but I didn’t think it was offensive regardless. B: You didn’t think it was offensive? They have wives. … Continued
If Rilke’s poetry has any relevance to twenty-first century Americans, it’s because we worry, now more than ever, that we are losing unmediated experience. We’re busy, we’re sleepless, we’re medicated, and we’re marooned in the everyday.
When does slang die? Is it when your mom sends you a link to a TIME.com definition of “bae”? When “shade” becomes a Jeopardy question? When “selfie” beats “twerk” for word of the year? These words have become so removed from their original contexts that the begin to lose their meaning, or at least some of their value. After all, isn’t one of the primary functions of slang to identify the speaker as a member of the community? I don’t care how many episodes of RuPaul’s Drag Race your cool mom has seen, she does not throw shade in quite the way the queens of Paris is Burning do.
Where in this frame is the duck? And it’s not for nothing: the insane onslaught of visual gags, puns, Alex Trebek-cameos and historical nonsenses really do render the video more effective.
D: We are giving people larger derrières.
Dr. C: They want more ethnicity.
D: If Martha Stewart can do it, anyone can do it.
A and B overhearing.
A. Can you believe that guy! I will seize my own day. Carpe penis!
There is a strange word that appears in Ancient Greek literature, a verb that describes a mental process: bussodomeuō. We could translate it as “to inhabit the base” or, more succinctly, as “depth-dwelling.” Such a gloss might be the best we can do.
Even when you’re in the right place and time, participatory art fails because art fails: too often nothing actually happens between a work and its viewer. We are so many strangers walking the streets of the city, hardly glancing at one another.
We wanted to make Mama’s insides beautiful,
to make her more beautiful,
to show slides—
so we installed an overhead projector there
(you can’t imagine how we managed)
and endeavored to project the world on her insides.
A: I don’t have fangs.
B: I’m a porcupine.
A: I’m a—what’s the fish that blows up?
C: “I’m a blowfish.”