Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Ceiling

Melissa added an ice cube to her glass, shaking it against the others until it whistled and cracked. I watched a strand of cloud break apart in the sky. The moon that night was bright and full, but after a while it began to seem damaged to me, marked by some small inaccuracy. It took me a moment to realize why this was: against its blank white surface was a square of perfect darkness. The square was without blemish or flaw, no larger than a child's tooth, and I could not tell whether it rested on the moon itself or hovered above it like a cloud. It looked as if a window had been opened clean through the floor of the rock, presenting to view a stretch of empty space. I had never seen such a thing before.
"What is that?" I said. Melissa made a sudden noise, a deep, defeated little oh.
"My life is a mess," she said.

From The Ceiling, Kevin Brockmeier (McSweeney's)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

why i'm still here (or something like that)

Probably there’s an argument to be made about the severing of digital ties, marking the end of something, starting something else. (I’ve tried this before, the disconnect. I suppose it didn’t really work.) Social media and blogging offer so much control over self-image and presentation that it seems like – well, if you feel different, then why not start a new blog? A new Flickr? Write somewhere else?

I suppose part of the reason that I don’t do it, or haven’t decided to, is because I’m not set on being the person I am right now forever. It seems instead like the nature of this place is to accompany me in all the directions that I happen to be shooting (as rhizome!). And perhaps there’s an authenticity in the instability – or maybe the instability is the only authenticity possible.

Anyway, the result seems to be that I'm keeping on in the same place. I realize that as I write more behind me drags a trail of the sub-par and the sub-sub-par (not to say that any of this is much better – I hope it is). But the fact that the older stuff is not great quality – that doesn't embarrass me. (Maybe it is because I am young, and was younger, when I was writing and thinking those things.) I think also – all of the record-keeping (digitally, plus physically - in photographs, journals, whatnot) has magnified what would normally just be just shadows betraying development. Being able to flip through things, I've been able to say: I am so different! And then, happily (+ gratefully, because I know not everyone says this, and maybe there’s a day that I won’t be): I am so proud!

Certainly there is much that’s quite embarrassing (rereading the earliest posts on this website is cringe-inducing, in the same way – and I’m not saying that this is a particularly original sentiment – that those people who didn’t grow up with the internet might’ve been disgusted by the memories of middle and high school). But despite how much I know that it should feel embarrassing, that's not what it does to me. Rather, I look at it and think – all this trash (yes, trash: honesty is key here) – all this trash is is, really, just the same type of stuff that constitutes the very means by which we measure our own change.

Trash, maybe. But I keep it because it marks the time, tells me more about myself. Reminds me that now is the time I've felt the firmest grasp (yes, grasp: I imagine gripping the brain with my ten articulated fingers, not knowing it fully, but still better than ever) on the contents of my own head. 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

two weeks

  1. in new york city, I buy maggie nelson's book Bluets; I read it all, the same night.
  2. i read marguerite duras' The Lover, on the plane from New York to LA. ( on the plane here i read to the end of the lover. i started it yesterday, when i bought it, but the bulk of it i read on the plane. duras wants you to forget. or maybe she doesn’t, but she embraces it. i mean to learn this, also. (not to forget – that is unavoidable – but to be comfortable with the holes, as she is. has to be. to survive.) )
    1. at the airports in Australia, I look up Joan Mitchell's 1973 painting, also entitled Le Bluets - I read Lydia Davis' piece in Poetry magazine, wherein she states--"even now, just by remaining so mysteriously fixed in my memory, the painting poses a question that, once again, remains even after I have attempted to answer it, and that is, not how does the painting work, but how does the memory of the painting work?"
    2. how does my memory of it work? how does my forgetting of it work?

    Saturday, May 9, 2015

    fragments from fiction class

    I'm writing my final story of this semester! It's progressing awfully! But here are some notes (which I like, but which – unfortunately – don't seem like they will make it into what I'm currently writing). (Because, you know, there's that problem – you write words and later realize that it was never really your intent to put anything, like that, there.)

    She remembered loving him, gruffly; stinkily.

    All of the recollection came wrapped in loving but none could compare to the fantasies of female comfort, the girl on the other girl – that touch. (Except – women. Not girls.) in revision: women, sitting in each other’s laps, crying or laughing, --ing at one another’s hair and legs. 

    ugh, sometimes i think breaking up is so good. you get to listen to fiona apple and pretend that you’re forgetting to eat things (really you just think: at least i’ll be thin if i keep feeling this bad).

    weird, that term. “breaking up”. i suppose “breaking” is verb, but the term it comes from, the original “break up”. is that a verb? or a noun? it’s both but also – wait, before we even entertain that: why these two words? what is breaking? what is going up? (not my weight, that’s for fucking sure.)

    if it’s a verb then it’s a verb caught in the middle of its performance. stasis in disaster. how appealing that is to me. (probably too much for my own good health.) i wonder, out loud, to D: will i get out of bed tomorrow? will i be able to move? 

    There’s an interview with Susan Sontag from the ‘90s that I really like. It’s on Youtube, and in it, the interviewer-guy asks her what she is. What she does, something. Actually, that may not be true. But anyway. In her answer, she says, very directly, without any question or hesitation, “I’m a writer.” It’s really great. That purpose, her decision. I know Sontag wanted to be “a Writer” all her life: it was the persona she chose for herself (it sounds silly, but we all do, or so many of us – we play the hard, the strong, the most important parts in the process of our own enlightenment). Saying, “I’m a writer” is not like saying that I’m a photographer. Photography is all woozy + disconnected. Pictures don’t narrate, they’re assemblages. SS wrote about pictures, obviously. I like taking pictures better because of how she wrote about them. But I know my photographs could never be that magic. 

    straight hair of rust, screeching against the pinkish hue of his face

    refuse the others whose sole wish is to tell you who you are (of course I am very narcissistic: but it is required, for my survival) 

    creaturely, warm, expansive, sniffing all over, wherever (crotch, face, ass)

    we suffer immensely.  we pick ourselves up.

    Saturday, April 4, 2015


    I feel happy. I could never understand what I was doing with this blog. Fashion reviews are clearly not my thing. Haha. I don't even know if I could ever stick with anything and decide that it was working. But I am happy. I am so happy.

    Friday, November 28, 2014

    zadie smith on camus

    It's taken, like, a million years, but I'm finally reading Zadie Smith's White Teeth and (wouldn't you know) really enjoying it. Some of the time during which I haven not been reading has been dedicated instead to looking for other things she's written, or said – I think this curiosity about who she is and what her life is like has, in part, been incited by the fact that she was so young when she wrote the book and, you know, awfully, endlessly anxious as I am I've been pilfering the Internet for some means of demystifying this otherwise magically precocious talent.

    In any case, the quote I've included above comes from a piece about her that was in Interview. I picked it out of the few available gems because I really like how she puts Camus' appreciation of life – "He was nothing but love for existence, for what there was." I have been thinking often, recently (I'm in New York) about all the times that I have been happiest, and why – and I've realized that despite the emphasis on the intellectual, or academic, that happiest moments (of which I've been reminded because I'm here in New York, where I have often found myself deliriously happy) have been happy because they come from this "love of all there is".

    Although it may seem like I'm a die-hard rationalist devotee to the poststructuralists and that surrounding, scattered crowd of smarty-pants I really do think this appreciation comes not from some elitist, academic desire to qualify all that there is but, rather, from that very same love or being-magnetized by the magical and terrifying beauty of our inscrutable world. Barthes is alluring not only in his intellectual pursuits but also in his sensitivity to this beauty. The same goes for SS and even Koestenbaum (only choosing this glorious trifecta as example right now because I'm in the middle of My 1980s, and it is proving very, very good).

    Saturday, November 22, 2014

    november, 2014


    I feel bad about not really thinking or planning or considering what i've been wearing lately. Fashion used to be so important to me – a means of escape, or conjuring fantasy; relating to the alternative and worlds of the films I liked and people I wish I was. I guess I can't be too hard on myself, though – going to school and trying to learn things is difficult. Plus it'll probably all end up being for the better. It's just strange to feel yourself moving into being someone different from who you remember being. 


    From the top –

    Anna Karina in Pierrot le Fou
    Aziza Azim
    Chanel SS 15 – though I have to admit I'm a little disgusted by Chanel – can no longer see anything other than a fascist Nazi legacy continuing its work (profiting off the iconography of a specific movement, twisting signifiers so they seem "fashionable"; divorcing everything from its explosive meaning...)
    Edie Campbell in i-D summer '14
    Miu Miu
    Charles Moore, from Inside Today's Home
    Valentino (I think)
    LV (by Nicolas... !!!)
    Screenshot from Alain Robbe-Grillet's Eden and After