Somehow, “Owl Pellets” just don’t seem to do it. So, repackage.
About the same time the pandemic took off, our solar system had another interstellar visitor and this one started to break up. I’m not sayin’, of course. I’m just sayin’ is all. That’s all. Just sayin’.
More earthbound problems:
The climate crisis is going to be many, many times worse. It may happen more slowly, but let’s not kid ourselves. Greater disease transmission, food shortages, energy blackouts, floods, homelessness, joblessness, species extinction—each will stagger us and then do so again.
I don’t think this virus is a dress rehearsal for anything. On some basic level, I just don’t really have that sort of view of things. I kind of view that view as an attempt to extract value from this situation. That might be the thing to do. Fucked if I know. But my gut feeling is that this instinct is, well, kind of the problem. It seems like some version of disaster capitalism.
Not to say I’m above it. I don’t even know if that’s desirable. I just have a temperamental problem with it. Some sort of deep emotional aversion to the idea of “rehearsal.”
I’d like to see more comfort and acceptance of the vain and valueless. This crisis is its own thing. But this is also a warning about our systems, a revealing and reckoning, a judgement and a verdict, and even an omen. Is it a thing to mine for something? I don’t know.
We must learn. And we must learn how to learn.
Although I plan to come through this whole thing with my basic contempt for artists in good shape and my absolute fucking horror at science fiction writers who . . .
Like, seriously, okay, give me a moment here.
Some of these motherfuckers stand on piles of corpses to sell books. It’s fucking sickening. Like, what the fuck is the point of writing dystopia if not to try to prevent it? What possible comfort can a person take from ‘i told you so’ or predicting this shit? Like, seriously, what the fuck is wrong with these people? You should be goddamn ashamed of your failure and your work’s failure to stop any of this and you should be rethinking all of it. You’d be more use with a shovel than a pen. I fucking loathe the prophetic element of science fiction. Fucking loathe it. The fucking prediction and the imagineering the future horseshit. I hate it. You have no idea. I really fucking hate it. Like, it’s a bone hatred.
Anyway, having got that off my chest, I always feel like art is more helpful than theory with these things. It can resonate and make us feel a little less alone. That’s a good thing.
On that note, I’ve been spending some time with this poem lately. It resonates.
A New Kind of Dream: Freud, Trauma, and WWI
A Look at War and Artistic Creation Through the Theories of Cathy Caruth and Sigmund Freud
While it may seem intuitive that survival is something to be thankful for, Freud and Caruth show that it is also an extremely difficult experience. While violent events occur in the past, they may remain forever incomprehensible, never fading from the conscious or unconscious mind. Survival may be the process of endlessly trying to understand. No one can fully recover from war.
Verso is putting up a bunch of Adorno on their site and, well, I happen to really like Adorno.
Paul Raven has some nice shit to say about me here but, really, I’m linking to this so you can read the rest of his stuff and also just to say: Hi Paul. I see you. I miss you too. Drop me an email if you want. And, if you don’t want, that’s fine too. Either way, I hope you’re doing as well as can be expected under current conditions. He’s a good egg.