Monday, April 26, 2004
Can't talk, packing...
Friday, April 16, 2004
I well realize you all came here hoping for more dreams about work or pseudo-intelligent sociological ramblings or uncomfortably personal revelations*, but instead I spent all night researching CSS and screwing around with my Blogger template. I wonder how many people truly get the joke. I wonder if my unlimited joy at increasing the title's font size and hitting PREVIEW yet again can ever be adequately expressed. Just how big can I make it? If I could set it to blink and flash different colors I would.

The ironic egomania of it all... the joke of my incredible self-absorption and ostentation to name a 'blog after myself, when I'm really quiet and self-effacing... except that my introversion manifests itself so often as complete egocentrism. I even have a Stanislavsky approach to empathy: whenever someone tells me what they're going through, I can only empathize by thinking of something similar I've experienced, then usually end up telling about them about it (I've been through something vaguely similar, I understand), thereby always turning the conversation back to myself... I wonder how many people find me an utter bore due to this?

At the same time, fear of my true inner egomaniac is probably what drives my retiring nature... Like the eternal Yin and Yang, feeding off each other, defining themselves in relation to each other, giving birth to each other... my self-loathing and my self-obsession are mirror images, twin aspects of the same inescapable solipsism!

Get it?

Plus I changed all the grey text to green. I like green.

{*Those of you who come here hoping for wry self-deprecation, on the other hand, have already been well sated)
Thursday, April 08, 2004
Another Dream Another Day

I am becoming more and more nocturnal. Today I actually slept until 3:30. For some reason, I remember dreams had during the day much better than dreams had at night. This makes no sense, yet it is true. Tonight's dream... TODAY'S dream began as a distressing number of them recently have-- at the Cafe. I came in at night, either to work or just to visit, and found most of the lights turned off, the place plunged into darkness. So I ran around trying to get some lights on, only to discover that most of the lights had been moved, replaced or broken. I can easily trace this back to the fact that the overhead lights there have mysteriously stopped working. Of course, no futile dream labor can be pursued uninterrupted, and so I had to stop every now and again to help make drinks. And notice that David Cross was sitting in one of the booths. Or, as I called him, "DAVID FUCKING CROSS!"

So on top of everything else I wanted to prostrate myself before this man of great comic genius without looking like too much an ass, but instead ended up trying to pretend not to notice him. This is how I generally behave when one of the absurd number of pretty girls comes into the Cafe... maybe I have a homosexual crush on David Cross. Maybe I think of beautiful women as celebrities-- they'd probably really prefer it if I didn't fawn over them, or indeed even make myself a presence.

So I eventually headed home, which for some reason was around several corners through a neighborhood where people sat on their front porches improvising slam poetry. It seemed very familiar, most of the people I remembered from previous trips down those blocks. When I reached home there was a huge crowd of people, all there helping D. move. And I realized it was the last of the month. I hadn't started packing or rented the van or gotten people to come help or anything!

So I ran upstairs, grabbed a collapsed box, and tried to tape its bottom so I could pile books into it. The rest of the dream was taken up by this inevitably futile quest.

Are everybody's dreams so relentlessly Sysiphean as mine?

And yes I'm moving. Have I mentioned that here yet? All the people stalking me through precisely this one source now get to learn that I'm picking up from the NW neighborhood where I've been for the last three years and moving to NE. My commute to work will be twice as long, so my butt -- after half a year of bike commuting already nicer than I had ever believed possible -- should be shortly pushing into Greek God territory.
Thursday, April 01, 2004
American Elitism

Today I went out in search of birthday presents for my sister (birthday on Sunday) and her husband (birthday today (yesterday, technically, but technically so is the previous 'today' so deal with it)) and ended up at a bookstore. It was the bookstore where I used to work, where I have been only once before since I quit (looking for a Christmas present). The place is still horrid, though they did have the book I was looking for. The 'Social Science' section is crammed full of books about how liberalism is destroying America and equating liberalism with terrorism and bemoaning the new American Snobbishness, including odious spinslinger John Stossel's entirely (and entirely unintentionally) appropriately named "Give Me a Break!"

I viewed it all through the filter of two entirely unrelated articles I have recently been forwarded to. Each on their own raises interesting points, but the two read in tandem bring a kind of revelation about the way the left in America views itself and is seen by others and how it is therefore hamstrung.

Shortly thereafter, I read the Onion AV Club interview with Dave Sim, a striking example of paranoia and monomania. No matter how often the interviewer attempts to steer Sim back onto the topic of his work, he swings right back, like a compass needle to magnetic north, to how feminists are trying to destroy everything and deny the relevance of his work (which he continues to laud to the skies, comparing it to nothing less than Tolstoy or Dostoyevsky, and rather inexplicably insisting that it is 'the longest sustained narrative in human history'). The most amusing portion has him, after a particularly foam-spattered paragraph, complain of feminist 'histrionics.' Sim sees himself as a last bastion of reason and thinking standing against the overwhelming tide of feminist emotion and feeling, and yet in none of his infamous anti-feminist rants have I seen anything even approaching the intellectual acumen displayed by such feminist writers as Carol Gilligan or Jessica Benjamin. Rather he spins webs of metaphor and imagery, equivocating between quasi-mystical 'feminine principles' and women themselves, in the end constructing an entirely self-contained ideological world that has little to nothing to do with modern political realities. He then seats himself within its irrational walls and hurls invective like pebbles from an animated slingshot at his presumed enemies -- always a monolithic whole, 'the left,' 'the feminist-homosexualist axis,' 'Marxists' -- while accusing them of failing to grapple with any ideas with which they disagree.

While Sim's paranoia is incredible, his vision of the victory of feeling over reason rings true as it resonates with the two abovementioned articles. There is a definite trend toward unreflective emotionalism in the American public sphere. However it is not the left, as Sim insists, that is using this anti-intellectual trend to its advantage; rather, Progressivism is its most notable victim.

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