an ouroboros of one’s own

If I continue blogging I will lose my job. There’s a fascinating piece up at the Utne Reader blog about Flaubert’s Parrot and the pleasures of  “aimless reading.” Just kidding: I realize it’s solipsistic and bad form to pointlessly link from your own blog to a blog that mentions your blog just to show people that your blog is being linked to. But: what the hell? How did this wonderful Utne Reader intern find Good Jobbbbb (neé The Bounty Farmer)? And: Is it chauvinistic or otherwise bad to say that the Utne Blog’s contributors photo is the precise copy, with no modifications, of this blog’s imagined, ideal readership?

Hopefully this cryptosexist, egomaniacal blog post will destroy the perceived blogospheric ascendency that has touched my soft brain and I’ll be able to seamlessly return to posting unfilmable hardcore teleplays for a treasured handful of friends and coworkers.

Friday night dinners

We (just me) ate early, around 4 p.m. I pulled a lever at the health-food store to dispense some Zen Party Mix and accidentally filled the entire bag. “Oh well,” I thought. Then I ate it while perusing the outdoor book stall at Dog Eared Books. I saw three people I knew while I was browsing and munching. I browsed and munched for a long time. At the very end I unearthed a 1967 Noonday paperback of The Moviegoer.

Cover design by Milton Glaser

The Dog Eared guy I love, the guy who if I were a beautiful little indie princess (female) I would seduce and make him tutor me in the ways of World War I poetry in his monk’s bed, I am not gay, said, as I bought it from his coworker: “I’ve never read that.” Isn’t that adorable??? I love him!!! It’s very likely he’ll find this blog and ruin my career as a heterosexual seafood maitre’d. Breadstixxx keeps walking by and seeing that I’m not writing that email to Jenny I’m supposed to be. What the fuck is wrong with me? I had a large-scale panic attack yesterday. If you ever go to therapy or analysis and then stop going, it’s fun to say that  you’ve “fired” your therapist, even though you’ve really just stopped going. You didn’t actually say ” Bernstein, you’re fired!” or anything like that.

Part II of dinner was the chocolate cigar Boethius gave me when his son was born. I also stole some licorice from his bookshelf. The entire office immediately was all “OMG WHAT ARE YOU EATING WHERE DID YOU GET THAT??” So, Boethius– you should hide that licorice!

Tonight I’m going to covertly smoke marijuana by myself a la Hal Incandenza and either go to a huge indie rock show where exquisite girls in leggings and their rippling, serrated boyfriend-thugs with ninja stars where their hangin’ doodles should be will throng the throng right up to its throngy hilt. Or an approximation thereof [DELETE THIS? –ED.] I will twitch in place, the marijuana a beadly shroud that rapes my vocabulary with a deft, chai-spiced confidence. What??? I’m going to dance weirdly for a bit, and definitely try to hurt the feelings of anyone who recognizes me. So if you see me, maybe the Independent, who knows — watch out. I’ll get progressively more drunk on sweet sweet India Pale Ale (so named because the magic cobras that lined the bottom of the East India Company’s trade ships were as white as Michael Jackson’s eukaryotic organelles) and whip my night blindness around like a tube [that makes a great vibrating moan when you swing it lasso style above your head]. then it’s the  4 mile or whatever walk home, not getting mugged on the way but probably shouted at by someone angry . My hoodie and the 1.3 ounces of youth-culture strength it signifies will save my life. Then I will kiss an indie princess on the lips — on the other side of consciousness, in dreamy slumber. Her teeth will be made from candy corn. I go to wash my face and dicks pour out the faucet; angry bidets ollie  their skateboards over the vert ramp of my face, etc. Slumberland — you know how it is.  Right up till morning, when I’ll jog, shower, shave, and put in a full Saturday at the office.


You have an incredible body.

The forgotten corners of our world

ARFIN: are you a little shitwizard? [Impatient, and with furious affection] Yes you are!

CELEBRIANNE: no, I’m just sensitive

A: What did you do last night during the historic election?

C: Thought about sadness

A: Are you really that self-important?

C: No. I mean, yes. I acknowledge that the historic election will mean that the U.S. will not be regarded as a pile of wet, soiled down comforters anymore. And other good things that happen with a Democratic administration. But when I look in the mirror…

A: What to you see, Celebrianne?

C: My face.

A: OK… What else?

C: Whatever’s behind me. Whatever I’m standing in front of. My stereo. Some posters. A hamper.

A: What time of day is it?

C: [Hugs herself a little, like she’s a big ole mug of tea, and her arms are fingers, and she’s warming herself on a mug of steaming self.] It’s definitely night. I have school the next day. We’re in New City, New York.

A: Are you a lesbian?

C: Yes. No. I have a boyfriend.

A: What is his name?

C: Playa. Maya. Something like that. He’s an Indian. He’s blind. He’s got Michael Phelps’s body. He’s alone. He can’t hear me. [Not shouting] Michael…

A: Have you eaten?

C: I ate some of those Paul Newman Oreos. And a few cups of decaffeinated tea. Herbal. Before that, nothing since the afternoon, a Nutter Butter. A latté.

A: How did you get here?

C: I drove my white Camaro. I’m menstruating. I’m a convincingly rendered female character. I’m alone.

A: Do you like comedy?

C: I like the arty shit. My Dinner with Paper Rad (1997). Just kidding. I watch Alf.

A: Do you like art?

C: I like sex. I masturbate. I kid. I go to museums. I’ve believed since I was young that going to a museum is a psychic battery charging experience. The charge from a long visit to a good museum of modern or contemporary art can last up to two months, sometimes longer. I like Nam June Paik, Robert Rauschenberg, everyone I’ve ever kissed–

A: You’re cute.

C: Thank you.

A: Do any of your friends have good lives?

C: They all do. They’re all fantastic lovers, and their lovers are the luckiest humans around. We live like gods. I’d like you to feed me a grape.

[C Produces a film-processing envelope from Walgreen’s. Removes the photos. A and C go through the pictures together: Scenes from the early morning of Nov. 4, 2008, in New York City and San Francisco. Young people dancing in impromptu street parties. C stops at one picture of a young man standing off to the side of the impromptu Obama celebration, watching. He leans against a car, hands in pockets, an only partially artificial smile on his face.]

A: Who’s that?


C: That’s our narrator. He’s glad Obama won. He’s thrilled. He’s got the two beers and one glass of champagne he drank last night to prove it. He’s also got the little assentive murmurs he made during Obama’s acceptance speech to prove it. His loudest assentive grunt came after Obama said

And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world – our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand.

I wonder if it resonated so much because he himself was huddled in a lush, boozy approximation of the scenario Obama was describing. In retrospect it also sort of reminds him of his dad telling a story of being a young hippie traveling in Europe in —  ’67? And hearing the Doors’ “Light My Fire” for the first time, in a room of other traveling hippies huddled around the radio. Eastern Europe. They were thrilled by the song; it was revolutionary. Not actually revolutionary, of course: it was a pop song. And of course Obama is referring to suffering, impoverished folk, not  traveling American 1960s counterculturalists or coked-up and genuinely pleased twentysomethings. People were passing around a bottle of Maker’s, and a bong, during Obama’s speech. We were moved. I teared up. I thought a guy I didn’t meet or speak to, who took a practiced bonghit during C-Span’s commentaryless footage of the Grant Park throng waiting for Obama, mocked me by satirically echoing my assentive grunt.

A: I’m sure he was just dealing with some esophagul difficulties.

C: I took it personally. [Spots a piece of melted chocolate icecream on the bicep of her peacoat, and laps at it like a fucking kitty]

novelist blah blah blah

DOG: Doug
TORQUEMADA: [Concerned] Guys?
DOG: Pizza
DOUG: [to DOG] Pizza? Do you wanna pizza? Yes you do! You’re the cutest! Yes you are!
TORQUEMADA: Sheesh. Peace. Ministrations. Memories.
DOG: Seriously, though, pizza
DOUG: Yes you do! [Ministrating] Yes!
DOG: Stereolab
DOUG: College; Stereolab. I actually love you guys.
TORQUEMADA: What’s on tap?
DOUG: For tonight?
DOG: Ruff
DOUG: Cuteness! Get over here
DOUG: Badness. What’s on tap, though, you’re right
DOG: Let’s repair to tha parkq
[The three begin pantomiming walking as the background scrim rolls from a living room scenario to a park scenario. TORQUEMADA takes out a pack of cigarettes. Removes a cigarette from the pack. Rolls it in his fingers. Brings it up to his face — smells it gently. Lowers his hands. Holds up the cigarette, still unlit, as if it’s smoking and he’s taking a break between drags.]
TORQUEMADA: I did a number of things I wasn’t supposed to in my dreams last night.
DOUG: Like what?
TORQUEMADA: Things I’d promised myself I wouldn’t do. Drugs, people, etc
DOUG: Was it a relief when you woke up and those things were in reality undone?
TORQUEMADA: Yeah, totally, of course. I didn’t even realize fully that I hadn’t in reality done them until just now. When I was holding this cigarette.
[TORQUEMADA makes like he’s gonna put the cigarette in his mouth but then suddenly smooshes it smashes it into his face, rubs it on his face, crushes the fag and rubbbs the tobbacky all over his face. lets the filter fall. DOUG and DOG are IMPASSIVE. TORQUEMADA removes anudder schmoke from the pack. Puts it in his mouf this time. Lights it.]
TORQEMADA: [Puffing luxuriously on his schiggarette] In my dream I was riding on a stairmaster, making love to a sexy teddy bear
DOG: Damn

Unchastened Drums

“Good taste” — an idea that means quite a lot in this category of the Grammys — can be telegraphed quickly by reducing the role of the drums.

In last night’s dream I quoted the above line from Ben Ratliff’s article on why Herbie Hancock’s lamest record won a Grammy for Best Record. I then suggested to someone in the dream that I’d write an article about how the situation was reversed in Chicago-style deep-dish postrock, “like Tortoise,” that the fake “good taste” Ratliff describes is suggested by loud drums, not quiet, in postrock. I think I actually sat down at a computer and started writing the article in the dream. Upon waking, there isn’t even the ghost of an argument there. I have no idea what I was talking about. Loud drums don’t indicate bland, “exquisitely acceptable” music in rock. I think there was an ecstatic Beagle in the dream, too.