Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Row of People at Theater

Row of people sitting in a small theater watching a play about a young girl that lives through an unforgiving tragedy and then ends up with people that saved her but also mentally abuse her until she goes crazy

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Drunk Person Cussing at People

A drunk person cussing at people when they walk by because they won't be friends with him, and he's calling some of them cock-heads and others cock suckers

Monday, August 29, 2011

A Sorry Fucker That’s Squandering His Productive Life Away

A sorry fucker that’s squandering his productive life away cause he’s already spent a few decades trying to decide if self-imposed isolation is worth it if no one else knows you’re doing it, or on the other hand if it’s worth it to part-way show people that you’re isolated to get credit for it, where it would lose its nobility & respect cause it wouldn’t totally be isolation anymore, but he’s getting to an age where he needs to decide on one or the other, or else give them both up and compete with all the opportunists, extroverts, & aggressors in the free-for-all grab for small legacy plots which, depending on how many plots you can grab and how relevant they are to the whole structure, amount to more or less permanent and recognized shares in the picture of recorded civilization and offer the most tangible, though often also the least valuable and, when the holder concedes the lack of value, the least satisfying basis for claiming a part in immortality

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Guy Sitting There at the Airport Bar


A guy sitting there at the airport bar getting drunk during a 4 hour layover while some propaganda ad about tax cuts is playing up on the TV on his way to his cousin's wedding where he has to be an usher, and a bunch of fuckin frat boys behind him are talking loud & out of turn about basketball like they're experts or something, and they all think they're comedians too, and he's wondering if the hotel he's going to stay in will be discrete about his bill if he decides to pay for porn on their TV

_________________________
MONANISM
Exhibited by Jeff Gabel in "Monanism," the inaugural exhibition at the Museum of Old and New Art, Jan 22 - July 19, 2011



Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hack job translation of 4 short Vepsian works into English after a 2-month self-taught crash course in Veps

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Mountain Ash

What are you,
Standing over the river
With bare legs, bare head?
The forest above
Sees red berries, stems.
Like a young girl, striking,
You grow in the beautiful black earth.
Nearby, the fox’s tail,
Cranes fly overhead.
Autumn goes, winter comes,
Your green falls away.
Naked, the wind strikes you
As the hazel hen eats the red berries.

Nikolai Abramov



Pihl’

Midä seižud jogen päl
Pal’hal jaugal, pal’hal päl?
Rusttad marjad kandad mest
Kacub sinun päle mec.
Kuti neižne, sinä bask,
Kazvad čomas mustas mas,
Rindal nägub reboin händ,
Letas kurged ülähän.
Mäneb sügüz’, tuleb tal’v,
Lankteb sinun vihand pal’t.
Ahav alastoman löb,
Pühut rusttad marjad söb.

*mest=möst

Nikolai Abramov



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Morning Voices in the Village

Early in the morning in the village streets, various kinds of voices can be heard,
Above all, house women talking with their animals.
Without animals, village life doesn’t run.
Where there is no place for animals, there can be no town.
There’s my neighbor calling the lambs to come and eat.
Čke-čke-čke! she says in a [descending?] voice.
And she already has a reply from her beloved household animal – the cow,
Aware of its status,
And when it wants, it shows the other animals that it comes first.
The woman gets on with her work.
She’s already calling the chicks, Cipa-cipa-cipa!
C’mon, I’ll feed you in the [trough?].
How well you understand,
The [trough] is filled up for everyone!
The chickens need food too. Tipa-tipa-tipa! Where are you hiding?

A man's voice can also be heard.
The horse – that’s his job.
He won’t leave this work to anyone else.
Pron’-pron’-pron’! he calls [with a falling tone?].
The horse knows of its master’s love, breathes loud,
And [snorts?] through the nose,
As if it wants to proclaim its love for him.

Suddenly the slender voice of Nastoi joins the other voices.
She too carries out her animal chores.
Kis-kis-kis! the girl calls out in a clear voice,
To be heard by her friend –Meow the cat.

Nina Zaitseva



Külän Homendesen Äned

Homendesel aigoš voib kulištada külän irdoil erazvuiččid änid. No enemban kaiked voib tedištada, kut emaged pagižeba ičeze živatoidenke. Küläs ei voi eläda živatoita. Nece ei ole lidn, kus ei ole živatoiden täht sijad. Naku minun susedakaine kucub lambhid sömha: “Čke-čke-čke!” saneleb [heledal laskval] änel. A sid’ jo emagale andab än’t emagan armaz kodiživat – lehm. Lehm tedab necen polhe, i ku voib, kaiken ozuteleb toižile živatoile, miše hänhän om ezmäizel sijal. No emag jatktab ičeze kodiradoid. Hän jo kucub kananpoigaižid: “Cipa-cipa-cipa!” Tulgat tänna, sötan teid [šonal]. A voi-voi, miččed to el’getomad olet. Kaikile [šonad] täudub! Pidab antta kanoile-ki. Tipa-tipa-tipa! Kus to peitletoiš?”


A sid’ emagan än’he ližadase ižandan än’. Hebo – nece om ižandan rad. Hän necidä radod nikenele ei jäta. “Pron’-pron’-pron’!” [laskvas] kucub hän hebod. Hebo tedab ižandan armastusen polhe i komedas hengib, i [purskab] nenal. Kuti tahtoib sanuda ičeze armastuses ižandale.

Ühtnägoi nenihe änihe ližadui hoik Nastoin änüt. Hän-ki pidab hol’t ičeze živataižes: “Kis-kis-kis!” komedas heikab neičukaine. Necidä kuleb hänen-ki sebranik – kaži Näugoi.

Nina Zaiceva



________________________________


Juniper trees

Many black and red currant bushes,
Mountain ashes, and bird cherry trees once grew outside around the house.
Everyhwere,
On the [tehud-?], beside the steps, near the fence –
A varied display of familiar and unknown flowers.
Right by the steps there grew a tall juniper tree.
It had seemed to me the junipers were like bushes,
But they were really tall trees.
It was pretty,
Like a tree from southern lands,
Completely green,
Perfect for decorating front yards and roads in the summer and winter.
It dawned on me – why don’t we plant & cultivate
More of these trees, more often?
Long ago the Vepses made several household items from the tree,
Spoons, milk buckets, [kerande-?]s and more.
Try to see this tree
Through the eyes of others,
Suited for our environment, undaunted by frost,
And entirely green.
Let’s rethink, and begin again to plant along the roads,
restore beauty for our eyes.

Nina Zaitseva



Kadagpud

Ümbri perits kazvoi äi mustan i rusttan čigičaižen penzhid, pihl’puid, tomičaižid. Keiktäna: [tehuden] veres, pordhiden rindal, aidad sires – nägui erazvuiččid tutabid i verazmaižid änikoid. Ani pordhiden rindal kazvoi korged kadagpu. Mina olin mugošt mel’t, miše kadaged oma kuti penshad, a nece oli todesine korged pu. Nece oli čoma, suvipol’žen topolin pojav pu. Paiči sidä, se kaiken om vihand i voib čomitada ezitanhid i irdoid i kezal, i tal’vel. Tuli pähä – mikš mijal lujas vähän i harvoin ištuteldas i kultiviruidas nenid puid. Neciš puspäi ende vepsläižed tehliba lujas äjan erazvuiččid kodikaluid: luzikoid, lüps’ragendoid, [kerandesid] i tošt. Pidab toižil sil’mil kacuhtada neche puhu, kudamb lujas kožub meiden londusehe, ei varaida pakašt, kaiken om vihand. Pidab udes arvostelda sidä i zavotta ištutelda irdoil, miše ned ihastoitiba sil’mid ičeze čomudel.

Nina Zaiceva



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What the Little Squirrel is Afraid Of

Little squirrel, little squirrel, where do you live?
I live in the big forest in a warm little nest.
Little squirrel, little squirrel, how did you make your little nest?
I found a quiet little place in a thick fir tree, carried moss there, grass, [packed myself deep inside – lit:. packed (myself) into the (its) heart?]. Quite a nice little nest!
Little squirrel, little squirrel, and what are you afraid of, when you sleep in your little nest?
And I’m afraid of the marten. The marten’s pointed claws, the quick teeth on the marten. It climbs up the fir tree, tears my warm soft little nest inside out and eats me.

P. Petuhov



Midä Oravaine Varaidab

Oravaine, oravaine, kus sinä eläd?
Minä elän sures mecas lämäs pezaižes.
Oravaine, oravaine, kut sinä tegid pezaižen?
Löuzin paksus kuzes tünän sijaižen, kandišin sinnä samalt, heinäšt, [ličoimoi südäimehe]. Ani hüvä pezaine!
Oravaine, oravaine, a midä sinä varaidad, konz pezaižes magadad?
A varaidan minä nädad. Nädan künded nügelad, hambhad nädel teravad. Libub näd kuzhe, murendab minun lämän pehmedan pezaižen i mindai söb.

P. Petuhov



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Notes

A few yrs ago I spent a few months trying to learn Veps, and tried to translate of a few works.

There’s a few words that I had to guess at because all I had were 2 crappy online dictionaries: a Veps-English word-list and a Veps-Finnish/Finnish-Veps dictionary. I couldn’t find a lot of the words in them that I needed. I don’t know Finnish vocabulary that well, so I had to look up a lot of the Finnish words in English. It looks like the only really big dictionary out there is a Russian-Veps dictionary, and I can’t read any Russian. Anyway, I chose stories whose words were familiar to me in either English or Finnish. I used [brackets] for a few words that I couldn’t find at all, and in these cases I left the Veps word in the English translation, or I made a guess based on the story content, or based on the words' similarity to Finnish vocabulary. Besides these problems, I'm sure there are other mistakes or misinterpretations.

I also had problems with certain grammatical forms. The only detailed textbook I got ahold of was in the Vepsian langauge, so it was hard to understand, and it only covered verbs, adverbs, conjunctions and particles. I used some online pieces of information in English, mostly about noun cases and pronunciation. They were highly incomplete grammars, and inconsistent as a group. Other sources consisted mostly of Finnish language linguistic treatises on phonology, suffixes, and phrase- and clause-typology, and one source was great cause it had a shit load of examples. Though these were highly descriptive, many parts of them were hard to understand because they were in Finnish, and because I’m not a linguist. There was one German language text that treated object noun cases, also with many practical examples. I found a children’s reader in the Vepsian language, which helped me become familiar with simple grammatical and sentence forms. The last story in this book is from the children’s reader. I also had the Book of Mark from the Bible to compare Vepsian and English texts. I relied a lot on Veps' similarity to Finnish noun case endings, verb paradigms, and sentence structures.

The information on Vepsian spelling, vocabulary, phonology, and grammar is not uniform across the various sources I used. Published linguistic studies are fairly scarce (in English- not so in Russian and Finnish), and differ in opinion about whether certain sets of sounds are phonemic variants or separate phonemes. This, among other factors, causes variations in spelling among different resources. The non-uniformity problems are compounded by the fact that Veps doesn’t have a substantial literary history, so particular research works are influenced or bound by regional and local dialect variation. Also, different authors chose different phonetic symbols for describing the same sounds.

The standard form used in literary works is obviously a forced hybrid from different dialects, but, as I understand, often tends to favor elements of the Central Vepsian dialect, which has been pushed as a literary standard. I have no idea which if any of the major dialects (North, Central or South Vepsian) are represented in each of the partucular translations here. They might even be compromised combinations for standardization. Anyway, literary works in languages without a comprehensive literary and standardization history most likely sound artificial to a large amount of the native speakers.

My 2-month run with Veps is pretty much a closed case, and anyone who wants to correct my hack job translations is more than welcome. I'm an artist w/ a day job and this was pretty much just for kicks. Life isn't worth the energy it takes to crap out stale booze and fortified processed carbs if you can't get your kicks somewhere - visual art activity isn't quite delivering the kicks I was counting on, it's actually devolved into somethimg of a drag, whereas this Veps ditty was fun.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Interview with Jeff Gabel about his online drawing project on Artreview.com's Project Space

(this will serve as my Artist Statement from now on)



artreview.com: It looks like you gradually gave up on working site-specifically here — what happened?

Jeff Gabel: Without anything that resembles what one would call evidence, I believe in the ability of a simple relationship between artists and their materials to almost fully account for the recent rapidly increasing failure of fine arts to distinguish itself from other visual or intellectual entertainment, a relationship which I would reluctantly have to call a theory or a theoretical model, though it would probably be, even if the missing data mentioned above could be supplied, too broad in generative capability and too low in explanatory power to be seriously called a theory by a researcher, so that only an artist can get away with calling it that. It simply goes: for each artist her/his media (or medium); for each medium, its artists. Art is, more or less, from artist to artist, internal, more or less the artist’s internal representation of something otherwise external to him/her. Everybody knows that. So, experiment all you want, but ultimately you should rely on the hundreds, dozens, couple of media, or the one medium, that you are meant to or have harmoniously learned to use. Sounds like simple and sensible advice, right? Fuck that. In this world where the first person to grab, even in the cheapest manner, a new technological or visual fad and pull it into the art world, and where everyone with some cash and a little success who is bored with their other type of work connects, even in the cheapest conceptual or physical manner, phenomena or processes or ideas from their own field with those of art, will receive a wave of attention that is completely immune to criticism. If you don’t play this game, I'd say your chances of turning your day job/career into a sole and permanent one will increase by at least 75 percent. None of this is to suggest that artreview.com represents nothing more than a media fad; quite the opposite, it has some nice works which use the media well. But, though this is by no means my first work dealing in a medium that I'm not suited to, and although I've been, in my opinion, relatively successful in twisting incompatible media into my comfort level by use of self-conscious contexts, sarcasm, commentary on those media themselves, and other extra-art methods without giving up creativity, as I began this artreview.com project on the other hand, I had just finished three exhibitions, and was in the process of re-acclimating to my full time job, which can take months sometimes after periods when I'm mentally out to lunch for a month or so, and consequently, all attempts at this project resulted in reminders that this is not my medium, so much so that I was nearing the decision to drop the whole thing when I suddenly realized that, pay or no pay, I am in no position to say no to any respectable offer in the art world.



artreview.com: Have you ever made the declaration 'This is the worst project I've ever done' before?

Jeff Gabel: No. And, this declaration is actually not true. I've done a few other artworks (and shown them publicly) which are far worse than this, and which I would also definitely call projects. And if I want to adhere to truth based on facts as they apply to my quoted words taken literally, then I would also have to include college works of the crappiest design-, graphics- printmaking-, architecture-, and probably a half-dozen other-typed-projects that one could possibly imagine coming from someone who studied and then practiced, and still practices, art. But still, even ignoring the annoying literal sense, which was completely unnecessary to bring up here, your question has caught me exaggerating and, even though it's only in the form of a figure of speech, I'm not proud of it, considering I'm six volumes deep into the influence of the unobstructed view of reality and truth of In Search of Lost Time. The declaration only represents a small part of this work, but its lighthearted overstatement begins to suggest that maybe this project is mainly a conceptual work of art rather than a literary work, which, however poor one might consider the quality, content or style to be, and whether viewed as documentary, experimental, or otherwise in nature, I would have much preferred.



artreview.com: But do you love failure?

Jeff Gabel: No, but I do thrive on it. Regarding failure as content, there seems to be a strong drive or inclination in me towards exploiting its nature or celebrating it, and it's one of my most comfortable subjects to work with. As for the reason, it's internal, which means that I probably can't see or comprehend it as clearly as others around me can, so I'll leave it at that, it's an internal thing. Regarding failure as art process, it is easier for me to be a little objective. It comes from my temperament's gross inability to condition itself to wide open-endedness or situations which involve turning chaos, even mild disorder, into clarity. If one doesn't share this trait with me, then what I'm saying so far might seem to be heading for a counterintuitive conclusion, but this is where art can be special, and where it becomes clear why the introspective nature and the joy of the problematic relation between internal/external factors of art has to be returned to its place as a central element (also, see the answer to the first question). In attempting to create a plan and follow it, or, as is far more common for me, in starting with a blank slate (literally; I often draw on slick clayboard or gessoboard), the failures of the formal and physiological elements, along with other factors, are sources of creativity. It's up to the viewer or anyone else interested to take my word for it that I'm not in control; the opposite would preclude failure. It's not fake, and therefore it’s not fun and I don’t love it, and, though often rewarding after the fact (otherwise I would have quit long ago), it’s difficult to manage over the long run (hence my problems in finishing this project).



artreview.com: Which library do you work in? Can you tell us about it?

Jeff Gabel: I work for the library at Brooklyn Law School. Librarians might want to hear about this place, but for the purposes of this interview, and in the context of the job's relation to my art activity, the only purposes or contexts which might be of any interest here, it is more useful to talk about the career in general, since, pay aside, all library jobs should mean roughly the same thing to an artist: -As with most other jobs or careers, almost 100 percent dead weight, i.e., no notable cross-over or double-duty with materials, ideas, emotions, creativity, time or any other components of creating art. If you have a family, you often have to make art at night, period
-A few caveats to the previous point: Though it doesn't pay quite enough, it's a career, which pays better than just a job, yet doesn't involve the direct* stress that a job in law, for example, would have (I'm a law librarian, not a lawyer), so that I am occasionally able to unofficially use time on the job to take care of necessary extra-artistic duties, like running errands to the post-office or gallery, or performing this written interview; since my work is based heavily on literal content, I do have access to materials that aren’t necessarily readily available and free on the web (but that’s just luck, it wouldn’t help someone who makes outdoor stainless steel sculptures); and along the same lines, my previous full-time job had a great collection of European literature, some in German, as I was learning to read it, and formed the basis of some of my translated art works in 2004 (again, just luck).

*as opposed to indirect stress, where the job itself causes little or no stress, but the amount of life wasted on it causes you to work at night all the time and artificially stimulate the body over long periods of time

-It's a career, not a job; it might not be rocket science, but the professionals are often excellent at what they do, adaptable, and so moving up is hard, i.e., would kill your art activity for good, i.e., if you want more income for your art, you'll lose the time you need for making art.
-As an artist, information isn't exciting, it's just information. The career is boring as hell. As someone who, if not a real writer, at least loves literature, and I'm amazed at how much of a surprise this is to many people, but I stress, for someone who loves reading anything at all, libraries DO NOT PAY YOU TO READ BOOKS. I catch some good blurbs, I've learned some anomalies or areas of study or concern in the historical and political worlds, for example, just by scanning book introductions or blurbs that come across my desk. But, unlike the free full text, which I don't have time to read, you can find that peripheral shit online, and more importantly, the more I read anything for personal gain, the more I'm avoiding my job duties.

This all undoubtedly seems like whining to many, because I know many, maybe most artists also not only have to work a full time job but also, like me, have no way out, ever; but (1), I'm not above whining if it gets me what I want, or if I just want to bring others down when I'm down, which is one of the duties, or at least strengths, of art, and (2), I don't know about all you fuckers, but I really want to work on art all day, or rest so I can work at night, or however one wishes to divide up their time, and (3), unlike most people, whining really does become me, it complements me, it often helps me, and it’s part of how I work.



artreview.com: What are you like in everyday life? This is another way of asking: is your art a direct transcription of yourself?

Jeff Gabel: Yes, my work is probably very close to a transcription of myself, at least in terms of the process and tone, though not necessarily in terms of the content, regarding which I generally invent stories whose details, though originally driven by realistic and sometimes actual human themes, often of myself, I never hesitate to change in order to make a better story. That is the case with this project as well. But regarding other elements of my work, the decision to pick the topics that I pick, the decision to make literature rather than art because I want to and because I tire of making art in the same way that I tire of almost everything I do, the erratic movements of pencil and eraser, the reluctance to use much more than pencil and eraser, the indecision, apprehension, moderate intolerance towards everything, lack of self confidence, lack of faith, and much more, in this work and in the rest of my work, is almost all me.



artreview.com: There's an unusual spirit in your work: the non-cynical abject, or the genuine abject. What I mean is that you’re starting at the bottom – of anger, depression, low confidence in your work – and looking up, rather than the more conventional tactic of abjection in contemporary art, which starts high and forces itself low, for kicks.

Jeff Gabel: That's a great take on my work, I'd like to leave it how you put it by not responding (and anyone tired by now of reading my crap, yet for some reason still reading it, is probably wishing I would do that). But I should mention a few things which, though they partially contradict a few of your points, don't really change your overall meaning. First, I have to admit that, seen as a body of work, I’d have a difficult time saying my work has nothing cynical about it, though it might not be the first descriptor to come to mind. But your creation of the term 'non-cynical abject' as a qualifier for abject gives the terms, and consequently your clause, a meaning that isn't necessarily incompatible with the notion that my work is cynical. Next, I have to admit that in my stories I have sometimes employed, if not the portrayal of hope, then at least an amicable tone and constructive content, before ending in an abrupt negation of everything just said, a spiral of hopelessness; and the lightheartedness with which I’ve sometimes done this might suggest it was just for kicks, though I would call it more of a cynical pleasure than kicks. But again, this tactic is restricted purely to storyline content, and I have a feeling that you're talking about the whole work, including my mood, the images, etc, as well as the story, in which case, again, we aren’t necessarily contradicting each other. In any case, even if I'm wrong here, you probably haven’t seen such works, and they don't represent the majority, though they are some of my favorite.



artreview.com: I first saw your work in an exhibition a few months ago at Spenser Brownstone in New York, where you wrote long unfolding highly analytical and scathing stories on the walls. These stories felt spontaneous — were they?

Jeff Gabel: The content and preliminary structure, at the outset, are very spontaneous. Even in cases where the original idea stems, for example, from a specific piece of literature or a real event, ideas that aren’t my own, they are worded, changed, or combined with other ideas, original or borrowed, as well as with the accompanying drawing, in a process that remains spontaneous and unpredictable, as with straight drawing or painting. I've always believed whim is one of the most important components of making art, as long as the artist takes responsibility for providing adequate quality control. But the next phases of the work, though possibly still whimsical, are anything but spontaneous. I often spend my down-time reading what constitutes for me immense amounts of literature, during which my mind unconsciously, though definitely not always correctly or literarily artistically, forms a sense of ‘ideal sentence style’ made all the more amusing by my lack of training and lack of intensive experience with writing. The process is a very intentional reworking of these sentences to make them sound right for me. The notion that they’re not so spontaneous sometimes surprises people, I think for three reasons:

-I've already mentioned that the original content and the original flow are very spontaneous, and the effects of this stage of the work are no doubt still evident in the final product.

-Lack of training in writing results in a lack of refinement which, combined with my thin vocabulary (which is being reversed a little due to Microsoft's spell-check and the proliferation of online thesauri and dictionaries), gives the work an unfinished or slightly unedited feel.

-Perhaps most importantly, under the influence of the long-winded structures of pre-postmodern European literature, I've developed a similar style, more uncomfortable and sort of tongue-in-cheek, for my own purposes and amusement, from which was derived, among other tactics, an insistence on finishing my entire stories, regardless of the amount of content, and overriding nearly all considerations of style except for those based on my intuition, without the use of full stops



artreview.com: How did you arrive at your method of portraiture: fine pencil drawings and text on small panels? Do you have a background in drawing cartoons?

Jeff Gabel: Content (stories, visual narrative or depiction, etc) and physical expression (how I move, neurosis, etc.) probably constitute most of what is important for me in making art, and pencil & eraser on board or paper still seem sufficient for working with these factors as variables. The physical properties of the works are fairly arbitrary, I don't like to plan before I work. Regarding the sizes, I guess I work small because I prefer not to spend forever on a drawing; there's a point where I don't care whether it gets better, I want to go to the next drawing. Other common elements in art, like conscious process, calculation, media for its own sake, construction, have never interested me. Color as a medium is an exception, but of all color media, I've only felt successful working with oil paint. But it's been 15 years, I can't afford a fuckin studio and I have to work full time, so painting is probably over with for good. But when I'm on a roll and make a series of good stories, and their accompanying drawings are even halfway successful, then I'm not bothered at all about the painting. If I got rich all of a sudden, I'd probably say fuck it anyway, I've inhaled too many fumes in the past and don't always feel well now, and I'd probably study something like language evolution on the side just for fun while I draw and write stories. To fully answer your question, I did do a daily cartoon strip in undergrad school at Kansas State U. It has nothing to do with my fine arts format, but it might have been a rudimentary form of my urgency to use a writing which does more than just support my pictures.



artreview.com: You say in the final image: 'I want a purpose.' If you could travel in time, what period would you go to where you would have a clear and unequivocal purpose?

Jeff Gabel: Considering my meager familiarity with history and the respective connections between widely-recognized consequences of the various ages, you could get so much better of an answer to this question, with such a potential for creative stories, from almost anyone else that's halfway intelligent and moderately educated. I'll probably have to stick to the 20th century unless you give me time to read some books, which I wouldn't find the time to do any time soon, I'm trying to finish the last volume of Proust now. To start with, I'd have to say that, due to my personality, unequivocal purpose would likely be for me unattainable in any period. I'll just try for any amount of purpose, since I feel almost none now. Furthermore, I've just decided to partially cop out of this question by not choosing from a set of specific periods, but rather taking a cheap route by creating a binary set of choices between the existence and absence of a particular feature of civilization, regardless of the periods with which it coincides: namely, the absence of the feature, for which I still have no name, of over stimulation, continuous yet fragmented documentation of and undue credit for the smallest increments of progress, and the skewed value of information relative to knowledge. On the one hand, I can't keep up, I don't have the nerves. On the other hand, partially due to this lack of nerves, which in turn creates lack of patience, I can't do the opposite, the right thing, I can't patiently find my way back to a path towards comprehensive experience, or reconnect to the more encompassing nature of the analogue way of working and thinking, not to mention living.

To end with, I should re-assess my purported lack of purpose. I feel it so completely most of the time; if I left my job, it wouldn’t mean a damn thing to the function of the library. I'm just lucky to be there. I'm largely incapable of making the world much better for anyone. I don't have time to do everything I could do with art, the purpose of which, as always, constantly needs to be reevaluated anyway. Still, people wonder, and I sometimes wonder, why I have such a tendency to slide into the abject tone and content when I write. Actually it's an easy answer once I think about it a little bit. I grew up in the late 1970s and the 80s. What a fucking 15- to 20-year stretch of a lack of caring about anything or anybody. Even if the verbal altruism or half-hearted vacation-package altruism of the late 90s onwards, along with the assumption that we are, if not quite the ambassadors, then at least the affirmations of the correct life, without having sacrificed ourselves working for it, but rather simply by living in inviting dwellings of perpetual celebration, which most people in the world can't afford, and holding our intellectual chins up proudly and over-forcing a welcoming strain to our smiles, cracking into shape from their arrogance-cast, while we hug our virtual friends before they move on to the next soiree feigning a look that won't confess a single worry or other state of normal human perplexity; no matter how phony this all is, it’s still an attempt, though a weak one clouded by too much pride, and which, by its own nature, lends itself so poorly to the invention of creative voices by artists who could perhaps have supported its better aspects; yet still an attempt, which is, to get to the point, a century advanced beyond the mindless swill from 20 and 30 years ago when cowardice won arguments over care and reason, and suffering was funny, and ass holes made most of our spiritual and administrative decisions. The biggest problem is that the fake altruism, while unarguably preferable to its predecessor, is still fake, and inadvertently serves as a mask for the 20-30-year-old swill that continues with only a slightly altered tone and re-spun rhetoric. So to finally wind this up, if I have any purpose at all, it's to help spread the word of hopelessness, maybe as an aid to personal liberation from the old backwash swill by exposing it through parody or sarcasm, but maybe also, in a more tactical sense, as a foil to the slightly good-intentioned mask that still hides it but does little to replace it.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sparkly Illustration in History Book from 2050 of Some Woman Back when She Was Narcissistic & Unempathetic Generation Y College Girl in 2003

Sparkly illustration in a history book from the year 2050 of some woman back when she was a narcissistic & unempathetic Generation Y college girl in 2003 that went through 18 cell phones & 4 laptops and used to put herself on Youtube dancing naked telling ramming stories before 3 society-generation-names later when she ends up being famous for being the 1st person ever to make an empirical measure of altruism’s effectiveness with a math equation that says, depending on peoples’ inherited means and available resources, that somewhere between 22 and 45% of the world’s adults would need to spend enough time, energy, & money on altruism to where they can only just exist & be healthy, in order to cause a noticeable increase in the # of individual cases of imporved well-being conditions in the world; but as long as altruism is just a lifestyle or social activity that people combine with travelling or self-promition or self-exhibition, then well-being, burden, and suffering will keep on shifting around in the population without any net change, all the way til the end of the world or til people fucking go extinct

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Adapted Selections from the Conversation during the Walk from Stils back up to Salwáre

“There's always been that kind of people,” I said, “in who or through who all the demonic powers of nature are directly active – I mean physically active – and not dispersed or dissolved in the mind, soul, dreams, eros, or thoughts, like with the rest of us. Ya, there's these kind of people, and there always will be.”

“Ja, except today there’s no real, practical relation to them people anymore,” she says, “but there’s also none to God either – and not to the stars, -- or to anything at all -- except to them damn menacing machines! But just wait,” she yells and raises her hand, “people will still be amazed! They’re already flying around in the air like devils–-“ she breaks off, & I didn’t ask if she meant the planes, or some kind of demons that only she knows about…but I believe that she really did mean the planes.

So she says: “I met this inventor this one time in Berlin. These guys from the War Office took me along to visit his laboratory. I think he was talking about remote ignition or something, -- and even though it was a totally official visit, it had something about it that was like a meeting of secret conspirators, like some kind of shady outfit. / So the man hardly looked at me, and he gave this totally boring specialist lecture, I didn’t understand a word what he was saying. But the whole room with all its precise instruments seemed kind of like an alchemist’s or magician’s cave, and then the way that he uncovered his model and dicked around with his switches and levers & shit was totally terrifying. / The whole time I kept feeling like rays were about to shoot out of his eyes & fingertips, and his brain would start to boil out of his skull in white bubbles. / Them other guys there, who all together represented a pretty big chunk of power, they were totally nothing compared to him -- at least that’s what it seemed like to me. / But what was most sinister about him was his endless modesty. It was like he had no idea that he could make it thunder. We’re used to Zeus being conscious, feeling in every fiber that he’s the ‘Earth Shaker’, and that everybody knows it. That gives him something human -- familiar to people. / But this fucker, -- with him, you couldn’t feel nothing, except that he marched in an army of Zeuses, Hephaestuses, and Prometheuses – and probably in second file, too. I was terrified of him, but he didn’t even notice. / It’s a bad time for saints and demons both. Even martyrs are out of work these days. Today, the only people that get killed & tortured are the small honest people that just happened to pull on the other end of the rope. The whole thing sucks."

Monday, August 22, 2011

Alcoholic from Upstate New York

Alcoholic from upstate New York that married a gullible woman from Long Island that thinks she can help people by talking rough and acting like she doesn’t care about what happens to her, and they’re visiting her relatives where he’s telling them all that he heard the New York Senate elections were fixed, and it must be true cause everybody he talked to at the packing plant said there’s no way they’re gonna vote for Hillary

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Orange Reflection

Some fucker that’s not as young as he looks because he has a thin neck and a facial expression that makes him look innocent and surprised even when he’s really not, and a round head that’s wider on top who used to get confused by magazine ads that showed guys that wouldn’t have been popular a few years earlier with soft features and big round plastic glasses with colored frames and short dorky haircuts or a woman that was making a hot face even though she was wearing a business blazer, and by commercials & movies that showed people rushing around with busy schedules or hurrying through airports or other modern-looking places that showed how their jobs and lives seemed important, because when he was growing up he lived in a place where there was no transitional period between this fashion and the one that came just before it where the cool people had heroic features with intense facial expressions and anti-social and counter-culture attitudes, and now 20 years later, a long time after he already realized he didn’t fit in either style, he’s sitting up in bed one morning and he sees a saturated orange reflection in 2 tones, a large rectangle area with a deeper-hued strip about 4 inches thick along the bottom, on his wall from the sun coming up shining through a window in another room out of his view, and unlike usual on a weekend in Sept or Oct, where, probably because of the overuse of this time of year as a setting for much of the so-called heroic and majestic anecdotes in the teaching of history, culture, and lore, an environmental accent like a striking anomalous decoration of nature or the sound of a hammer in the distance during the fall typically suggests, to him, bustling and vitality that makes him believe, since he has always failed to see that changes caused from within a person and those caused from the outside are almost always completely unrelated, life can, with a burst of positive attitude & active posture, and a small bit of energy, sort of start over again without the unwanted baggage that had accumulated up til now, this orange reflection on the contrary reminds him of a time when he mostly felt hopeless in any situation that didn’t conform to the possibility of him needing to use his planning abilities, and a time when sunrises and sunsets made him think of distance and possibilities, so now it’s evoking wistfulness, playful now that it’s long over, along with a remembrance of unsatisfaction and, influenced by his subjective memory, a little guilt too, all of which is now de-mystifying this orange spectacle, just amplified to where it had seemed synthetic, and the culturally implanted nostalgia of sunny early- to mid-autumn weekend mornings, dissolving the sham to reaveal that he always worries like an old bitch about sequential and categorical things that don’t have any effect on the outcome of his life, and that he thinks a lot about mortality in a very unconstructive way