Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Family Feudal

america, serf city usa
just the course of these coarse waves
the crest is crazy
all days appraised away in the haze of western weighs
sit stunned, amazed, while undone assumptions trigger guns
and set the pestilent bollocks ablaze
AKs and gamma rays, restless rain and radon brain
a home daubed in ashen gray from the nuclear blast-first speculate
traipse the insecurity gate
mount the fence with intent to penetrate
swimming pools and charter schools alleviate
a need to conceive and to concede, retreat, abbreviate
hack the rapture, expose the actors
landlocked by landlords dislodging bladders on a platter
oh no, serve the servitude and deconstruct the instructions
words are only gerber food for the image death factory fluxus

inhale the mold, fingers cold,
index injuries polled with the safe-swift sale of gold
bitches bury riches 6 feet deep in the backyard
for the zombie apocalypse and defend it with a hacksawed body part
guns god and glory grown old with worry
exist to subsist and so elicit the fist of the nanny's fury
christen the cyst of the endless oedipal jury
insist on getting pissed off kissinger's roadside slurry
full moon dystemper kids gawk at viral my lai render
the currency's insurance is the occurance of flushed flesh as tender
bloodlust is old dust to tots on a cold bus
fuckers too cruel for school pushing the monitor into a choking crux
laissez-faire, so who fucking cares
the engine is the ascescion of the narcissistic glare

save the haterade for a later date
we've got work to do or exacerbate or exaggerate or in-fucking-flate
savor the labor rather than the flavor of an empty plate
march in snorted lines, the folky lie
reunionize the lefty pipe dream?  don't be obscene
either flash mob the guillotine or distend the bloat til it floats down the ravine
if the true death were any cooler, you'd have to stick it in the cooler,
you can't measure the world by rulers
you wind up tethered to the pleasure of your schoolers,
your jailers, your makers, your trailer's a fake
but you stake out your angles so well, they're convinced that you dwell in that steadicam realism,
instagram idealism, misdemeanor forcefeelism, the virtual steel prism,
holographic foundation for the polymathic rotational program- an operational trojan,
a society built on a slogan,
which asks for money but only takes tokens,
symbolic self-sacrifice with real wounds wound real tight
and outsourced to prove it's properly dystopian

Friday, November 21, 2014


Whenever someone argues that a joke is offensive or destructive, the argument is always that it's all just a laugh, you should learn to take a joke, etc.. The implication is that comedy has no real inherent power; it's leisure, a throwaway byproduct rather than an authoritative force with serious impacts and ramifications on culture.

Figure this then: the world's most famous comedian was able to sexually assault women with impunity for years because he was a trusted funnyman whose folksy brand of wit made him a moral authority in the public eye for around 40 years. When allegations were made against him, journalism gave him a pass, thanks in no small part to the power his comedy had had over culture. It then took a comedian, rather than a journalist, to bring these horrific crimes back to the public's attention, which in turn allowed a number of brave women to speak out about their experiences with Cosby. 

To laugh at something is to reject its authority. irony, on the other hand, mocks an authority while affirming it's continued grasp over us. But to laugh with someone is to be complicit in the joke. And it's this we fear and we feared most about Cosby- not that one man might be so monstrous, but that given our willingness to see ourselves in his comedy, his wisdom, his ideology, that we too or people we know might be just as responsible for other unseen or overlooked monstrosities.

After all, if Cosby could be a serial rapist, is it not also possible that Obama ordered drone strikes that killed children, that we starve the poor and rob the sick and needy of every last dollar while creating tax loopholes for billionaires, that a nation founded by holocaust survivors could perpetrate its own set of atrocities while the world sat and did nothing, that a police officer could shoot an unarmed teen six times in broad daylight until he bled out in the streets because he was pissed off that he wouldn't cooperate, that a gunman could massacre 20 kindergartners and 2 years later nothing has been done to prevent that from happening again, that the entire species could be headed for extinction while we make no distinctive changes to the we we operate, in many cases even advancing the direct causes of climate change? Who will be there to laugh at us when we're done patting the Bill Cosbys of the world on the back for making us laugh? When will we be able to look back at ourselves and laugh at how stupid we all were during this horrible time? (read the article, it's very good)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Back Inaction

This is your periodic reminder that I’m not posting that much on this blog or writing that much in general.  I wish I could say that this was because there was a project brewing or that this was by choice, but unfortunately it’s more of the same as the lifestyle designates. The rest of that top 100 of the naughts list is still forthcoming, but it’s slow-going.  When there was only one kid and before that, free time was easier to allocate, inspiration easier to come by and priorities a little less to manage.  At some point, music left me wanting for things to say.  That hasn’t entirely been the case during my long silence.  There are periodic displacements that I think warrant the matrimony of words to tones (PC Music, FKA Twigs/Arca, Opal Tapes, Mike Will Made It productions), and I’ve even felt I have unique things to add to the already dense conversations being had around me by folks more in the know, more accustomed to riding the tide (“losing my edge/…kids coming up from behind/ blah blah blah”). 

However, my work life usually afforded a little bit of wiggle room to pontificate, gather thoughts, and come up with brief outlines to pop out reviews, screeds, thinkpieces, thoughtless pieces, et al. after I got home and put the kids to bed.  Now, I just don’t have that kind of spare work time to think, scribble, muse.  Like so many, I’ve taken on a number of extra responsibilities that at one point could have been folded into about 3 different jobs.  Unlike others, I have a decent wage (more than I would have ever made as a freelancer), benefits, union protections, vacation & sick days, and some scheduling flexibility.  So, please don’t think I’m complaining, unreasonable universe that punishes so many for…you know, wanting to eat and stuff.

But I’m still exhausted, constantly.  Much to my dismay, I’ve even found myself yearning at times for media that doesn’t require brain power.  Though I still get frustrated by poor narrative, conventional editing, and a lack of originality (moreso in Hollywood than the small screen it seems these days), I can sympathize way more now with people who take pleasure in these things (of course, most of the time the intrinsic ideology of these things does the thinking for you).  I get lost in the internet’s hypertext so often that I’ve barely picked up a book in a year.  Whenever I try to really zone in on music and ignore all other stimuli, something either demands my attention (screaming baby, broken household item, frustrating email, et al.) or I fall asleep.  The life of leisure corporations and situationists alike promised us is a myth (first world problems, yeah, but they do make a difference). 

I’ve thought about whether switching to a tumblr model of more abbreviated posts- longer than tweets, shorter than blogs- is the more appropriate way to fade off into dad-dom, suffocated adulthood, growing irrelevance to the changing cultural landscape.   Even tumbling though still seems to require some kind of mystical ability to manifest a constant rotation of fresh content.  I’m as guilty as any of perpetuating this cycle, but it’s kind of madness, isn’t it? Does anything even stick with you if you are just moving on to the next thing at all hours of every day?  At some point, won’t the buzz begin to feed itself?

It’s hard not to think back with fondness to high school when I had a solid 100 or so CDs, ten or so favorite books I’d read a couple times through each, and watched about three shows regularly (The Simpsons, The X-Files, Flying Circus reruns on PBS).  The rest of the time uncommitted and free to meander, rest, regroup, reconsider, strategize next steps.  In my constant now, the kids are exhausting, the work is exhausting, the constant need for content is exhausting, dealing with the shitty red tape of every service provider or transaction or health care bill is exhausting, the calendar of incoming blows is exhausting. And on top of it all, the most pressing thing I should be doing is getting some exercise every now and then.  Jesus, that sounds exhausting.

Maybe I’m just excessively whiny.  Maybe I need to spend a year in a monastery.  Maybe I just put all my projects to bed and start fresh. 

This has been your periodic reminder that I’m still horrible at making decisions.