Morning McLuhan Reflections

The loss of the wrist watch, and the rise of the cell phone have produced a new kind of voluntary time.

Time on the assembly line was not voluntary, the looming clock everyone could see…

Then wrist watches decentralized the central clock in the Grand Central style. Time became a tad more voluntary, but more present: it’s also in the home, as well as “at work” whatever that kind of slavery was back then. Admittedly though, the wrist watch did make time ubiquitous. In the 1980’s, I mean, who didn’t have a wrist watch, or five; like Madonna..?

Anyhow, cell phones make time a bit more flatly digital or that is, a monopoly on the sun dial sort of time. Remember that digits are light projected at our face. As McLuhan says, the Sun Dial is a more forgiving sort of time, not because it isn’t exact per se, but because it is light in a three dimensional form versus a line; a moving line, the striking finger of a clock…I look over at my Smart Phone, and time even if in content, exact, I have had to open up the phone to find it…And even if it were threatening, I have a world of options to open time up to the perceptions of anyone I choose. Time under internet conditions, is organic and perhaps altogether becoming absent.

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Epic Life

“Sieze the day boys…make your lives extraordinary.”

“I say that one must be a seer, make oneself a seer. The poet makes himself a seer by a long, prodigious, and rational disordering of all the senses. Every form of love, of suffering, of madness; he searches himself, he consumes all the poisons in him, and keeps only their quintessences. This is an unspeakable torture during which he needs all his faith and superhuman strength, and during which he becomes the great patient, the great criminal, the great accursed – and the great learned one! – among men. – For he arrives at the unknown! Because he has cultivated his own soul – which was rich to begin with – more than any other man! He reaches the unknown; and even if, crazed, he ends up by losing the understanding of his visions, at least he has seen them! Let him die charging through those unutterable, unnameable things: other horrible workers will come; they will begin from the horizons where he has succumbed.

-Arthur Rimbaud

It’s really hazardous to vow things to yourself. The power of inner suggestion is far too powerful to handle consciously. I vowed these two tenets when I began to think of life as a means of living and not slavery.

You know most people? They’re just slaves. Anyone that does not live by the two tenets here is a slave by definition as someone who does not live on one’s own terms.

Someone today caught me though, and brought a spring back to my life.

I talked to my daughter today for the first time in I don’t know how long. She sounded so much older. That meant nothing to me growing up, but it does now. I know the meaning of it, of someone’s progress. She’s French, so most of our talk was in her native tongue although she  seems to understand a lot of “L’Anglais.” She was so cute and intelligent, something curiously apt behind every simple thing she illuminated. Talking about her school and her cats. She just lost her grandfather too. And her father, (me) is more than 5000 miles away. We will talk on the phone tomorrow. Again. She called me Daddy. That was surprising, she has so much reason to hate me.

The Many Containers We Live In

We are, all of us victims of our surroundings and environments until latent inhibition is removed.

Which is what a drug like marijuana can do, or does… All that sedimented worry and panic, lack and gain, the struggle on your bones and in your wrists, the cancer you plug into your ears… All of this is removed. We see it as if for the first time.

This is the real reason it is illegal–it satisfies too much, that the corporate world would have to get us into drugs full time and all those multiplicitous pleasures that they make money off of, would be cut in half at least through such a consolidation of industries into one.

They are all fooling themselves if unware of themselves. I see a lady clutch a purse spend valuable time over the phone…being polite to a sales representative who obviously she wanted off the phone. Just hang up. But she wanted to be on the phone, her voice patterns, stale and rigid in her optimism, her posture, struggling yet with so much unnaturality to it.

If only she could break free.

As I have. As many before me. It will take perhaps five generations…or ten perhaps, before someone in her family is free. Everything is so important to her. No wonder it’s meaningless.

It is not enough to have the thought–”I have better ambitions and better things to do than they.” You must also feel it.

God’s Good Earthen Soil – Dystopic Sci-Fi – Vesper Heliotropic Excerpt

She also and weirdly, knew that his daughter was no longer ‘present’ on God’s Good Earthen Soil, either. Harietta Damiand had died in a horrible Hover accident involving several or more automobiles. She was nine at the time of her death.

He had loved her, like Daddy’s do. Or like, Daddy’s can. To complicate things, Johanna, his wife was going senile. Her sudden dementia was combatted with restructuring software and everything, but in the end, she just slipped away.

This made things more convenient for him of course, especially. Harietta had been made of God’s Good Flesh when she lived. She was made of God’s Own Good Born Silicate and now, well now, she was made of wood. Dr. Damiand, resurrected her by copying what the Intra-Portable Equiv-MRI Bot, that is, the brain software, had recorded…

…Read More of Vesper Heliotropic Book II. RACHAEL Here!

Vesper Heliotropic Dystopic Sci-Fi Novel

Mon Premier Benefice.

I think more than anything in the world, I wish to evoke in people, that is, within themselves, the sense of rapture in the song of life, the human drama; the idea of being alive. 

The modern world is accepted on the blanket of the nanny state and complacency of stuff. We keep repackaging it and expect it to get better somehow. It’s still just stuff. 

My goal more than ever is to influence people to treat their own rapture and bliss as the highest priority in their lives, and that this, in the end trumps attempts at infinitely securing mere survival–that is, the physical state is worth risking and even sacrificing for, on behalf of the mental state. Not the other way around as every existing culture would have you believe.

The latter cannot ultimately come first, but in the immediate, can be for sure, and often is by necessity. 

The reason we are in love with Zombie movies has very little to do with the given: good marketing, and more to do with our Narcissus Narcosis and OCD fidgeting.

Why? Because we are the zombies. Not them.

Whoever the ‘the they’ is at a given place and time. 

Elementary School.

I spent two different first grades in two different schools. As mentioned, Brenmar Elemtary and Ravenworth.

The reason was because I got held back after the first year after the first grade. Don’t remember much about Kindergarden or pre-school. I have some very strange memories of rainy days, girls, me clutching a Federal Express styrofoam airliner model that my Dad gave me. Have no idea from where or how but I think it had something to do with his work. He was a Word Processor early on, (yep!) and then later a Real Estate agent. I eventually crushed it I think, the airplane, after taking it with me to school too many times. I always hated the sound of crushing styrofoam. Always made me sad.

In terms of school, I had probably what was dyslexia, or something akin to it, but I was diagnosed ‘Reading Disabled,’ and therefore (I believe) LD, or ‘Learning Disabled.’ Ironically enough, I would later be put into GT, or Gifted and Talented (6th grade) and learn the difference between what boiled down to smart people and the rest. Yes, I can say that with a good bit of confidence. That’s later.

Mrs. Arola was my first grade teacher at Brennmar, Mrs. Shermetzler my second and first grade teacher at Ravensworth. All I remember from Shermetzler was that she didn’t like me standing out too much. One day I wore a white glove to class and even stretched it out in front of the kids one morning upon receiving a paper. When it met my white soft velvet gloved hand, Shermetzler said: “What’s with the glove?” I have no idea what I said back. Probably nothing. Felt ashamed. I always took everything WAY too seriously. Columbine shooter kind of geek kid in his infancy I suppose. Eh, those stupid Columbine kids are nothing, fuck em, I grew up on Hitler movies.

My father, interestingly enough, for bettwe or for worse (though we all know it’s for the better 😉 had a very interesting and dichotomous infatuation with ‘The Fuhrer.’

Well, our Fuhrer, Der Fuhrer. Okay. Well, anyway, we weren’t anti-semitic, at all. And I am not one to this day. Some of the most influential people in my life were Jews, and I have no problem with this. Tops Christians anyday.

Despite this, right along with it was my Dad’s big World War II interests coming out of the 1960’s Nuremburg trials. They are quite interesting indeed. My Dad’s Dad was a Colonel in the U.S. Army coming out of WW2 himself. So I can definitely see where the interest path lies to Hitler and the War. My Dad’s most notorious Hitler story from his youth was the time he decided to hang a swastika flag outside his room in his house I beleive on Long Pine Drive, Virginia. It was discovered by The Colenel’s boss I beleive when THE GENERAL came to dinner one night. Great. Must have made em wonder. Eh, oh well, nothing was said I don’t think until after the meal I bet.

Hitler, like the Columbine kids, was confused, creative, and angry at a depression filled country where you could never pay for coffee upon ordering coffee, but only upon leaving the shop cause inflation was so rapid that even 15 minutes not only could change the price, but did, basically every time I think. In those days. 30’s.

It wasn’t just Hitler. My parents, both of them, good ol’ liberals. I didn’t end up that way, but hey, they can’t be perfect right? Heh. Anyway, funny enough, Hitler was my introduction aside from my Dad into the life and mind of the Artist in terms of what I consider now to be genetics. Think Hannibal and his cell of fine cutlured items, his paintings, his wish to peer out a window. I can hear Anthony Hopkins doing Lector now…

“I want a view with water…” Chilling voice. So calm, so rational, yet, underneath…

My Dad yelled. A lot. Spontaneously in terms of our point of view. Perhaps that made for a metaphysics of constant alertness for me. I would later read this was similar for the Vienna based artist as well. 😉

The Themes were this: The relationship of, the fine lines between civility and barbarism, dark genius and altruism. Dynamism vs. Statis identity. As McLuhan says, “The Nazi is tribal.”

I grew up thinking of life on epic terms in the way that an Artist faces the world, and namely the Beurocrat. “Yes, the beaurocrat with his nice tidy desk, doesn’t know what to make of the Artist and his vivi-sectional (living section) view of life…”  -Marshall McLuhan

The story of the Artist is something I began to consider myself with reluctance and at every turn learned that ignoring this would be to my detriment. That’s why I was never pretentious in reality, an Artist is what I figured out who I was.

My mom played into this. I think Ruth Coombs (maiden name) thought I was some sort of Pariah. I swear. That woman treated me like a Price. Spoiled me, oh yeah. It’s a confidence that never goes away. Steve Jobs, I am learning recently was similar that way with, I forget, but I think it was his mom.

Tangent to this: Two of my closest friends would be El Salvadorian and I would learn that there were other mothers like mine, who made their sons into what was beyond ‘momma’s boys.’ I think it might have been the Jewish influence in my family. From my mom. Maybe somewhere down the line the value of knowledge was passed on.

The Real Protest

“It’s happening now. Not tomorrow.” – David Bowie, Outside 1994

The Gen-Xers are more picky than the companies are. I never knew the change would come through being spoiled, but it has.

Right now I’m doing an all-new IT Recruitment Website and the company I’m doing it for is flabbergasted about an experience they had with a Gen-Xer candidate who turned down like, I believe her ideal job just because the company in question pissed her off. As a result the owner calls me up and says: “I want the website to be catered to YOUR generation.” It was the first time in my web career someone that owned a company really had ‘endowment’ in the right area, if you get my drift.

I’ve been hearing about recruiters having frustrations with younger, generation-x candidates for web, not taking jobs they really ‘should have’ taken. This is so funny. My father and I have the same difficulty.

What did they expect? We’re the instant gratification generation, even more than the baby boom-disposable income kids: the hippies gone yuppies (my Dad) who ended up being forced into a lower standard of living, only to turn the highest standard of living ever known to mankind in all 100,000 or whatever years of human history–over to their kids: us.

I remember what I grew up with: 7-hour Saturday morning cartoons and complaints about not having movie night, every night. Restaurant night, every weekend.

So last year I was 33 and my father walks into my apartment in Crystal City near D.C. and asks why exactly one needs a 70″ LED Screen. I answer with bravado: I don’t need a 70″, I want the wall to be a TV. I want better than 1080p, I want Kinect, Pizza delivery via my Kinect with cable TV going on in the background, beers, vodka, and I won’t work unless it’s from home–even if I can’t pay the bills.

His naive eyes then roll over the XBox, the PS3, the redundant games we bought cause we couldn’t find one or two of them probably still left in our closet, buried. They lay scattered all over the soft carpeted floor, the nicely warmed condo overlooking the city, both our Macs standing on either side of the Monolith HD Screen like sentries or sphinx, forever guarding our feasts. That Steve Jobs would guarantee our freedom from the Corporate consumer life (basically communist in a weird way) into a realer capitalism. I love capitalism. The Unknown Ideal!

Rotten teeth? Who cares. Death? Who cares. As long as we can have our vices our cake, eat it too, then eat Pizza. Were the bravest generation only because of what brats we are. The question is not: “Where is my iPad?” Because the answer is iPad2, not my frickin’ old ass iPad 1 sitting there in the corner. Why not sell it? It’s buried under laundry. Who wants to do the dishes anyway? Not me.

As the late great Marshall McLuhan I will forever constantly site, has foreseen since the 50’s: That with every newer generation, is a newer level of community involvement. This is where capitalism merges with tribalism to become something we’ve never seen embodied in a medium we are but deer in the headlights to. That is, unless you’re me. Ha.

That’s us, that’s Gen-X. I never knew the great decentralizing social change of our era would be due to a child’s resentment of ‘The Man.’

The Lord works in mysterious ways.