Sunday, January 4, 2009

2009 Hints for Living


  1. Sure there's no god, but there actually are demons. Night demons, day demons, dog-demons, rake-demons. Visible or invisible, looking like The Thing or a phone or a kid. Demons.
  2. Sure there are demons, but there are definitely not any faeries. This can be particularly hard to swallow in Eugene, where it seems like there are lavender scarves and jingling bells everywhere. But those aren't faeries, they're just graduates of some kind of outdoor leadership school who decided that "enchantment" is the only viable compliment to their newfound capacity for "survival." (This is reason #671 to leave town. There are still 800+ reasons to stay.)
  3. Life is not like a blog. It's not a steady, collaborative, dialogical medium that rewards honest effort. Au contraire, life is more like a message board, on which you need to post 100 times before a new set of topics/features is revealed to you, and you're starting from scratch again. What are the new features, you ask? Demons.
  4. Sure, the personal is the political or whatever, but personhood ain't reducible to politics. We can recklessly conflate our bodies and our lives with causes, but we cannot evaporate into these causes. Doing so just tangles up "me" with "the struggle" in pretentious and ineffective ways, such that you cannot separate your, say, libertarianism from your stocking fetish. And then you're not helping anybody or "taking your desire for reality because you believe in the reality of desires." [special note - French theory, let alone the anarchic whatevering of the Situationist International, is of no help whatsoever when it comes to boxing gate-demons]
  5. Your friends (probably) don't secretly hate you. They (probably) want you to ask them to use their laundry machine or whatever. They (probably) aren't looking at you and thinking, "this guy looks like a bag of balloons and his entire being is smoldering beneath a foul, acrid, pus-like silence." You should try to convince them to cook for you or go to the movies. You shouldn't let them think you somehow are benefiting from being alone.
  6. There is no such thing as 'being alone.' It's not that hell is other people or whatever. Purgatory (read: earth) is the place where you feel too sick or too embarrassed to seek out the people who can help, thus trading good company (friends) for bad company (raft-demons, turntable-demons).
  7. Don't sit in a dive bar reading a book. You look like an asshole.

13 comments:

lex dexter said...

seasoned readers will note that i denounced 'agnostic patrick' in the post of 12/24/2008. 'seems there's no escaping some catholic vestiges as i go about navigating space-time, however. what a pity.

dave3544 said...

trivia tomorrow night. be there, or, alternately, be cooler than everyone who is playing trivia (I have no illusions).

Also, would do me a favor and use my washing machine and dryer every now and again? If I don't use them twice a day they don't start worth a shit in the morning.

gabbagabbahey said...

also, I'd imagine reading a book in a dive bar - assuming it was dimly lit - would be bad for your eyesight.

Wilbur said...

Is that engraving called "The Temptation of St. Anthony"? By Schoengauer? I want to say it is, but am not entirely sure...This was a good one - post, that is. I think I could probably get a lot out of trying to stick to some of the items laid out here in 2009 m'self.

lex dexter said...

you're right about the citation, Will. i should've included it.

and thanks for liking the post. it means a lot.

evil r + b said...

WHen I was back there in seminary school, there was a person there who put forth...

I tend to feel less Freudian (or worse: cognitive) when it comes to demons. I feel more like Jonathan Edwards.

Normally, however, I feel like Harry Bosch's wimpy nephew.

evil r + b guy said...

Oh yeah: fairies in a lot of places aren't though of as nice little twittery things hanging out in gardens and the like. They're much more sinister. Ask Eddie Lenihan:

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3129/2722418841_6f0a6ebaf8.jpg

Take a look, really.

wobblie said...

My long-term pre-grad school girlfriend was into fairies and paganism. In retrospect, it should've been a warning, but at the time, I thought it only as a harbinger of good sex. Which it was, but also of flakiness.

Elvira said...

I believe in fairies.

ash said...

damn, lex. this is some good blogging. seriously eff-ing nice post.

lex dexter said...

thanks, Ash!

Cucumber Wig said...

very funny. especially about the magical enchantment of being safely middle class. But the last bit about the dive bar reminds me that stuff like that always seems like somebody making mental movies starring themselves. I did it, sure, I was in high school.

Wiener Kid said...

Me likey.