|361Coming close is as close as we can ever come: Erasure + parallel processing|
29.04.14 Chicago> sat in an indoor hot tub watching thunderstorms rain hail on the domed roof over our head. When it cleared some, walked around the neighborhood (if u can call it that) outside the hotel but not much to see or even eat. Asked the hotel people what there was around the hotel + all they had to say was a new outlet store ... + even that wasn't w/in walking distance. What can u say back? ... «outlet stores could be interesting...». Most of America (outside NYC) is a wasteland if u don't have a car.
Went back to the room & finished reading Barry Yourgrau's Wearing Dad's Head. David Byrne put it well: «I can never remember my dreams, so Mr. Yourgrau's stories are a pretty good substitute.» After we finished it, we closed our eyes + sort of dozed off thinking about Yourgrau. It was 3:30 or so in the afternoon so we felt guilty napping ... not that we had a job or anything to be at ... suppose it's some sort of ingrained American work ethic, feeling u need to be doing something ... but we're travelling, so hard to «work» on what we'd normally be working on ... + even then most wouldn't qualify what we do as legitimate «work» ... not in the protestant sense anyway, from where at least bloodwise we probly stem (something that also plagued our brother).
We were half-thinking/half-day dreaming about Yourgrau + his stories + generally about the role of dreams in our waking lives ... or even more more generally—sleep. Dreams are just the tip of the iceberg to a whole other subconscious world. We think of it as a sort of parallel processing. Often (as in our dream last night) we try to capture it—to put it in words—but when u do it is only the conscious mind putting into words the non-goings on of this subconscious realm. Yourgrau comes close w/ his stories, but they are still self-conscious. Coming close is as close as we can ever come.
We trust Mr. Byrne's taste in literature ... it was cuz of him we 1st read Amos Tutuola + My Life in the Bush of Ghosts remains 1 of our all time favorites (both the book + the album). It shares common ground w/ Yourgrau in it's primal urgency ... of a writer just writing what he feels compelled to write w/out stopping to ask why, almost as if they are merely relaying visions.
J just txted me from some boring meeting ... asking what i was doing + we tried to say the area we were in wasn't fit for flâneuring, but it autocorrected it to «not fit for flame urging» ha ha. Is life better w/ autocorrect on?
Parallel processing is also how we think of our role in 'SSES" 'SSES" "SSEY' ... not just in relation to our brother + i's parallel lives, but getting back to the relation of conscious/subconscious. If only our brother logged his dreams, but he didn't think too highly of dreams ... considered them to be like junk DNA. We have our own dream journal dating back well into the late 80s (tho tapering off in recent years ... perhaps tapped out). We've included some in 'SSES" 'SSES" "SSEY' ... the 1s Kevin appears in, or that we might've had on the same he day he logs a regular conscious journal entry ... for perspective, ungrounded or not.
... not that any of this has to do w/ Chicago. 5cense is for the most part self-conscious journaling. Tho it is also a sort of parallel processing to what we are working on at a given time, so in a sense is on an alternate plane ...
Planes are flying overhead at regular frequency, every 3 minutes ... in a holding pattern to O'hare. Can also hear the the rumbling of the L (as in eLevated) from here.
Our own Poste Restante is collected of such Yourgrau-like dream-inspired flashes. Here's a dream from almost 30 years ago that didn't make the cut + doesn't really fit SSEY either so we'll include here:
At the time, we'd seen neither Lake Nicaragua nor Mt. Kilimanjaro for ourselves. Not sure what business they were doing in our dreams.
30.04.14 Chicago> Our brother's birthday ... were he still alive he'd be 49. We still think of him as the age when he died, 32. One way to not get older is to die young.
Felt like Ferris Beuller's Day Off ... a day to do whatever in Chicago ... except we didn't have the puffy-haired girlfriend along (ours was in an all-day meeting ... getting elected to some board) + the rich father-pecked friend w/ a sports car + we're not playing hooky from anything. We did think to go to a Cubs game, but they were playing away. Took the L to the Loop area. Walked around in the rain (too early to duck into a museum (where art goes to die)) ... down to the river & the edge of the big aqua-blue lake + back up along river ... tho they were doing major construction along a major swath of it.
Rain picked back up so we took shelter in The Art Institute ... special exhibit on Christopher Wool which was good + comprehensive. Decent permanent collection too. Heard a teenager (seriously) ask her friends «how do u know what's art?»
Got a deep dish pizza after at Pizano's. We used to be a fan of deep dish, now we're not sure ... let's just say it was nice for a change.
Then walked along the lake north towards Lincoln Park. We saw most of this already the last time were here (for &Now 2006) ... so tried to venture off into new territory tho we were sort of randomly meandering w/out any preconceived plan ... thru «Old Town» + all the way east along North ave ... past the infamous Exit punk club + Quimby's ... to Wicker Park ... just mapped it + it was over 15 miles of walking. Here's our random peregrination ...
We once had ambitions to open up a shop (preferably on 5th ave or some expensive street) where nothing was for sale ... just to piss people off. It seems The Boring Store has beat us to the punch ... sort of, while they do sell things, they market their merchandise as the «most characterless and opiating stock of wearisome and lifeless items available in the United States.» Needless to say, we couldn't find anything worth getting (tho they did have the standard selection of literary journals, as did Quimby's, neither of which carry Sleepingfish (tho Quimby's used to carry our shit til we got tired of them never paying for what we sent).
Had tacos at 'Big Star' (their sign was just a big ★ w/ no words so figured that's what their name was) ... pretty good for nouveau-style Mexican (tho spare me the fucking pineapple on my tacos).
Some other uncategorized observations: People are a lot friendlier in Chicago than NYC. Chicago is fairly anti-septic, doesn't have the grit NYC has. Everyone in Chicago seems to have big wooden porches. At some points the L would pass so close to people's apartments it was like u were in their living room. Some of the places in Chicago have 'no guns' signs ... does this imply guns are allowed everywhere else? Used to that in small towns like Tucson (where people carry holstered guns to the laundromat) but a scary thought for a big city. All of America outside NYC seems scary + foreign to us, not sure where we belong ...
02.04.2014 > Back in NYC now ... tho j turned right around + went to Nepal ... poverina. This is the beginning of a month-long stint of insane travel for her + she's already frazzled ... left her bag on the plane + then again, left it in the cab. Perhaps her sub-conscious finding a way to get out of all this travel (the bag had her passport + computer, etc.). But good samiritans kept running after us to give the bag back.
Originally we thought to go w/ her to Nepal, but in the end it was too expensive + too short notice w/ too much going on on the homefront. Had idealized notions of somehow relating it to 'SSES" 'SSES" "SSEY' ... since that was our brother's primary destination in his odyssey. Thought maybe we'd bring his ashes or something & go on the same trek he went on + scatter his ashes ... but besides being sappy, bringing a baggy of white powder to Nepal (via Doha) didn't seem like such a smart idea ...
+ now w/ this whole ordeal w/ the sherpas glad we didn't. It's the idea that counts. And sometimes the idea is better if u don't actually do it ... that's what writing is all about. We can just lie + say we did. So our better half is on her way + we are holding down the fort ...
It was only less than a year ago that we were there anyway ... which is when we embarked on 'SSES" 'SSES" "SSEY' ... actually put pen to paper.
Just when we were bragging about our old laptop, it slowly died in Chicago. Good thing it died there + not a month from now in the UK. Spent a day or two just salvaging the work we did in Chicago, including this ... a painstaking process, every action taking hours ...
On the plane back finished Erasure by Percival Everett. Not sure we liked it as much as Glyph, but brilliant nonetheless. Everett is one of the more underrated post-modern writers out there ... ever thinking + self-aware + deeply cynical. The title is based on the piece Rauschenberg made by erasing a de Kooning drawing ... guess the parallel is that Everett's protagonist is erasing himself by writing how a black person is expected to write (the novel (Ma Pafology) of which is embedded w/in the novel!) rather than to «write white» as is his natural inclination (as if white people have a monopoly on thinking + conceptual writing) ... a storyline u can't help but wonder must be autobiographical.
We've run out of things to say so we'll just show the rest of the pics ...
|> 362 > Cane bones dialed in remote to DC blazing zef dust from the rails|