a thread for mundane ironists

This is the place to shave off that long white beard and stop being philosophical; a forum for members to just talk like normal human beings.

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 15, 2018 7:52 pm

Emily Gould

Existential angst was far, far above her pay grade.


Unless you count being born.

As a child I was a little bit disgusted and embarrassed to learn about the facts of life, and did not immediately connect the idea of “sex” to the feelings I got when I lay on the carpet on my stomach,idly humping a stuffed animal while watching Sesame Street. The realization that sex could be something to anticipate happily rather than to dread as another unpleasant grown-up duty came to me in a dream. Nothing overtly sexual even happened in this dream—it was a dream about lying in bed on a sunny afternoon with sun streaking the sheets, surrounded by warmth, feeling satisfied. It took life a long time for life to catch up with what this idealized version of sex could be like; it’s still not like that every time, but when it is, I notice.

Let's exchange our own versions of this.

Amy had always thought she was too vain and selfish to seriously contemplate suicide, also too afraid of pain. She realized now that when she'd thought that, she hadn't understood how painful existence could get. It could get so painful, it turned out, that any other kind of pain began to seem preferable. She felt ridiculous thinking these goth-teenager thoughts, but they were real.

Someone pass this along to Peter Kropotkin.

She wondered if it counted as being good if you did the good thing for purely selfish reasons. Probably not, but who cared. What was important was what you did, not how you felt.

Or: She wondered if it counted as being bad if you did the bad thing for purely selfless reasons.

And there was Sam’s charming Marxist thing of thinking that restaurants, new clothes, et cetera, were frivolities that only served to keep workers addicted and enslaved by Capital. Amy agreed with him about this, in theory, but she loved wearing a new outfit for the first time, ideally to a restaurant.

The new class struggle.

We would talk about the future while holding it forcibly at bay with our inactivity.

Hey, he thought, whatever works.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 15, 2018 11:27 pm

Temple Grandin

I believe that the place where an animal dies is a sacred one. There is a need to bring ritual into the conventional slaughter plants and use as a means to shape people's behavior. It would help prevent people from becoming numbed, callous, or cruel. The ritual could be something very simple, such as a moment of silence. In addition to developing better designs and making equipment to insure the humane treatments of all animals, that would be my contribution.


They're still butchered though of course.

There’s a saying in engineering: You can build things cheap, fast, or right, but not all three.

Let's think up one for philosophy.

If language naturally evolves to serve the needs of tiny rodents with tiny rodent brains, then what's unique about language isn't the brilliant humans who invented it to communicate high-level abstract thoughts. What's unique about language is that the creatures who develop it are highly vulnerable to being eaten.

Does this square with Wittgenstein?

My mind can always separate the two. Even when I am very upset, I keep reviewing the facts over and over until I can come to a logical conclusion.

So, Temple, logically speaking, is it ethical to eat animals?

The word “autism” still conveys a fixed and dreadful meaning to most people—they visualize a child mute, rocking, screaming, inaccessible, cut off from human contact. And we almost always speak of autistic children, never of autistic adults, as if such children never grew up, or were somehow mysteriously spirited off the planet, out of society.

On the other hand, just how exceptional is she?

Neither living nor learning was good without order.

Though it is surely more complicated than that.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 16, 2018 3:23 am

Nein

The past, the present, and the future walk into a bar. Bartender: What will it have been?


Probably not a true story.

Yes, everything's already been said. But not by you.

Probably not by you either.

If it’s any consolation, there isn’t any.

What, are you expecting one?

In the beginning, we’ll say, there was Adam. Then they made Smith.

And then they made Don Trump.
[Well, some of you assholes anyway]


We regret to inform you that Twitter has deleted your fake followers. If it’s any consolation, your fake leaders remain all too real.

Trust me: Not just on Twitter.

Listen: Monday doesn’t want to be here either.

Around 4,000 of them won't want to be for most of us.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 16, 2018 3:24 am

Nein

The past, the present, and the future walk into a bar. Bartender: What will it have been?


Probably not a true story.

Yes, everything's already been said. But not by you.

Probably not by you either.

If it’s any consolation, there isn’t any.

What, are you expecting one?

In the beginning, we’ll say, there was Adam. Then they made Smith.

And then they made Don Trump.
[Well, some of you assholes anyway]


We regret to inform you that Twitter has deleted your fake followers. If it’s any consolation, your fake leaders remain all too real.

Trust me: Not just on Twitter.

Listen: Monday doesn’t want to be here either.

Around 4,000 of them won't want to be for most of us.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 16, 2018 4:59 pm

Nora Ephron

On some level, my life has been wasted on me. After all, if I can't remember it, who can?
The past is slipping away and the present is a constant affront. I can't possibly keep up.


Me, I'm just around the corner from that.

Failure, they say, is a growth experience; you learn from failure. I wish that were true. It seems to me the main thing you learn from failure is that it's entirely possible you will have another failure.

Hell, it's almost impossible not to have one.

I think I was so entranced with being a couple that I didn’t even notice that the person I thought I was a couple with thought he was a couple with someone else.

The stuff that movies are made from.

I am led to the proposition that there is no fiction or nonfiction as we commonly understand the distinction; there is only narrative.

Then eventually it gets around to the stuff I'm saying.

Of course, everyone has something wrong with him, that’s for sure, but this guy probably had something really wrong.

Of course he's dead now.

Sometimes I think that not having to worry about your hair anymore is the secret upside of death.

Just for some though.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 16, 2018 11:25 pm

Erica Jong

I don't know what the definition of pornography is and nobody else does either. Pornography is somebody else's erotica that you don't like. People are interested in their own sexuality and they've always reflected it in their art. End of story.


In other words, the end of her story.

But the fact is, the muse won't be summoned. She alights when it damn well pleases her. She falls in love with one artist, then deserts him for another. She's a real bitch!

Or, if she's a he, a real bastard.

All natural disasters are comforting because they reaffirm our impotence, in which, otherwise, we might stop believing.

Let's run this by the victims first.

I see the whole episode in my memory as if it were a very crisply photographed black and white movie. Directed by Bergman perhaps. We are playing ourselves in the movie version. If only we could escape from always having to play ourselves!

Or, for some, our hopelessly fractured and fragmented selves.

What all the ads and whorescopes seemed to imply was that if only you took proper care of your smells, your hair, your boobs, your eyelashes, your armpits, your crotch, your stars, your scars, your choice of Scotch in bars - you would meet a beautiful powerful, potent, and rich man who would satisfy every longing, fill every hole, make your heart skip a beat, make you misty, and fly you to the moon, where you would live totally satisfied forever.

Come on, if they didn't work they wouldn't still be around. Hell, we're buried in them.

Once I worshipped Keats for dying young. Now I think it's braver to die old.

Or, rather, what's left of us does.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:23 pm

Nathanael West

A button machine makes buttons, no matter what the power used, foot, steam or electricity. They, no matter what the motivating force, death, love or God, made jokes.


Let's decide what we make here.

In the king’s bed is always found, just before it becomes a museum piece, the droppings of the black sheep.

Wow, how ominous is that?

Once he had tried to get fired by recommending suicide in his column. All that Shrike had said was : "Remember, please, that you job is to increase the circulation of our paper. Suicide, it is only reasonable to think, must defeat this purpose".

Still it was just a ruse.

You dedicate your life to the pursuit of pleasure. No over-indulgence, mind you, but knowing that your body is a pleasure machine, you treat it carefully in order to get the most out of it.

Could that really be all it is?

But now let us consider the holes in our own bodies and into what these congenital wounds open. Under the skin of man is a wondrous jungle where veins like lush tropical growths hang along over-ripe organs and weed-like entrails writhe in squirming tangles of red and yellow. In this jungle, flitting from rock-gray lungs to golden intestines, from liver to lights and back to liver again, lives a bird called the soul.

Which as we all know, freed from all the gunk and goo, will one day fly off to Heaven.

It was on this trip that Faye acquired a new suitor by the name of Homer Simpson.

Really, there have to be at least a few out there.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:18 pm

Elias Canetti

How unfair, he thought; I can close my mouth whenever I like, as tight as I like, and what has a mouth to say? It is there for taking in nourishment, yet it is well defended, but ears - ears are a prey to every onslaught.


Imagine then how lucky we are.

You draw closer to truth by shutting yourself off from mankind.

Let's just say that works for me.

One lives in the naive notion that "later" there will be more room than in the entire past.

Unless of course one doesn't.

A tormenting thought: as of a certain point, history was no longer real. Without noticing it, all mankind suddenly left reality; everything happening since then was supposedly not true; but we supposedly didn't notice. Our task would now be to find that point, and as long as we didn't have it, we would be forced to abide in our present destruction.

I know, but just imagine if it were true.

She was crude, but loyal. He began to understand her even better than before. A pity she was so old; it was too late to try to make a human being of her.

It wouldn't work on me either.

Slumbering in every human being lies an infinity of possibilities, which one must not arouse in vain. For it is terrible when the whole man resonates with echoes and echoes, none becoming a real voice.

More to the point [for some of us] you never get used to it.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jul 18, 2018 5:06 pm

Günter Grass

Suppose you're teaching math. You assume that parallel lines meet at infinity. You'll admit that adds up to something like transcendence.


You being not me for example.

…there is something very strange and childish in the way grown-ups feel about their clocks—in that respect, I was never a child. I am willing to agree that the clock is probably the most remarkable thing that grown-ups ever produced. Grown-ups have it in them to be creative, and sometimes, with the help of ambition, hard work, and a bit of luck they actually are, but being grown-ups, they have no sooner created some epoch-making invention than they become a slave to it.

And not just the fucking capitalists.

They had tried doing it by themselves in her room with a cheap onion, but it wasn't the same. You needed an audience. It was so much easier to cry in company. It gave you a real sense of brotherhood in sorrow when to the right and left of you and in the gallery overhead your fellow students were all crying their hearts out.

What shall we all cry about?

Memory likes to play hide-and-seek, to crawl away. It tends to hold forth, to dress up, often needlessly. Memory contradicts itself; pedant that it is, it will have its way.

Of course we forget why.

If Hell’s in store for us someday, one of its most refined forms of torture will be to lock a person naked in a room filled with framed photos of his era.

How preposterous is that?

What more can I say: born beneath light bulbs, interrupted my growth at the age of three, was given a drum, sangshattered glass, smelled vanilla, coughed in churches, stuffed Luzie with food, watched ants as they crawled, decided to grow, buried the drum, moved to the West, lost what was East, learned to carve stone and posed as a model, went back to my drum and inspected concrete, made money and cared for the finger, gave the finger away and fled as I laughed, ascended, arrested, convicted, confined, now soon to be freed, and today is my birthday, I’m thirty years old, and still as afraid of the Black Cook as ever—Amen.

On the other hand, who hasn't said that?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:05 pm

Philosophy Tweets

“To philosopher and historian the madness and imbecile wickedness of mankind ought to appear ordinary events.” David Hume


Another thing [surely] we can all agree on.

"The judges of normality are present everywhere. We are in the society of the doctor-judge, the educator-judge, the social worker -judge." Michel Foucault

Any actual philosopher-judges here?

"There are three causes of strife in human nature: rivalry, distrust, pride.” Thomas Hobbes

Provided of course in this day and age we get around to the part about money.

“The privilege of absurdity is restricted to only human.” Thomas Hobbes

And, let's face it, that's more than enough.

"The fool tells me his reason; the wise man persuades me with my own." Aristotle

Well, he wasn't Aristotle for nothing, right? Just ask, among others, the followers of Ayn Rand.

"Those who excel in virtue have the best right of all to rebel, but then they are of all men the least inclined to do so." Aristotle

He means the part where rebelling engenders, among other things, actual consequences.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jul 18, 2018 11:21 pm

Neil Gaiman

Media. I think I have heard of her. Isn't she the one who killed her children?


Every night on the news.

I decided that I would do my best in the future not to write books just for money. If you didn't get the money then you didn't have anything. If I did the work I was proud of and I didn't get the money, at least I'd have the work.

In other words, after already accumulating a boat load of dough.

When people tell you there’s something wrong with a story, they’re almost always right. When they tell what it is that’s wrong and how it can be fixed, they’re almost always wrong.

Go ahead, try it with me.

In fact, the only things in the flat Crowley devoted any personal attention to were the houseplants. They were huge, and green, and glorious, with shiny, healthy, lustrous leaves.
This was because, once a week, Crowley went around the flat with a green plastic plant mister spraying the leaves, and talking to the plants....
Although talking is perhaps the wrong word for what Crowley did.
What he did was put the fear of God into them.
More precisely, the fear of Crowley.
In addition to which, every couple of months Crowley would pick out a plant that was growing too slowly, or succumbing to leaf-wilt, or browning, or just didn't look quite as good as the others, and he would carry it around to all the plants. "Say goodbye to your friend," he'd say to them. "He just couldn't cut it..."
Then he would leave the flat with the offending plant, and return an hour or so later with a large empty flower pot, which he would leave somewhere conspicuously around the flat.
The plants were the most luxurious, verdant, and beautiful in London. Also the most terrified.


Obviously a metaphor. For what though?

Writing may or may not be your salvation; it might or might not be your destiny. But that does not matter. What matters right now are the words, one after another. Find the next word. Write it down.

Either that or copy and paste them.

It was not that he was feckless, more that he had simply not been around the day they handed out feck.

They missed me too. Though [clearly] not you.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:27 pm

Edgar Allan Poe

There are few persons who have not, at some period of their lives, amused themselves in retracing the steps by which particular conclusions of their own minds have been attained.


Some less amused then horrified.

I am walking like a bewitched corpse, with the certainty of being eaten by the infinite, of being annulled by the only existing Absurd.

Or, sure, something like that.

Man's real life is happy, chiefly because he is ever expecting that it soon will be so.

I trust then that among us I am not the only exception.

Such, I have long known, is the paradoxical law of all sentiments having terror as a basis.

Anyway, terror is around them somewhere.

There are surely other worlds than this - other thoughts than the thoughts of the multitude - other speculations than the speculations of the sophist.

Or surely not, he thought.

The history of human knowledge has so uninterruptedly shown that to collateral, or incidental, or accidental events we are indebted for the most numerous and most valuable discoveries, that it has at length become necessary, in any prospective view of improvement, to make not only large, but the largest allowances for inventions that shall arise by chance, and quite out of the range of ordinary expectation. It is no longer philosophical to base, upon what has been, a vision of what is to be. Accident is admitted as a portion of the substructure. We make chance a matter of absolute calculation. We subject the unlooked for and unimagined, to the mathematical formulae of the schools.

The quantum world writ large?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:43 pm

God

I’m deeply sorry for the racist, sexist and homophobic things I wrote when I was younger.


I'm sure if He does exist, He might possibly even mean it.

No matter what you think of Donald Trump, you have to admit: he's a piece of shit.

On the other hand, aren't we all?
[at least to someone]


I’d like to see some dirt on Trump. Six feet of it.

See you in Hell, Don.

Putin is grabbing Trump by the pussy.

Sounds like collusion to me.

And now, back to the shit show.

Going all the way back [so far] to the Garden of Eden.

Alexa, run the universe for Me.

What am I missing here?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:17 pm

Federico García Lorca

As I have not worried to be born, I do not worry to die.


On the other hand, it's not exactly the same thing.

We're all curious about what might hurt us.

Also: We're all curious about what might kill us.

My head is full of fire
and grief and my tongue
runs wild, pierced
with shards of glass.


We'll need a context of course.

In Spain the dead are more alive than the dead of any other country in the world.

Do they know that?

Don't ask me any questions. I've seen how things that seek their way find their void instead.

And that's before enduring the answers.

Like a snake, my heart
has shed its skin.
I hold it here in my hand,
full of honey and wounds.


Though no less slithering.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 20, 2018 7:14 pm

C.G. Jung

Because we cannot discover God's throne in the sky with a radiotelescope or establish (for certain) that a beloved father or mother is still about in a more or less corporeal form, people assume that such ideas are "not true." I would rather say that they are not "true" enough, for these are conceptions of a kind that have accompanied human life from prehistoric times, and that still break through into consciousness at any provocation.

Modern man may assert that he can dispose with them, and he may bolster his opinion by insisting that there is no scientific evidence of their truth. Or he may even regret the loss of his convictions. But since we are dealing with invisible and unknowable things (for God is beyond human understanding, and there is no means of proving immortality), why should we bother about evidence? Even if we did not know by reason our need for salt in our food, we should nonetheless profit from its use. We might argue that the use of salt is a mere illusion of taste or a superstition; but it would still contribute to our well-being. Why, then, should we deprive ourselves of views that would prove helpful in crises and would give a meaning to our existence?

And how do we know that such ideas are not true? Many people would agree with me if I stated flatly that such ideas are probably illusions. What they fail to realize is that the denial is as impossible to "prove" as the assertion of religious belief. We are entirely free to choose which point of view we take; it will in any case be an arbitrary decision.

There is, however, a strong empirical reason why we should cultivate thoughts that can never be proved. It is that they are known to be useful. Man positively needs general ideas and convictions that will give a meaning to his life and enable him to find a place for himself in the universe. He can stand the most incredible hardships when he is convinced that they make sense; he is crushed when, on top of all his misfortunes, he has to admit that he is taking part in a "tale told by an idiot."

It is the role of religious symbols to give a meaning to the life of man. The Pueblo Indians believe that they are the sons of Father Sun, and this belief endows their life with a perspective (and a goal) that goes far beyond their limited existence. It gives them ample space for the unfolding of personality and permits them a full life as complete persons. Their plight is infinitely more satisfactory than that of a man in our own civilization who knows that he is (and will remain) nothing more than an underdog with no inner meaning to his life.


Let's file this one under, "sure, why not?"

Thinking is difficult, that's why most people judge.

Here? Cue the fucking Kids!

I swayed between fear, defiance, and nausea, and was wholly the prey of my passion. I could not and did not want to listen to the depths. But on the seventh night, the spirit of the depths spoke to me: Look into your depths, pray to your depths, waken the dead.

That ever work for anyone here?

Scientific education is based in the main on statistical truths and abstract knowledge and therefore imparts an unrealistic, rational picture of the world, in which the individual, as a merely marginal phenomenon, plays no role. The individual, however, as an irrational datum, is the true and authentic carrier of reality, the concrete man as opposed to the unreal ideal or “normal” man to whom the scientific statements refer.

Jesus, how scary is that?!

Not the criticism of individual contemporaries will decide the truth or falsity of these discoveries, but future generations. There are things that are not yet true today, perhaps we dare not find them true, but tomorrow they may be. So every man whose fate it is to go his individual way must proceed with hopefulness and watchfulness, ever conscious of his loneliness and its dangers.

How comforting, right? If only in an entirely abstract way.

We want to have certainties and no doubts--results and no experiments--without even seeing that certainties can arise only through doubt and results only through experiment.

Not counting, say, human interactions in the is/ought world.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:47 pm

Jan Mieszkowski

"The madman is not only a beggar who thinks he is a king, but also a king who thinks he is a king." Lacan


On the other hand, he's mad so what's the difference.

You're so vain, you probably think your selfie is about you.

Wow, how vain is that?!

Sophocles: Not to have been born is best.
Schopenhauer: It would be better if there were nothing.
Heidegger: Trembling, Dasein holds itself out into the nothing.
Žižek: My speaker's fee? I'll tell you one thing: it's not nothing!


Hating Žižek. It must be the "thing" these days.

Camus: All I know about morality and the obligations of men, I owe to football.
Sartre: And your conclusion?
Camus: Humanity is vile and life is meaningless.


What's that got to do with football, he thought.

When someone praises Kant's theory of experience, it's all I can do not to
Hegel: cry
Kierkegaard: laugh
Nietzsche: laugh out loud
Benjamin: assemble 1000 pages of stray notes about it


Not Benjamin surely.

The best football match
Parmenides: never begins or ends
Hegel: has always already become what it is not
Heidegger: doesn't leave the Black Forest
Beckett: promises misery but delivers only despair


Except in France of course.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:22 pm

D.H. Lawrence

Oh build your ship of death, oh build it in time and build it lovingly, and put it between the hands of your soul.


How soothing does that sound?

Had you noticed them before? he asked.
No, never before, she replied.
And now you will always see them, he said.


Is that maddening or not?

But a woman could yield to a man without yielding her inner, free self. That the poets and talkers about sex did not seem to have taken sufficiently into account. A woman could take a man without really giving herself away. Certainly she could take him without giving herself into his power. Rather she could use this sex thing to have power over him.

He wondered, Is that still going on?
But not for long, right?


Why are we all only like mortal pieces of furniture? Why is nothing important?

1] Death
2] No God


So long as life's full, it doesn't matter whether it's happy or not. I'm afraid your happiness would bore me.

The second part surely. But the first part?

But she would wake in the morning one day and feel her blood running, feel herself lying open like a flower unsheathed in the sun, insistent and potent with demand.

Just not for you.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:25 pm

Edward St. Aubyn

Most people wait for their parents to die with a mixture of tremendous sadness and plans for a new swimming pool.


The new normal.

Every paradise demands a serpent.

Let's think of one that doesn't.

There's a blast of palpable stupidity that comes from our host, like opening the door of a sauna. The best way to contradict him is to let him speak.

Of course here we let the Kids post.

People think they are individuals because they use the word "I" so often, Patrick commented.

As in, "I do what everyone else does".

In the Dodge City of romantic love, crowded with betrayal, abandonment and rejection, it was better to fire first than to take the risk of being gunned down.

Time after time after time after time.

In England, art was much less likely to be mentioned in polite society than sexual perversions or methods of torture.

We'll need some confirmation of course.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jul 21, 2018 11:28 pm

Tom Stoppard

Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.


Of course it almost goes without saying: our words, not theirs.

I have three copies of the first edition, which sold in double figures, speaking loosely; there was a moment when Blond's 'Lord Malquist and Mr Moon' sold 67 copies, or some such number, in Venezuela - a mystery I never solved. I have never been to Venezuela. I remember going into Foyles' bookshop in 1966 and being gratified to see a stack of Malquist-and-Moons on the New Fiction table. I counted them; there were twelve. A week or two later I went in again; there they were. I counted them again; there were thirteen! I saw at once what was happening. People were leaving my book at bookshops.

Would that I could have been so perplexed.

The days of the digital watch are numbered.

Hell the days themselves are numbered for, say, all of us.

It’s to do with knowing and being known. I remember how it stopped seeming odd that in biblical Greek, knowing was used for making love. Whosit knew so-and-so. Carnal knowledge. It’s what lovers trust each other with. Knowledge of each other, not of the flesh but through the flesh, knowledge of self, the real him, the real her, in extremis, the mask slipped from the face. Every other version of oneself is on offer to the public. We share our vivacity, grief, sulks, anger, joy… we hand it out to anybody who happens to be standing around, to friends and family with a momentary sense of indecency perhaps, to strangers without hesitation. Our lovers share us with the passing trade. But in pairs we insist that we give ourselves to each other. What selves? What’s left? What else is there that hasn’t been dealt out like a deck of cards? Carnal knowledge. Personal, final, uncompromised. Knowing, being known. I revere that. Having that is being rich, you can be generous about what’s shared — she walks, she talks, she laughs, she lends a sympathetic ear, she kicks off her shoes and dances on the tables, she’s everybody’s and it don’t mean a thing, let them eat cake; knowledge is something else, the undealt card, and while it’s held it makes you free-and-easy and nice to know, and when it’s gone everything is pain. Every single thing. Every object that meets the eye, a pencil, a tangerine, a travel poster. As if the physical world has been wired up to pass a current back to the part of your brain where imagination glows like a filament in a lobe no bigger than a torch bulb. Pain.

Or surely something as approximately true as this.

What's the first thing you remember?
No, it's no good. It was a long time ago.
No, you don't take my meaning. What's the first thing you remember after all the things you've forgotten?
Oh, I see...I've forgotten the question.


Let's see him come back from that.

The Plastic People of the Universe played 'Venus in Furs' from Velvet Underground, and I knew everything was basically okay.

So, sure, I Googled it: https://youtu.be/ydgw2QJIQk4
Is this them?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:18 am

Existential Comics

The damn atheists ruined atheism!


Of course we all ruin something.

So pathetic how many Democrats are obviously thrilled about Trump, because now all they have to do is say "Trump is BAD! Russian INTERFERENCE!!!" and everyone loves it. Meanwhile they don't have to propose a single policy that would harm the bottom line of their corporate donors.

Hey, we don't call it crony capitalism for nothing.

People who are obsessed with logical fallacies suffer from the most severe fallacy: that disagreements are easily resolved. As though everyone secretly agrees, but half the population made a simple logical misstep and arrived at the wrong conclusion.

Okay, admittedly, not just the objectivists.

Republicans are outraged that Trump might be a traitor to the American people, when he was only suppose to be a traitor to the American working class.

And not just the ones in Congress.

I like that slogan "freedom isn't free", because it's extremely true, but not just in that you have to fight for freedom. Freedom literally costs money. Ever try going to a city with no money? You'll find your only freedom is to sleep in the street and beg for food.

Still, as we all know, it's their own damn fault.

That phrase "the birds and the bees" is weird as hell, if you are teaching your kids about sex, you probably shouldn't bring up bees. The Queen Bee has one giant orgy at the start of her life, rips all the male bee's dicks off, killing them, and stores all their sperm for life.

Bees, the first feminists.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:10 pm

Anthony Bourdain

...your body is not a temple, it's an amusement park. Enjoy the ride.


In other words, if it lets you.

Vegetarians, and their Hezbollah-like splinter faction, the vegans ... are the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit.

Oh please!

Maybe that’s enlightenment enough: to know that there is no final resting place of the mind; no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom...is realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.

Sure, suicide fits in there somewhere.

Skills can be taught. Character you either have or you don't have.

Of course [like everyone else] he gets to say what that is.

They're professionals at this in Russia, so no matter how many Jell-O shots or Jager shooters you might have downed at college mixers, no matter how good a drinker you might think you are, don't forget that the Russians - any Russian - can drink you under the table.

Same with their hackers.

We know, for instance, that there is a direct, inverse relationship between frequency of family meals and social problems. Bluntly stated, members of families who eat together regularly are statistically less likely to stick up liquor stores, blow up meth labs, give birth to crack babies, commit suicide, or make donkey porn.

Even if they eat together at McDonalds?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 22, 2018 8:08 pm

tiny nietzsche

me: I don't trust anything
postmodernism: same


Same meaning different.

it's my funeral and I'll die if I want to

Now all we need is Leslie Gore.

I hate tourists almost as much as I hate locals.

My advice: move.

I used to think being human was a given. Now I'm not so sure.

Just out of curiosity, what the hell does that even mean?

I got my phd at Fuck U

Me? I got my associate degree at Fuck U community college.

my horoscope says I did it in the kitchen with the lead pipe

Time to get a new birthday.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:37 pm

Meg Wolitzer

It was exhausting being a schizophrenic.


Even more exhausting: figuring out if you actually were.

Everything you do, it’ll all feel really slow for a long time. But looking back, much later, it will have seemed like it was fast.

You know, in the shadow of, among other things, the abyss.

He’d had a real talent, but what was talent without confidence, self-possession, “ownership,” as people said, pompously but maybe accurately.

How's that different [for some] from having no talent?

My job does not define me.

Not so sure about your own job are you?

The way Susannah sings 'The Wind Will Carry Us' is so sad, he murmured.
Yeah, it really is.
It makes me think of the way people devote their lives to each other, and then one of them just leaves, or even dies.
I hadn't thought of it that way, said Jules, who had never understood those lyrics, in particular how a single wind could carry two people apart. I know this sounds picky, but wouldn't the wind carry them together? she asked. It's one breeze. It just blows one way, not two.
Huh. Let me think about it. He thought briefly. You're right. It doesn't make sense. But still, it's very melancholy.


Lots of lyrics like that though.

All that reading took. It became as basic as any other need. To be lost in a novel meant you were not lost in your own life, the drafty, disorganized, lumbering bus of a house, the disinterested parents.

You know, back when novels actually accomplished this.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:04 pm

Ambrose Bierce

Happiness: an agreeable sensation arising from contemplating the misery of another.


Schadenfreude, dummy.

Infidel, n. In New York, one who does not believe in the Christian religion; in Constantinople, one who does.

The same fucking God!

Politics, n. Strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.

But only until Mueller drains the swamp. Or, sure, maybe not even then.

Nihilist, n. A Russian who denies the existence of anything but Tolstoi. The leader of the school is Tolstoi.

Not even close, right?

War is God's way of teaching Americans geography.

Remember when that was actually true?

Twice – Once too often.

Or, sometimes, twice too often.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:33 pm

so sad today

yeah no shit i'm trying too hard


Any chance that I am?

one time i was optimistic and it did not go well

Don't tell me about it.

the emptiness has arrived

Again in other words.

being an adult sounds really bad

And not for no reason.

weekend plans:
regret past
fear future


Or, sure, 24/7

sorry i tried to use you as an antidepressant

Sorry I made it worse.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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