11-11-11 notes.


I walk around Bed Stuy taking pictures of autumn leaves on black limbs, rustling piles beneath battered Tims, smile across my face and ink all over my hands, like I’m in some bad early 90’s indie flick you never saw or heard of.
The nametag I wore last night for work designated me as an “artist” so I guess I am one now.
I think everything is weird and beautiful and funny and absurd.
Blame the court-mandated caseworker who brought me Camus’ “The Stranger”  when I was 15.  Fucked my head up right good.
There is a perfect pattern, indescernable, indescribable- a magnitude incomprehensible.
It curves.
I curl.
The earth is not a sphere so much as a point.  So to speak. 
Paco, stoned, approaches me at the outpost.
“Ah,” he says, lumbering smoothly, gesturing.
“A personal information unit, instead of a laptop.”
“A notebook.”
Alphabet soup in my brain and I am chunky Tanya Tomato.

It's about perspective; anti-teleologic.
Listen to the wind in the trees.  A leaf, alone, does not rustle.  The clanging of construction on Atlantic.
I crouch in shady corners, sharpie, marble notebook, taking notes.  I prefer my solitude to solipsism.
We seem dysfunctional, unstable, but you look too close.  Build monolithic mythologies and lose your focus.  You will romanticize our supposed tragedies, our apparent eccentricities, our implied “It’s not easy being me”’s, into something much more difficult to safely ingest.  You are looking too fucking close.  We are seers, speaking in visions, and you, my friend, are one too.   We.  Can’t.  Hear.  You.
Mic Check.

Moma on Veterans Day
Preliminary Design For Man at the Crossroads:  look at the way Rivera drew hands in his sketches.  Spend time with his thumbnails.  
Listen to the old wealthy members talk revolution, speak in lilting italics, “Ah, yes, but as an artist, he....”, as though anything is compartmentalized that easy.
They are swaddled in their scarves.
His grid is faint under graphite.  
Tear it off the wall and ensure it lives forever.  Plaster crumbles.
Theme- “The development of civilization is no longer lateral- it is inward and upward.”
And it goes on.
“The Worker gives his right hand to the Peasant who questions him and with his left hand takes the hand of the Sick and Wounded Soldier, the Victim of War, Leading him to the New Road.”
“The Television gives an image of War as in the case of Unemployment, the result of the evolution of Technical Power unaccompanied by a corresponding Ethical Development.”
Rivera’s sketchbooks give me permission to draw; blocked colors of domesticated pageantry.

A wall is a wall and a room is a tomb and I wander the labyrinth of sanctioned high culture, adrift.

Combatant Status Review Tribunals - readings from Gitmo on Saturday and Sunday at 1pm.
I am bored.  The Moma is a mall.
Again, again, and again I return to Harun Farocki’s dark room of screens.  Images of War (at a Distance).
It is Veteran’s Day, after all.
“The System for remembering is a little cheaper than the one for training.”
Every time I sit on this bench, in this room, and watch these films, I cry, and I know that it will be here until January and I will never see these films again, and it is safe in here, and it is dark, and no one here knows me and never will.
I am thinking of you, dead in the sand.  I am thinking of you, lost in fatigues.  I am thinking of you, rifle in teeth.  
The post traumatic soldier, recounting, says to his business casual therapist as he once again tells the story - always, the spinning, cyclical, story - “Do people get worse after doing this?”
Outside, in the crisp yellow autumn sun, they’ve blocked off the subway for the parade and the soldiers smile and wave and their heavy medals catch the light, glinting.  


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