The body is the seat of the mind, where the mind happens, but it does not set the boundaries of the mind. If the body is a cage, Wallace’s creation is proof that the mind can make itself smaller than the gaps between bars. Wallace’s confinement was undoubtedly torturous, surreal, and painful, and he expresses this in his letters to Sumell. In the virtual tour of his house, he gives explanations for certain features, such as the master bedroom’s jacuzzi bathtub, six square feet larger than his cell. In the words of Sumell, “[The House That Wallace Built] illustrates not only what is wrong, but also what is possible.”
I wonder if Marina Benjamin considered another title for her excellent book, The Middlepause. Specifically, I wonder if she thought about using “Mental Menopause,” a catchy moniker used by one of her friends as they discuss their mutual exploration of middle age and beyond. “It’s more a mental menopause I’ve been struggling with,” this friend shares, “with every significant choice I’ve ever made suddenly up for review – education, career choice, where to live, children; even your key relationship, which is so established, it requires work.”
I think it's rather vulgar to refer to oneself in the third person. I rarely say my name aloud. And I rarely say anyone's name when addressing them, usually just stating something or saying, "Hey, uh, statement xyz." Do you do that?
MAX from MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: I know that it is hard to be in a relationship with someone who has such severe PTSD. I’m not even sure he’s capable of opening up emotionally to another person after what he’s been through. But if he’s willing to try, then I will bring all my reserves of patience. This is someone with a genuinely good heart.
After that one time, I knew she couldn’t endure chemo. She was so small and her hair fell out, her mottled charcoal/pink skin turned solid black from the drugs, leaving just her tiny black Chinese Crested face, like a little spider monkey. When a little boy on the street looked terrified and tugged on his mom’s pants to point at Nina, that’s what I said: “She’s a monkey”, and smiled. And thought, you-- you-- little boy, will be old and look like shit one day and by then your mother will be dead, so fuck you.
So many of us have been to art school and graduate school now and there's a lot of investment in a parochial way of looking at art. I think it's good to try to keep that out of the studio. Artmaking is not a good place to be dancing for judges. No one really knows anything about art! Rather than a conversation or a game, I like to think of art as a totally random collection of heavily cathectic matter-poems thrown up by regenerating but definitely dying spiritual-biological animals on a planet in space.
In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty. Great works of art have no more affecting lesson for us than this. They teach us to abide by our spontaneous impression with good-humored inflexibility then most when the whole cry of voices is on the other side.
One very amusing Oasis documentary, and a short stop in Amsterdam later, voila, I landed in Brussels, finding it a puzzling Southern California-esque 85 and sunny. I napped for four hours as everyone advises you not to, then rose a la Lazarus to wander around in aimless circles. Getting lost was OK, then awesome, then scary, then fine, then fun, then alarming, then I stopped caring. Time didn’t stand still so much as flopped around in a haze of cafes, cathedrals, splendidness, garbage, beggars, tourists (U.S., China, India, U.K. most represented), squares, cobblestones, statues of that peeing kid, ornate windows, waffles, and chocolate shops. Euros are pretty. So nice to hear French. Dutch is hilarious. The youths are as tattooed and bearded as they are yonder U.S.
Art museums should have beds that lovers can climb into and nuzzle. Art museums should have choices of spectacles with colored lenses, red, purple, kaleidoscopic. Once an hour or so, or it could be once a day or week, art museums should play, loudly, a piece of music that people can dance to. Art museums with tall ceilings should offer bungee jumps to their patrons. This may be a perk of membership. Museums should have pits of foam so that we can look at a work of art and then fall backward safely and softly. Trampolines?
These honest recollections, confessions of how the mind and the body will grasp at anything to survive the residency years, how Kalanithi found his “munching apples” moments in the trauma bay with some harmless jokes and a soggy ice cream sandwich, are why I consider When Breath Becomes Air essential reading for any doctor-in-training, why I push the book on so many medical students, residents, and fellows.
When I finish a chart, I feel a great sense of closure that dance never gives. Because in dance there are so many mitigating factors for anyone to see your work and for the work to be seen as it was intended to be performed: a dancer can be injured, a dancer can turn away from your work, a new production is usually out of reach, things can go wrong on any given night and make the piece not the piece, the house can be empty, the house can be full, the tickets are priced out of reach of your audience, etc.
I told Chimamanda that I’d love for her to sign her book, "We Should All Be Feminists," for you. I offered her a Sharpie and she quickly and decisively wrote: “Summer keep writing. Keep doing,” and added a smiley face. I told her Summer was only six and I would wait before giving her the book. She looked me straight in the eyes, not unlike Gloria, and said: “She can get it now.”
Have you too been accosted by the sad flashing dogwalker?
One is often told that he/she should not think and act in binary terms - there is always room for gray. However, just as something can be on or off, one must be told to either "rock on" or "fuck off." (Certainly, I feel that people must often be told this! They can't read my mind. These switches will help facilitate this in a less combative manner.)
“The Paperweight Show” is the inaugural exhibition for the Fisher Parrish Gallery, run by Zoe Fisher (formerly of 99¢ Plus and HANDJOB) with Patrick Parrish of the namesake gallery.
Dear Mom Who’s Not My Mom, I’m bisexual, but my Mom Who *Is* My Mom doesn’t know. She’s a very conservative Christian and I don’t want to upset her, but I don’t like keeping things from my family, despite their disapproving nature. Is it important for our relationship, do you think, that I tell her? It would not be welcome news to her ears. Sincerely, Child Who’s Not Your Child
If I hear dogs barking in the night, my heart breaks; if I hear their distant clamor, my heart stops hastily. And I go back to look at the ancient orchard, the garden of those years, the smell of peas, cows, horses grazing in the moonlight. Then, the men meet in the olive grove; they speak of the coming harvest, of the ghosts that at that time are appearing like birds, the specters with wings made of sheets, and they steal all the fruit.
his is one of the many enchantments of his book: You never quite know what the author is going to give you next. Sure, there are plenty of authors which offer you the unexpected, but rarely do you come across a piece of literature which moves so freely in and out of genres, be it criticism and literary history or autobiography and diary entries.
Some people say air is important, but in fact it's how you breathe that indicates whether you should be allowed to continue breathing or not. Master yogis know it, zen life coaches also somewhat know it. Your relationship with air is important insofar that you're inhaling it well and, in fact, ideally better than everyone else around you, whether you are in the northernmost parts of the Canadian countryside or in downtown Beijing on a hot day.
Once in a while, I would get a stray phone call from such unlikely places as Calvin Klein or Richard Avedon’s studio, asking me to come see their boss for some kind of go-see. I would invariably ask, “Does this have anything to do with Glenn O’Brien?” It always did. He was generous and inclusive in that way.
What can be said about a room like this—and there are thousands of them here—except that it is designed for one or more persons to live essentially as one would in a house, albeit in a room of roughly two hundred square feet, a room meant (unlike most hotel rooms) to imitate all the functions of home, a room so anonymous, so clearly in poor or missing taste, as to be any room, every room, and no room all at once.
We didn’t always refer to our work as “video game puppetry.” We used to call it “live machinima theater.” Our work has much in common with traditional puppetry. Video game characters, like puppets, have limited actions, and performers speak lines for both. The ultimate goal is the same too–to convey the story to the audience
I believe in Making.
Although “powerful comedian” may be an oxymoron, if what you’re looking to do is throw a frame around questions of agency, the individual relation to power, the ability to impact environment and control experience, then comedy is a good way -- maybe even the best way -- to achieve that end.
My fat arm got stuck in a park bench in the supermarket. The park bench was, of course, not in a park, so maybe it couldn't really be called a park bench. But it was the same kind of bench that one would find in a park. Say you're walking around the cement walk track to get some of that exercise that you feel you should be getting because you eat too much ice cream and too many hot dogs and you drive everywhere in your air-conditioned car. You see this bench and decide to sit down on it. That kind of park bench is the same kind that was in this supermarket.
We are here as outsiders. Life is an investigation.
I wanted bubbles to cover me./ But they stick to themselves and won’t.
I am new to the mug cake/brownie racket and to be frank uncertain I am wholly on board. Staring into the depths of my Dr. Oestker’s Chocolate Individual Mug Cake Mix it smelled and looked good, sure, but I couldn’t quite figure out just…what a cake was doing there in my mug.
Clear the path and travel is smooth.
Big, evolutionary, disruptive ideas need time to develop. In the past an underground would simmer away for years before surfacing. Who among us is willing to wait years before we pitch our stuff onto the Net? Traditionally the underground gained potency cloaked in invisibility. Today everyone wants attention, right now. In the age of social media, invisibility is perceived to have negative value only.
A lot of this new work has been made or conceived by the idea of escape...This past June I found a great spot in Costa Rica. I Airbnb'd a little spot 100 meters off the coast and made my little beach shanty Studio. For the next 30 days I was drawing everyday at the beach 8-12 hours with a few dips in the ocean.
The idea of being a reporter seemed absurd, and leaving the cozy little room with the Haddlesomes not particularly unappealing. I was about to say so when Mr. Mochrai spoke again. “Just don’t come blatting to me, when you cock-up,” he said and then shuddered. “And I’m not going to hold your hand, for every story about rosebuds and feminine protection and breast feeding or what have you, so I’ll thank you for not asking.”
All the essays in this column (including the one you’re reading now) began, in my mind, as “book reviews.” Eventually, I came to think of them as “book-inspired essays.” In moments of honesty, though, I’ve called them “personal essays disguised as book reviews.” I view myself as a husband and father, a physician, and a writer, in that order; therefore, not surprisingly, these essays almost exclusively focus on my marriage, my children, my doctoring, and my struggles with the written word. I mean these essays as the highest compliment to the writers whose books inspired each piece. Again, borrowing from David Shields in defense of his own self-obsessed book reviews: “There’s always an implied love story between me and the writer – me loving the book, loving the writer.”
Do a deep conditioning keratin hair mask! Highlight your hair! Now lowlight your hair! No, don’t do that. Stop.
This 2016 re-edit comes from the following contributors (line by line): Michael M. Naydan, Chris Dorland, Nancy Kangas, Daniel Nester, Shane Kowalski, Nancy Kangas, Walter Robinson, Andrew Singer, Bogdan Suceavă, Matvei Yankelevich, Andrew Miller, Andrew Bomback, James Capozzi, Francis Waite, Erik Kennedy, Scott Navicky, Brianna Barnes, Andrew Bomback, Marcus Slease, Shane Kowalski, Morgan Leichter-Saxby, Jerry Saltz, Gilmore Tamny, Hobo Scumbag, Aaron Belz, Josh Lefkowitz, Nancy Kangas, Gilmore Tamny, Kevin Sampsell, Amy Fusselman, Sommer Browning, Brian Finke, Devin Kelly, Jerry Saltz, and Nate Logan. Thank you to all the contributors this year!!
Before that, my comedy had become increasingly feminist (I’ve been performing stand-up for about 7 years) – and I was beginning to try and see if I could center women and my POV as distinctly female by joking publicly about the types of things women laugh about when men aren’t around (Kill All Men, etc.). I found it very therapeutic. And also got to throw some of the sexist rhetoric we’re just supposed to swallow back in the faces of the men who told me I “didn’t have a sense of humor” just because I thought they were assholes.