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The fear, when contemplating giving up any vice, that it will lead inevitably to giving up all vices, and thence to that ultimate state of having given up: Christianity. Born again cretinhood. Re-bluff.

A corny line in a corny PR sheet sitting at my feet sez some nu album is "not so much about redemption as it is about evolution." Which, hey, I kinda like that - it sounds like something John Lilly might have said, or any one of those guys, part snake oil huckster hustler, part gen-u-wine holy man: Robert Anton Wilson, Terrence McKenna, Timothy Leary ... I mean, even the Old Man himself, WSB, had something of the Carnie barker about him, suckering the rubes in and pledging his allegiance to the Johnson Family ...
... and the last couple of weeks I've discovered or realised the existence of a contemporary Johnson Family of my own of sorts of contemporaries, and I like it, I really like it [see: Coincidence Control Center Notes below] and I prefer their spectral Invisible College company to that of any phantom circle jerk of TV "friends" I'm here to tell you ...

This started off in the general direction of the daily progress report on my TV reduction programme ... which, I have to tell youse, it is proving oddly painless. Maybe, like a lot of vices, Summer is a good time to ditch them - but especially TV with its endless dull echo of (repeat). {Detox as such, as per Woman's Mag straplines, you know, ditching all those daily Bounty Bars for fruit, drinking ten glasses of purified water a day instead of ten glasses of Chardonnay or ten pints of Guinness, etc - also?, much easier in Summer, near impossible in Winter.} Rather than reduction programme - which I thought it would have to be, I've just switched that ol' Trinitron off and it's stayed switched off, near permanently. And no sneaking peaks at the TV schedule {The Guide: now tell me, what kind of pseudo-Religioso or cheap package-holiday terminology does that bespeak? Like, Time was a foreign place, a labyrinthine backwater we needed help finding our way round or, worse, disposing or unburdening ourselves of its strange golden surplus ... }, no wondering what's going on in "X" who's duping who in "Y" ... and a little 5 minute peak wouldn't hurt ... no. No: out of sight has meant OUT of mind.*

I watched a chunk {about 50 mins} of Blazing Saddles last night; but that's like saying, I sneaked into the museum and cheered myself up with a look at a Velasquez: an Old Master, a Joy For Ever. {"What's a dazzling urbanite like you doing in a rustic setting like this?"}
And of course The Simpsons, which, it goes without saying is not a TV programme but a FORCE FOR GOOD and which, with a single line can LIGHT UP YOUR LIFE and restore your faith in American scriptwriters. Like, last night wuz the Simpsons-san go Japan episode and on the plane over:
Marge: "Come on Homer, you'll like Japan - you liked Rashomon ..."
Homer: "That's not the way I remember it."

But here's the interesting {or maybe just "interesting"} thing {don't worry, I'm not going to proselytise: I never have with ANY of my vices, either pro or anti. I figure 'evolution' is indeed the word, individually or collectively. When it's steam engine time, it steam engines. When it's givin' up and movin' on time, people give up and move on: nobody truly ditches anything unless or until it makes them unhappy, and any amount of propoganda from reformed SMILERs may even make the Addict cling all the more stubbornly to their pet rock, stone still immovable and cacti prickly over there in the cool cool shadow over there ' ... and maybe 7-9-10 lying up in there like hibernating reptiles keep the tempreatures up to Talking Level: How low the other junkies are "whereas We - WE have this tent and this lamp and this tent and this lamp and this tent and nice and warm in here nice and warm nice and IN HERE and nice and OUTSIDE IT's COLD ... IT'S COLD OUTSIDE"'."**} no, the innaresting thing is ... nah, I've lost the thread now WSB has blown thru my mind; it wuz only about this crumby movie-TV anyway, which I tried to watch after The Pryor Glory That Was Brooks, and I wuz suddenly like, What Is All This FOR?? All these tired cool gangster cliches, all these ice-blood babe-cliche "women" in improbable Lycra, fighting for five minutes {I refuse to use the derrogatory "c*tf*ght"}, and all this BLOOD, and MORE blood, and MORE guns, and MORE cliches and ... and I don't know if all that counts as TV per se or just anotha dumb ten-a-bennie post-Tarantino cash-in movie but it seemed to me to BE nothing but KILLING TIME and so OFFski it went and back on w/ the anti-TV mat and on w/ The Handsome Family or Coil or Sylvian back into the timelessness of real night, let the happiness in, and soul kisses from my cats and a long breathe-in gaze up at the ALLTIME SKY and ...

... and if you think of 'personal growth [eugh] and evolution' as being less about shark suited gurus and BETTER BUSINESS and mantra ray eyed this&thatologists {cf. The Plan in Six Feet Under which I'm still undecided in re ...} and not about being a "better" person [like this year's better more efficient model] but like a semi-secret collective enterprise, a BET the HIGHER BEINGS have dropped off on us like smiling Mafia godfathers - 'But Godfather, these ones don't KNOW from evolution - and we've SEEN what they think 'revolution' means: hacked limbs, missing heads, mazes made out of their own species skulls: ... they're strictly from hicksville, strictly amateur, still just one notch or switch up from cave shadows, and most of 'em not even got the good honest know-what-I-am soulfulness a hyaena possess and make me puke all those fine words they find to excuse n explain their dumbass bloodlust*** .... SHEESH BOSS! Why'd you give THEM this job? We could have slipped it to the Outer Galaxy boys on 1111117th St and slept like little girls after gymkhana tonight...' but the Godfather just makes with his usual Cryptic Smile ... - which seems in its sulphurous/spectral way to flash "a word to the wise guy ..." without ever quite imparting just what that word might be: but the suggestion of some higher wisdom, some heavenly-hellish but AWESOME to behold purpose or function**** is usually enough to pull most any crew where he wants 'em to go ...

+ ______________ -

Coming soon: are children screaming more? Have you noticed this phenomenon {or is it just me and the ghetto-chilled low rent streets where I live?}. I mean - children of all ages, spoiled rotten, obstinate, idiot-children {and that's just the parents!}, and I mean not the occasional hiccoughy sob in Safeway*****, but freaky SCREAMING, screaming like you think someone's being murdered or raped or abused, no joking, really. Ah but this really is a whole Other story ... major espresso break major espresso break up ahead.

- ______________ +

*{first recorded use of 'wise old adage' cliche in this w-blog's history. But that's the way the cookie crumbles!

**{{THE NAKED LUNCH // INTRODUCTION deposition: testimony concerning a sickness {Post Script.... Wouldn't You?} WILLIAM BURROUGHS [I'm looking at a completely UNcollector's item 1976 Corgi pbk copy here, fanboys. Pages significantly brown around the edges, possibility that if shredded and burnt and inhaled, might produce significant toxic alteration in user. Some pages starting to fall out due to excessive consultation.]

***{{{listening to the COIL LIVE CDs last night. The LAST song thing rant on LIFE FOUR, therefore their LAST WORDS ANYWHERE, from late OCTOBER 2002: Jhon Balance, screaming and ranting and assuming the thoughtform persona of some manic Other, in "AN UNEARTHLY RED", at first I thought this was, like, "about" Peter Sutcliffe or someone, but then one of the masks falls away and it's revealed to be the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, waking with blood on his hands, and ...:


Aren't those, like, Bush's exact words, near enough, from earlier this year [I quoted 'em on this page somewhere. He was caught verbatim on tape as he chit-chatted with some Middle Eastern Head of State, about why exactly he'd gone after Al Q and/or Iraq.
On the final track of LIFE THREE, "BACKWARDS", J.B. also intones the mantra:


I offer these disjecta membra without comment.

****{{{{ "... what if I told you, Mr Rube, that your tacky technology, tacked so vulgarly to the wall of your shack there, is UN NECESSARY? What if I told you ... ah, but this is more of a Shelbyville thing, you wouldn't be-" "But I WOULD, I REALLY WOULD Godfather..." "Well, what if I told you ... your 'race'-" he says the latter word as if handling (gingerly, at a distance, with tongs) a bag of toxic waste, washed up on the morning shoreline "- if your racehad its own antennae, The Antenna Inside, and that you were just too backwater dumb to find and use the Instruction Manual ... Mmmm?" Then the Godfather makes with his tactically deployed to the micro second Cryptic Smile, more effective than CS Gas on the avenues of Paris, 1968 ...

*****{{{{{although actually, that's unfair, the absolute WORST case of Spoiled Child Hissy Fit I've witnessed not just recently, but perhaps EVER, was one evening recently in nice 'we only watch David Attenborough oh NO officer I'm sure our little Rosetta wouldn't be caught DEAD talking in "chat" rooms to ex-prison oiks people carrier dont say thankyou to the help' middle class den of brittle politesse Waitrose. But oh the babes, the babes ... you could start an innocuously pervy website: Waitrose Roses: Pix of Middle Class Mums who still have a certain arresting enchanting ... bloom. Media husband money and 8 hours a day of the BEST beauty treatment can do a lot to KEEP TIME AT BAY like a cowering hostage ... which is just how YOU TOO will feel, a cowering hostage at Kalashnikov point, when they make with one of those Withering Looks they unload so split second natural like if you so much as smilingly sing beamingly wing the chorus to The Spinners & Dionne Warwicke's 1974 stone classic "THEN CAME YOU!" in their general direction - that's all it was, guy, general - direction ... maybe in retrospect it would have been a classier move to go up to the mother of His Majesty The Major Irritant {he was going along punching things in the aisles like some Jake le Motta in embryo, screaming red faced I WANT IT I WANT IT YOU BITCH I WANT IT WHY NOT!?} and sung: LIFE.AINT.SO EA-SY ... WHEN YOURE A GHE-TTO CHILD ... LET ME TELL YOU NOW ...

++ -- -- ++

Coincidence Control Center Minutes {2 Go ...}

Thankyou to B.B. for being such a post- Age post-heart mensch {I hereby award you the honour of Honorary Pawboy Carte Blanche, not only cuz YOU GOT THE CATS but for your sterling services to Mercury ... see you soon} and thankyou muchly & deeply & Plato & Socrateasely 2 Mrs Audi for the anti-bug hug spray yesterday exactly when it was needed and talking of matters C.C.C. thankyou also Agent 02323 for the David Sylvian cache and - oh my good lord above I DO BELIEVE! I WILL repent! there IS no 'evolution' there IS only the Lord and His works and oh but He is a fine and Gracious Lord and I am in receipt of his bounty! - the NORTHERN SOUL comp, which ... OH! OH OH OH OH OH! {More anon: Esther Phillips! Lorraine Ellison!! Linda Jones!!!}

And, on further and searching and cryptic C.C.C. matters, did anyone experience anything ODD or, well, not nice, or generally uncanny or upsetting or out of the "ordinary" yesterday morning {Friday 15th i.e., in Plod Years}, at about, let's see, between 10 and 10:10 am? {Any infromation supplied WILL be kept entirely confidential. Really.}

¿ ---- ?

Vaguely C.C.C. related: I wuz going on about "Q" as in the boldface but blanc center of Querelle yesterday and then this whacking great brick of a hardback turns up whose central character est aussi un "Q":

Q by "Luther Blissett" [William Heinemann]

Now, I am sufficiently intriQued by ... the "coincidence", by the lovely plates & historical pix inside, by the book's promising premises, and by the whole "Blissett" phenom, but can someone {who's already attempted the rockface} tell me before I let bataille commence on the 635 pp+: Is it worth it? is it really really worth it? Digging in? I'm talking genuine reading pleasure and genuine intellectual stimulation {i.e, tell me it isn't another Foucault's Pendulum, yeah?, where it kicks off fine but then... you start skipping ... n itchin' n ... then skipping whole chapters n... you know.} ... when I have walls made of books waiting to be read this summer/year/aeon?

posted by Ian 8/16/2003 01:02:00 PM

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