Returning to things, returning to reality

Like the philosopher who understands concepts while he fixes motorcyles, thinkers find ways when their brain dances as they oddjob in reality.

I wrote a few articles about the body, who “calls” us all the time.

Today I read a magazine article about the French president, who was criticized because he explained on TV that we should not gather more than 6 people for Christmas (so it was: “It’s not the president’s role to talk about these “details””.), and was praised for the exact same sentence: it is a goodsmart way to show people that he was “in life”, and not “in the higher spheres”.

Yesterday I talked with a photographer, who told me that, as many others, he was coming back to film, analogue photography, which was a classic: a loss, a lack (each picture costs money, you have to buy films) and a progress (you focus much more, you think about when you trigger, etc).

But the main thing, he told me, was to be back in contact with paper, chemicals, grain, film, smells… Something real.

By the way I remember I held Bernadette‘s hand in a dark photo lab, at school when I was 15. Protected by darkness (the teacher had a passion for photography and taught small groups how to develop), we were holding hands. Emotion!!

(yeah later we kissed)

Thus, as a bookseller, I told him about Matthew Crawford‘s book ( Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry into the Value of Work – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_Crawford ) – he’s a scholar in Advanced Studies in Culture and is also a motorcycle mechanic.

Example of abouts (I bolded the bold): “Every once in a great while, a book will come along that’s brilliant and true and perfect for its time. Matthew B. Crawford’s Shop Class as Soulcraft is that kind of book, a prophetic and searching examination of what we’ve lost by ceasing to work with our hands-and how we can get it back.”

So, voilà. We work with our brain, we think and we talk, we have memories. It’s out of the question that I’d say : “We should go back to do things with our hands”, blah. Nope!

Because you know me: we have to come back, to do both, to go back to hands, the skin, the smells and the reality – and thinking/talking. The tango between them is our throne, our machine, our power.

So welcome: we eat, we need sex, we walk (I hope so!), the body knows how to call!

Stuck? Stop thinking, DO something, explore and try, disobey to some rules, try something unusual, let the body and the hands act! And bake and cook, it works…

Like the philosopher who understands concepts while he fixes motorcyles, thinkers find ways when their brain dances as they oddjob in reality.

Patterning Unusual

The constant return of the body

Analogue

Thanks for reading!

Is “to exist” adhesion or emergence?

ONE

My poor structural brain just found a bone to chew on.

It’s… because I bought a philosophy book named “Vivre en existant” : to live by existing.

So here are verbs, three of them for a triangle :

to live – to be – to exist

Let’s play. There’s adhesion, or grip, to life. But curiously the word “EXIST” is like a tree :

  • To be, to continue to be, to persist
  • To be real, to be present
  • To have life, to live, to be able to live
  • To have the ability to be known, recognized, understood

There are more in https://www.thefreedictionary.com/exist.

Etymology gives something more.

From Latin existere/exsistere: “to step out, stand forth, emerge, appear”.

And in a way we all know that to live is to de-coincide with me, it is to emerge into the world. To operate, maybe?

There’s something like: to live is adhesion, fitting to what “is”, but to live by existing is to detach, unstick, take off.

The singularity of the experience.

TWO

All this mess is linked to other words, like “possibility”. I immediately thought about Deleuze’s becoming.

To find differences, and to begin multiple processes of transformation.

  • To think differently, but how?
  • What do we do with the unpredictable?
  • What is the effort to create a future that differs from the present?
  • Can we dream our own dreams, but how to get out of the trap they are, if they remain dreams?

Human life is ordered, classified, distributed, and managed: how can we shape possibilities?

Deleuze “becoming” is not to imitate something, it’s to get out of our “territories”, invent new plugs, quit the always-predictable to evolve in “becoming mode”. And for a day or an hour, you become a cat, a doctor, a wolf, a mother, a cook, a stone, etc.

The magic is the word “and” instead of the word “be”, ungrip and unhook from “I am this I do this”, to let propositions happen, to watch what is singular, or intense.

Will we make a web, will we bark, will we gather food like squirrels, will we be a child, for an afternoon? Will I become minoritarian for a day?

THREE

Told you, it’s a mess!

All this because of the “ex” is exist, “to stand forth”, hmmm.

What do you think?

Thanks for reading!

Risky suites of chords (and how to get them) ?

I downloaded French magazines like “Best of Music 2016“, and I dig, je creuse, through torrents or YouTube. I trash everything (rolling my eyes), but, well, I keep digging.

There’s a very lazy Radiohead album (A Moon Shaped Pool), an “I see what you’re doing, sillies” with rolled-out vowels I pfffed all along. But there’s this one: Burn the Witch, propelled by unstable harmonies, I found it… interesting (I try to forget the rolled out vowels). It floats in some uncertainties.

So there’s a lack, everywhere, I think, in the pop-rock field, of a producer saying: “No, dear, this is not good enough”.

This morning I listened to Paul McCartney’s Chaos and Creation in the Backyard, which is curiously entirely good. It was produced by Nigel Godrich (the, hmmm, Radiohead producer), who was tough enough to fight the myth, to push and jostle the singer:

According to McCartney, Godrich was at times blunt in his appraisal of McCartney’s songs-in-progress during the making of Chaos and Creation in the Backyard:

“Nigel… refused to allow me to sing songs that he didn’t like, which was very cheeky of him.”

Ah ah! I like this! Well, today (and then), the whole profession says it’s a masterpiece, an instant classic.

So I played the game of listening to the previous album and the next, entirely, and hmmmm, nope, it’s not that good, by far (but there’s one exception, a song named : “I do”).

I know exactly what Godrich did. Because what he got in “Backyard” is… harmony complexity (and surprises), which come from risky suites of chords and the subsequent modulations he has to make to follow).

Cf Friends to Go, very John Barry-esque (and oh, the lyrics!)…

This is such a good lesson. Good things appear when sometimes… we need someone we trust to say: “Hey, silly: not like that!”. Cheeky but lovely, right?

How do we find someone like that? Someone we trust enough? And more: when do we need this “coaching”? What kind of “producer” relationship is it? A superior? A lover? A Friend? A collaborator? A “push-me-out-of-my-comfort-zone” guy? What if we need this and we don’t know it?

Have a great day!

Lion’s Cave & Resignations: Chronicle 64

When you read people about MBTI, they’re all INFJ! If I exaggerate a little I’d say 95% say they are INFJ, though it’s 1% in reality.

“OMG THAT’S SOOOO ME!”.

“I’m an empath, an introvert, I’m so rare, I can feeeeel people”. So rare but they’re all “so rare”. Why not, after all: it’s all a game of grids, right? Percentages for people are rarely accurate, and one can’t forget that some “types” are sometimes used as an excuse or justification for certain unhealthy behaviors – like “I’m doing nothing because I’m like that, so there”.

oOOo

I got rhythm
I got music
I got my guy
Who could ask for anything more?

Mike Oldfield really?

When I was a teenager I went to the neighbors’ house with my parents to have a pre-dinner drink. It was very quiet and boring.

I was maybe 13. My neighbors had two daughters. One of them, who was maybe 16, showed me a record with a blue butterfly on the sleeve and put it on the turntable. It was Platinum, by Mike Oldfield. The most incredible artistic shock of my whole life. I fell off my chair. Almost cried.

What was it? It was like a 20 minutes long track with a disco rhythm, gorgeous guitars, breaks and crescendos. I was flabbergasted. It was pulsing rocketing ideas everywhere. My head exploded.

Years later I understood. Skills. In Platinum, Mike Oldfield :

  1. had the bottle to build a 20 minutes disco complex instrumental “thing” with big guitars, disco rhythms, a big brass and a Phil Glass repetitive ending.
  2. is a great melodist.
  3. likes crescendos, likes to pull levers on crazy levels (cf Amarok)
  4. obviously looks for the audience’s ecstasy.
  5. is a bit crazy, daring crazy, the good crazy.
  6. has a VERY special guitar sound.
  7. dares an energic Punkadiddle “rock with a recorder and a crowd”.
  8. writes dreamy echoes in the night (Woodhenge).
  9. A Gershwin cover track.

So, I bought the album and it was my very first LP! Listened to it for months before I bought others (Ommadawn, etc).

There’s a big question today, in my head, about why he lost his skills as a composer. Lack of energy or inspiration is common when you come to 50, 60 years old, but…

mike-oldfield-platinum-lp-album.jpg

oOOo

There once was a lion who was too lazy to hunt for his food. He pretended to be very sick and announced to all the animals that he was soon to die.

“Please,” he said, “come visit me in my cave and bid me goodbye.”

The lion looked so weak and helpless, the animals felt sorry for him. One by one the visitors came. One by one, the lion ate his fill of them!

When fox arrived to pay his last respects, he stopped in front of the cave’s entrance and looked closely at the ground.

“Come in quickly, I am dying!” cried the sly lion, impatiently.

“No,” said the fox, who was equally clever, “You’ll not have ME for a visitor, though you moan and pout. While I see many footprints going into your cave, NONE are coming out!”

oOOo

Ahhh the rest job face :

Diljob.jpg

oOOo

oOOo

Collins Dictionary: Resignation is the acceptance of an unpleasant situation or fact because you realize that you cannot change it.

Descartes: My third maxim was to endeavor always to conquer myself rather than fortune, and change my desires rather than the order of the world, and in general, accustom myself to the persuasion that, except our own thoughts, there is nothing absolutely in our power.

W. Somerset Maugham: I can imagine no more comfortable frame of mind for the conduct of life than a humorous resignation.

oOOo

I read about a study on the factors that employees consider motivating. Good wages, interesting work, the security of the job, of course, but the number one factor was “to be valued”. Really valued.

It’s not about a bonus or a “best employee of the month” challenge. It’s something like :

“I see what you do and I appreciate what you do”.

People often do the best they can with what they got. And they wait, they need to be seen…

Makes sense, right?

It’s a special case for life, this theory telling that everything we do in society is to be loved.

Thanks for reading!

Structures against Changes

Again, always:

“How to catch what moves, generates, leaks, becomes, invents, slips, spurges… instead of contemplating what we think is fixe, immutable, eternal, stable, immobile?”

Today I like it because I think about models:

“A model is a lie that helps you see the truth”

– H. Skipper

So there’s a bias: the propensity of the thinker to believe that the model IS the principle of people’s actions. That’s wrong because “Haecceity”: people move, mutate, and invent!

We have time to think outside of life, but when we’re inside of the flow, models and rules are just “grids”. Life’s more about strategies, hesitations, adaptation and attempts. We try to plug!

Nevertheless, structures are useful, they are tools to watch, magnifiers or rulers.

What I’d like to study, in a given field, is “how structures change”.

We also could study the difference between structure (or model) and practices, or how it is a mistake to trust “habits” and customs. In fact: surprises!

Working with models is great but they are virtual cages, and we lose a substance: the complexity of the human mind.

That’s the purpose of the at-the-top quote: “How to catch what…”

Thanks for reading!

Questions about Difference

There are “seed words” like this one. Just a word. This word is covered with moving strings. It resonates. It’s like a multi-tool. Difference:

  • Difference “of what”? Intensity? Nature?
  • Do we talk about meaning, or identity?
  • Can two things be different in appearance, but not in itself?
  • Quality or quantity?
  • Are differences oppositions? What (and why) is affirmation of difference(s)?
  • Are differences states? Like raw and cooked, alive and dead.
  • What’s the struggle to define differences and where do we see that?
  • If compliance is a state, what is a superior accomplishment? What is deviance?
  • What is resemblance? How is resemblance a difference?
  • Must difference be represented?
  • What is simulacra? What is virtual? Is it the same, but not the same?
  • What are structures, or models? Finding “the same” within differences? Are there levels of differences then?
  • Is negation opposition?
  • What is differentiation? The process of becoming different? Who notices?
  • What is diversity?
  • Can one cancel differences? What for? How?
  • What is extension? What is “to grow”? Evolution? Are there levels and stages? What are stages?
  • What is an evolving system? What evolves, what parts? Is there a “system of growing differences”?

Where do we see this?

Thanks for reading!

Chekhov’s Gun & its Disobedience :Chronicle 63

Confinement 2.0 in France: the whole of November – but most specialists say that it’ll need 2 or more months to be effective, and only if people respect the game.

The problem is if universities are closed, all schools are opened. If people are encouraged to work from home, many can’t.

More: a problem appears from the fact that all small stores are closed (florists, hair styling salons, bookstores) AND supermarkets are not. The little ones want to stay open, but if you do that, the confinement is silly! Therefore the government ordered them to close the “non-essential” parts, like toys, flowers, books, etc.

Strange days, right?

oOOo

I had the idea to build an alphabetical exploration in the blog. So now I’m working on A, but I’m lazy! I watched Losey’s Accident for that.

oOOo

I reached 500 “real” followers here, after 4 years. This means, I want to believe, that readers love “one subject” blogs, but not that much “a little of everything” blogs.

oOOo

Chekhov’s gun is a dramatic principle that states that every element in a story must be necessary, and irrelevant elements should be removed. Elements should not appear to make “false promises” by never coming into play.

Of course, you want to disobey this, right?

oOOo

I wonder what an American person does to imitate the British accent. I think there’s something with “t”. Better said better instead of bedder. Often said often instead of offen. There’s also a singing quality, I think. Am I wrong?

oOOo

I searched the two words “Trump Lord” on Twitter and read a few dozens of tweets. Ohlalaaaa! US religious persons sound very strange to me, I really don’t get it. I asked a question and got an answer: “We need to look to God & His Word for His plans & purpose. He desires repentance & readiness for His 2nd coming. He desires that all be saved through Christ and come to the knowledge of the truth. He is Holy, faithful & just. God will keep His promises.”

oOOo

Watched a documentary about U2, full of little ideas. What I realize, after such months with The Beatles, it’s how… The Beatles are good composers!

U2 has been a hitmaker. The film (about Joshua Tree) shows their different ways to achieve that…

Bono is very charismatic, Edge has an interesting “sound” (infinite guitar, etc), the bass player is limited (dom dom dom dom dom) but very effective, and the drummer is fantastic. They are not great “composers”, but they have plenty of energy, goodwill and a great singer/lyrics writer, they have good rhythm ideas, a sense of “hymn” things, and… Brian Eno/Daniel Lanois are good producers!

If you type “U2 Chords” on YouTube you get things like “Four Chord Easy Beginner Guitar Song”, which is cruel.

Of course, this was a delight to hear Eno & Lanois and their differences and facets, Eno as an intellectual (who loves gospel), Lanois as a fascinating clever person. Both have such a look in their eyes…

oOOo

I bought Ronan Farrow’s book about the Weinstein affair, a Gertrude Stein biography and Bryson’s book about England. Then I realize that the two last books are about Americans living for decades in Europa. I’m probably interested in what they noticed.

Have a nice day! Thanks for reading!

Eugene Korolev, Russian Digital Artist

Eugene Korolev, Russian Artist

This guy is fantastic. I love his subjects, his dreams, his colors. It’s good craziness, it’s frightening and funny, it’s great !

You’ll find plenty at : https://www.artstation.com/evgen

This one is clickable :