Here’s an example of how blank I am: I write these diary entries and believe with all my heart that the future will read them. I believe that only the future will read them, and I’m sensible enough to admit this with shame; but I act on my belief nonetheless. So, whenever I feel the impulse to speak on a contemporary event, my habit is to remind myself that “by the time anyone skims your words, no one will remember the climate of your cultural surroundings”—this is why I always avoid saying anything relevant.
Look at that heap of jabber that I just “composed.” It all started when I awoke with the idea that the Government of our Universe should begin censoring flowers. Since the time and place in which I live—circa year 120 A.D. (After Duchamp) in the Midwestern United States—inherited a culture that prefers violence over sexuality, I thought it’d be consistent with our practices in suppression to include flowers among the list of unlawful things; because flowers are basically Lust Incarnate: they all look like live nude sex organs, attractive in the extreme and wickedly gorgeous—if we prohibit the display of comeliness, it would be fitting and righteous to ban all flowers as well. (This far in my argument, it dawned on me that Georgia O’Keeffe has probably said something similar somewhere.)
But two things are problematic about my idea. First, as I said in the beginning, futurity is a paradise of nonstop eroticism: in the future, souls will communicate more by means of touch than by words, and warfare will have been abolished for so long that many people will doubt that it ever existed—therefore, the notion of banning flowers is even less vital than the average religious hindrance: for it is unfunny. One must read a history lesson, just to frown at the joke.
Second, the basic premise of my above suggestion is false: our present culture does not value violence over sexuality—for our provinces each have a militia AND a seraglio; and there was a cop series on TV where they once showed a guy’s bare backside.
I’m getting jokey because I dislike the style that I’ve fallen into here; I need to snap out of it, when I find myself using phrases like “the basic premise of my suggestion is…” etc. If my writing fails even to please its author, I think it’s wise to question why I’m doing it.
Here’s one reason I keep coming back to the task of journal writing: I love dirtying up a blank page with words.
I am sure that I must have said this before, but I’m often envious of the comradeship that is inherent in the job of film directing. Movie makers get to bounce ideas off people all day… a film is a true collaboration… one person runs the camera, one person edits the film; obviously you have the actors, the screenwriter… then the finished product is screened for execs and for test audiences—so you get some feedback before your artwork appears on the library shelf.
But the aspects of movie directing that appeal to me also appall me. And their appallingness is worse than their appeal, which is why I refuse to become a brilliant European filmmaker. I reject the contract: I don’t like the thought of having to manage a bunch of people… I don’t want to field a ton of questions every day… I don’t want to have to argue with everyone, to swordfight with investors over necessary costs like…
But I think it would be fun to have a studio fire me from a project and kick me out of the editing room and bar me from the premises… They would reassemble all the footage that I shot and thus convert my would-be flop into a commercial success.
By the way, “footage” is a word that stems from the days when movies were captured physically on celluloid film, which was measured by the foot—the unit preferred by Hollywood America—as opposed to the meter—the unit that I, as a brilliant European filmmaker, am presumed to favor; which explains why, in my dreams, I refer to the contents of my silvery canisters as “meterage.”
And did you ever wonder, dear Bryan who writes this diary, why thine entries go on forever and ever amen? I’ve been told that it is because you don’t want to end on a joke or a drag. And by drag you mean yawn or bore. So, being devoid of meddling studio execs, you just keep writing…
If the LORD does not answer my prayer and send some meddling studio execs within the next few minutes, I’ll quit as soon as my sweetheart walks in the door. She should return home any minute now. She is out having an affair with the local butcher. I’m kidding: she’s teaching piano to children of republicans. Our neighborhood does not even have a local butcher.
Do you ever wonder about that, O people of the future? Where’d all the local butchers go? In the past, each neighborhood had a little shop that any resident could visit to purchase fresh meat. You could even bring your own living beast into the shop, and pay to get the innocent firstborn slaughtered. It was like dropping a suit off at the dry cleaners: on entering, a little doorbell would tinkle… there’d be corpses hanging from the ceiling, and feathers and blood everywhere… (But, truly, I have no idea what one might find in those types of shops—being extinct, their interior remains a mystery.)
Nowadays, where does all the meat come from? Nobody knows, because we’re afraid to ask. Perhaps it’s all just manna. Heaven’s version of pink slime. I think that if I myself were to be eaten by a deity, he or she would find that I taste pretty bad. But I’ve never had chiseled muscles, so my flesh would be tender. Plus, I think that with the right amount of spices, anything is palatable. Recall futurity banqueting on the Leviathan.
OK sweetheart is home… bye for now!