|December 7, 2012|
Vaginas drive men crazy—some in a good way, some in a really bad way. The vagina is a lurid mystery, wild, reckless, immoral. A primitive thing to get lost in, like the bubbling cauldron at the centre of all cannibalistic ceremonies. Vaginas have a will of their own. As far as I know, in my life, I have driven only one man literally crazy with the unintentional power and timing of unbidden acts of my own vagina.
I was sixteen years old and one of a dozen or so passengers from Montreal, heading down in a converted school bus to a hippie festival in a remote location on the edge of a large, murky lake in Texas. It was 1988, and we wore secondhand clothes and jewellery made of coloured thread and semi-precious stones, silver, wood, and bone. Our hair was unwashed and our tanned skin buffed by the dust and the dirt; nature was gradually repossessing us. You can lie down anywhere and the earth is your blanket. The boundary around yourself slowly disintegrates. We arrived at sunrise, the air misty, a trace of coolness in the heat, a pink sky; the milky edge of the water the colour of tea.
It was there that I first laid eyes on Lance, a few evenings later, as I wandered from one campfire to another, stepping into the halo of yet another small, human grouping: the conversations, the music, the preposterous lines of dialogue. She’s doing power animal retrieval in Colorado now. I was young and enthralled by the newness, the adventure, the exhilarating freedom of it all. I was naked except for a long Indian cotton skirt. The air was full of insect noises and the ring of laughter in the darkness. The sky was flung with stars.
The Black Dog
W. H. C. Pynchon
In a corner of our country not far removed from two of its great cities, there is a low range of mountains, the hoary evidences of ancient volcanic action. Countless years have elapsed since the great tide of molten lava rolled over the region. Years fewer, but still countless, have passed during which the shattered and tilted remnants of the lava sheets have watched over the land.
Merleau-Ponty’s Child Psychology
As much as death signals the end of the self, birth is just as mysterious. Both extend out to infinity and signal the brevity and contingency of our lives. As mysterious are those first few years of life that one does not have access to as an adult, I know I existed before my earliest memories. I know I interacted with others, I learned to walk and talk. I was willful from my parent’s tales.
William Pope.L: Reader Friendly
William Pope.L is famous for (among other things) carrying a business card that identifies him as “The Friendliest Black Artist in America.” It’s a clever gag because it makes itself true, in a way, every time it draws people closer. The card must be especially useful when Pope.L does business with people who dread Black men or Black artists.
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In an effort to be interdisciplinary, and to keep up with the current trend for all things neuroscience, I recently attended a conference in Berlin on neuroaesthetics. One of only two philosophers in the room, I found myself on the receiving end of an incredibly hostile attack after asking a question of the founding guru of the discipline, the neuroscientist Professor Semir Zeki of University College London.
Instead of traveling solo, the heroines in Thelma & Louise (1991) escape together from social constraints and obligations from work, home and a controlling marriage. Instead of merely reflecting on their lives, throughout the movie Thelma (Geena Davis) and Louise (Susan Sarandon) encounter real threats and real adventure (though far from comical); their short vacation quickly turns into a nightmare. Instead of chasing love, they are chased by the FBI for shooting the man who attempted to rape Thelma.