100 TWEETS ABOUT LOVE DOG from @Lifeasweshowit


Masha Tupitsyn. Drawing by Joanna Walsh

by Joanna Walsh

Masha Tupitsyn calls her new work, Love Dog, “The second instalment in my series of immaterial writing.” Her first instalment, Laconia – 1,200 Tweets on Film, made me want to tweet a response to her second.

Aphoristic Twitter seems an appropriate medium for what Montaigne called the ‘essai’ – literally, ‘the try-out’ – the ancestor of today’s personal essay. We tweet ideas about philosophy and politics alongside thoughts about what we had for breakfast. Something about Twitter is ‘tentative’ – linking the English sense of the word (timorous) to the French definition: ‘an attempt’, as in George Perec’s essay, (tentative d’episement d’un lieu parisien). Twitter is a trying-on, a dressing-up, of experience of words.

I recently wrote for Granta about what happens to love when it is dressed up in on-screen words and images. Romantic love – Eros as opposed to Caritas – is similarly, as philosopher Alain Badiou, citing Lacan, calls it, “an approach”. Twitter seemed the perfect place to talk about Love Dog – a book that is as much about communication as it is about love.

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Tagged #ld100. All “quotes” are from Love Dog unless specified otherwise.

@Lifeasweshowit calls Love Dog “The 2nd instalment in my series of immaterial writing” #Ld100

1/3 Love Dog materially (in essence) & materially (necessarily) is & isn’t a book. A patchwork of links, music, video, firstly a Tumblr #ld100

2/3 often aphoristic, it demands engagement #Ld100 so I’m responding in 100 Tweets #ld100

3/3 (see also @Lifeasweshowit ’s @zer0books )#Ld100

1/2 Inspired by Barthes’ “Mourning Diary” @NottingHillEds Love Dog is a timeline of recovery from loss #Ld100

2/2 …but like Barthes’ “A Lover’s Discourse” can be played on shuffle. #Ld100

Like Ali Smith’s Artful @HamishH1931,,9780241959589,00.html it’s the work of “a 12month & a day” Smith’s measure of a mourning period #Ld100

During the year of its construction I read Love Dog as it unfolded at I am now rereading. #Ld100

9 Tweets on Time #ld100

On the cover of Love Dog, The Big Clock. Movies are all about runtime. But watching the movies is now digital, not analogue. #ld100

.@Lifeasweshowit admits she hardly ever watches a movie from beginning to end. #ld100

“In film time-jumps are the lapse in time between people (most often lovers) & events…duration is noted at the bottom of the screen” #Ld100

Time jumps are “The illusion of movement” They show how, in film time = space. #Ld100

Love is a timeline but not an even one “Time, years & years have passed. & now I am at once tougher & softer than I have ever been” #Ld100

As Didion-also a screenwriter-is to film, the medium of her age, ‘jump-cutting’ her essays of the 60s & 70s, so Tupitsyn is to digital #Ld100

1/2 “There is simply no place for real, and therefore radical, heartache in this culture. No time and no place.” Reminds me of #ld100

2/2 Marguerite Duras, also a screenwriter: “The story of my life doesn’t exist. There’s never any centre to it. No path, no line.” #Ld100

“something finally happens.” #Ld100

7 Tweets about Loveslips, Timeslips #ld100 

Love Dog is slippery in its jumpcuts. @Lifeasweshowit talks about Heidegger, holding onto, being held by, memory. #Ld100

To write about love is not love; this is a difficulty. @Lifeasweshowit writes “I am a digressive and analogical thinker” #ld100

1/2 “For months I felt you, X, everywhere. I thought it was real The feeling, which felt like your actual body coming towards me.” #ld100

2/2 Love works in absence, writing, memory, most real when most invented. #ld100

An astrologer tells me: “You do everything backwards.” I wonder what backwards is. I wonder what “everything” is. #Ld100

“Emotion is retro” #Ld100

“You can’t believe how much less you know every day.” #ld100

5 Tweets on Repetition #ld100

On @lifeasweshowit’s playlist: Carol Hughes’Let’s Get Together Again. Why are relationships set to repeat? #Ld100

again & again: “How did he know?”, “How did she know?” #ld100

Badiou said repetition is the enemy of love. Maybe in this lecture, #ld100

I’ve listened to this lecture a fair few times for my own work.  Maybe @lifeasweshowit, a EGS student, was there live. #Ld100

Love is REreading, REwatching, RElistening #ld100

7 Tweets about music #ld100

.@Lifeasweshowit writes “Note to reader: This book is polyphonic. It should be read, listened to, and watched.” #Ld100

She makes a retro playlist like Debi in Grosse Pointe Blank, a movie @Lifeasweshowit writes on. She DJs her book  #ld100

Debi is the movie’s writer b/c the songs narrate the movie’s backstory.As DJ she’s also the movie’s voiceover #ld100

Love Dog’s playlist: 50% songs you slow-dance your way into the gaps of /50% punk excitability. 50% past/regret 50% present/now! #ld100

I make a lot of Spotify playlists – mixtapes for an imaginary BF? (mixtapes are love tokens)? Mine are usually one song, all ways, but I made this one for Love Dog #ld100

1/2 “a song is playing in the car while me and my ex are driving in the middle of the night…We were gliding, in the clear, when the song came on.” #ld100

2/2 Only in America: enough road for time x space to = music, to produce enough Kairos (the moment) for love. #ld100

4 Tweets about American + Retro #ld100

“Music is the affect that gives you the experience you don’t have.” I’m not American. For me Love Dog has cultural as well as temporal nostalgia #ld100

“In post-20th century America you can’t even want everything, much less have everything.” #Ld100

It’s something to do with the movies: over here we don’t have myths that big. See @lifeasweshowit’s story of Judy, Diane, Marnie. #ld100

@lifeasweshowit says of young Americans “Mostly they play at feeling…” It’s to do with all that watching, and looking #Ld100

5 Tweets about Looking  #ld100

“If Hollywood and mass media are any indication, nothing is faked and enacted more these days than a face.” #ld100

“A woman’s face is something she has to fake almost all of the time… A heartbreak of women watching women. Women being women” #ld100

”Women are meant to have faces that receive” but Johnny Depp “You might not look at him unless you knew you were supposed to,” #ld100

It’s all about “How public you are with your private” Managing the private in public. #ld100

Is this why love is a face so difficult to recognise? #Ld100

5 Tweets about Doubling #ld100

1/2 “The lover doubles the lover. The double doubles over. You, (X.), want me and you don’t. Everything that can happen doesn’t …” #ld100

2/2 “& everything that doesn’t does…Your rejection of me has always been a double of your desire for me.”#ld100

John Cusack “Using 1 person to be another person so you could be more & less of yourself. A hybrid. An ideal” #ld100

.@lifeasweshowit on doubling, androgyny, attraction #ld100

.@lifeasweshowit audio Her teenage boy voice. I think of her doubling Dobler. #Ld100

11 Tweets about Voice #ld100

“Auden: “Words are for those with promises to keep.” This digital age hasn’t got a clue about what it means to say things to people.” #ld100

1/2 “Paltrow, like Depp and Ryder stopped talking like that, stopped talking about love period,” #ld100

2/2 “which means that maybe a part of Paltrow stopped being able to feel that way. After all, how one talks is also how one lives.” #ld100

.@lifeasweshowit quotes Heidegger “Common speech merely employs language.” Employed language is what @kg_ubu calls provisional #ld100

“The industrialization of language… Provisional language pretends to unite, but it actually splinters.” @kg_ubu #ld100

“I was simply talked out of my mourning. Talked out of holding on… we get talked into and out of love.”  #Ld100

.@Lifeasweshowit calls herself “Unread and misread… Maybe lovers do too.” #Ld100

“expressing yourself, has somehow become synonymous with being a bad or difficult person.” #ld100

“Is this how yoga instructors talk to people? Go get some more plastic surgery” Shocking to read shocking words about shocking words. #Ld100

“I get attached to and hung up on words. Words are actions… I am married to everything and I can’t help but remember.” #ld100

“brilliant male artists writers & philosophers proved to be nothing like their work…What do we do with this gap that never closes?” #Ld100

11 Tweets about Girl #ld100 

I use ‘girl’ like Chris Kraus, like @daughteroffury, like Deborah Levy in Billy & Girl. Girl is undecided, unsettled, derided, fake. #ld100

Of course these girls are women, old enough to tell. Another timeslip. #ld100

“aren’t white men the only ones who even really get to think of themselves as geniuses, as artists” @lifeasweshowit #ld100

Sheila Heti “One good thing about being a woman is we haven’t too many examples yet of what a genius looks like. It could be me.” #Ld100

@Daughteroffury, Heroines, “I intone to the mirror to myself: You’re a fucking genius. Now you try it.” #ld100

“Women have historically been permitted to say more about it, but that’s because of the trivialization not just of women, but love in general.”#ld100

Maggie Nelson’s Bluets, @kayengel’s @daughteroffury’s,@olivialanguage’s, my work. Love/loss as *the* subject/catalyst of women’s writing now? #ld100

Allthesadyoungliterarygirls #ld100

Story of her life @lifeaweshowit writes on her classes, papers. Love’s work ( @nyrbclassics), working through #ld100

Girl statements. One sentence. Jenny Holzer, @daughteroffury @kayengels. Fragment. Phrase. Aphorism. #ld100

Girl = memoir ÷ aphorism = twitter, tumblr, blog. The Internet is female (round the edges)  #ld100

10 Tweets about Forest #ld100

Girl is green. @Daughteroffury wrote Green Girl #ld100

Forest is wordless. Forest is colour: green. #Ld100

Green and Red are film colours @olivialanguage told me green in film fades over time. There is a society for their preservation. #Ld100

“The green still shows. Why didn’t I rust?” Rust is what happens when green and red merge, over time. #Ld100

Love sends you on quests (to essays on red & green & screen faces). Everywhere sends you back to love. #Ld100

But there is a path through the forest. Don’t forget Love Dog is also a Tumblr, linear, temporal. #Ld100

1/2 Elaine Castillo said @lifeasweshowit “& I are always in the forest.” #Ld100

Any love story is also a story of friendship, love at a second remove, rebounded, given an echo chamber, so vital in the vacuum of 2. #Ld100

Like Sheila Heti & @mmmargaux in How Should A Person Be? the friendship between a visual & a word artist #ld100

“Two powerful girls. Making magic together” #ld100

6 Tweets about Cutups #ld100


.@lifeasweshowit plays 3 x versions of Joy Division’s Love Will Tear us Apart. love dog #ld100

.@lifeasweshowit cuts up Holzer’s “I am awake in the place where women die” (about rape torture) to make a love poem #ld100

Love Dog patchworks others’ words being, partly, an expanded epigraph. #ld100

1/2 @Lifeasweshowit quotes Negri on Kairos (the moment) “Every time an encounter takes place there is a construction of Being”  #ld100

2/2 Negri “Kairos is the way in which one sees the world, a point of view—one that is also a view of the past.” Like watching a movie #Ld100

2 Tweets about watching #ld100

What does watching have to do with love? “in movies things still matter. People still matter to people. Love still matters.” #Ld100

“ I like people, no love people, who take looking and being looked at this seriously.” #Ld100

About the Author:

Joanna Walsh’s writings and drawings have been published by Tate, The Guardian, The Times, The Idler, FiveDials, 3:AM and The White Review, amongst others. She has created large-scale artworks for the Tate Modern and The Wellcome Institute. Her website, Badaude, was a Webby Honoree in 2008. She has created and developed situational games in collaboration with agencies Hide & Seek and Coney. Last year she appeared at the Port Eliot Festival, The Wellcome Institute, The Cambridge Festival of Ideas, Hide & Seek’s Southbank Weekender, Shakespeare and Company Paris, Dialogue Books Berlin and the Melbourne Writers’ Festival. She is an associate member of the London Institute of ‘Pataphysics. She is currently writing a semiautobiography.