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100 TWEETS ABOUT LOVE DOG from @Lifeasweshowit

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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 http://www.zero-books.net/books/laconia-1200-tweets-on-film @zer0books )#Ld100

1/2 Inspired by Barthes’ “Mourning Diary” @NottingHillEds http://www.nottinghilleditions.com/books/mourning-diary/52 Love Dog is a timeline of recovery from loss #Ld100

2/2 …but like Barthes’ “A Lover’s Discourse” http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lovers-Discourse-Vintage-Classics/dp/0099437422it can be played on shuffle. #Ld100

Like Ali Smith’s Artful @HamishH1931 http://www.penguin.co.uk/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,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 http://mashatupitsyn.tumblr.com. 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

[email protected] admits she hardly ever watches a movie from beginning to end. http://minorprogression.com/2011/10/03/masha-tupitsyn-via-the-screen #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. http://open.spotify.com/track/1forpItVE6vtE09iYC6nZx 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, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3WeGUCzaDA #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

[email protected] 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 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8xadfDxWRQ #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 http://open.spotify.com/user/badaude/playlist/48PyPDbAzhrxMTVBjhQxCL #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. http://archive.org/details/Tupitsyn-Masha_LA-Lit_27_PTA.mp3 #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” http://blogs.indiewire.com/pressplayall_an_act_notes_on_john_cusack_and_the_art_of_being_yourself #ld100

[email protected] on doubling, androgyny, attraction http://ryeberg.com/curated-videos/i-touch-myself-part-1/ #ld100

[email protected] audio http://archive.org/details/Tupitsyn-Masha_LA-Lit_27_PTA.mp3/ 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

[email protected] 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 http://www.poetryfoundation.org/harriet/2010/04/provisional-language/ #ld100

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

[email protected] 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 (http://www.nybooks.com/books/imprints/classics/loves-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 http://emergencypress.org/green-girl.html #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

MY LIFE IN SOMEONE ELSE’S TEXT (A MASH-UP) #ld100

[email protected] plays 3 x versions of Joy Division’s Love Will Tear us Apart. love dog #ld100

[email protected] 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.