The boy child

The boy child

[Some doors only close]

“That’s ridiculous,” the boy child states to his manny. “I swear to you,” the manny promises, arms raised in surrender. “Prove it,” the boy challenges. “I cannot,” the manny shrugs. “Why?” the boy asks. “Cause. Think about it. It’s a door that ONLY closes,” the manny suggests. The boy thinks this over for a bit. “I suppose you’re right,” the boy child decides. “But then how am I ever supposed to find out whether or not you are?” “You will find out someday, but not today,” the manny promises. “Promise?” the boy confirms. “Promise,” the manny reiterates with an offered pinky. The two pinky swear.

 

 

Dance, ‘Ant-Man’!

Dance, ‘Ant-Man’!

She had never really thought about it before, except under the specific circumstance of riding in Economy Plus on the night flight from Auckland, Auckland, NZ to Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. For it was on this flight that she watched, for the third or fourth time, Ant-Man and the Wasp. The first time, of course, is the most notable version of this movie-going experience.

She and her partner had decided that they were going to leave Seoul, South Korea—their current home—the year before, and now, the date of their departure only stood a mere month away. Having been seeped all spring and summer in celebratory senioritis, they were winding down their fundays in order to focus on the final tasks that all had to be accomplished during that final departure month.

The grand finale had to be big, and it had to be awesome. This only left one option: The late-night showing of Ant-Man and the Wasp in IMAX 3D at the newly reconstructed Yongsan IPARK on opening weekend. For those who don’t know, Seoul is the greatest city on Earth, but don’t take her word for it; she left. Anyway, in Seoul, there are movie showtimes at all hours of the night except maybe between 0400 and 0500. Thus, that last showtime they opted for was a showtime at 0140 – 0348. Yes, that’s right; this is a normal showtime in Seoul. The problem, however, is that the subways and buses stop running around (depending on the bus or subway stop) midnight, and they don’t start up again until about 0500 (again, depending on the subway stop or bus). So, what is one to do?

Well, they scheduled a bunch of shit and thought that they would try out the whole “Sextel” experience in Sinchon. If you know, you know. They planned a stay-cation that would begin in Sinchon, work its way through Hongdae, Ewa, Yongsan and Itaewon, whereupon they’d leave their apartment in Nowon at 9 AM on Tuesday morning and not return until whenever the first subway out of Itaewon got them back to Nowon on Friday morning. So, on Tuesday morning, they packed some daypacks with only the stuff they’d need, and off to Sinchon they went where the first thing on their tour was to meet her birth mother.

After an emotional afternoon and evening reconnecting with her birth mother, her man meeting her birth mother for the first time, they found themselves in a sextel over by the Yonsei University campus, and so, they changed clothes for an evening on the town. Wednesday, being unable to use the room during the day (if you know, you know), they checked out and filled the day with eating and finding various places to escape the heat for long periods of time without being weird or having to buy multiple handcrafted beverages throughout their stay and played hand after hand of Hold ‘Em. By 1800, they were checked into a new sextel, and they just kicked it in their room that had a circular bed and large circular jacuzzi all in the same room. They may or may not have run out for some orange diner-type food and bath bubbles.

By the time Thursday rolled around, they were getting a bit worn out, but they charged on. With morning filled with more coffee in establishments that were comfortable enough to spend hours in, they spent the afternoon grazing a pizza buffet and then, began their walk to Yongsan. Again, if you know, you know. The remainder of Thursday remains a blur of walking, walking, trying to find a GS for some liquor fixer, walking, walking, trying to find a bathroom, trying to find somewhere to eat, trying to find a GS for some more liquor fixer, walking, walking and walking. By 2300, she called it quits and threw a fit, which transpired into her lifemate calling a cab and the driver driving, literally, half a mile to their destination. And this was not the first time she lost it within a mile of their desired location(s). But come on, they had been walking all day—and not in a straight line—to Yongsan. Arriving at the theater two hours before the showtime, they felt quite proud of themselves and continued their never-ending Hold ‘Em game.

Obviously, Ant-Man and the Wasp was awesome. They left the theater around 0400 and decided that a cab to Itaewon would be quite cheap at that hour, so they hopped in a cab and grabbed a bite to eat at a 24-hour pizza joint. After the delicious slice, they walked to the next subway stop just to kill some time. As the sun began to create a gentle haze over the calm, cool city, they sat and tried not to fall asleep on a park bench just outside the subway stop that they would inevitably enter at 0530 in order to catch the first train out to Taerung where they would transfer to Line 7 to the Nowon stop where they would catch a bus for a twenty-minute ride to the stop one block from their apartment where they would eventually take a cold shower and pass out.

By the end of August, they were on a plane to New Zealand, where they would stay for a few months only to quickly learn that NZ was not the place for them. And so, onward they went back the USA via a short, tropical vacation in Hawaii. It was this first experience of Ant-Man that instilled the knowledge within her that Paul Rudd would indeed dance when she tapped on the in-flight screen and selected to watch Ant-Man and the Wasp to pass the time as they flew over the Pacific at night. And of course, it was on this flight that she realized that she very muchly enjoyed watching Paul Rudd dance. Of course, she had always known this, intellectually, but now, she became curious about it interpersonally.

 

 

 

Not the Listmaker

Not the Listmaker

“He stood out clearly in the crowd.”

 

In a realm notoriously overrun by women, females, bodies of the womb-possession type, uh yea, he stood out. If you were to ask him, he would tell you that, obviously, he knew that he would stand out, but yea, of course, he had no idea that it would be quite so obvious. If you were to ask him, he would tell you that he, “Why would anyone?” would never travel to such a place unless, as is the case now, he must. The older woman sent him, obviously, and so, here he is, sitting, uncomfortable in a stiff chair, waiting for someone for some reason. Just like they way that all of them are, just sent, to find someone or something for some reason. Of course the reasons exist beyond them, but they have lives too, people to whom to attend, lovers to scorn, realities to endure. In the end, really, all he wants is to just be able to sit, forever, right here.

 


 

There

There

Garlic, onions, something else and definitely fresh black pepper wafts through the air and hits me square between the eyes. Pastries, butter, bread, garlic butter, char, everything I need to make a simple meal for my stroll along somewhere one ought to perceive as beautiful but that is now no longer defined as such. I scratch that bit of scalp where your hair becomes face at the top of your forehead and worry, in dismay and self-conscious awareness, that I may perhaps someday go bald. Grey is a story all its own, one for which I eagerly await.

Nevertheless, the air feels damp, and my hair smells of the sort that is all nah-tchur-ahl, unadorned, raw. The smell reminds me of myself, oddly enough, but a younger self, a self that rarely went a day without a shower. When the rare occasion would arise wherein I need not shower on a given day, my hair always took on a certain quality all its own after about two days of being left alone. Fondness, a sense of feeling, being alive when I smell the scent. Garlic overwhelms me all over again.

The streets feel hard, lined with concrete, cinder-block, cement. Chairs are stiff, of the upright, iron-wrought, tiny wooden circle, bistro type. Tables barely hold enough items to satisfy one much less any company. Vanilla. I smell it in the air, and then, the taste hits my tongue. Vanilla bean. Following my nose, I stop in for a small scoop of iced cream. Tiny, the wooden spoon feels fragile but sturdy, the first plunge proves the latter. Bursts of cold and soft and the sensation that my mouth will indeed fill completely with the supple sensation of my mouth filling completely with flavor. Cool, warm, home-like vanilla.

 

 

Monday Moment

Monday Moment

If you’re just waiting for this ephing day to end, here’s something for YOU. I had the perfect image pop into my head today, and I’d like to share it with you, if you don’t mind. *shrug* Cool. Imagine with me …

Will Farrell, sitting on a bed inside a childlike bedroom, hair a-baby fro, dressed in a purple, magical-white-horse printed tee, and John C. Reilly atop his own bed, with a baby belly and crazy hair, they discuss the prospective future of Prestige Worldwide. “Oh, Jesus. My heart is beating so fast. Right now,” Will Farrell admits, shaken, nervous. He shakes himself off and begins:

“Peep hole ARE talk-in’

Talkin’ ‘bout PEEp-ho-oh-ole

I just ignore it, BUT

THey-eh

keep-uh sayin’

We la-AFF

just a little too

LA-OUD”

[JCR wipes tears from eyes while looking in awe; WF sings]

“We staanand just a little too clo-ose

WE STAA-air just a little to

Lah-ah-ahng

maybe they’re seein’ sumthin’

WE DO-ONT dar-Lin’

let’s give ‘em sumthin’ to talk ah-Bou-aout

let’s give ‘em sumthin’ to talk ah-bout

How about Luh-uve, LOO-OVE, love

Love-a-dove-a-shoo-ba-dee-a-canna-dig-an-hah!”

 


Songwriter: Shirley Eikhard

Step Brothers Screenwriters: Will Farrell & Adam McKay

‘We Follow Because We Must’

‘We Follow Because We Must’

[an excerpt from “We Follow Because We Must: Building on the David Foster Wallace definition of ‘addict’ in the 2019 era of social media” by TK Camas]

 

Honestly, I’m not keen on forcing a writer who cannot defend himself and his work to do exactly that. Instead, I will present my own theory on entertainment’s role in fostering an addictive landscape not unlike that of religious devotion, and social media today, through the lens of David Foster Wallace’s definition of addiction.

Some context: On the surface, of course, he’s right; dig deeper, and he’s a bit wrong, but then, dig deeper still, and there, you will find him, right again. This is the power of David Foster Wallace, his total existence within the deep depths. He challenges you; he asks that you simply use that “map”* between your ears. To this end, David Foster Wallace will always be right, if and when you actually reach the deepest depths of the deepest depth. But for now, I will answer the question (hopefully) looming in your mind, What is she talking about?

I am talking about David Foster Wallace’s (from now on abbreviated as DFW) assessment that —with the dawn of the internet—people will desire a “gatekeeper,”** a person (or thing) to whom or which we may “give ourselves away,”*** because with regards to this information overload and the “Interlace grid,” or internet, he argues, “We’re going to beg for it. We are literally gonna pay for it. But once we do that, then all these democratic hoo-hah dreams of the Internet will of course have gone down the pipes. And we’re back again to three or four Hollywood studios, or four or five publishing houses …”****

[end excerpt]


*A well-known (and my absolute, personal favorite euphemism) DFW-ism for the brain, used in both Infinite Jest and Lipsky’s Although.

**Lipsky (2010) p 87 and all heretofore footnotes of the solo-page-number type will reference this Lipsky book.

***p 157

****p 88

 

Bibliography

Lipsky, David. Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace. New York, NY: Broadway Books, 2010.

McCarten, Anthony. The Pope: Francis, Benedict, and the decision that shook the world. New York, NY: Flatiron Books, 2019.

Owens, Simon. January 17, 2019. “Is It Time to Regulate Social Media Influencers?” New York Magazine. http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/01/is-it-time-to-regulate-social-media-influencers.html (accessed 03/30/2019).

Wallace, David Foster. Infinite Jest. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company, 1996.

‘There’s a Fungus Among Us’

‘There’s a Fungus Among Us’

 

Etiquette in the Age of Social Media: Admirable Conduct as a Disconnected Human

by Alyas Whilebitz

 

Chapter 2

“There’s a Fungus Among Us”  – Mangus Fries

 

“It’s the intention that drives us. It’s the unintended that defines us.”

– EV Maddox

A person who brags openly admits that she (for the sake of redundantly repeating she/he, each will be interspersed throughout, randomly) feels inadequate when she looks at the world and compares herself to it. A person who is not only confident in who she is but who is also confident in what she does, lacks the need to brag. A person who is awesome, amazing is known by the world as awesome and amazing, thereby removing any need for the awesome, amazing person to then tell the world, in effect bragging, that she is in fact awesome and amazing. Thus, a person who brags, does not feel as though the world thinks him awesome or amazing, which then requires the braggadocio as a statement by the braggart, himself, to the world that he thinks he is awesome and amazing.

This then is the reason why I say here that braggarts are losers. Give them no attention. Do not worry about a braggart’s brag. Do, nevertheless, know what the different types of braggarts are in order to distinguish the various, potential harm a certain braggart in your life is capable of inflicting. Outlined throughout the rest of this chapter are the different Tiers and Levels of harmless to harmful types of braggarts. As we progress through the various Tiers, know that all higher-level Tier behavior includes the already stated lower-level behaviors within the same Tier. (For example: a Boletus Tier, Level III, also exhibits all of the behaviors applied to Boletus Tier, Levels I and II, etc., etc., but a Polypore Tier, Level II, may not necessarily exhibit any of the behaviors of any Boletus Tier Levels, but for the most part, all braggarts exhibit behaviors of multiple Tier and Level combinations, just not necessarily.) Let us begin.

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