This is at the Bullring in Brimingham during Monday night's riots
Portugal. The Man, In the Mountain In the Cloud
László Kasznnahorkai, War and War
Margaret and the Nuclear So-and-So's, Buzzard
Malcolm Middleton, Long Dark Night
Richard Youngs, Amplifying Host
Boris, Japanese Heavy Rock Hits V.3 - "16:47:52..."
The Soft Pink Truth, So
Joe Farrell, Outback
- The riots in Birmingham UK went down right outside of my sister-in-law's apartment, where we stayed last Christmas. She is OK, but the Tesco on the opposite corner where we bought milk and hi-octane cold medicine was looted. We passed by the Bullring shopping center every time we walked to the train station. Maya and I braved the Boxing Day crowds there, right before the big VAT increase.
Here is Maya fixin' to bite it on the ice outside Selfridges at the Bullring.
Here's hoping the Dragon Inn made it through the night. I could go for a black and white and a sausage buddy right about now.
- It's a dissociative thing to see places you recognize on the news. "Turn on the News" came around from Zen Arcade yesterday and I remember seeing a particular street corner outside the convention center in New Orleans filled with evacuees during Katrina, or when Zeitoun rowed his boat to a drugstore I've been to a number of times. You are connected and not at all.
Hüsker Dü, "Turn on the News"
- It's also a mark of a rather pampered life that I have the luxury of just dissociation spooling out from these trace intersections with chaos. Imagine how someone in a war-torn place feels every day. I can't. That's what made the composer story in Andrew Ervin's Extraordinary Renditions so good, you felt he did get it, or at least got at someone who did. The Liberia episode of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations was on last night, not the best food episode, but one where the series turned into something bigger. I wonder how people see progress in what looks like rubble when I consider the stacks of paper on my desk a somewhat hopeless situation.
- It got me thinking about the difference between perspective and focus: how much you can see vs. what you look at. War and War is a dizzying proponent of the latter, each numbered section a page-long sentence of subjects trapezing across grammatical continuity rules, each portraying one facet of an incident down to the molecule. Thing is, its actually as easy read once you submit to it, unlike Beckett's novels - probably the easiest comparison - which are Sisyphean trudges. War and War is like a repeated suspension of the air-time in a bunch of bike jumps, except with the ramps set pathetically low.
But anyway, the focus of W&W's narrators are that of jewelers, free from distractions unless they should impeded on the purview of the loupe and then they become catastrophic, which again, is a perspective issue. Can we only focus when we limit perspective? Can we only gain perspective when we let go of focus? I expect my photographer friends can answer this with a well, duh, and thus this diatribe will only serve to further explain why my photos are so terrible.
- Part of my eye problems is that they don't really work in unison; they sort of flicker back and forth and thus I don't actually have real perspective, only an estimated one, so explained a doctor once. That might explain some things. Maybe I have no business even discussing perspective and should just stick to focus.