✨ Smattering 05: (Re)Considering
Eclectic collections of fragments, quotes, and anecdotes from our on/offline lives.
📽From the Father of Amsterdam’s Underground Cinema
For those who care: I'm not really into slogans or catch-phrases in general, but it seems to me especially the expression "It is what it is" is waaaaaaay overused these days.... creeping into everyone's vocabulary as they shrug their shoulders and give into the situation.
But the first thing I learned when I started really living life was the opposite - nothing is the way it is. Nothing is stuck. Everything was different before, everything could have been different now, and will be different in the future. And on top of that, there are always different layers - nothing is flat.
I don't mind realism, as long as it includes surrealism, poetry, contradiction, banality, sexiness, diversity (which are all part of reality). Let's not forget that life is open, and not closed.
The worn-out "it is what it is" phrase often just feels like resignation to me, a passive giving in, a 'deer in the headlights' reaction to an overwhelming world. Let's embrace the mystery and plurality of life and not allow ourselves to get knocked unconscious by dead media narratives.
Yes, the world is a mess, but that is no reason to become pessimistic - it is a reason to become active!
Hope to see you!
Improvisations made on looking into some fried egg white…
By Out to Lunch via Militant Esthetix
🧨Excerpt from ‘Notes on The Local’
‘The controlled territory where our life passes, between the supermarket and the digital lock on the lobby door, between the traffic signals and the pedestrian pathways, forms us. We are moreover inhabited by the space in which we live. Especially when everything, or nearly everything, from now on, functions there like a subliminal message. We don’t do certain things at certain places because we do not do those things.
Street furniture for example has almost no utility—how often, to our surprise, do we wonder who exactly could fill the benches of a neo-square without succumbing to more violent despair?—it has precisely one meaning and one function, and these are dissuasive. Their mission/charter “You are only home when at home, or where you pay, or where you are monitored.”
The world is becoming global, but it is shrinking.
The physical landscape we traverse each day with great speed (by car, using public transportation, on foot, in a rush) has effectively an unreal character because while there, no one lives as anything at all, nor could anyone possibly live as anything there. It’s a type of micro-desert where one is like an exile, between one private property and another, between one obligation and another.
The virtual landscape seems much more welcoming to us. The liquid crstal screen of the computer, internet navigation, the tele-visual or the play-station universes—these are infinitely more familiar to us than the streets of our neighborhood, populated at night by the moonlight of the streetlamps and the metal gates of closed stores.
It is not the global which opposes the local, it is the virtual.’
– Tiqqun #2, Notes on the Local (2001)
Tiqqun is the name of a French leftist philosophical journal, founded in 1999 with an aim to "recreate the conditions of another community." It was created by various writers before dissolving in Venice, Italy in 2001 following the attacks of September 11, 2001. Tiqqun was the object of some interest in the media after the arrest of Julien Coupat, one of its founders. The journal was short-lived; only two issues were produced.
What's this experiment all about?
Well, 2020's been a rough year.
An absolute dumpster fire of a year for a lot of people.
That's when it came to us. Can email be a conduit for catharsis? If you could type out an email, press send, and see it being consumed in an actual dumpster fire, would it help reclaim a little bit of what we've lost?
Let's find out.
Try it here.
🤑Red is Bad. Green is Good.
By Paul Bille
‘Red is Bad. Green is Good' is a Google Sheet I created to calculate my wages. The spreadsheet covers hourly, daily, weekly, monthly and yearly rates basedon the minimum wage in Germany.
All rates are calculated twice–including and excluding the German VAT. The color gradient in the background shows the viewer what a good rate is and what a bad rate is. Red is bad. Green is good.