josh blog

Ordinary language is all right.

One could divide humanity into two classes:
those who master a metaphor, and those who hold by a formula.
Those with a bent for both are too few, they do not comprise a class.

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10 Oct '04 05:12:05 AM

A note to myself: I'd like to read this book, not to mention the others Christgau refers to.

10 Oct '04 05:02:26 AM

I randomly encountered Desrosiers while walking through Seward tonight.

It is part of my method of working to set down in a place, say my office or a coffeeshop, only to leave it a while later to walk elsewhere. I can't remember how I ever stood working on papers and homework when I did so by remaining in one place.

10 Oct '04 04:56:14 AM

Derrida dead at 74.

I'm not terribly fond or unfond of Derrida's work but the letter of protest against his honorary doctorate mentioned in the obituary still irritates me as small-minded and parochial. If I hear one single member of my highly-analytic department doing anything like gloating next week, I don't know if I'll be able to withhold my opinions on the humanity of those doing the gloating.

9 Oct '04 02:47:02 AM

A moment where it seems the tracks may not have lasted as long as the train.

5 Oct '04 08:03:16 PM

'borderline schizo / superfine tits though'


3 Oct '04 08:55:29 AM


I, Bertolt Brecht, came out of the black forests.
My mother moved me into the cities as I lay
Inside her body. And the coldness of the forests
Will be inside me till my dying day.

In the asphalt city I'm at home. From the very start
Provided with every last sacrament:
With newspapers. And tobacco. And brandy
To the end mistrustful, lazy and content.

I'm polite and friendly to people. I put on
A hard hat because that's what they do.
I say: they are animals with a quite peculiar smell
And I say: does it matter? I am too.

Before noon on my empty rocking chairs
I'll sit a woman or two, and with an untroubled eye
Look at them steadily and say to them:
Here you have someone on whom you can't rely.

Towards evening it's men that I gather round me
And then we address one another as 'gentlemen'.
They're resting their feet on my table tops
And say: things will get better for us. And I don't ask when.

In the grey light before morning the pine trees piss
And their vermin, the birds, raise their twitter and cheep.
At that hour in the city I drain my glass, then throw
The cigar butt away and worriedly go to sleep.

We have sat, an easy generation
In houses held to be indestructible
(Thus we built those tall boxes on the island of Manhattan
And those thin arials that amuse the Atlantic swell).

Of those cities will remain what passed through them, the wind!
The house makes glad the eater: he clears it out.
We know that we're only tenants, provisional ones
And after us there will come: nothing worth talking about.

In the earthquakes to come, I very much hope
I shall keep my cigar alight, embittered or no
I, Bertolt Brecht, carried off to the asphalt cities
From the black forests inside my mother long ago.

3 Oct '04 08:12:19 AM

I am looking for digital copies of all the songs on this old mix that Ethan sent me.

Except 'Come Sail Away'.

And 'Party and Bullshit', which was the first thing I tried to get my hands on as soon as I got my current computer (finally capable of finding and playing music).

3 Oct '04 12:41:10 AM

When I write, every truism that inadvertently slips onto the page thanks to my effort to try to move things along, to have said enough that I am actually in a position to say something rather than mouth the words that will lead the reader on - every one stops me dead in my tracks.

1 Oct '04 06:39:07 AM

(And somehow that made it - better? acceptable?)