Archive for the ‘Conspiracy Theories’ Category

Something to Ponder

July 14, 2017

Do you think Sofia Coppola ever wishes she had just been born Peter Weir so she could have made Picnic at Hanging Rock and called it a day?

Assignment

July 10, 2017

The following is an essay prompt given out to students of the Enfield Tennis Academy class “The Personal Is the Political Is the Psychopathological: the Politics of Contemporary Psychopathological Double-Binds.”  I would like each of my readers––yes, all four of you––to please submit your responses by 2359 GMT today.

KEEP YOUR ANSWERS BRIEF AND GENDER NEUTRAL

ITEM 1

(1a) You are an individual who, is pathologically kleptomaniac.  As a kleptomaniac, you are pathologically driven to steal, steal, steal.  You must steal.

(1b) But, you are also an individual who, is pathologically agoraphobic.  As an agoraphobic, you cannot so much as step off your front step of the porch of your home, without undergoing palpitations, drenching sweats, and feelings of impending doom.  As an agoraphobic, you are driven to pathologically stay home and not leave.  You cannot leave home.

(1c) But, from (1a) you are pathologically driven to go out and steal, steal, steal.  But, from (1b) you are pathologically driven to not ever leave home.  You live alone.  Meaning, there is no one else in your home to steal from.  Meaning, you must go out, into the marketplace to satisfy your overwhelming compulsion to steal, steal, steal.  But, such is your fear of the marketplace that you cannot under any circumstances, leave home.  Whether your problem is true personal psychopathology, or merely marginalization by a political definition of “psychopathology,” nevertheless, it is a Double-Bind.

(1d) Thus, respond to the question of, what do you do?

(No cheating off Schacht and writing “mail fraud,” please.)

Burning Books (and Plays)

July 5, 2017

I wrote a funny (I hope) little thing on the act of burning books, and then today, read this funny little thing about Edward Albee’s will, which stipulates that his unfinished work be burnt after he died.  Here’s the important bit:

Was he working on anything when he died? We may never know.

Why not? He requested that all his unfinished manuscripts be destroyed after his death.

In another part of this “article” (faux Q&A?) the writer says that the executors plan to grant Albee’s wishes.  Which made me really curious: was Albee a longhand man?  Meaning: do they need to destroy physical works?  And if so, would they let me attend the bonfire?  I will absolutely not sneak a peek at anything!  I would consider that a sacrilegious act.  I’m considering writing a note to the two executors, named in the New York Times, asking for permission, but I very much doubt they’ll be open to it.

 

Technology Is the Devil, Part I’ve Lost Count

June 28, 2017

I got a new phone (ugh!) and when I use Gmail, sometimes there are SUGGESTED RESPONSES in little boxes at the bottom of my emails based on, I’m assuming, what the algorithm that has “read” my emails deems most appropriate.  Samples include: “Sure, that sounds great,” or “See you then!”  I’ve literally NEVER BEEN SO INSULTED IN MY WHOLE LIFE.  As if I can’t up with clever, unique ways of responding to even the most simplest of invitations!  Pass me the cyanide pills, ’cause I’m gonna need those little buggers when the robots start taking over.

Three’s a Trend

June 25, 2017

So actually there are only two of these that I can think of right now, which means that this post is anticipating a third one, which I’m guessing will happen verrrrry soon because I am something of a cultural prophet.

Here’s what I’ve noticed: a rise in the true crime meta-doc.  What is that, you ask?  It’s a sub-trend of the true crime trend, which has been ongoing for the past few years, and sees us revisiting crimes––some major, some less so––of the past, oh, forty or so years (OJ, Robert Durst, Making a Murderer, et al).  But in the true crime meta-doc, instead of just going over the facts of the case and maybe positing a new theory as to what happened, the director charts the progress of a fake-film he/she is “making” about the true crime case.  The first example of this is Kate Plays Christine, about the news anchor Christine Chubbuck, who killed herself on air in 1974; the meta-doc came out the same year as a narrative film on the topic, called simply Christine, did.  I saw the narrative film and didn’t have much interest in seeing the meta-doc, until Richard Brody told me I was a moron (which is true) and so now I am faced with the dubious task of seeing the documentary and un-seeing the narrative film.

And then this year, after the deluge (okay fine, maybe there were just two?) documentaries about JonBenet Ramsey’s murder, came the supremely weird (and possibly exploitative? also h/t Brody) Casting JonBenet, in which actors from the Boulder area, where the Ramsey family lived, audition for a possibly fake (unclear) movie about JonBenet and, during their try-outs, talk about everything from their experience with prostate cancer to their own family members being murdered to their mostly crackpot theories about the case.

Now––why the new meta-doc trend, and why return to something like the JonBenet Ramsey case, which has been covered in myriad ways ad nauseam since the girl’s murder in 1996?  My theory is that these major cases were cultural traumas, and therefore we just can’t let go.  For a bit more on that, let me introduce Neil Smelser, sociologist.  Take it away, Neil!:

The idea [of mass cultural trauma] is that certain historical events are so profound in their cultural and personal impact that they develop the features that resemble psychological trauma, namely that they’re permanently unsettling, that you can’t forget about them, even if you try to forget about them, there’s a kind of compulsive need to relive and re-experience.

The murder of one child, however adorable and young she was, might seem like small potatoes in the face of the Holocaust or slavery, but Ramsey was, I’d argue, emblematic of American innocence, and the fact that her murdered has never been solved (though I have a guess as to who it was) means the Freudian compulsion to repeat is heightened. And we’re repeating via meta-doc because all the more straightforward ways of doing so (made for TV movie, documentary, interview with family members, books on case) have been done already, and thus we have to resort to more avant-garde/oblique projects.

What will the next true crime meta-doc be?!  Here are some guesses: Ted Bundy (movie’s in the works, so the timing is good!), Laci Peterson, and… Son of Sam?  I am stuck on this one.  Help me out, people!

One final note: I would like to have a feather boa cape-thing (what is the word for this?) like the one the ersatz JonBenet wears in Casting JonBenet.  Thankssomuch.

Screen Shot 2017-06-25 at 4.19.28 PM

And SCENE.

Another Post About Celebrities

June 22, 2017
ML: so
george clooney started a tequila company 4 years ago as a “side project”
with some other rich people
and diageo is apparently now buying it for 700 million fucking dollars
ID: yeah
i saw that
wtf
ML: w
t
f
ID: do you ever just think like
my life sucks
why am i not george clooney?
ML: only 4 or 5 times a day

PLEASE LET’S BE CLEAR

June 16, 2017

If I were more articulate, I’d find a way to describe my day yesterday other than “shittastic,” but because I dropped my phone down an elevator shaft, I don’t have access to my Thesaurus app, so I’m out of luck.  On my way home from an errand, I picked up the Evening Standard magazine, which I do on the regs even though I become full of rage when I see that once again, they are featuring the offspring of a celeb who is him/herself “on the brink of stardom.”  I honestly think the ES Mag goes this route 50 out of 52 issues a year, give or take.  These pieces all manage to peddle the same lies, and y’all know how I feel about a FORMULA.  So, while it shouldn’t bother me at all, below are a few statements you will inevitably see made in a profile about a celeb’s kid.  I call bullshit, and call on ES Mag to do same:

  1. The celeb’s kid is “not your average celebrity’s child” (Yes they are, because they are trying to become actors)
  2. Because they are totally “down to earth”
  3. Due to have “never really known” their parent(s) is (are) famous
  4. They never considered acting as a career (this one cracks me up)
  5. They’re totally not into the Hollywood scene (they say while sitting at the Chateau Marmont and musing on their first rehab stint, at sixteen)
  6. They don’t drink (DUI charges pending)
  7. They had to work as hard/harder than anyone else (HAHAHAH)

Jacques Lacan Being a Dick

May 3, 2017

Interviewer: In your philosophy…

Lacan: I am not a philosopher, not in the least.

An ontological, metaphysical notion of the real…

It is not at all ontological.

You borrow a Kantian notion of the real.

It is not even remotely Kantian.  I make that quite clear.

***

“The Triumph of Religion” comes from a press conference held in Rome on October 29, 1974, at the French Cultural Center.  Lacan was interviewed by Italian journalists.

Someone Please Remember

April 14, 2017

Remember when I had an idea to make a TV show (equal parts Knick and Mad Men) about RD Laing’s Kingsley Hall?  No?  I know someone has a record of this somewhere.  Although I guess it doesn’t matter now, because screenwriter-director Robert Mullan has beaten me to the punch with his new movie Mad to Be Normal.  From The Guardian‘s (much maligned) Peter Bradshaw:

David Tennant is on pugnacious, mercurial and beady-eyed form in this very interesting and absorbing film. It’s one of his best performances. He plays the psychiatrist RD Laing, who became a 60s counterculture hero for challenging what he saw as the profession’s heartless prison-hospital ethos of tranquillisers and electroconvulsive shock treatment. Instead, Laing proposed a holistic treatment without drugs (although medically licensed LSD was acceptable), using group therapy and communal healing. He set up a refuge at Kingsley Hall in east London, that was regarded suspiciously as something like a Bedlam cult.

Hard-drinking, hard-smoking Laing laughs and cries along with his patients – who adore him – and angrily tells interviewers about the people “out to get” him. Elisabeth Moss plays Laing’s (composite-fictional) partner Angie, and Gabriel Byrne and Michael Gambon are excellent as his patients: old men who in a later era might be overlooked as care-in-the-community homeless. The screenplay by Robert Mullan and Tracy Moreton does not take a conventional biopic line but instead shows scenes from a life, with influences from Beckett, BS Johnson and perhaps David Cronenberg’s Spider in its images of broken things being put back together. Now I’d like see Mullan direct a biopic of Laing’s French counterpart, the philosopher and critic Michel Foucault. Perhaps Cédric Kahn could shave his head for the part.

Smoking

March 31, 2017

On rare occasions I’ll feel a bit sad that my days of being a stupid kid are coming to a close.  When that happens, I tend to envision myself doing something like smoking one of these Sobranie cigarettes––kinda kitschy, but undeniably glamorous.  I can probably have one a year or so even now that I’m a grown-up, right?

6aff7ae6a6256cc66eb3bcb8ecb25526