In the army, there was a kid who lost it at the mortar range. So we had to go down and pick him up. We rode by in the jeep and took him to the military hospital. He was yelling the whole way.
At the hospital, we went up to the top floor where the psych ward was. When we were coming in, I ran into my captain. He was shuffling around in slippers and a bathrobe.
I asked him, Captain, what are you doing here?! And he said, They tell me I’m a manic depressive.
This is a Russian folk song. This is my favorite recording of it that I’ve found. He sings a combination of the Russian lyrics and the English translation, seems like.
I don’t know what this is. The video is cool.
This is some folk punk thing with a banjo. I don’t remember this.
This is some British rap thing.
This is a Ukrainian folk song. This one is really nice.
This is that Mount Eerie, you know.
This is a cool alt country thing.
This is a weird lofi folk noise album, or something.
This is a cool rap song. Some immaculate shit.
This is Adrian Orange playing the song “YYY Bee” at Take It To The Limit Fest 2007, maybe. This one is nice.
This is a folk song by a guy on the JDub label, that put out the first Matisyahu album.
This is a Gucci and Jim Jones song with the line “bitch, take these ten bricks to Kansas” in the chorus.
This is a classic rap song. “I’d rather be tried by 12 than carried by 6.”
This is some OG California weirdo rap. This has like historical significance.
This is some chill indie new age album. I don’t know what this is.
This is another British rap song. He says “fuck 75 thousand CDs, fam.”
This is a pretty wild British story rap thing. This one is really cool.
As a kid, I owned a plastic, battery-operated piggy bank shaped like a jukebox that, when you put a coin in, would play the chorus of The Kingsmen’s cover of “Louie, Louie”—which Punk Rock, So What? The Cultural Legacy of Punk (1999) describes as “punk rock’s defining ur-text” (via Wikipedia).
Here are some excerpts from David Lipsky’s book-long interview with David Foster Wallace, Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself.
- DFW: […] And I think, I think there’s a reason why a lot of avant-garde stuff gets neglected: I think that a lot of it deserves to be. Same with a lot of poetry. That’s written for other people that write poetry, and not for people that read. […]
- DL: Is fiction going the way of poetry or no?
DFW: I think avant-garde fiction has already gone the way of poetry. And it’s become involuted and forgotten the reader. Put it this way, there are a few really good poets who suffered because of the desiccation and involution of poetry, but for the most part I think American poetry has gotten what it’s deserved. And, uh, it’ll come awake again when poets start speaking to people who have to pay the rent, and fuck the same woman for thirty years. That’s off the record: that’s really nasty.
DL: Do you worry that fiction could end up becoming the kind of pleasant hobbyist’s backwater that reading poetry has become?
DFW: If it does, it won’t be the audience’s fault. And it won’t be TV’s fault.
- [David Foster Wallace is signing books after a reading.]
GUY: Ever write poetry?
DFW: No. (Clipped, nervous.)
GUY: Thank you very much.
Here are some famous people I’ve seen in real life:
- Tech N9ne: I saw Tech N9ne at the Chipotle on Massachusetts Street in Lawrence, Kansas. He was with Krizz Kaliko. They were eating burritos. People kept coming up to Tech N9ne and getting him to autograph those brown napkins they have at Chipotle.
- Philip Glass: Philip Glass came to the University of Kansas to play a concert. He gave a little talk for people in the music school. I wasn’t invited but I just showed up. It was in a little classroom and there were like 30 people there. Philip Glass said he didn’t make any money off music until he was 50.
- Aubrey Plaza: In an airport I saw a woman that looked like she might be Aubrey Plaza.
- I think those are the only famous people I’ve seen.
I read this book Herzog on Herzog. It’s a long interview with Werner Herzog. It’s part of a series of books published by Faber and Faber. I’ve read the Lynch on Lynch one, too. It’s the same thing except with David Lynch.
Here are some things Herzog says:
- Look into the eyes of a chicken and you will see real stupidity. It is a kind of bottomless stupidity, a fiendish stupidity. They are the most horrifying, cannibalistic and nightmarish creatures in this world.
- Years ago I was searching for the biggest rooster I could find and heard about a guy in Petaluma, California, who had owned a rooster called Weirdo that weighed thirty pounds. Sadly Weirdo had passed away, but his offspring were alive, and guess what? They were even bigger. I went out there and found Ralph, son of Weirdo, who weighed an amazing thirty-two pounds! Then I found Frank, a special breed of miniature horse that stood less than two feet high. I told Frank’s owner I wanted to film Ralph chasing Frank - with a midget riding him - around the biggest sequoia tree in the world, thirty metres in circumference. It would have been amazing because the horse and the midget together were still smaller than Ralph, the rooster. But unfortunately Frank’s owner refused. He said it would make Frank, the horse, look stupid.
- I am a Conquistador of the Useless.
- I was fascinated by livestock auctioneers and always had the feeling that their incredible language was the real poetry of capitalism. Every system develops its own sort of extreme language, like the ritual chants of the Orthodox Church, and there is something final and absolute about the language the auctioneers speak over there. After all, how much further can it go from there? It is frightening but quite beautiful at the same time; there is a real music in the delivery of the speech, the sense of rhythm these people have. It is almost like a ritual incantation.
- I have always felt that rats possess a kind of fantasy element in that they are the only mammals whose numbers surpass those of man. The figure is something like three to one, and our fear of the creatures stem in part from this fact.
- It is not money that moves ships over mountains, it is faith. And it is not money that makes films, it is these things [holds up his hands]. You have to establish just one little heap of money and make it seem big. There is a German proverb: ‘Der Teufel scheißt immer auf den grössten Haufen.’ ‘The Devil always shits on the biggest heap.’ So heap up a little money, then the Devil will shit on it.
- At the press conference for the film [Bruno Schleinstein] impressed everyone with his complete sincerity and innocence. He said he had come to see the sea for the first time and marvelled at how clean it was. Someone told him that, in fact, it wasn’t. ‘When the world is emptied of human beings,’ he said, ‘it will become so again.’
- A few weeks ago I received a phone call at my apartment from a painter who lives just down the street from me. He tells me he wants to sell me his paintings, and because I live in the same neighbourhood, he says he wants to give me a good deal on his work. He starts to argue with me, saying I can have this painting for only ten dollars or even less. I try to get him off the phone, saying, ‘Sir, I am sorry but I do not have paintings in my apartment. I have only maps on my walls. Sometimes photos, but I would never have a painted picture on my wall, no matter who made it.’ And he kept on and on until all of a sudden he starts to laugh. I think: I know this laughter. And he did not change his voice one bit when the painter announced that it was my friend, Harmony Korine.