September 10, 2002

Aaron the Moor

i am reflecting, positively on my life.

i have reorganized 90% of my scanned family photos on my new 40GB drive. i still have lots of room. my hyperbio is updated and while i'm being overly cynical for this decade, i think that's my calling for the moment. yes, as aaron the moor:

For I must talk of murders, rapes and massacres,
Acts of black night, abominable deeds,
Complots of mischief, treason, villanies
Ruthful to hear, yet piteously perform'd:
And this shall all be buried by my death,
Unless thou swear to me my child shall live.

finally, i wept several times through 'titus' glad to know there was at least half the dvd i had slept through. i can feel the shakesperean english creeping into my essay on the separation of church as state that now i believe stands a good chance of standing on it's own in that thread. rome was heartless and cruel, and the gods didn't give a poot. so it wrecked poor men and they all killed each other. good thing it was dramatic, only about 8 or 9 died. a handful or so, each with clear meaning and purpose. that's the beauty of art. hear hear shakespeare, you've done it again. so another dvd worth owning for cert.

remind me never to give my hand to any emperor.

oh but damn was that aaron casting great! and the buckwild chiron and demetrius! holy smokes. still drawn to his metaphorical blackness there. good stuff for another day.

so what blew up today? (this has been my morning greeting to the news for several years, in fact, since i first installed pointcast. remember pointcast?) i haven't yet checked because of the finishing touches i've put on my article concerning the reason that i can include opaque arguments into xrepublic, dammit. we all do the opaque thing, and we call it reason. ha! so since we're accustomed to it, let's not indulge any fantasies about sweet reason prevailing in the cyberworld. i should have known better than to expect it. and speaking of knowing better, to hell with open source free software. xrepublic is going to cost your ass, and it'll be worth it, because of what's at stake.

If thou do this, I'll show thee wondrous things,
That highly may advantage thee to hear:
If thou wilt not, befall what may befall,
I'll speak no more but 'Vengeance rot you all!'

one more day and i can take the australian flag out of the flower vase in my beetle. i daresay i've flown the red, white and blue longer than most patriots. and for it, approximately 4 people over the past year have been cheerful to me, stopping me in traffic to say g'day. western civ has a prayer after all, and so toast to sydneysiders.

yesterday was productive too. i cataloged the majority of my expenses here for this sojourn in houston's tropics. about 7,500 i estimate since the end of april. it has been my great fortune not to need to pay for airfare back and forth between this 'paradise' and the rigors of homelife. i'll need to submit envelopes to the civilian authorities as they take their tribute. who knows, in four short years i may be ahead of that game.

hmm. anyway. i've resigned myself from halo heroics and have demoted myself to be a normal player. in so doing, i whipped through hundreds of alien buggers and actually flew through the maw on the first pass. good. soon halo will become as boring as titty bars and i can too retire that vice to the swampy reptilly mind's limbic recesses. all the better to devour something new. tom lehrer put it nicely in his song called 'smut'.

all television falls into three categories according to my newest theory. news, politics and porno. only the weather channel is news, well, at least 33% of sports is news. c-span is news, but it's news about politics. the rest of the news is actually politics, as are all the commercials, religious broadcasts and the remaining 2/3ds of sports. everything else is porno, with the exception of a few children's programs which again, are politics. even the best cultural presentations and story telling are political, by their very rarity.

and so i and you are handicapped in being unwilling and perhaps unable to read for ourselves. but then again, you know that.

so defend porno and smut, or lose choice (and hbo).

now for some strange reason, the california employment development department is not answering their phones. they say - go use the website. fine if you have 128bit encryption. i've got to figure out how to update my version of ie6, from the ie5 i updated yesterday that somehow gives me more than 56bit encryption, so that i can use the goddamned website and file my special claims to the state of california. it appears that i will need to now that some houston projects have slipped a bit out of the grasp of my non-wordy friend who promised me work in the niche.


it's interesting to learn how close we all are to desparation. but it aint fun. my friend gloria suggests that i should walk the 3 miles to and from the grocery store to buy some bread. i am only now recognizing the brilliance of this advice.

Posted by mbowen at 04:30 PM | TrackBack

September 09, 2002


i haven't read amis in three days, but the bad dreams stick around.
last night, well this morning at about 3:30am, i finally fell asleep to julie taymor's "titus" on dvd. prior to that i had been blasting away for 5 hours on the alien ship 'truth & reconciliation' attempting in vain to complete my xbox game of 'halo' at the heroic setting. i had one lifebar remaining and i was stuck in the shuttle bay. i must have died 100 times trying one tactic after another of taking out the hunter in the maze of purple boxes, the three grunts that appeared 7 seconds later from the left, the 2 invisible foes on the balcony up and to the right 15 degrees, the two guys with shields up on the center platform, the last wave of 6 and then the two mighty hunters with the giant spikes that come out of their backs.

so i was really in a state to get ruined by dreaming.

it was actually very simple. by some twist, i arrived at the bottom of a staircase in the kremlin. a wide marble staircase squared a circle up one level. at the crest, stood a gigantic gold eagle with claws into the shoulders of a minature gold statue of stalin. he was wearing the same kind of cap as fidel castro and a boxy suit. his face looked oddly like saddam hussein's - the same bushy mustache and eyebrows. i stared at the inscription: STVLIN as if it were roman somehow.

as i climed the stairs i kept thinking how regal this building was, what an incredible monument. that if you have enough people you can accomplish anything. in particular, knowing lenin lay in state at the top in a glass case, that the world's greatest embalmers were comrades of the soviet system. as i passed the massive gold bird, i instinctively reached out to touch the wingtip, and i could see how all the gold had been rubbed down to the lead underneath where millions have touched...


as soon as i turned through the portico up top and thought 'millions', i started to come apart. i caught a glimpse of the glass coffin in the wide flagstone floor, and people milling around in small cliques, but fell to my knees before i could take another step. i could feel it coming in slow motion, this uncontrollable weakening. i felt the pause of dread as my body prepared itself like the moment a toddler realizes how much that bump on the head *hurt*, surprised eyes wide before they shut in bawling. my jaw clenched, my lips pulled back baring my gritted teeth, i drew a gasp of cold air, my squinted eyes filled with tears and it began with a heave. i wept loudly, shuddering, hiding my face in my hands.


Posted by mbowen at 12:28 PM | TrackBack

September 05, 2002

A Life of Lonely Journaling

a life of lonely journaling.

this is the night of going outside in sandals, frazzled-edge shorts and a t-shirt. over to the blockbuster. blade 2, amelie, tron, someothershit. there's a girl in line in front of me. she looks bored. i want to say something like, don't you wish you had somebody to watch your videos with, or maybe just talk instead of watching videos? she doesn't look up. she's not next, either. she's already the third wheel of a couple at the register. i'm next and i walk past her without a word.

the dude behind the counter asks if i want to get the special card. do i look so pathetic that i need yet another blockbuster discount card special plan? no. i'm terse. he says that it could save me money. last time i lied that i already had netflix and blockbuster's marketing scheme will never work. my rentals total 23 dollars. see, he says. you could have been done for this month. the blockbuster dude has outmaneuvered me. i take my dvds out the door, scowling.

now it's time to head over to wendy's for some dinner. should i get the bacon cheeseburger or the salad? i buy the burger and two salads. i take a bite out of the burger as i downshift and turn left at the arrow with my knees.

home through the security gate. i have more quarters so now i can put my clothes in the dryer. there's a girl in the laundry room. her butt's too wide for my taste, farmgirl legs, but a cute face with cool glasses. she gives me an enthusiastic hi as i unstuff my washingmachine load. hi, goes me, and she's gone. i swagger over to the bank of dryers and pitch my towels and shit in.

there's a green striped pair of panties on the floor. i pick them up. they're wet. there's a very unsubtle pickup line in that somewhere, but the person coming in the door is a tall skinny dude with a black t-shirt and goatee. i drop the panties onto the folding table and exit.

my three way speaker system is hooked up to the computer. i have 2400 mp3 recordings on my new external hard drive.

[whodini, soul coughing, stone temple pilots, djavan, shabba ranks, cirque du soleil, isley brothers, aaron neville, stan getz, foreigner, slick rick, johnny cash]

. see, i'm sophisticated! i'm eclectic! i'm finished with my burger and dasani water, and i'm trying to find something online which is surprising before i go watch one of the movies from blockbuster. i've already seen most of them. i've already heard every one of the mp3s. i've already married a girl.

there's nothing left to do but wait for death.

[blue man group]

nobody wants to help me build a java polling class. it must be simple. of course it is. i'm just too lazy to program it. i've got a weird pain in my chest. it could be angina. i don't want to just sit here. i don't want to go to the weight room. i already bought the navy seal fitness guide. if the army doesn't use steroids, that proves it all doesn't it? my brother david is training to become a los angeles police officer. everybody is going to be able to run faster than me when the fascists come. they'll put kiddie porn on my hard drive and send me to gitmo, and i won't be able to run fast enough to get away.

i'll just sit here and type my life away on this lonely thursday night.

[thelonius monk]

the man who interviewed me will hire me. nigel and seth say there is still a great future in my niche. anybody who is anybody in my niche knows to listen to nigel and seth. the man who will hire me is not a wordy chap. all i want to do is put my head down and code, i don't want to be wordy either. just gimme a job. he's ex-hysl too. we all used to work for the big corp, now we're just free agents taking down scores in the niche. still, nigel and seth just talk about the vendors and the products. it's all about the implemention, right?

cynthia calls my apartment paradise. she said, make sure you wash some dishes before you go back to paradise. yeah. this is paradise all right, bouncing like a squash ball inside my own head. left to my own devices. out here on my own. 2400 mp3s, silent girls, wendy's burgers, angina and a dialup line to the virtual sympaticos.

when they come to take me away, will they confiscate the servers at first?

[cibo matto]

it's martin amis, finally. i mean i just ordered another dvd of jeeves and wooster from amazon, also that global mind book and some chopin. but i keep reading about stalin 20 pages at a time. i listened to theodore rex, but i can only think about the gulag.

mike and timothy have just had one of the best discussions i've ever read on bs. as usual, i was 4 days too late to the party, not that i had much to say. i'll have to cite them when (and if) i build xrepublic. i'm not a disciplined writer, and that's starting to bother me. this big gap in my website under the professional section, i've only had lowercase discussions about my technical specialty, and i could have written a book by now. two, even. but instead i just flow like this.. prosidy, if that's even a word. prose-poetic, that rhythmic thing i described up the blog a month or two. blog.. yeah right. post-modern slave narrative is more like it. how original michael.

yeah what was my point?

[kronos quartet]

oh. that i'm too lazy to write the polling class which will kick start the xrepublic. because i have to acknowledge mike and timothy's points about the opacity of argumentative axioms in political discourse. i've got to do the polling thing first instead of the blogging part. why? because of the opacity. ultimately you just don't give a fuck why people believe what they believe and you don't want to even dignify their comments. you abandon the whole process because you'd rather not get involved. it's just not worth it for one more person to get it. so you ditch 'em. you leave their wet panties on the folding table, you leave their blockbuster marketing specials without another email address, you leave their drive-up windows only exchanging money for cholesterol with a minimum of human contact and then you go back home to your own personal paradise and review the day.

was it a good day? yes. productive. it was a wear a t-shirt under your brooks brothers bizdev blue shirt interview day. it was a firm handshake day. it was a white wine lunch, muse about the niche day. it was a day that gives confidence to the possibilities of keeping the doordogs away for another few months.


[nancy wilson]

i still have to build the polling class, and i have to be able to figure out how we are going to get democracy back into our own hands before the fascists take over. but there are those goddamned opacities out there. or should i says god-inspired opacities, no offense mike.

nobody asked me to feel for the world. i shouldn't have been a poet. not at all. all this lowercase is good for the soul but is my soul my legacy? no my legacy is a bunch of websites, a bunch of datamarts, a bunch of kids, and two very troubled mothers. why are they troubled? because my paradise isn't their paradise. that's how it is with paradises.

should i blog until charlie rose comes on?

[fatboy slim]

it was a reorganize the professional part of the website day. so i'm searching the database thread to see if i said anything worth repurposing. hrmph. not much. just a bunch of lowercase scribble.

amis says the prisoners of the gulag wrote poetry to maintain their sanity. alexander solzhenitsyn made it out alive. bully for him. i read 'the man died' by wole soyinka. same shit, different continent. how long before we're all in jail? why do i get so paranoid when republicans are in office? actually it's just the stupid republicans i can't stand. the big bush wasn't so bad, i mean he could run the c.i.a. so he's no fool.

[pavorotti & aaron neville]

the professional part of the website needs work.

[dave matthews]

i'm running out of ideas.

[the bangles]

might as well just listen to the music.

did i mention that i'm sick of everyone except for the episcopaleans? we're the only ones that make sense. the only christians that is. bhuddists are cool. jesuits are alright, i suppose, but are there any jesuit catholics? i mean if you're a catholic do you choose the order or do you just go to the church nearby? jews, i like. muslims, well.. i've yet to meet a mystical muslim who wasn't also just loony.


religious bigotry is a good way to get to first principles. i could do that, i think. or maybe not. i remember how i bugged out with charles at the scientologist's world domination rally. that was fucking scary. i wouldn't have the patience. the opacities get in the way. i'll defer to charles. i'm guilty. i never played enough hipbone. maybe charles has a bad heart too. we could be in prison together and write poetry. we could connect solzhenitsyn to soyinka to cameron and bowen under the fourth bush administration.

[chauncey canfield]

i wrote a letter to cornel west today. see? it was a good day. i had lots of time, and it didn't even bother me much that my bags didn't make it from l.a. until this afternoon. i had all morning to shave a labor day's weekend of growth off my head. of course it cost my 66 bucks at kroger to replace my kit. but that didn't change the fact that cornel may respond...

no he won't.

[alicia keyes]

alright that's enough for one day. did i cover everything? not really. ok i'll just toss it all in. first level of halo at the legendary setting. a couple thousand kudos in project gotham. a failed installation of acid 2.0 (where the hell is that license key?), more nasty squabbling at e-thepeople. the eviction notice. and.. oh.

i've got to get my clothes out of the laundry...

[earth wind and fire]

if and when the fascists come, and we're all purged, nothing matters. we'll all be faceless, nameless slaughtered people. maybe they'll remember that we were jews or hutu, but they won't know anything about us. so i'm blogging tonight all this useless blather in case is backed up and squirrelled away to havenco or the publisher gods or the pony express.

everyone dies..

oh yeah the other thing was the harper's article about nine-eleven (which is the only way i never see it written, and as such doesn't give me such a splitting headache). the world didn't change. we're not exceptional over here in america. we have just been left out for a few generations. it's all coming back.

[take six]

Posted by mbowen at 10:19 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack