Either you are sorting it out, or you are full of it.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

New Words: Chrestomathy and Pudibundity



(special thanks to Nabakov and his love of Latinate words)

posted by ferret at 11:50 pm  

Thursday, August 27, 2009

我人品很差 (I Am A Terrible Person)

[Ferret and Bald Eagle are sitting and enjoying a leisurely dinner, going over the usual topics, when Bald Eagle decides to introduce his sweet new duds.]

Bald Eagle

So, check out this sweet new t-shirt I got!

[Bald Eagle proudly displays his t-shirt with the words: 我人品很差]



Bald Eagle

You know what it means, right?


I mean. Yeah. It means you are a bad person, right?

Bald Eagle

Yeah, basically it says I am a total shit!


Like you are lacking moral fiber completely. Like you have none of the qualities necessary to be considered a human being.

Bald Eagle

Yeah. Isn’t it awesome?


I don’t know. Aren’t Chinese people going to think that you don’t know what it means?

Bald Eagle

Yeah, but I think that’s part of why it’s cool. I mean, I get Chinese people coming up to me and asking me if I know what it means, and then I tell them!


Are you trying to make any kind of claim about the way Chinese people see Westerners or vice-a-versa? A clash of cultures kind of thing?

Bald Eagle

It could be. I don’t know. I guess it could also have to do with how people think that all the money coming into China, especially in places like Shanghai, is destroying their morals. But really, I just think it’s cool. I suppose all of that could be part of the reason, subconsciously, culturally why I think it’s cool.


It’s something that I often love, but find terribly confusing about the arts.

Bald Eagle

What’s that?


How all of these connections are to be grasped intuitively. I suppose that’s the point of good contemporary art. You don’t need an explanation, just being alive in the environment should be enough. You get excited. You get provoked. You may not know why, but the reasons are right there.

Bald Eagle

Although lately that hasn’t been the case in the art world.


Or has it?

Bald Eagle

Stop it. I’m not in the mood. I still think it’s cool.


It’s cool to tell all the Chinese people that you are a total shit?

Bald Eagle



Okay. Point taken.

[After dinner, Ferret and Bald Eagle walk out of the restaurant. A group of young Chinese guys start hooting and hollaring, they ask Bald Eagle if he knows what his shirt means. Bald Eagle says yes, and then grins fiendishly at Ferret.]

posted by ferret at 5:22 pm  

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Words: Coruscate and Frisson



(Come on, B25! That’s all I need for Bingo!)

posted by ferret at 5:40 pm  

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Boy and A Girl Climbing a High Gate on Fanyu Lu

The two of you gripped tightly

Vowing for the top

Unimpeded by the strange nature of your footholds

Brass, twisting like flowers and dragons, flowing in on themselves.

The years will go by and this gate will grow

So high you might think that you can’t reach the top;

You’ll say you can’t find a foothold in the tangled mess,

But even then you still can.

posted by ferret at 9:47 pm  

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

False Start #17

So you’d ask:

What’s the best metaphor to describe what plaid is like? I mean, the essence of it. Irrigation canals? Chicken wire? Warps through space and time? Fabrics on a loom? Mathematical grids in Euclidean space?

I would say:

No, no. I can’t say. They’re all good, but really, I mean, do you expect me to be able to take our friend plaid out of its context? Chicken farmers, jailers, carnies working at a glass bottle shooting range all wear chicken wire plaid. Farmers, civil engineers, ditch-diggers wear irrigation canals. Astronauts, tripping professors, and forward minded novelists all wear warps.  Minervan mermaids, spinster grannies, looming threats of men all wear looms. Devotees of Descartes, reckoners, and city planners wear grids…

You’d respond:

But you fail to see what I’m saying . We’re talking about the essence here.

I would say:

No, we are grasping at it, touching its edges, its corners. This is the best we get, we humans, a taste of the essential.

posted by ferret at 6:18 pm  

Monday, August 24, 2009

New Words: Architrave and Corbusian


(also known as an epistyle)


posted by ferret at 1:13 pm  

Monday, August 24, 2009

Just An Appreciative Note

Cast it into your mind, burn it

Into the inky grottoes of your hands, you

Aspiring verse varnishers:

We impecunious pugilists of poesy

Tread many paths,

So many that they would ask us

How many styles the universe would weave in her unveiling,

Bidden bride that she is

Coyer still as we read her vows.

We, who are lovers perverse as possible

Sleeping on the sepulchers of

Our ancient polyglotted professors

Licking the gritty granite

Sanding our teeth on the cenotaphs.

We, who bankrupt the bandits

With eternal promises of eternal life,

Sitting at their banquets, bibulously

Devouring and disdaining all that sits

And flits and waddles before our eyes,

Hypocritically calling beyond this brine of truculent tyrannies,

Howling those words to undue our patron’s plans

Equality! freedom! wisdom!

Howling them at such a pace

The dervishes deign to dance

And our alliterative angles

Finally find a voice.

We, who make the lovers weep

To etch in their hearts

Our little songs cut deep.

We, who make the madmen sane

Who give the pundits pause

We, who stop the mobs of men

And garner their applause.

We, who find the words

That let us all adore

Our favorite thing

Is just an appreciative note

This and nothing more.

posted by ferret at 1:07 am  

Sunday, August 23, 2009

False Start #16

I have come to the realization that we monger ideas through the desires in our hearts, but we birth ideas though the desire in our minds.

posted by ferret at 7:10 pm  

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Fight Behind the Temple of Heaven

Smash of a bottle, and raised

Hands grab for shirts to rend,

But only scuffle and writhe

LIke an immense octopus

Plucked from water and thrown upon dry land,

Its suction-sewn tentacles wriggling to bring it aright

With eight minds of its own.

Someone brings a stool to bear upon the behemoth,

To bring its feelers to rest,

To smack its parts into submission,

To break its cotton binding:

The relationship that went wrong between

These affronted fellows, falling to the street.

The crowd gathers and gawks and jibes,

Salivating on the sight, as if waiting for a feast.

Soon they’re cleaved apart, these octopus fighters,

No doubt to fry in holding cells. The crowd is sated,

Taken in their fill.

posted by ferret at 11:26 am  

Friday, August 21, 2009

New Words: Zareba and Godown



posted by ferret at 10:35 pm  

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