“It’s time to do something. Even if it’s wrong.” This is my rocking chair. It’s said that girls are failed males. There’s been many a worse failure. But things change on a dime in the world of sleep, and I quickly found myself in the back of another Bentley. This time it had doors and Kanye drove while Jay-Z hung with me. Both men were wearing tuxes and we were all drinking Cristal, and soft jazz might have been playing. Typical Kanye, though, was up to no good. Next thing I know the three of us were parked outside of Johnnie’s Deli spying on Kim and her soon-to-be-ex Kris Humphries. Actually, it’s all just the builder Bob. Bob? And Laleh. So far. I am beginning to lose faith in popular culture. So it’s easy to be cheerful and slippery around people who have it hard, as with death about. More radio, more donuts, good morning, no fuss about career as well. So: on top of its brusque and decidedly unromantic sexual fondling, TSA agents have also been caught stealing electronics, jewelry and cash. A TSA manager ran a prostitution ring from a motel room, and a supervisor is a defrocked priest, kicked from the pulpit for molesting two young girls. Lots of kids pass through the Philly airport, so this shamed minister has found his true calling. If you want to browbeat and grope, the US Government has a job for you, and if you fantasize about torturing and killing, and committing outrages on corpses, that can be arranged too. The latest TSA scandal involves an agent opening an urn containing cremated human remains, sticking her fingers into it, spilling ashes and bone fragments onto the floor, then laughing about it as the deceased’s grandson tried to gather what was left of his granddad from the carpet. Suddenly the three Dexedrine that I gulped back at the bar kick in — hard. My chest tightens. I’m also still drunk, and still drinking. “I would like there to be an artist like Damien Hirst whose arch-nemesis is a master magician like David Copperfield, OK?” I snarl. “And the artist creates something, right, and then the magician makes it disappear …” “She’s amazing,” says the celebrity, who knows I am cranked. “OK! We should go.” “Have you heard the rumor that I have? That Matthew Barney was fucking Elizabeth Peyton?” “Well,” chuckles Yanni. “That Matthew Barney is quite a guy.” I glare at him. “He’s also married, Yanni,” I hiss, and poke him hard through his summer cashmere. “To Bjork! You know, I’ve personally been to black metal barbeques, with these weird wrestling competitions and James Franco — at their Long Island City compound.” I take a sip of champagne. “Matthew Barney cannot just take any painter into his submarine thingie and have sex with her, for Christ’s sake …” So: if we take into consideration that the larger part of Lenin’s book, about two thirds, is dedicated precisely to the accusations of idealism directed against “Machists” and Lenin provides an infinite amount of citations from the works of “Machists” themselves and from the works of philosophers who do or do not sympathize with them, then in addition to the psychological puzzle – how our author could come up with his polemics while in essence expressing the same point of view – there is also a logical puzzle: how this polemics could be formally combined in his head with his own views. The key to the solution of the first puzzle is already available to us: it is religious thinking, solid in its verbal expression but vague in its concepts. The second puzzle can be explained by the extremely peculiar philosophical-critical method that is systematically used by our author, the one I would call, choosing the softest expression, the method of the “substitution of concepts.” It is a very simple method. “Machists” reduce all reality to “elements of experience.” What are these “elements”? Colors, forms, tones, smells, touch and so on. But Hume thought that all these colors and tones are sensations! Therefore, “elements” are the same as sensations. But Berkeley considered these same colors, forms and so on to be ideas! Therefore, sensations are the same as “ideas”! So, “elements” are ideas, and “Machism” is the purest form of idealism, i.e. “fideism,” “obscurantism” and so on. Mach and empiriocritics understand experience realistically: experience is things and images, physical and mental complexes. Elements are the same in both cases; in some complexes they are elements of things, in others, elements of images or sensations. The elements of things (or of “environment”) are colors, forms, rigidity, softness and so on, taken as independent of an individual, in objective connection – in a complex of a “rose petal” the color red is connected to the softness, the oval shape, the certain smell and so on objectively, i.e. completely independently from whether “I” look at it or not, whether “I” can distinguish between colors or not and so on. In the complex “perception of petal” the red color is present, but if “I” close my eyes, it changes to something different, if “I” am colorblind, it is accompanied by the sensation of “softness” only if while touching it I am also looking at it; here the red color, the softness or the smell are my sensations. Hume, Kantians and Plekhanov understand experience individualistically-psychologically: experience consists of “my” mental images, and nothing else. “My” here means that we cannot speak of any independent connection between the elements, that this connection is always subjective, and that all the component parts of experience are always only “sensations,” only individual “my” sensations. “It is ridiculous,” writes, for example, Plekhanov, “to ask what color rose has when no one is looking at it, what smell is has when no one is smelling it…” Here the rose has no color and no smell because no “subject” is “sensing” them. And finally Berkeley understands experience idealistically, and therefore all the component parts of experience are conceived by him as elementary “ideas.” In other words, since these are different understandings of experience, naturally, they produce different concepts of what experiences consist of. Lenin’s conclusion: we can use these different concepts interchangeably! Then another dream, where once again, I was preternaturally wise. Where once again, I had all the answers. A black sky. Animal cries. Chimp whoops, in the distance. Monkeys throwing their faeces about. ... ‘What will people look like, at the end of time?’, W. asked me. They’ll look like us, I told him, but with browner teeth.” Light coming into sky above black plane / / of ridge, crow calling from pine branch / / in foreground, sound of wave in channel.
[Note: Sources: Bruce, a friend of Anne Gorrick’s, as relayed to me via email from Anne, rec’d 28 Jun 012 approx 10:14 AM PDT; Jono Tosch, “catching up”, at Oil Changes, 28 Jun 012; Lyn Hejinian, The Night Has a Thousand Eyes, as quoted in “Read This Bit Re: Lyn Hejinian’s Poetics of Failure”, at Harriet, 28 Jun 012; Mina Ross, “WHILE I WAS SLEEPING…I WITNESSED THE MAGIC OF KIM-YE WITH JAY Z AND AZIZ ANSARI”, at Hello Giggles, 28 Jun 012; Stina Kajaso, “Tomte husse” (tr. Google), at SONOFDAD, 28 Jun 012; JBR; Linh Dinh, “Gone Banana Republic”, at Detainees, 28 Jun 012; Cat Marnell, “AMPHETAMINE LOGIC: NOTHING IS WRONG IF IT FEELS GOOD”, at Vice, 28 Jun 012; JBR; Alexander Bogdanov, Faith and Science, as quoted in Mikhail Emelianov, “Some Things Never Change (Bogdanov)”, at Perverse Egalitarianism, 28 Jun 012 (“a long response to Lenin’s Materialism and Empiriocriticism”); Lars Iyer, “A Third Dream”, at Spurious, 28 Jun 012; Stephen Ratcliffe, “6.28”, at Temporality, 28 Jun 012]