Wowee, America* I am having a super-fantastic summer, seriously, I fixed the vinyl liner in my above-ground pool and now I can go swimming whenever I want, which is really great because of how hot it has been, which summer-wise, is a plus, the hot, and being able to come home all hot and bothered and then slip into a cool pool and a cold beer is very satisfying, in a totally Suburban way, which is not a disparagement of Suburbanites, because I live in a City, but it’s just kinda like a Suburban thing to have a pool, even though mine overlooks the alley and there are feral cats [...]
Wake up when you have to.
Take as much air you need.
Examine trivial details, the bubbled foam on a just-used but not-yet-rinsed toothbrush.
Eat what you eat too often.
Have or dwell on the possibility of sex.
Envy things but realize it is not the things you desire so much as the comfort of envy itself, the notion that you might one day have more.
Some of my favorite haters—Céline, Pound, Bernhard—seem to have been exceedingly nasty people. Maybe they needed to be, or whatever, but is art worth it? Rilke skipped his daughter's wedding because he didn't want to lose his concentration. I say go to her wedding, make her happy, it's just a poem, dude.
But I do admit to finding our culture of positivity a bummer. I agree with Adorno that "The common consent to the positive is a gravitational force that pulls us downwards." Vituperation is a defense against vapidity. I live in Mississippi at the moment, where social relations are modeled on the butterslide. Everyone is very polite, [...]
"I’ve never had any luck with publishing companies. Nobody has, really—discounting the handful of Famous Bestselling Authors you read about in the NYT. It occurred to me, a few weeks ago, that I personally know about forty people who have sold books to big or medium-sized publishers, and their experiences are all the same: Long after you’ve written it and long after you’ve spent the advance on food and rent, a forgotten little bundle of words with an inscrutable cover is released in the night, you might do a few readings in empty Barnes & Noble stores on a weekday, and then four or five years later you still [...]