Tag: Philosophy

The Authentic Feel of Unpolished Expression

Of course Bernard didn’t realise the song wasn’t in his key. None of us did. We didn’t know anything about stuff like that. We always wrote the music first, and what I’d always loved about Barney’s vocals was the unintentional strained quality as he tried to fit into the track. Like Ian, he wasn’t blessed with the world’s best singing voice, but it had emotion, passion, and to me the struggle in Bernard’s voice was a major part of the band’s appeal. (I agree with David Byrne, who said, ‘The better a singer’s voice, the harder it is to believe what they’re saying.’)

Substance: Inside New Order
Peter Hook

Waking Life – Quotes from

Waking Life

Soap Opera Woman
: Excuse me.

Wiley: Excuse me.

Soap Opera Woman: Hey. Could we do that again? I know we haven’t met, but I don’t want to be an ant. You know? I mean, it’s like we go through life with our antennas bouncing off one another, continously on ant autopilot, with nothing really human required of us. Stop. Go. Walk here. Drive there. All action basically for survival. All communication simply to keep this ant colony buzzing along in an efficient, polite manner. “Here’s your change.” “Paper or plastic?’ “Credit or debit?” “You want ketchup with that?” I don’t want a straw. I want real human moments. I want to see you. I want you to see me. I don’t want to give that up. I don’t want to be ant, you know?

Man on TV: A single ego is an absurdly narrow vantage from which to view this experience. And where most consider their individual relationship to the universe, I contemplate relationships of my various selves to one another.

Kim Krizan: Creation seems to come out of imperfection. It seems to come out of a striving and a frustration and this is where I think language came from. I mean, it came from our desire to transcend our isolation and have some sort of connection with one another. And it had to be easy when it was just simple survival. Like you know, “water.” We came up with a sound for that. Or saber tooth tiger right behind you. We came up with a sound for that. But when it gets really interesting I think is when we use that same system of symbols to communicate all the abstract and intangible things that we’re experiencing. What is like… frustration? Or what is anger or love? When I say love, the sound comes out of my mouth and it hits the other person’s ear, travels through this byzantine conduit in their brain through their memories of love or lack of love, and they register what I’m saying and they say yes, they understand. But how do I know they understand? Because words are inert. They’re just symbols. They’re dead, you know? And so much of our experience is intangible. So much of what we perceive cannot be expressed. It’s unspeakable. And yet you know, when we communicate with one another and we feel that we have connected and we think that we’re understood I think we have a feeling of almost spiritual communion. And that feeling might be transient, but I think it’s what we live for.

Boat Car Guy: Man this must be like… parallel universe night. You know that cat that was just in here? Just ran out the door? Well, he comes up to the counter, you know, and I say “What’s the word, turd?” And he lays down this burrito and he kind of looks at me, kind of stares at me and says, “I have but recently returned from the valley of the shadow of death. I’m rapturously breathing in all the odors and essences of life. I’ve been to the brink of total oblivion. I remember and ferment the desire to remember everything.”

Wiley: So, what did you say to that?

Boat Car Guy
: Well, I mean, what could I say? I said, “If you’re going to microwave that burrito, I want you to poke holes in the plastic wrapping because they explode. And I’m tired of cleaning up your little burrito doings. You dig me?”

I Like the Bricks More Than the Building – Nietzsche quote

Error of philosophers: The philosopher believes that the value of his philosophy lies in the whole, in the building. But posterity discovers it in the bricks that he used and which others will often make use of again for better building; in the fact, that is to say, that the building can be destroyed and nevertheless possess value as material.

— Nietzsche, Human, All Too Human (1878)

Epigraph found in:
Heidegger in Ruins
Richard Wolin

It’s All Drag – David Johansen Interview

The New York Dolls were so into a sort of pre-punk sensibility. Very raw, high energy. Buster Poindexter is much more lounge, Vegas persona. Buster Poindexter is in a tuxedo…

It’s all drag Terri. Birkenstocks are drag. I mean everyone is saying something with their clothes.

New York Dolls Frontman David Johansen
Johansen was a founding member and frontman for the early ’70s glam band The New York Dolls – the band that helped set the stage for the punk movement. Later, Johansen created the lounge-lizard persona Buster Poindexter. He’s the subject of the new documentary Personality Crisis: One Night Only, co-directed by Martin Scorsese and David Tedeschi. Johansen spoke with Terry Gross in 2004.

NOTE – quote is my rough transcription.

The most beautiful part of every picture is the frame – Chesterton Quote

Over the past couple of years, I volunteered to teach in the West Tennessee State Penitentiary, where I was part of a faculty cohort that offers humanities seminars to incarcerated women.

The program director had invited me to discuss a play, but I didn’t think I could do justice to a drama in just two brief sessions. So we read Shakespeare’s sonnets instead. Right choice! One student, Aja, was so enthusiastic that she came to the first class having already translated her favorite into her own verse.

The sparse classroom has a corkboard on one wall whose dimensions mirror the shape of a sonnet on the page, giving us a good visual analogue for the form: why would an artist choose to work within such a frame? G. K. Chesterton, who held that art consists in limitation, was only half jesting when he asserted that the most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.

How to Think like Shakespeare
Scott Newstok

From the footnotes, original source:
Cited by Ian Ker, Chesterton: A Biography (Oxford University Press, 2012), 254.

To Miss the Joy is to Miss All – Stevenson Quote

For, to repeat, the ground of a man’s joy is often hard to hit. It may hinge at times upon a mere accessory, like the lantern, it may reside, like Dancer’s, in the mysterious inwards of psychology. It may consist with perpetual failure, and find exercise in the continued chase. It has so little bond with externals (such as the observer scribbles in his note-book) that it may even touch them not; and the man’s true life, for which he consents to live, lie altogether in the field of fancy. The clergyman, in his spare hours, may be winning battles, the farmer sailing ships, the banker reaping triumph in the arts: all leading another life, plying another trade from that they chose; like the poet’s housebuilder, who, after all is cased in stone.
By his fireside, as impotent fancy prompts,
Rebuilds it to his liking.
In such a case the poetry runs underground. The observer (poor soul, with his documents!) is all abroad. For to look at the man is but to court deception. We shall see the trunk from which he draws his nourishment; but he himself is above and abroad in the green dome of foliage, hummed through by winds and nested in by nightingales. And the true realism were that of the poets, to climb up after him like a squirrel, and catch some glimpse of the heaven for which he lives. And the true realism, always and everywhere, is that of the poets: to find out where joy resides, and give it a voice far beyond singing.

For to miss the joy is to miss all.

From the essay – The Lantern-Bearers
The Lantern-Bearers and Other Essays
Robert Louis Stevenson

Forgetting Your Song and Finding Your Song – August Wilson

In his theatrical vocabulary, “finding a song” is both the expression of spirit and the accomplishment of identity. Some of his characters have a song that they can’t broadcast; others have given up singing; some have been brutalized into near-muteness; and others have turned the absence of a destiny into tall talk—the rhetoric of deferred dreams. But Wilson’s most brilliant demonstration of “carrying other people’s songs and not having one of my own”—as one character puts it—is in Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, where a conjure man called Bynum, who has a song, discourses with Loomis, who has been separated from his. Bynum says:

Now, I can look at you, Mr. Loomis, and see you a man who done forgot his song. Forgot how to sing it. A fellow forget that and he forget who he is. Forget how he’s supposed to mark down life. See, Mr. Loomis, when a man forgets his song he goes off in search of it . . . till he find out he’s got it with him all the time.

Joy Ride: Show People and Their Shows
John Lahr

What are some of the hazards or downsides of over-thinking – ChatGPT on

what are some of the hazards or downsides of over-thinking

While thinking and introspection can be beneficial, over-thinking, or excessive rumination, can have negative effects on an individual’s mental and emotional well-being. Some hazards or downsides of over-thinking may include:

Anxiety and stress: Over-thinking can trigger anxiety and stress as the mind continuously dwells on past events, present situations, or future possibilities. This can result in a heightened state of worry and distress, leading to increased stress levels and a sense of overwhelm.

Reduced decision-making ability: Over-thinking can lead to analysis paralysis, where the individual becomes stuck in a cycle of over-analyzing and struggling to make decisions. This can hinder their ability to take action and make choices, leading to missed opportunities or delayed progress.

Negative impact on mental health: Over-thinking is often associated with negative thought patterns, such as self-doubt, self-criticism, and negative self-talk. This can contribute to the development or exacerbation of mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety disorders, or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

Strained relationships: Over-thinking can lead to miscommunication or misinterpretation of others’ intentions, which can strain relationships. It may also cause the individual to excessively ruminate on past interactions or conversations, leading to unnecessary conflicts or misunderstandings.

Reduced productivity: Over-thinking can consume significant mental energy and distract from other important tasks, leading to reduced productivity and performance in various areas of life, such as work, school, or personal pursuits.

Physical health impacts: Prolonged over-thinking can also have physical health impacts, such as disrupted sleep patterns, increased muscle tension, and elevated stress hormone levels, which can contribute to a range of physical health issues, including fatigue, muscle pain, and compromised immune function.

Reduced enjoyment of the present moment: Over-thinking often involves dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, which can detract from being fully present in the current moment. This can result in reduced enjoyment of life experiences and an inability to fully engage in the present moment.

It’s important to note that occasional introspection and reflection are normal, and everyone experiences it to some extent. However, when over-thinking becomes chronic or excessive, it can have detrimental effects on an individual’s mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Seeking support from a mental health professional or practicing healthy coping strategies, such as mindfulness, relaxation techniques, and setting boundaries with rumination, can be helpful in managing over-thinking.