If you describe something that you say as a "take," or what anyone says as a take, it is impossible for you not to be an idiot. "He has good takes" = "I am a moron".
The word "yea" rhymes with "nay." As in, yea or nay.
It's not yay or nay. It's not yeah or nay. The word "yeah" is the one that is used in the chorus of the Beatles' "She Loves You."
Am I the only person in the world at present--which could make me the last to ever know--that knows this is true? When people write the word "yea" for "yeah," they inevitably also sound like a moron, or as if they're in the midst of a stroke, to the poor person who can actually read.
The person who can read is now to be pitied. Granted, I realize that very few people can actually read, as in read all of the words they see correctly, never mind sometimes comprehending what they read, but if you can read and you try to read in this world, it's like being tortured non-stop.
You won't encounter a single sentence, no matter how simple, in which everything is correct, and you will never encounter a sentence in which anything intelligent and original is said, which is presumably something you'd care about.
It's awesome when I see people who have been handed jobs to write poorly for The Washington Post and The New York Times who think the word "anyway" is plural, as in "anyways."
Why not just give writing jobs to dogs and hamsters at this juncture? Why bother having humans do it? Does anyone write worse than a human? I'm sure there's some way to translate the thoughts of a hamster into English. I'd rather read that. Hook the little fellow up to some brainwave translating software, and give him a Twitter account.
"Fucking wheel is breaking my spirit today, man. I run and I run and I run, and yet I never advance. Nor do I tarry, but the point is to move forward, and I only go round and round. But tomorrows are for starting anew, and I shall regather tonight and resume in the morrow with greater purpose. For now, some refreshment at the old water bottle, and then I shall sup on pellets."
Because that's what a hamster is thinking, and that is far more entertaining than what a human is going to give you.
(His initial thoughts above are also more substantial than anything one will see in a literary journal in this country. Maybe people would be more inclined to read if there was a way to get hamsters to do the writing. Turn those brainwaves into prose. Can't be worse than what you get in Conjunctions. Ah, Bradford Morrow, you talentless, old bigot. A whole life given over to bullshit, privilege, cronyism, pretentiousness, narcissism, and nonsense, when it really would have been more productive just to have never been born. By a lot, too.)
I think it'd actually be really easy for that hamster to thrash everyone else.
We've covered this before, but I see this now in headlines for major publications, and about 300 times a day on social media, with whomever handles the accounts for major organizations--TV outlets, sports teams, what have you: "Every day" is an amount. "Everyday" is an adjective.
Do you know what? A third grade child will write better now than an adult. They have to and have teachers who, in theory, make sure that they do.
A third grade child will write better than an adult who 3.1 million other adults follow so that they can see their words as they are tweeted out.
So would you follow a seven-year-old on Twitter then? The seven-year-old is more interesting. There could have been a fight on the playground yesterday. A bully was given his comeuppance. I'd be more interested in reading about that.
What happens is, everyone hires morons, in part because there are only morons. In things like publishing and media, the morons who get hired are the connected morons. Connected morons usually come from money, which means that those morons are even dumber than the regular morons--which is this kind of dystopian feat--because they've been more sheltered and though they have a formal address, their actual real address might as well read as Up-Their-Own-Ass Street instead of like Lantern Lane. You cannot get a dumber person than a connected, privileged moron.
Each generation of morons is stupider than the last, because of the whole devolution thing and ever-worsening literacy issue. So that means the Red Sox Twitter person tells me that they have a game "everyday" this week.
This is your job. Your sole professional responsibility in life. You handle what is now, in this rancid society, the most important aspect of your company's communications division. The public interface. Yes, there are press releases, but no one reads, and people do do something with Twitter, though it's also not really writing and reading.
And you haven't mastered how "every day" and "everyday" work? How do you get stupider than this? How do you get less qualified?
I was going to ask what are teachers doing, but the teachers don't often know either. I encounter many moronic teachers every week. I encounter English teachers who send me notes with "anyways" in them.
Noble profession? Is it? Or part of the problem?
I've known and met a lot of teachers since I left school. Do you know how many of them were not idiots?
I'm not going to offend anyone by answering my own question specifically, but it's not a lot.
In school, I would say that I had less than ten non-idiot teachers. That was a different time, when people were much more intelligent than they are now. Which isn't to say that people were intelligent. But there is nothing to compare the mass stupidity of the world to now.
I think humans peaked during the Renaissance. They've gone down ever since, though at different rates of speed. This digital/internet age was like that crazy slide at the carnival that whips you to the bottom in record time. Then you're on your ass on the ground and you don't know how you got there, and it takes you a second to be like, "Oh yeah, the slide," though now no one realizes what got them and everyone where they are. They're just on the ground.
And given that everything is now inverted--so bad is good, not funny is funny, fake is genuine, what's on the outside of a person is more important than what's inside of them, etc.--this is now celebrated as if Everest was just summited on account of a whole race having landed again, and again, and again, on its ass.
Its fat ass, too, which you're also not supposed to say, because unhealthy is now healthy, and no one ever wants their laziness challenged and called out as what is one of the prevailing, governing conditions of their life. Laziness is akin to a god that they bow down before, which is convenient, because they were probably already supine as it was, so they just had to roll over, if they could get themselves to manage it.
People can't even talk to each other, and I can't believe that no one else can see this. They cannot communicate because they don't have the language skills. What can you have that is any good, between humans, or with humans involved, in which the level of communication is dire to non-existent?
As I've said before, why do you think everyone now says the word "literally" all the time? No one uses it correctly. They use it out of desperation. They lack the ability to say what they want to say, or what they think, or what they feel. They can't describe anything as close to what it is. They flail to "literally."
It's like a fish on the beach, dying. What does a fish do? It flops about, thwacks with its tail, like it's swimming or as though these motions can restore it to the water. That's how people talk now, as that dying fish on the beach that can't get back into the water. They're not behaving reasonably any more than the fish. They're reacting desperately, because they are fucking helpless. They just do it, the same as that fish just flops until its dead. Literally.
Then society reorders. You can't fire the world. These are the players, that's all there is, this is the league, we want to have a season, so the standards change. They change so that anyone who is great becomes the devil and is shunned. There is no place for the person of greatness in the new league with the new rules. Society adapts--and that can include devolution--to take care of the most amount of people. The meatiest part of the curve. Society is all flab right now. So society makes flab the way to go and the way to be.
One way society does that is to remove standards. To remove truth. Wellness. Sanity. Honesty. Legitimacy. Strength. It makes life an almost impossible proposition for one who possesses and cultivates these qualities. They are blocked, feared, hated. A home and a life (as such) is thus made for the dishonorable, lazy, talentless, unethical moron, which is what most people are.
The world goes on. But: the world goes on that way, for that kind of person, of which the world is now almost exclusively comprised. Those people beget other people like themselves, as does--even more so--that environment.
We live in a world where it's possible that soon there may never be a good person again, and certainly not a great one. The person of greatness would have to swim across the force and number of a million ocean currents. And who could be that great? And for what? To be in a world they're not a part of, whose inhabitants would shun them and often wish them dead, when it was already like they lived in hell? A private hell--not even a hell where they could commiserate with fellow sufferers.
That's why things need to change. To go in another direction. And soon. Never has it been more imperative for the pendulum to swing, and never has their been a greater need for someone to start moving it.
I believe that the pendulum could only be moved by a single person at this point, because people cannot come together--not truly--on anything anymore, and there are no unified forces in the ways that matter most. The force would have to be within one person. And this would have to be why they existed. And kept going.
What do you think is going to work in human society without good communication? Do you think marriages work when neither party can communicate their wants, needs, desires, feelings? That's textbook divorce when they can't, right?
So what are we expecting to happen everywhere else? Or in marriages, for that matter. In any relationships. People don't have friends. They say they have friends. They don't. They're not capable of having friends. If you were going to be a friend, you'd first have to have a healthy relationship with, and understanding of, yourself.
And about whom can that be said now?
Look how much people hate the truth. They hate the truth more than they hate the things they pretend they hate and are against. They don't care about equality and the Ukraine and trans people or any people it's fashionable to say one cares about. They care about themselves and that's it. How they're perceived. They don't even care about what they really are. They don't have consciences either, because the more you devolve, the less of a conscience you have. A conscience means that you think, and, further, that you think introspectively.
But you know what people hate even more than the truth? The truth about themselves. Why do you think everyone in publishing hates me? It's nothing I've done to anyone. Right from the start, I was different. How do you compare me to any of these people in any way? And right from the start, they aligned against me, because of what I could do and did do. Then, I got better. And better. And better. I get better every day. I achieved more and more, with almost all of these people being against me going back a quarter of a century.
This journal--where I began saying the truth--has now existed for five years. This journal which is soon to become the longest diaristic record in human history. That's not hyperbole. That is soon going to be a verifiable fact. After five years, not fifty. This journal which is what I write in-between the bulk of the writing--the formal writing, the masterpiece making, the books, the features, the op-eds, the essays, the stories, and so forth--I do. The hate and discrimination went on for twenty years before I said so much as boo. I knew exactly what was happening. And I still tried with these people, which, of course, is exactly what they wanted, because then they had the power, I had no recompense--and this journal and being exposed is certainly recompense--and they could be as evil as they wished towards me, with no penalty, no exposure.
And all that would happen is that they'd get another masterpiece they knew as such, from the person who had just published ten things in a couple weeks, across a whole range of forms and venues, which burned their asses, and so they then got to have their revenge in that moment when I sent my polite, professional, knuckle-the-forehead email with a story attached that not one of them in a trillion lifetimes could ever do, or a great pitch for a piece that anyone would know was going to be awesome from the person who was the leading authority on that subject--with the work to back it up--in the world.
And it was a different kind of story every single time, from someone who can invent endlessly, and who never writes the same anything twice. But it didn't matter.
Re: Bradford Morrow above: an entry about him will be coming on here. Do you know how much abuse I took for years with this guy? How much discrimination? Insult? He'd send me an email I wasn't "supposed" to see to someone else in which he insulted me to that other person, and in his predictably witless, sad, bitter old man way, though a guy like this has always been a sad, bitter old man at every age of his so-called life. Want to see my emails to him as this was all going on? Who do you think is going to come out looking better here, and who do you think is going to look like an envious, childish asshole? I'll be thorough as always. A time comes, though, when I say enough. In this case, that was after years.
The new rule moving forward is you get one shot. If I can prove that you're discriminating against me--which is usually very easy to do--up you go on here, for all to see, and for everyone to know what you are, as we also take apart your terrible writing by dragging it out into the open for people to see it for what it is, which wouldn't have happened otherwise. And then we can put it next to mine, too.
Here's something: "Letter to My Submerged Father," by Sangamithra Iyer in Conjunctions. Have a look at it. Go ahead. How pointless is that? How bad is that? We're putting that next to anything I might do and saying that's better? Really? Not only would no one in the world believe that, it's impossible to believe. You know what else is amusing? That piece is from part of a book put out by Milkweed. I could do an entry on here on Daniel Slager, Milkweed's editor, who is his own incompetent, discriminatory piece of work. Want to see those emails? You won't believe them (except you will, if you've been following along). But they are real.
Someone like a Slager looks at that dreadful writing by Sangamithra Iyer, that boring ass nothingness, and says, "Huh, you know what would be even better? 300 pages of writing like this. Time for a book deal for this crap that no one could ever want to read!"
These people are also so simple and insincere--some could argue, too, that this is how the actual racist works--that they see big foreign Indian words (from a person with a big Indian name) and they think that's exotic and literary. They regard it as impressive. It's never about the writing, what it conveys, it's about shit like this with simple people like this. Privileged, entitled, sheltered, arrogant, petty, neurotic, insecure, pretentious, simple people.
No one has carried themselves with the aplomb, decency, grace, patience, and professionalism than I have. The problem--as in the source for the animus--is that these people try and measure what they do and what they are against what I do and what I am (while also knowing there has never been a handout in my life, and it is against staggering resistance and odds that I achieve, and that what they have gotten is always the result of a handout from someone just like them or a group made up of people just like them. For instance--and for laughs--Bradford Morrow was handed a Guggenheim). They get the truth about themselves that way. In the contrast. Which they hate.
Who do you think they then blame? Themselves and their lack of ability, knowledge, range, production, imagination? Or the person who makes them feel that way a billion times over by the contrast and the gap? Then what do you think is going to happen when one of those people--or any of 10,000 of them--have a chance to say no to that guy with a book or a story who made them feel that way and who makes them feel that way every time they look at what he's done and is up to?
Speaking of simple: It's really that simple.
You can take a more or less decent person, though, and if you say the truth to them, however gently, they lose it. There is no one who handles that in stride, or who steps back in the moment and makes a note to think about those words later, one way or the other. I do. I have looked at parts of myself that were ingrained over decades. I then decided they were wrong, and it would take real time and effort to pull down what was there, and learn new ways.
For many years, I walked over 3000 miles a year. I did two things on my walks. I wrote in my head and I worked on myself. But that is like something out of the Bible. I did that. I was strong enough to face where I was wrong, where I'd gone wrong, what I'd gotten wrong. This person of these pages now is the person he is because of that arduous outlay of effort and honesty. Rigorous self-assessment. That I have the answers to everything now and can see everything for what it is, is in part because of what was tantamount to my time in the desert. Alone. Without distraction. Not even music. Just intense thinking. Nor does that rigorous, probing way of being, of questioning, of seeking, of affirming when need be, ever stop. If I wake up in the middle of the night, it resumes instantly, such that I can't even tell that it had stopped, if it had stopped.
A weekend for me would involve ten hours of walking and thinking. For years. And it's not that different now, save I'm focused on different things than I was then. I have a tendency, too, to be over-cautious. I will question myself on more things than another person ever would, which sounds strange, given my total awareness of what I am. But that's why I have the total awareness. I will filter every possibility through my mind. It is never about my feelings. It is about moving closer to truth. That's also why I know what is true and what's not true. I will see someone who says, "I used to know someone and they were this way, and it was bad," and I will ask myself if I am that way. I will think about it. I may ask someone I know. I'm never easy on myself. I am ruthless in my own self-standards.
I've noticed, too, that when you talk to someone now, you have to go slower than ever. You have to wait for them even when you're saying the simplest things. They have a hard time keeping up. You have to spell out everything. Things you wouldn't have thought you'd ever have to spell out. I can see the difference between now and two years ago, never mind now and ten years ago, or twenty years ago, or thirty years ago. It can be the same person you spoke to five years ago. They're dumber now. Conversation becomes exhausting, like you're talking to a child who is dim or not paying attention or both.
When we talk--that is, when we talk well--there are things which must be implied. You say A, you say C, and because of how you said A and C, the other person fills in the blank that is B. They're involved that way, which is how both listening and conversation works.
Not anymore. And yes, that's anymore, and not any more. You have to walk through B, and you have to do it slowly. Not slow. Slowly. That's called an adverb. Like when we do something quickly. If someone says to me that they do something quick, I think, "I cannot take this fucking rube seriously. Not now, not ever. They are not a serious person and they should never be listened to by anyone who is a serious person, because they are fifty and they do not have the language skills of a second grader."
How you speak and write says everything about you that any intelligent person would ever need to know. They can know all they would ever need to know about you--and really all that is to be known about you--in two seconds. And it's not like you'll surprise them, because maybe five people in this world right now could ever truly surprise anyone, and I really think it's closer to one person. People show you what they are, and that's all there is to them.
I have also learned that a reference you once would have made, which would have been understood, no longer is. I don't mean to obscure things, or "intellectual" things, or "arty" things. I'm not talking some conversational reference to an Ambrose Bierce story. People now live with blinders on, but not just the blinders on the sides. There's a bonus blinder blinder at the front. If something doesn't fall into that little box in front of their face, they aren't going to know it. They are only in their tiniest of corners of the world. They don't even stand looking out into the rest of the room. They're facing the wall of their corner. Always.
When you live like this, and what you know (if that) is all that falls inside of that box and in that corner space, rancid with your own breath--no ventilation, no cross current--you become less and less--quickly--until you are nothing at all. (Ever worked out and stopped working out? How long did it take you to get fat? Happens fast. Look at ex-professional athletes and how they blow up just a year out of the league. So what do you think happens when you live a certain way for a year? Two years? Twenty? Ever think about the person you become? All of your inner flab? What happens to your mind? Your language skills? Your ability to read and comprehend what you read?) You then know nothing, and you're not able to think such that you can understand anything, because thinking is an expansive process. We extend ourselves mentally even when we're applying extreme focus to one thing, because we come at it from all directions, bringing as much to bear cognitively and experientially on that one thing as we can.
Yea? Nay? Seems pretty clear.