Monday, August 9, 2010

Memories in Space

Recently, my friend posed differences between electronic "firsts" and more traditional "firsts." I wonder if he's onto something. He divides his recollections into The Digital (first section) and The Physical (second section). Let's see how mine fall.

The Digital:

First internet experience: Oooh. Wait. I was in grad school, I think. And people were talking about Eudora and checking things on Eudora. Which made me think of Welty. Also. I had some friend who played on MUDS.

First cell phone: I did not get a cell phone until way late. I don't remember what it looked like, but I do remember that I did not like how people sounded when I talked to them on it, so I tried not to use it very much.

First web page: You're lookin at it, bitches.

First Tweet: Not a clue.

The Physical:

My first car: black Nissan pulsar, manual drive, with T tops. I. Loved. That. Car.

First book I ever loved: Call of the Wild. I read it, like a thousand times.

First song I ever obsessed over: This is a toss up between "It's a Heartache" by Bonnie Tyler and "The Gambler" by Kenny Rogers. I still know every single word to both.

First room of my own: Matt has a better memory of his. Mine is vague, but I do recall that I totally found a King snake in there when I was, like, three. I am unofficially re-titling this category to First King Snake.

First love: Long blond hair, blue eyes, velvet voice, weird obsession with Concrete Blond and science. Totally unforgettable.

Matt thinks there might be some underlying symbolism to these ties--or the lack thereof. I don't know. I do know that the experience of memory is what makes us. Like skin. It separates us from the worlds in which we function, protecting the softer, denser, more vulnerable bits by drawing lines between our constructions of self and the self constructions with whom we build the worlds we inhabit.

My self still misses that little Pulsar.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Oh. By The Way.

25 days left til football* season.

* And by "football season," I mean, of course COLLEGE football.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Word Gaming

We are playing a game,
Listing off all the synonyms we can think
For False.
How many words
(So many words)
Ring untrue,
Flat and soft and ruined like overripe nectarines?
We will remember them.
We will use them well.
First, we can begin with the beguiling,
The seduction
(Because, as it turns out,
There just aren’t that many ways to say Yes.
There are, however,
So many ways to stretch
The spaces between what we want to hear
And what we will believe.)

Then we will move to the concocted.
(Those are my favorite.)
In this language world we practice
How to maneuver from scene to character,
How to appropriate the weaknesses of the listener
And shape those weaknesses
Into something they’ll imagine is,
And was always,
(I am good at shaping.)

From the concocted, we easily move into that which is apocryphal.
These are your department—
You can be in charge of editing these volumes.
You will decide which tall tales to include
(Therefore, necessarily, the kind of boring bits)
And which of these tall tales will be left out
(The luscious, bloody entrails of accidental love affairs?
The intimate intercourse between dragons and snake charmers and belly dancers?)
I won’t interfere—you take the lead in this section of the game.

After our insubstantial diversions,
We cruise the lesser words—
Crowds of letters and syllables will insert themselves into our conversation
Whether we like it or not.
We try to remove them,
But the houses in which they live,
These mansions that we built for them...
How much time did we spend on the construction?
(So much.)
They are palatial.
Only a fool would want to leave such Gorgeous,
False Palaces.

I think we will end the game on casuistry.
You will try to make sure that this does not occur,
And I will work towards it.
After all, I started this game.
I wrote these rules.
Casuistry is where all of this will end
And where all of it will begin again.