digression – there is no real reason for this post but aesthetically i like to have a picture post at the top of the page instead of just text

March 6, 2008

y0, tom chiarella! tommy boy, tom tom, tommy tutone, i saw that heath ledger story in ur mag, d00d! whoah, heavy! it really made me think and stuff. i totes write fan fiction about real peeps 2, just like lisa taddeo. LOL! its kind of inspired by that story by DB about batman that was in ur mag back in the dayz, back in the 60z. u know, “the joker’s greatest triumph” ? WHOAH, heath ledger is the joker in that new batman movie@!#!@ #@! heavy, br0, i bl0w my own mind sometimes. hey, will u put me in ur mag? u can call it “reported fiction,” i don’t care – i did lots of reserch (sight sources: the hills, mtv, wikipedia!) so it’s like half true at least, maybe 60%. i will write it on a napkin if u want.

“In a much less epochal way I tried with ‘The Uniforms’ to avoid the short story’s blander landscapes. I consider this piece of work a movie as much as anything else. Not my movie, however. No, the work is an attempt to hammer and nail my own frame around somebody else’s movie. The movie in question is ‘Weekend,’ made of course by the mock-illustrious Jean-Luc Godard. After seeing this film for the first and only time, I walked the two miles or so from the theater where it was playing to the monochromatic street I live on and immediately set to work remaking what I’d seen and heard. Took out the boring parts. Added a few brand names. Two sittings later I had ‘The Uniforms.’ It was right there before me in black-and-white with my name above the title. What does it all mean, signify, or demonstrate? I guess I was just trying to find one small way in which literature might be less rigid in the sources it uses. Thousands of short stories and novels have been made into movies. I simply tried to reverse the process. Until elastic type is perfected, I submit this mode of work as a legitimate challenge to writers of radical intent.”

A Friend Comments on K’s Aloneness

The thing you have to realize about K. is that essentially he’s absolutely alone in the world. There’s this terrible loneliness which prevents people from getting too close to him. Maybe it comes from something in his childhood, I don’t know. But he’s very hard to get to know, and a lot of people who think they know him rather well don’t really know him at all. He says something or does something that surprises you, and you realize that all along you really didn’t know him at all. “He has surprising facets. I remember once we were out in a small boat. K. of course was the captain. Some rough weather came up and we began to head back in. I began worrying about picking up a landing and I said to him that I didn’t think the anchor would hold, with the wind and all. He just looked at me. Then he said ‘Of course it will hold. That’s what it’s for.”‘

I never met Robert Kennedy nor did I talk to people who had. The story was begun while I was living in Denmark in 1965…the only ‘true’ thing in it was Kennedy’s remark about the painter. I happened to be in the gallery when he came in with a group; I think the artist was Kenneth Noland. Kennedy made the remark quoted about the ruler—not the newest joke in the world. The story was published in New American Review well before the assassination. I cannot account for the concluding impulse of the I-character to ‘save’ him other than by reference to John Kennedy’s death; still, a second assassination was unthinkable at that time. In sum, any precision in the piece was the result of watching television and reading the New York Times.” (Donald Barthelme, July 16, 1977.)

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