But some things you don't want to know. Take this morning. Our doctor looked up from his chart and said, "I'm not going to gild the lily, Mr. Failure. You were built on a haunted indian burial ground."
It's a reasonable question, you know. Now that the kid's out of the house, and in the juvenile house of detention where anybody with even half a brain could have told us he would wind up sooner or later, the way he went around waving it in public, waggle waggle, waggle waggle, waggle waggle.
Because you can't go around doing that sort of thing, he must be mental, waving his appendage about like he's Harry Potter and it's a magic wand, at the mall for instance, or in the bleachers at the ball field, that's not the kind of thing you want to see no matter what kind of ball you're playing.
But the question is what do you do, or rather what do we do, now that the little pervert is safely behind bars, or at least a fence topped with barbed wire, and presumably being watched around the clock, and perhaps even set down before a counselor, or psychiatric professional of some sort, who may be able to help him get to the root of the problem, god help us.
For there are reasons for everything that happens while simultaneously everything happens for no reason at all. So that no matter whether you search your heart or throw your hands up in the air you will find yourself no closer to the truth, which is that everything matters and nothing matters and that's all there is to it, so long as you can hold those two notions simultaneously in your consciousness the world will both make sense and not make sense and that will be the closest you ever come to the way it really is, the way things really are, the way the world works, the world doesn't work.
Klyber asked to see his file. It was given to him. He carried it to a table, so as to examine its contents. This was all in occordance with procedure. Klyber had every right to examine the contents of his file, which had to be handed over to him, at his written request.
The light at the table had a green shade on it. The room was large, functionaries silently bustled about, it had the air of being one of those enclosed spaces where no one, not one solitary person, will ever sing. Klyber examined the documents in his file. The evidence of his guilt was overwhelming. It was no wonder he was a free man. That was the beauty of the state. It left each man, when confronted by the overwhelming burden of proof of his guilt, to convict himself.
To be an artist is a sublime thing, the painter plodded through the deepening snow. He was miles, he suspected, from any village, and the snow was falling heavily, and he was on the mountain in it, and lost. With the light failing, and shivering, and in vain did he look for the man-made lights of a cabin or farm or distant row of cottages, in one of which an old woman calmly butchered a cabbage, or not so calmly actually but in a pent-up rage, remembering the August day in her youth when she was married.
There was never any doubt in the painter's mind that he would find his way safely home. How wrong we all are in this world.
This is a blog for the whole fucking family, so we'd be failing in our moral duty to protect the eyes and tender sensibilities of the young, or just young at heart, by reproducing any of Balthus' more characteristic work here. But you can find it elsewhere. Be sure to check out The Guitar Lesson. Anyway, we love Balthus, or Balthasar Klossowski de Rola as it said on his birth certificate, just as it said on our birth certificate, Male Child, Rather Ugly. While everybody else was painting greyish wedges or stupid drooping watches he was going the dirty old man route, and painting nothing but Lolitas and cats, which are certainly more interesting than geometry or low-rent surrealism, any day. We're sure people have their gripes with Balthus, he was too this or too that, or a rotten Humbert Humbert or a slave to the figurative, but in our humble opinion anybody who could paint a cat as well as he could saw the world clearly, and had in his possession all the secrets of the universe.
Really. We realize it's not our most likeable character trait (that would be our ass). And we try, we truly do, to expand our horizons, to open ourselves up to new things, etc. But there is, as e.e. cumming's once so eloquently wrote, some shit we will not eat. And one of them is the notion, now being broadcast about by certain critic types, that the best rock band in the world comes from FRANCE.
Because the idea is patently absurd. France has given us many great things, too many great things to mention, but ROCK? Yet we're now expected to believe that the band Phoenix is the greatest thing since sliced bread, which is an American invention by the way, the French simply eat their baguettes whole, gnawing from one end of the baguette to the other with their rodentoid teeth until the baguette is gone, at which point they sniff delicately at the air with their big twitching Gallic noses and wail, mournfully, "C'est Fini!"
Here is one of the songs people say make Phoenix the greatest band in the entire world. It's okay, right? No great shakes, kind of "I've heard that before" sounding, but not terrible. Ditto for their Cadillac commercial 1901, which come on, we admit we're old and out of touch but as the singer himself observes, "I think it's overrated." Now "Countdown (Sick for the Big Sun)" we like for some reason, it's big and it opens up but heck so did the songs by Arcade Fire, the last special new band that we actually liked, about a million long years ago.
Let's face it. The greatest band in the world doesn't exist, and hasn't existed since Hefner put out "Good Fruit", whenever that was, and even it's not that great, it just makes us happy, the melody does, and the way the girl in the video with chopped off hair dances, like she's out to break God's heart.
To be a painter in Iceland is a very wonderful thing, because you get all the sex and sausage you want. Still, there are very few painters in Iceland, because the sex and sausage there are so awful. And that's what makes Þórarinn B. Þorláksson (pronounced Hymie Burlap) so special. He was Iceland's first modernist painter, or at least Finland's first modernist painter not working in the medium of "house". He was also a member of the committee that designed Iceland's flag, which must have been pretty exciting, if we ever get to be on a committee to design a nation's flag we'll spend the entire meeting jabbing our finger in the air and shouting, "Sirs, it absolutely must have a chicken on it!" Anyway, Þorláksson primarily focused on landscapes that evoked the moody majesty of his mysterious island homeland, where horses stand around looking suspicious but also kind of sexy in a "come hither and stroke my silky flank" way, which is what Þórarinn B. Þorláksson is chiefly remembered for, his pouting smutty-looking seduction horses.
To be who you are, to remain true to yourself through all the days of your life, how perilous. For it takes only one wrong word, one straying thought, one wrong footfall to become someone completely different, somebody you were not meant to be, a new person you can't even recognize in the mirror: some dark horror in an ape suit, waving an articulate banana.
The doctors say you recover from such things, but the truth is that nobody recovers from anything, and for this reason it's almost impossible to find a person who is not dead, or at the very least deathly ill, so ill indeed as to be on their last legs, if not literally croaking in a ditch.
"I want my happiness," at last he murmured, hoarsely and indistinctly, hardly shaping out the words. "Many, many years have I waited for it! It is late! It is late! I want my happiness!"
Last night I found myself in the business district. I'd left work and had time to kill before an appointment, and had no idea what to do with myself. The prospect of filling the time before my appointment suddenly seemed so daunting as to be impossible. I needed to calm down, so I looked around for something to kill myself with.
How awful, how wonderful, in the cafe they play bop like we're still living in the 1950s, like men still wear hats, like the whole idea of hats hasn't become totally impossible.