The Game That Instructs

1

A few years ago, I was asked by some friends to write on play and games for Anarchy. I sent them an essay, entitled “A Funny Thought Concerning a New Way to Play,” in which I insisted above all on a certain attitude: a deep distaste for competition, for the unkind imposition of arbitrary rules and the unthinking acceptance of them. I continue to find that healthy. Beyond that attitude, the interest of the essay is that it maintains:

a) that everything we do is in some sense a game, and

b) that the apparently discrete and rule-bound activities we usually consider games are for the most part not the kind of game in question.

I am also still happy with the conceit I shared in this regard, the idea of a cosmic, chaotic game that bleeds into every discrete, ordinary game. And I am still playing, still dreaming, still trying to forget the game of the thesis. So I review my own writing here to refine that conceit.

Illustrating the concept of the cosmic game, I had recourse to a fine chapter in Deleuze’s Logic of Sense, adopting his distinction between Normal Games and the Ideal Game.

What I have been calling discrete or ordinary games, Deleuze dubbed Normal Games, suggesting that they are “mixed‚” — they involve chance, of course, but “only at certain points”; the rest of their play (?) “refers to another type of activity, labor, or morality.” We can think of social activities as games … only because we think of games in the restricted, “mixed” economy of Normal Games that involve the acceptance of rules and a possible competition. That is, normal games always refer their play to a norm that is taken to be serious, outside of the play-sphere.

The Ideal Game is Deleuze’s name for this funny thought of the cosmic game or the play of the world. It has no rules and is entirely too chaotic to allow for any skillful use of chance (meaning the mechanical consequences of well-executed moves). Every Normal Game flirts with chance to some degree or another, and plays, Deleuze wrote, at mastering it. And if one is serious one might think one has.

In adopting this distinction, I made a double objection:

My problem with Deleuze’s version of the Ideal Game is that he states, first of all, that it can’t be played “by either man or God.” Worse, “it would amuse no one.” He writes that, ultimately, “it can only be thought as nonsense.” I wonder why this did not suggest another idea of play and of amusement, such that, not negating but simply and nonsensically contradicting the first two claims, the Ideal Game can’t but be played by people and Gods (if any); and it not only amuses everyone but is precisely the Amusing as such!

Both aspects of this double ojection now strike me as silly. First, to invert the claim that the Ideal Game can’t be played by either man or God was a clumsy move. It would have been more interesting, and also nonsensical in a more modest, more subtle way, to agree. I now think Deleuze was showing that, from the point of view of the Ideal Game, both humanism and divine anthropomorphism are rendered ultimately impossible. From that perspective, God and Man never really play. They are immediately transformed, cancelled, rendered radically other, so that these words turn out to be signs of stranger, more wonderful processes. Insofar as such mirages have any consistency (I won’t write reality), they name players of normal games (Creation, anyone?): mixtures, as Deleuze wrote, of play and work, chance and rules well followed. Is anyone surprised? God and Man are always primarily at work. That is what History teaches.

What about Deleuze’s second statement: ” it would amuse no one”? I held out the possibility that perhaps the Ideal Game “is the Amusing as such.” Now I want to ask: amusing for whom? Not for Man or God, as I think I’ve established – they work and play in their normal games, and work at least cannot be amusing. It is serious, rigorous, painful. (I leave it to you to discern if even the play component of normal games is ever amusing). So who is amused? Personne, as it is said in French: anyone, nobody. But that anonymous person is a mask to be sculpted, not a pre-existent fact.  It would have been more interesting to agree, again, and draw this conclusion: if the Ideal Game were the Amusing as such, then some minimum permanent amusement  would have to be guaranteed. That is, the Ideal Game would have to be conceived not as the impossible Idea of Play but as the all too possible guarantee of amusement. I think that is also called heaven. Or the dull utopia of our more secular, still silly friends who think that the play of the world is progressive and make plans accordingly. Is anyone surprised? Amusement is not guaranteed. That is what History teaches.

How could it be more interesting to agree that the Ideal Game amuses no one? This is what is most difficult. The Ideal Game, if one accepts that its play dissolves God and Man in chaos, is not amusing because it can never be determined ahead of time who is amused or what is amusing. We can go on playing normal games, or attempt to open them up to their Outside, the  Ideal Game. Of course, they are already so opened. The question is to know it, to show it, and to play according to this intuition. The success of this operation is no more guaranteed than victory in a normal game, but it is far more desirable. There must be an unevenly distributed virtuosity in the ability to know and show this opening, to act on it. (And this is perhaps the only way that desire and virtue may be related). More straightforwardly I mean that it is not only dull, but impossible, to be God or Man outside of one or more normal games – so the bleed is how we become  someone or something else, whoever or whatever is amused.

Becoming whoever or whatever is amused by the Ideal Game is necessarily uncertain. It is the most delicate of processes, the most unpredictable of undertakings. In these mutations we might discover what I consider to be the sole healthy use of hope: we may hope for amusement, hope to become those who are amused (and amusing?!).

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An aside for the curious: how could exposure to the Ideal Game transform the sense of our old motto “ni dieux ni maître“? I suppose its destructive intuition remains intact. It was always a matter of playing certain historical or political games so that Gods and Masters were excluded. But its rage is perhaps diffused into a bizarre comedy.  Ni dieux ni maître: a title for a play about ridiculous gods, and laughable masters. It is a story of History seen from its underside, of the World Turned Upside Down. I hope that this chaotic reinterpretation is amusing!

Hume, in his  Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, arguably sketched out part of it, with his tales of less than Ideal gods: witness the increasingly mad hypotheses of the infant god, the senile god, the 30,000 competing gods, the Spider god of the Spider planet … Are any of these “God”?  Can we learn how to act out the rest of the play, becoming those who amuse everyone by laughing at the laughable masters, at power, at competition, at every form of auctoritas? Is it still “Man” we are talking about when we become the manimals that, outside of History, wander the fields of ownness like packs of wolves, flocks of birds, or solitary and proud beasts?

3

My revision of the essay is done. I would like to add one more provocation: the Ideal Game is the only game that truly instructs. Of course normal games teach in some trivial way. One might say that a given game teaches patience, for example, or that another teaches strategic thinking. Maybe so. In the metaphysical register where all of this butterfly-writing is lodged, I would say that, if normal games teach, they teach first, foremost, and perhaps only the mastery of their own play. To say they teach anything beyond their own play is to engage, wittingly or unwittingly, in contemplating their opening up to the Ideal Game.

That is to say that normal games only teach through redundancy. As our genial grandmother, Gertrude Stein, wrote: “let me recite what history teaches. History teaches.” Let us not forget that Vico, Hegel, Marx and our other perverse grandfathers, inventors of the concept of History, all set out to define and describe its inexorable laws of development. Let us not forget that the ideal of progress, especially as inherited by the Left, was always taught as the working out of these laws – a massive normal game combining work and chance, but mostly work.

Peer if you know how into the outside of History. You might discern that the  Ideal Game is impressive. It silently impresses its lessons upon us insofar as we are exposed to a chaos that cannot be thought, only felt. Artaud called it a metaphysics that enters through the skin. Wouldn’t the strangest thing be to take these impersonal lessons, and, impressed, learn the lightness of the self and its masks? Who but the most virtuous among us could claim to have gracefully opened the play of their life to the cruelty of the cosmic game and sculpted the artifice of a person, a mask for this slice of the chaos to wear? Who but the most sober could admit that the slice  comes into being with the mask, that personality is local, like the weather? Who but the most delicate could claim to have learned, not in the strictures of normal games of morality and etiquette, but in the midst of chaos, the attitudes of patience, gentleness, or honesty? That chaos is still their raw material and, dare I say, essence?

The Ideal Game instructs because it is ultimately all there is to experience. Not a limit, but a pulsating horizon, interminably receding. Becoming one who is amused is almost intolerably gradual. Patience, gentleness, honesty: these are not static qualities of a moral person. They are masks to be endlessly perfected, ways of playing normal games that seek to open their play to the cosmic game with ever greater virtuosity. If one learns anything in one’s life (and, not to be coy, of course one does! all the time!) it is learned in and through participation in the Ideal Game, that cosmic prefiguration of zerowork.

Destroy What You Love

By Sending Them Letters

Is not indolence the pleasure of spending the morning in bed?

– D.A. (editor of Letters)

Letters Journal IV, the self-styled* “anti-political communist journal” coming out of Kentucky is a beautiful thing and that isn’t even to talk about the writing (which is also lovely). While I have never read the journal before, other than some small things on the Internet, I was excited to read it because this issue focuses on the topics of friendship, love, and fate (among other things). It kind of reminds me of another infamous journal that I’ve really liked lately because of this focus on relationships (and no, I’m not talking about New York City and Santa Cruz). It may seem a little cheeky, but I feel like these are important topics to discuss, and honestly they are probably easier to understand than pro-revolutionary theory (because I’m still not exactly sure I know what that is, but I want to).

What is the journal? In their own simple words:

With this journal we wish to better understand and analyze capitalism and its critics through the distorting lens of a rigorous anti-political experimentation and soul searching. We are not the expression of a political party or organization and seeks no adherents or official line, though we are open to offers of financial patronage. We are not afraid of paradox. Our aim is to bring maximum disorder to habitual perspectives.

By Sending Them Letters

Is not indolence the pleasure of spending the morning in bed?

– D.A. (editor of Letters)

Letters Journal IV, the self-styled* “anti-political communist journal” coming out of Kentucky is a beautiful thing and that isn’t even to talk about the writing (which is also lovely). While I have never read the journal before, other than some small things on the Internet, I was excited to read it because this issue focuses on the topics of friendship, love, and fate (among other things). It kind of reminds me of another infamous journal that I’ve really liked lately because of this focus on relationships (and no, I’m not talking about New York City and Santa Cruz). It may seem a little cheeky, but I feel like these are important topics to discuss, and honestly they are probably easier to understand than pro-revolutionary theory (because I’m still not exactly sure I know what that is, but I want to).

What is the journal? In their own simple words:

With this journal we wish to better understand and analyze capitalism and its critics through the distorting lens of a rigorous anti-political experimentation and soul searching. We are not the expression of a political party or organization and seeks no adherents or official line, though we are open to offers of financial patronage. We are not afraid of paradox. Our aim is to bring maximum disorder to habitual perspectives.



Sounds good enough to me, the soul searching is never ending.

Recently, some body or bodies encompassing Letters Journal went on a little summer tour, after all what else does one do during the summer when there is no CrimethInc. convergence? Anyways, there was a lot of water coloring happening and nothing doing going on plus some traveling, that neither here nor there. Before the tour the journal solicited a challenge to anyone to make a video about why or why not they are coming. One response, entitled Waiting for Letters Journal isn’t that much of a thriller and reminds me of some of the denser moments when reading the journal (snooze). But, I guess it can’t all be cherries and sugar now can it? [answer: not for communists at least]

The other video response entitled Letters Journal – Alfonso 1970 – Autonomia Italia is simply wonderful. This video deserves a review of it’s own, and I’m not sure if it is really possible to comment on it, other than simply laughing and watching it a couple of times. An anonymous spectator said this:

While simultaneously flashing The Coming Insurrection and Politics is Not a Banana I thought I also heard the phrase “Letters Journal” uttered like the infamous yell of “Mortal Kombat” (but, then again, maybe not).

Here is my one big critique of the journal – it is beautiful and lovely, but really difficult to understand at times. For hours last night, I read the entire journal and I came away from parts thinking that I have no clue about anything I just read, almost like it was in another language. Maybe, this is just my reading – but, I feel like part of it is because in order to understand Letters one has to be versed in a very specific set of other letters. For example, when I was reading the letter from Frere Dupont to Red Hughes I was totally lost, and while it is important to take your zen with your anarchy – I feel like I would have to read all of the archives at anti-politics.net and then a salon somewhere before tackling it again. Is Letters destined to become the next Politics is Not a Banana or has my understandability gone out the window? Whoever said communists and anarchists can’t be friends? Because we are. And just for the record PNB is great as well.

Love Your Destiny?

We were friends and have become estranged. But this was right… That we have to become estranged is the law above us; by the same token we should also become more venerable for each other – and the memory of our former friendship more sacred. There is probably a tremendous but invisible stellar orbit in which our very different ways and goals may be included as small parts of this path; let us rise up to this thought. But our life is too short and our power of vision too small for us to be more than friends in the sense of this sublime possibility! – Let us then believe in our star friendship even if we should be compelled to be earth enemies.

– Nietzsche – Star Friendship, The Gay Science (quote also printed in the journal)

The friendship of Letters begins. And, as a writer says it lasts for three weeks of Dionysus-esce wine and cigarettes. Coming from Letters which in a way seems to have come out of the vegan straight-edge zine Total Destruction, this is something. But, of course the editor doesn’t have to agree with everything, now do they? Soon, the three weeks ended, and they went separate ways – attempting to write letters the old fashion way. This slowly died, but the memory lives on. For some reason, this may sound a bit sad, but I love this. It is like learning to fall for something, whether it be in love, into a spell, or however you want to think about it and then just losing it. Kind of mysterious.

The journal talks a lot about things that used to exist, often abstractly it seemed, and from this we can mention the lost art of letter writing. After all, who writes real letters anymore? Although, in some ways I think this is too obvious of a loaded question, that has been asked and answered too many times before. But, let take a look at one of the greatest examples of letter writing ever to grace the pages of a book:

If I hadn’t been exchanging letters with you for the past months, I would have reacted to those headlines the same way they did. And I realized there’s no such entity as a human species, or rather that it doesn’t recognize itself as such; it possesses no faculty of community. Either it never had such a faculty or it lost it. The beings I was among, including me, were not species-beings but closed compartments. Maybe what we’ve just experienced on both sides of the world shows that the faculty of species-being is something still to be created, and that it’s not the abstract “community” I’ve always envisioned but something very concrete, as concrete as Mirna’s “excursions.” Maybe it’s nothing but the willingness to touch, feel, look at and listen to each other.

– Sophie [you say Sophia], in Letters of Insurgents

In another text regarding friendship, Le Garcon Dupont signs with love while earlier writing that “friendship and love do not exist in modern times.” It kind of feels like the jokes on us. It goes on to mention the bourgeois philosophizing of comparing Santa Clause and love, in other words – comparing two things that you can’t prove actually exist. But, I mean how can you actually compare Santa Clause and love? They are on two completely different scales. I guess that is why I appreciate the fact that Letters argues that this phrase is just bourgeois philosophizing. Though, it seems almost too seductive to not believe in love or argue/statements for it being only real in the past. How do you know? Why does it have to be sooo set in stone? Although, the tone of fun or death is appreciated – is a life without love one worth living? Didn’t Albert Camus say something like the greatest question is whether to kill yourself or no… He doesn’t sound like a very fun person to have at parties.

Words Marx the Spot

The meaning of a phrase can more accurately be deduced by its use rather that its origin. For example, the use, and thus, the meaning, of the statement “cisgendered straight white male” is the replacing, avoiding, and disrupting of argument.”

Yes! What is it about being so politically correct, if you will, or whatever it is, that saying this out loud just makes you want to blow chunks? For some reason, I’m reminded on the 2009 CrimethInc. Convergence in Pittsburgh and some comments that get made surrounding Bash Back! (RIP).

There is another quote that I really like about language and the subjects of teaching vs. being a student:

To teach is to open oneself to those demands and to seek the language to meet them. Or, to teach is to be contaminated with the demands of the student and to find that the threshold between the teacher and the student (between teaching and learning) is not a boundary but an open space of contamination, that we learn in teaching and teach in learning by maintaining the roles and rituals of teacher and student. (So in some ways the concept of teacher and student are interchangeable [meaningless?] but are only interchangeable, in this case, in our respecting the meaning and structure of teacher and student.)

This reminds me a lot of Paulo Freire. Students and teachers, teachers and students are one and the same. This seems kind of like an obvious statement, but is this really how it is? Schooling and education in North America today is crazy in a lot of ways and some thoughts on an experienced that many of us have lived is appreciated.

Later on in the journal one comes across, The Parallax Few, and this quote stood out for me:

Most human beings do not reflect upon what they are responsible for, most do not even arrive at the stage of having to forgive themselves and get on with life – we are “hard programmed” to evade the question of our involvement in unacceptable events, and therefore we also habitually evade the question of change.

Holding yourself responsible. But, are we really hard programed for not holding ourselves responsible? It feels more like a condition to me. Noam Chomsky may have said sometime during the 1970s that we are hard programmed for language. Is responsibility also like an innate ability? Or is it like that band said famously, some years ago – “Responsibility… FUCK THAT!”

And Finally… the Literary Supplement

Immediately, I noticed the mysterious torn out pages at beginning and end of the little hand held supplement. Is this just my copy or are the pages going to turn up with the missing Days of War, Nights of Love page somewhere in CrimethInc. desert underground headquarters? The supplement is a very nice touch though. I really haven’t read all of it yet, so I can’t really comment – but what I’ve looked through so far is interesting.

There is an interview which touches on some ideas regarding the translation of different language. Creating a good translation is difficult, but when done appropriately it is amazing. There are so many languages that we can probably never learn, but having excellent translations is something worth while. It is also something that should happen more often.

On that note, the journal has been publishing chapters of The Unseen by Nanni Balestrini each issue. I started reading it, but the abstractness and teetering incoherence of it made me pause. While this may have been the writers intention, to be experimental, like the writing of whatever and things that don’t make sense, I just didn’t like it. Perhaps, one just needs to be in a more Neoavanguardia frame of mind. Or maybe the translation is just that bad?

Letters Journal can be purchased from Little Black Cart(LBC) because supposedly they have around 1,000 copies and if only 100 people buy a copy, then LBC will get angry and burn them, sparking Libertian Communists worldwide to revolt against the anthropomorphization of books.

You can also read the Wikipedia page about Letters Journal if you’re curious for some more background knowledge. There are also some funny comments from a forum on Libcom (funny in a sad kind of way, because most of the posters just seem like jerks).

The journal can be contacted here:

Letters Journal
838 E. High St. #115
Lexington, KY 40502
USA

editor(at)lettersjournal.org

‘Cause Baby I am a Communist? (no final thoughts here)

*authors notes: don’t you just love the term “self-styled” or would you rather me use “self-proclaimed” like Tom Gabel (of Against Me!)? Seriously, do we have to be serious all the time, even when writing a review? Is this what Letters tells us? After all, the journal has explicitly stated that they are not anarchists, but rather some sort of “obscurantist communist!” [actually CrimethInc. said that… but, oh well, this is communism baby!] Sorry if this review isn’t serious enough, there will be more serious reviews coming seriously soon. besitos!

Saying Goodbye

I.
What could be more timeless than saying goodbye?

And what could be more proper to the present configuration of capitalism than the search for things timeless? Notions of love, family, gender, progress, and humanity are constantly presenting themselves as natural in the marketplace of ideas. Renegade intellectuals, dialecticians or postmodernists, make a game out of taking the eternal out of the timeless, such that everything is new.

Who knows what saying goodbye was like in the early days of capitalism, and earlier. What is certain now is that the very term “goodbye” conveys a sentimental finality that contradicts the lack of any finality in the physical movements built into the apparatuses of today.

I.
What could be more timeless than saying goodbye?

And what could be more proper to the present configuration of capitalism than the search for things timeless? Notions of love, family, gender, progress, and humanity are constantly presenting themselves as natural in the marketplace of ideas. Renegade intellectuals, dialecticians or postmodernists, make a game out of taking the eternal out of the timeless, such that everything is new.

Who knows what saying goodbye was like in the early days of capitalism, and earlier. What is certain now is that the very term “goodbye” conveys a sentimental finality that contradicts the lack of any finality in the physical movements built into the apparatuses of today.



The most common migrations of the past were those of primitive accumulation, modernization, and urbanization—the breaking up of communities, the massive reconfiguration mediated on the human scale with a great many goodbyes. It was a migration that necessitated permanence and prohibited the likelihood of reunion precisely because the place being left behind, the rural community, was ceasing to be, and if any individuals should cross paths again, in the city, in the New World, it was within a matrix of entirely changed social relationships.

This culture of departure inherited earlier notions of solitude that would fast become obsolete. The term of parting that is now so synonymous with finality, “goodbye,” is just a shortening, and probably a shameful, self-conscious one, of the metaphysical “God be with ye,” similar to the French “adieu,” the Spanish “adios,” and the German “grüß Gott.” What now connotes absence, a separation that multiplies loneliness, then was a giving over to another kind of accompaniment. The leave-taker, departing the protective graces of the community, was put in the hands of the supernatural, an earlier quality to solitude that made today’s loneliness impossible.

On the road, in travel, one fell into the jurisdiction of metaphysical connection to the world, as transcendence of the world. Goodbye holds its meanings equally well in the realm of death, in both the present and prior paradigms. Taking leave of the dead, before the rise of capitalism’s scientific worldview, was equal to welcoming them to a new world; afterwards, it is a final surrender to total loneliness.

II.
In today’s world, saying goodbye to loved ones is never final unless meaningless chance invites a death that prevents any reunion. Insofar as capitalism is globalized, people do not move between communities but between labor markets, which continuously fluctuate. Most migration into the US since World War II has been temporary, for the purposes of often seasonal work, and only the construction of a giant wall and the institution of an unprecedented regime of raids and deportations has the chance of changing this fact.

North of the border, departing itself has become permanent. The commute, the real-estate market, the mortgage, the internet: increasingly few people are from anywhere, belong anywhere, and, in any given moment, fully are anywhere.

A person can never be authentic. They can only see authenticity in hindsight, because authenticity requires recognition by external authority, which, in the case of people, never recognizes, only impels into more exploitable modes. What might once have been becoming is now moving-away-from, and because of the relativity of perspective, what one is moving away from, as long as it travels along the same axis, appears to stay still. Thus becoming is mistaken for being. Authenticity is born where place is lost.

Benjamin notes that in works of art, authenticity only becomes a categorical possibility when reproduction of the work of art is possible (thus creating an original, which was created somewhere and is housed somewhere, and the copies, which could be sent anywhere), but as the technical means of reproduction advance, authenticity is destroyed by the subsumption of reproduction into the art form itself. One cannot talk about the authentic print of a photo, the way one can for a painting. What is ultimately lost is the aura of an artwork, defined by Benjamin as a function of distance, and of its fixedness to a place and time.

As for goodbyes, what one encounters in the depths of nostalgia is one’s own exiled aura.

III.
There is a certain perverse truth to the fact that one discovers a great moment of freedom in driving down the highway at night. “A tank of gas is freedom, and a starry night and open road is hope,” according to a folk punk band of recent countercultural fame.

I am myself partial to the freedom one finds on a mountaintop, but I have to admit that certain external pressures constrict that moment. It is useful, because regardless of all plans or lack thereof time in wilderness is regenerative, and for all its potential subversive qualities also prepares the body for reentry into capitalist rhythms. And it is temporary, for all its efforts towards timelessness, because all wilderness is threatened by forces that cannot be blocked within its own realm.

On an empty highway, on the contrary, one is alone with the quintessential apparatus. The annoying imposition of other drivers is missing, as is the punctuality that weighs down on the commuter, and the pressure of impending work or the numbness of approaching dead-time. After hours, one can course through the hyper-controlled architecture with a certain tenderness. Even see the moon, perhaps, as yet beyond the touch of any apparatus, and equally too far to offer any real aid.

IV.
It is in this space, driving away, that saying goodbye can produce nostalgia of a tragic quality seemingly undeserved in this era of petty motivations. One has just left behind people who, in defiance of all the superficiality structured into our brief moments of collision, one has come to love, and does not know when one will see them again, but has little justification for fearing this goodbye to be permanent. After all, automobiles are increasingly safe, and why else would one die before 80?

The only real permanence we’re acquainted with is the permanent departure of hyper-mobilized consumer existence. But night-driving creates an unpermitted, unregulated space for fantasy that allows this nostalgia to imagine itself tragic forms that could justify the weight of its emotions.

One imagines death, or revisits sentimental movies and novels. Two of the most poignant goodbyes in English-language literature since World War II, in Return of the King and The Amber Spyglass, involve departing for other worlds, such that the goodbye is irrevocably permanent, but allows for both parties to continue existing and missing each other. What was had is not lost, but one can never go back.

V.
The force that might accompany us beyond the pale of the community, when we take our leave and entrust ourselves to the warm embrace of solitude, is the metaphysical existence of the world. With the world gone, the community is gone, friendship is gone, we are gone.

VI.
The reason these trivial partings and moments alone can leap to such great heights of sentimentality is because we do encounter a permanent loss within these networks of unending animation in the silent moments when we’re not distracted by the more obvious misery of our contemporaries being run through the chutes.

What we find is our own suspended death, our auras that we’d long since lost. Friends without fixedness are missed as much because they might never really be known to us as because they are no longer here. None of us are here; there is no there there. Without something subversive—even subversive to the common patterns of subversion—to fix us together, and through this fixedness, creating for the first time in our lives a solid ground, resurrecting place, hinting at the possibility of a world of places: without this, all our intimate connections are threatened by the measured temporality that has us constantly moving away from ourselves, or all of ourselves that does not fit within these vacated bodies. Capitalism is an immensely powerful thing. How sad that friendship should appear weak if it is not strong enough to stand up against the greatest god ever built.

In this tragedy, saying goodbye is a ritual that preserves the obsolete forms of friendship, community, being somewhere, and that only reveals its hollowness if one finds the silence to hear an echo.

dedicated to I-5