Thursday, February 5, 2009

Beginning in a Circle, Devolving into Other Shapes, Speaking Archly About Things One Knows Nothing About, and Concluding with a Vapid Attempt to Shock

We begin in a circle. Then one of us speaks. It is usually about something not terribly important. Just simply that something was said, that’s what’s important. Then others begin to speak. They say all sorts of things, some of them important, others not so very important. After a time the circle disintegrates. It does so naturally. People are not meant to stand about in perfect geometric shapes. So we don’t. We move about. Certain people are speaking to certain other people, and not everyone is listening. People cannot pay attention to more than a single person at a time anyway. Or that’s at least what some people think. I would say that’s being a bit generous. I’d say that sometimes we get close to paying attention to another person, but we never can go all the way. But that isn’t the point. Not that there is a point, definitely. There are things that are definitely not the point, however, and that is one of them. The circle, that is more to the point. Or rather the irregular geometric shapes that emerged from the circle. And why it did so, and how. But people shouldn’t be made to answer questions. People aren’t around to be constantly finding answers to things. People should stop answering questions, in fact, or at least stop trying to. But people should be doing some things. They should be playing more tennis, for instance, but washing their hair less frequently. People should stop cooking, and they should pretend to not like pets. People should adopt more phobias and try to never leave their apartments. People should learn more ways of hurting each other, and they should begin sleeping around more. People should always be sleeping with each other, but people shouldn’t be allowed to have children. We should try to put an end to ourselves. Baby’s should be laughed at and hit over the head. People should take photographs not of things but of other photographs. People should try meaning less of what they say, and if they find themselves in a situation in which sincerity is demanded, they should be forced to apologize for their sincerity. People should read books but not remember them. They should watch movies but only when they need a nap. People should listen to music in order to better understand that there is something even uglier than human speech. We should yell at each other more loudly. We should try desperately to make each other even more frightened of each other than we already are. But again, again, none of this is to the point. Let us just conclude with this: that when one begins to speak to others in a circle, the circle begins to break down into slightly more irregular geometric shapes until, finally, you are looking at some single person and shaking all over, thinking about all the various things keeping you from doing what you’d really like to do to them, which is, in all likelihood, to hurt them.

In any case, we shake a great deal, us humans, because we have forgotten how to hurt people. So take a bat, or a baby, and hit it hard against something.

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