Saturday • 1/5/2013
"The state of being ‘installed’ at a computer or laptop for an extended period of time without purpose, characterized by a blurry, formless anxiety undercut with something hard like desperation,” and other digital-age emotions for which there are not yet English words.

"The state of being ‘installed’ at a computer or laptop for an extended period of time without purpose, characterized by a blurry, formless anxiety undercut with something hard like desperation,” and other digital-age emotions for which there are not yet English words.

Sunday • 12/30/2012
#regram from @klughaus of this 2012 installation of GROTESK wooden sculptures with Sure dedication by FAUST. Closest approximation of how I want my world to look at all times.

#regram from @klughaus of this 2012 installation of GROTESK wooden sculptures with Sure dedication by FAUST. Closest approximation of how I want my world to look at all times.

Friday • 12/28/2012
aka The Audacity of Hoop

aka The Audacity of Hoop

Thursday • 12/27/2012 Wednesday • 12/19/2012

The Cyril Hahn remix of “Say My Name” has been making me feel feelings today

Thursday • 12/13/2012
MY BLOCK > YR BLOCK
#Chicago #Bears #1963 #OGwear

MY BLOCK > YR BLOCK
#Chicago #Bears #1963 #OGwear

Friday • 12/7/2012
Thursday • 12/6/2012

Danger! Get on the floor!

You know what really and truly blows my mind and reduces me to a living case for all kinds of anti-anxiety medications is the very fucking real game of intellectual (dis)honesty.

In a recent email exchange with a dear and brilliant friend, I tried to explain it. The thing is that our intellectual choices mean everything when we’re asking ourselves to think through reality as it actually confronts us, not as it appears through the lens of intellectually convenient historical paradigms.

Oh, but those intellectual conveniences are seductive and so powerful. What nearly kills me is the fact of how much intellectual convenience can appear to us as something like proof. A closed yet infinite system of self-affirmation. That’s the darkness! 

Monday • 12/3/2012
… Because this isn’t at all terrifying

… Because this isn’t at all terrifying

Boxer to Boxer

Playing magnificently and futilely in the final minutes of tonight’s Lakers loss at home to the Magic, Kobe reminded me of Boxer the Horse. Always doin’ work, even when all it’s for nothing. This other boxer sees you, Kobe.

Thursday • 11/15/2012

Raawwwrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Raawwwrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Monday • 11/12/2012
THIS IS HAPPENING

THIS IS HAPPENING

Monday • 11/5/2012

Anne-Sophie Mutter playing Beethoven's Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 61 in the Sydney Opera House on Vimeo.

On the morning when Sandy was beginning to bear down on New York, I woke up with Beethoven in my head. Not the bombastic, stormy Beethoven, but the fine, ribbony phrases of the solo violin that threads its way through an orchestral forest and emerges into various strange, open clearings in the Concerto in D (Op. 61).

This has been my favorite concerto for a long time, although it was not the first concerto to have held the no. 1 spot in my heart, or even the second or third. But it was the last—in the sense that no other has trumped it since I first heard it, probably a decade ago. In any case, it’s not the kind of thing you pull out every weekend, obviously, and it’s not the kind of thing you put on a mixtape for a new lover. It’s not the kind of piece you put on when you want to entertain. You just carry it around with you in the halls of the heart without bothering the archivist about digging it out. And so it was strange to wake up with it playing in my head the other morning, having not thought of it, let alone heard it, in a couple of years.

The first version I heard was a recording of Anne-Sophie Mutter’s that is also, of the many versions I’ve known, the best, and the particular one I have in mind whenever I think of the piece. She was the one playing the violin that was in my head the other morning, so I searched for a video of her performing it and found this wonderful little interview she gave on the occasion of her debut in Australia. (The clip is really worth watching—it’s short, but you get to see some of her performance while she discusses it.) Explaining why she chose this particular concerto for her first performance in the country, she thinks for a moment and says, “It’s a very philosophical piece … it’s a dialogue working itself out between the soloist and the orchestra,” rather than a “flashy” monologue like so many concertos. She wanted to initiate that dialogue.

The interviewer asks her why, in her view, the piece was received so poorly when it first debuted, and her answer includes a fascinating reflection on the nature of the kind of dialogue happening within this concerto: its language is German, and half joking, she points out that it has “these long sentences that take forever to arrive at the verb at the end of the phrase.” We are rewarded for following the most intricately constructed predicates with a gesture that makes them a revelation, but only from the top of the flight of stairs. It requires the performer to always keep the end point in mind, “like an architect,” she muses. “Like building a cathedral. You cannot build stone by stone without knowing where you are going.”

From the listener’s perspective, it’s not about the fulfillment of a grand plan, but rather about the kind of effort that earns revelation. It’s about staying with the phrases, following them through with a certain dedication, not requiring their self-explanation but allowing for uncertainty as they work out their capillary passages. There is a question, and there is patience, which is listening in good faith, and there is a revelation, which is the reward.

Thursday • 11/1/2012
Let’s hear it for Badass (so I’ve dubbed him), toughest resident on my block, belongs to nobody but himself, survivor of Irene AND Sandy. I was so happy to see him still standing this morning amid the wreckage.

Let’s hear it for Badass (so I’ve dubbed him), toughest resident on my block, belongs to nobody but himself, survivor of Irene AND Sandy. I was so happy to see him still standing this morning amid the wreckage.

Thursday • 10/25/2012

There is no Center

The NBA has deleted the center position from the All-Star Game nomination ballot. There is no center in the All-Star Galaxy! This is seen by many an NBA junkie, myself included, as the first step toward the eventual extinction of traditional, fixed position delineations in the league. And sure, the NBA nerds out there are all but unanimously condoning the centerless ASG ballot, but the hero Bethlehem Shoals foresaw, and proclaimed, the end of static positions (assigned to particular players according to their main role on a team) way back. Most recently, he wrote about it, brilliantly, for The Classical. Witness his prescient utopian-anarchist vision!:

I used to be a positional relativist, with players’ roles determined by a set of responsibilities that had to be distributed across the roster. However, this now seems way too rigid, as it locates the possibility of unflinching order somewhere between a team’s identity and the identity of the individual players—neither of which was supposed to slip or crumble. Now I would say I’m more of a positional anarchist, but not in the violent, liberal-arts-kids gone wild, sense. I’m thinking more of the utopian version of anarchism, where everyone is provided precisely through the rejection of overarching order or authority.


There’s a lot more to this than theory. In practice, it’s already been happening, all over the league, for a long time. The NBA isn’t the game changer; the game is changing the NBA.