psychogeography of calamari


the ever generous derek the flâneur–or maybe better: derek le flambeur–has a walkabout nyc and, while he’s at it, says some nice words on FOG & CAR’s W and Z bozon exchanges:

I received a card shuffler once as a gift—one of the most memorable gifts I ever received. For weeks before, my father let me visit the present, which he had caged in a box in darkness so I could hear and smell it, but not open it. I think there was a sign on it that said “do not touch until Xmas.” Actually I lie, this wasn’t the card shuffler gift. This was another memorable gift—a piggy bank in which you’d put a coin in a slot and a hand would reach up and grab the coin and pull it down into the bank, which was made to look like a coffin. I am not sure why I’m telling you this, or what it has to do with Fog & Car.

On the plane here I watched some movies, most not worth mentioning besides Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. I did see some program on Andy Warhol though, and they were talking about his movies, the ones where he would put a camera on people, unscripted, without guidance, and then leave the room. They’d leave the camera on them for hours, until something had to give. Somebody commentating on it was saying something about how Warhol dances this fine line between what’s exciting and boring. And how this is sexual or some such thing. I’m not sure why I’m telling you this, except to say that maybe Fog & Car skates this same fine line. Through rout reiteration, Lim pushes boring to the extreme that it becomes exciting. How does Lim do this? To quote his character, “the normal always let my mind go the farthest, always the immediate physical world was navigable without thinking, so that thinking would head elsewhere, deep into its own self-contained jungle.”

In a sense, this is what particles do: bore and excite.


marsupial: our mother for the time being by derek white


though dubbed elsewhere the first lynchian novel, MARSUPIAL reminded me most often of cronenberg’s NAKED LUNCH, where an unflappable main character nods straight-faced through a bizarre and constantly morphing scenery. witty and — due to its sense of nostalgia for a just-left dream or a long-left city — oddly melancholic. a relatively simple story line anchors the book: a young man comes to Paris to work as a stand-in for his actor-brother during an arty-ish B-movie shoot. on top of that simple narrative’s foundation is built a complex, shifting and dreamy mis-en-scene perhaps as obsessively art-directed as one by richard foreman. white’s repeating concerns include: crayfish biomorphism of all kinds, lacanian fascination/alienation from our own bodies, mothers, brothers, sibling rivalry, paranoia, and the french. an obsessively rendered dreamworld that leaves a long-lingering aftertaste of heartache, MARSUPIAL is a fascinating read.

should be said too: derek white, the DIY master who runs calamari press, has done himself one better on this book’s design, which is graced with a beautifully gritty cover (and from which, his name is defiantly absent) and which also has his trademark collages interspersed throughout.

buy it from calamari press

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