How to get out of here?
I will walk you to the door. It's a large door, where the children used to go through, and it only opens with a key. I am used to calling it the front door, although it's a square building and this door is on one of it's corners. I guess it doesn't have to do so much with the ground plan of the house, but more with how the door is used. About what world it opens up to. There is another door, which is in the middle of this facade, and it faces the village directly. This facade then is the face of my house, opening up to the town, through this other door. And yet, I only use this door to get the newspaper from the mailbox. So in spite of it's location, I call this door the zijdeur, or the side door. Then there is another door I use and I made it myself. It's in my room, next to the pile of timber, it looks like it is a loose door, leaning against the wall, mainly because in a way it is not supposed to be there. The type of the door and it's eccentric location in the wall will tell you: I'm not here, I don't belong here. I admit that I build it in an impulse, I wanted to go out into the backyard and didn't want to walk all round the building, so I broke a hole into the wall and only after that started thinking about fixing a door in there. Also it was a present to Doris, who was away at that moment. It's a bit of a weird present, I suppose, now, looking back. I mean: a door. And it's not even the door that was the present, but actually the ability to enter the backyard. So the present consisted of a passage way to and in a sense also the backyard itself, to which it gave access. And therefor, because of the backyard, I call this door the backdoor.
This door here, the one we have reached together, is the only one to which I carry a key. So it's the only way to enter the building from the outside. All of the other doors, also the one next to the garbage, that offers access to the electrical fuses, they all only open from the inside.
This door then connects the outside to the inside, through it I only go wearing shoes and jacket, through which I take my bike. To come to this door from my room, I transfer through the kitchen, which is a communal space, so I travel through different spheres of intimacy to outwardness. I call this door the front door.
So if you go right here, first to the left, then the bus stop is just across the street.
Climb in the tree right in front of the house. from the bottom up, as if you are a squirrel, use your tale, wait for the right wind.
When the wind catches you, jump from tree to tree to tree to tree… curl up at the corner. When you're at the top, the very top of the final tree of the street, jump to a cloud.
Let the cloud cover you as a warm blanket, fall asleep.
When you wake up, turn around and find a gap. jump in the gap, and wait.
Fall and wait.
Wait for a moment, until the water reaches you. don't be scared of the water. let the ice cold water go into your ears, mouth, nose.
Let yourself float to the bridge, the enormous red bridge with cables, and jump.
Grab the cables, you might use your tale again, and swing, swing to another cable, catch it, swing to another one. and another. The wind will dry your hair.
Then, when you swung to the last cable of the bridge, jump down at the right moment. A cyclist, pushed by the very same wind, approaches. Wait for the very right moment, to jump on the bike.
I see the sea and the sea sees me.
If you want, you can go left or right, I would probably go right, to visit Hannah so I can smoke and to secretly eat meat. Its probably easier if I take you though. I can never remember the names of streets; do you really think they are so useful? Personally, I like to think that I can get there without a map.
It’s spelt like father, but with an ‘O’… and gill like a fish.
You want to go the away from there and go towards where the sky meets the sea. Make sure you stand on the left-hand side when you want to cross with your shoulders back, head straight, and bottom tucked in. Waiting for a moment to run. Slipping between where Dad has been working for ten years, and our pride and joy, you will pass by the back of the sleeping dragon, on top of it sits an empty watchtower surveying the busy street.
You will probably be alone, unless there is someone sleeping in their car with a magazine on their lap. Once I fell a sleep in our car, after I sang songs about a soldier and before I ate a lot of jelly and then threw up. Dehydrated, I think, so much to do in an unmoving car. That happened not far from here, but further than Hannah’s house. It was where Stephanie told me that if I wished daily for something, it would eventually come true. So I wished for a Cowboy, not really thinking that that was just an example that she giving me. Everyday on the swings, “I wish, I wish, I wish for a cowboy”.
If you decide to go straight down a hill and back up again following the bluest of blue you will eventually a find it a little hard to see. There isn’t so much shade, I am sorry, I know.
It must have been my father (because it is the fathers who know these kind of things) who told me the difference between left and right. If you take a look at the upperside of both your hands, point the thumbs to eachother, fold the three outermost ones into you palms, and put the left ones up in the air, two corners are shaped. Now, your right hand is just two lines attached, while the left one became a letter, the L for Left.
I never got my divinglicense. My hand-foot coordination wasn’t well developed so driving a stick wasn’t even an option so it seemed. Then there was the impacient drivinginstructor who gave me a stomach ache everytime the two hour lesson started. I mistook the break for the gas, switched off the wipers when I was supposed to turn on the lights, and when I had to speed up, I accidentally slowed down. I like moving images the most when they are delayed, but in traffic, it’s just unfortunate to cause a blockage when the lights turn green, my father told me.
My mother is the youngest of a family of nine. Five brothers left, the 6th and youngest one died just before I was born and two sisters passed away before my mother turned the age of five herself. The first one, two years old, died whilst asleep, the other crossed the street and was hit by a truck. My mother saw it happen and got afraid of trucks, big vehicles and other large things that just go fast. You can imagine, she is not a wonderfull driver herself. My mother takes the bike everywhere she goes and, on the road, would never pass any truck, even when she is running late. I am always late. Or maybe just in time. And when my grandmother who lived with us, reached the age of ninety five and died three years ago, we carried her dead body and my brother was on my left side while putting the coffin into the car. He hold my hand so I couldn’t look at them anymore. I just knew he was on my left. He kissed me. The left cheek. The right thing to do. He still lives with my parents, twenty four years old, and drives my mother in my grandmothers old green car to wherever she needs to go when my father repairs her bike, because that is still her favorite way of transporting herself. She would run though, if it wasn’t for her weight. I saw her yesterday for some hours, she lost a few pounds. When I took the train back home and put my hands into my pockets, I found two sweets, one in every pocket. There sometimes doesn’t need to be a difference between left and right.
“Perhaps the immobility of the things that surround us is forced upon them by our conviction that they are themselves, and not anything else, and by the immobility of our conceptions of them. For it always happened that when I awoke like this, and my mind struggled in an unsuccessful attempt to discover where I was, everything would be moving round me through the darkness: things, places, years.”
Proust, A la Recherche du Temps Perdu
Colin Davis, “État Présent: Hauntology, Spectres and Phantoms” in: Maria del Pilar Blanco and Esther Peeren, The Spectralities Reader: Ghosts and Haunting in Contemporary Cultural Theory, Bloomsbury, 2013.
Silas Weir Mitchell, The Case of George Dedlow, 1866 (a fictitious case report published anonymously in The Atlantic Monthly magazine, known today as The Atlantic)
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/693/693-h/693-h.htm (scroll down)
---Abraham, Nicolas. “Notes on the Phantom: A Complement to Freud’s Metapsychology.” 1975. Reprinted in: Critical Inquiry, Vol. 13, No. 2, The Trial(s) of Psychoanalysis (Winter, 1987). Pp. 287-292.
---Derrida, Jacques. Specters of Marx. 1993. New York and London: Routledge, 1994.
BLINDNESS & A-VISUALITY
Anonymous. “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves,” adapted by Jack David Zypes. Arabian Nights. Volume 1. The Marvels and Wonders of The Thousand and One Nights. Signet Classic, 1991.
Fragments from: Lippit, Akira Mizuta. Atomic Light (Shadow Optics). Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 2005.
Sigmund Freud, The Uncanny
Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way (Vol. 1 – Remembrance of Things Past), translated from the French by C.K. Scott Moncrieff, 1922.
PATAPHYSICIANS & DETECTIVES
Rene Daumal, “The Pataphysics of Ghosts”, in Pataphysical Essays, Wakefield Press
Fragments from: Alfredo Jaar, Exploits and Opinions of Dr. Faustroll, Pataphysician, 1965
Interview with Carlo Ginzburg: “On the dark side of history”
Additional: Writings by Carlo Ginzburg
A MISSING VOCABULARY
George Orwell, “Politics and the English Language”, 1946
Alix Rule & David Levine, “International Art English” in: Triple Canopy
Hito Steyerl, “International Disco Latin” in: e-flux magazine
LESSONS IN WRITING
Maurice Blanchot, The Instant of My Death, 1994
Maurice Blanchot, The Space of Literature, 1955
So, you are driven by this force that pulls you down to the bottom of somewhere so deep and confusing like an ocean, a warm one, a cold one, sometimes mild, you are listening, observing, stalking, smelling , touching, yelling, silently, you are struggling but this is the essence of this suspended journey.
There is no way out except through dying.
Your struggle is about finding means to remain, to sustain the wrong story, to make it endless, immortal, in an intended sense.
You are haunted by your manipulation skills. It is not an obsession or an addiction. It is theft. Holding on to a prey, in water, under the sunlight, cold but there is a promise of warmth, you don’t want to reach it, you can’t reach it unless you are alone, you decide not to. What keeps you stable in that same depth? Right in the middle? The force of your object of desire, trying to escape, trying to move upwards, to the light, to air, to freedom, to life. What keeps you stable in the midst of struggle, and water, is the rejection. The forceful need to let go. If you swim up, you will leave your comfort zone, if you try to tie your desire down, it will either accept and die in your arms and you sink, or if you let it go, you will then exert a lot of effort on your own trying to float in the midst of water, looking restlessly for another object to hold on to, to help you continue your struggle. It is not the external force that you are in need of to swim up, you will eventually end and sink down, this verticality will either kill your soul by making you lose your desire, or will kill your body and make you lose yourself just because you did not accept to give up. Accept. You need to accept. Your need for an object to hold on to is a survival necessity. You don’t necessarily have to be considered selfish if you thrive to survive… through someone else… It might be selfish if they die in your arms while struggling to get rescued. In this case they become a burden and will drown you with depression and the weight.
At certain intervals of time you will have to accept to let go of your survival object, to depend on your own body for the effort of suspension, then fall in the arms of another object that wants to escape. Or in that sense, grab the poor victim and suck on its opposite desire and on its rejection, and stay still.