5cense

535> Wake up + smell th copy: fakers, journihilism + name reclamation (I am Anon I'm Us)

7/27/2017 | DC> Sent A Raft Manifest to the printer, so done with that chapter of our my life. Done method acting as Rem+Rom, which we've I've been doing here for some 5+ years now. Thank you for putting up w/ me, dear Internet. Yes, there are 2 more books in the West of Kingdom Come quadrilogy, but likely they'll be ghost-written under the guise of another identity. And there's volume II of 'SSES" 'SSES" "SSEY" which I need to get back to, writing under the nom de plume of Chaulky White (a sort of grown-up extension of Rem+Rom). But for now, at least for this week, I'll resort to being myself ... if I can remember how to spell and write "normal." Believe it or not, as a kid I got 3° place, 3 years in a row, in the Oregon state spelling bee. Maybe I would've placed higher, but the more attention was drawn to me, the more I just wanted to get off the stage.

So now, donning my editorial hat as Cal A. Mari, I've been wrangling w/ printers over ⅛" bleeds and whatnot. The PDF is rife w/ intentional error, can only imagine what they think. As Cal A. Mari I also posted a chapter ("Wake Up + Smell Th Copy") from A Raft Manifest up on Sleepingfish.

Not much else going on under the guise of Cal A. Mari... I've pretty much thrown in the towel. David Ohle sent me a massive 400 page manuscript based on City Moon, but I don't know if Cal A. Mari can do it justice. Not sure I have the stomach to play the game anymore. Any publishers out there willing to tackle it? Feels like a sort of crowning achievement for Ohle, somebody needs to publish it.

Speaking of faux news, reading Fakers by Paul Maliszewski, my only literary-minded friend in DC... a series of connected essays on "Hoaxers, Con Artists, Counterfeiters, and other Great Pretenders," mostly literary or journalistic types. I myself never took much interest in the controversy around the likes of JT Leroy and James Frey, felt like even taking notice fueled the fire and gave them the attention they sought... though I did get a good laugh at those (Oprah-ha) who cried foul, those that bought into it (literally, financially) or the bleeding hearts who shed a sappy tear. The fakers are not to blame so much as those dumb enough to get duped.

In my mind nothing is truly fiction and nothing truly non-fiction/memoir, in the literary world. The journalistic liars (the likes of Stephen Glass and Jayson Blair) are the real danger, the ones that continue to erode our faith in good journalism, science and rational thought. Not just the outright liars, but those that sensationalize, paparazzi-ize, this new wave of fake news... though we recently rewatched Network (1976) and it seems totally relevant now—same shits been going on for millenniums.

The 2 factors fueling all this are 1). capitalism (As Ned Beatty's character in Network said: "It is the international system of currency which determines the totality of life on this planet.") and 2). authorship, or fame, this celebrity worship business. Everyone wants to be a rock or movie-star, we even have celebrity chefs now. It's no longer enough to just eat or cook a good meal for yourself or your family, you have to instagram or tweet about it, to see how many random strangers approve by clicking a button. Otherwise it never happened.

So, before I can even reclaim my name to sign to this post, we already renounce our name reclamation! It's like that computational conundrum of needing a temporary variable to swap 2 numbers (before the XOR swap algorithm). We'd assume a "John Doe" identity, but that dude from X already stole that mojo. Or at the risk of sounding like Don Imus we could write under the name: Anon I'm Us? As in Spartacus, or H.C.E.

I'm Anon I'm Us.

No, I'm Anon I'm Us.

These literary fakers are just a subset of the ever-pervasive new wave of cheaters overrunning modern society, all the way to the top, to POTUS. A.K.A. not my president. Every field or line of work has become a steroid-pumped sport. The game now, across all sectors, is all about how to buck the system + not get caught. Again, all fueled by greed + notoriety.

Even scientists. Which Anon I'm Us considers ourself in spirit, a skeptical one at that. We can't lie for the life of us. Never could make up stories, which is not to say our writing doesn't get filed under fiction. It's the language we make up, metaphorized from dreams. For are dreams not just as valid? While you dream you dont know the ∆ifference. We've always subscribed to the Copenhagen Interpretation—if you believe it, it's just as valid. If you believe in ghosts then they ∃xist... in your mind. But not necessarily in the real world, yo. The problem is nowadays most people cant make the distinction between reality + trumped up fictions.

What we do here is journihilism, not journalism.

Experimentalists are the unsung heroes, especially those independent ones (not funded by corporate entities) that reproduce results (an integral component of the scientific method). As John Oliver said (if you need your news spun as entertainment) "there's no Nobel prize for fact-checking":

Instead it's the headline-grabbing studies that get funded, awarded + applauded, typically by corporate entities hellbent on an outcome that promotes their product. There's little difference between paid advertisement and news. Ditto book reviews. But much as we enjoy John Oliver's exposés, he's fast-becoming an egomaniac + angry attention-seeker that one day soon will probably be exposed as a fraud, that will join the ranks of those he criticizes. Either that or his lawyer fees will be too much for HBO to bear. Oh how we miss the days of getting our news from Jon Stewart. Very few stayed true for as long as he did.

If people didn't feel a need to attach their names to every feat, the games would be so much more interesting + pure. In such an ideal world, all art + writing would be taken at face-value without knowing who wrote or made it. Why Anon I'm Us likes to read The Economist, cuz they've done away w/ bylines, + the writing is good—accurate, unsensationalized but not dry. Sure, they can be opinionated + skewed left, but we agree with them 99% of the time. Evidently though, the foundation of this anonymous collective is being corroded by Twitter. Anyone else out there willing to carry the baton, to heed the words that "what is written is more important than who writes it"?

Anon I'm Us hasn't read Leroy or Frey's writing, but maybe it's good? We'll never know. And Chabon (another faker unveiled by Maliszewski), just the sight of him makes us throw up a little (in particular the shot of him in leather pants sitting on a swing set unfortunately pops to mind). And his literary hoax (pretending he knew a Nazi in hiding posing as a holocaust survivor) is truly fucked... as Maliszewski says, he "fashioned a Jewish identity for himself that incorporates—through an utter fiction—the Holocaust." Which triggered defensive objections from the likes of the NY Times (all the news fit to print for elitist liberals) + Dave Eggers (speaking of impostors, who makes a living telling other people's stories + slapping his name on it).

Maliszewski wrote his book circa 2008, before TrumPutin became the ultimate scam this world has known ... at least we can only hope ultimate, can't imagine topping this clown. Then again, we thought the same of Bush. But Bush is looking real good right about now.

Maliszewski did recently write this piece about Trump... though it's more about shame then cheating your way to the top. Presumably Anon I'm Us are the "friends" in Georgetown, in the opening paragraph. And pretty sure the piece isn't faked fiction because yes he is our hero for using an "ip" phone (flip?) .. whatever it is, it's old school, w/ no ironic intent.

On one hand, maybe one has to embrace the buffoonery of it all or go insane. Take everything with a grain of salt. On the other, you can choose to retreat. To not partake. Anon I'm Us are runners, choosing flight over fight. We're not angry at Trump so much as disappointed in the ∀merikan people + the liberal media that propagates him by making him the subject of every breaking news headline, even the critical lampoons, rather then ignore him as a pathetic man that needs psychological help. Being at the center of controversy only feeds his ego. Trump-haters that follow him on twitter just to see what dumb things he says only count as a supporter in modern cyber-speak. A vote of confidence, regardless whether you like or dislike. In today's world view all that matters are hits.

7/28> Our bedder-½ is off in La La land for the day, some forum where bigshot Hollywood directors invite scientists to educate them, for accuracy + ideas in their films. We had her read Marteen t'Hart's Rats piece in Granta as a cautionary tale, wherein Hart is brought in as a consultant to help deal w/ the 10,000+ rats Herzog uses in his Nosferatu remake + despite his best efforts 1000s died of starvation, dehydration, self-cannibalization, being boiled alive (they were white rats that needed to be dyed black), etc. tho Herzog claimed no rats were harmed in the making of the movie, that they could let 10,000 rats loose in an alley + then account for them all afterwards. If you knew half the truths behind the scenes, you might not watch a movie. Like we recently rewatched Buffalo '66 then after read how Vincent Gallo is a Trump supporter, so regretted watching it. Or Ray Donovan, which we are currently watching... not only is Jon Voight a Trump-supporter, but it's uncanny how much he acts like him. Can there not be good (acting) assholes in movies that aren't assholes in real life?

Speaking of fakers, the other day a Sun Kil Moon song came on + we got to thinking that Mark Kozelek (much as we've loved Red House Painters/Sun Kil Moon for the past 2-3 decades) nowadays sounds like a parody of himself, + we got to thinking that somebody else must think so so we googled "Mark Kozelek parody" + sure enough, this Morgan guy not only nailed it spot on, but recorded an entire EP worth:

Thank you Internet.

 534 <( )> 536 > Purging ego while bridging the archival gap: 1980-83 south of the border to Pebble Beach

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