Monday, August 11, 2008

Next Move

Is this image foreign? Is it exoticized?

What do pictures want?

In Walter Benjamin's Passagen-Work, he spoke about developing "an experiment in the technique of awakening."

According to Benjamin, this awakening could be ignited from the depths of boredom:
"Boredom is the threshold to great deeds. Now, it would be important to know: what is the dialectical antithesis to boredom?"
The only way to answer Benjamin's question successfully would be to ignore it, to avoid it, to in a sense void it as an activist prodding to overwrite the boredom that exceeds any inclination to getting back in and playing the game.

Yet here is another Professor VJ blog entry, and the game continues. Soon the conversation will drift toward the possibility of "making a move" even as the current stasis makes it all too easy to just dig in deeper and keep the next wave of awakening on hold until further notification.

Until then, there's always the blogstyle version of Passagen-Work.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Obama and Me

The title of this blog entry is a little misleading since there is nothing specific that's of interest between Obama and me (except for the fact that we both publish books and share a fondness for some of the same writers).

But it's kind of funny. Three weeks ago, when I was in Germany teaching a masterclass workshop on interdisciplinary studies with the Art and Algorthim group as part of compART, Obama spoke to over 200,000 people in Berlin (which reminds me: why is America the one place in the world where being a presidential candidate who is super-popular with your allies is somehow used against you in attack ads? I have a good answer that I'll try and elaborate on in a future post).

Now that three weeks have passed since Obama and I were both in Germany and I have made it back to Kailua, a small Hawaiian town of about 30,000 people where I have been headquartered for the past ten months as part of my sabbatical, the locals here (myself included) were pleasantly surprised to find out that Obama and his clan are renting a house on our beach, right in the neighborhood where I jog/walk every morning. Apparently, Barack, who is taking a long overdue vacation to chill out and write his acceptance speech for the Democratic nomination for President, was out jogging at 6:30 AM this morning, a couple of hours before I usually make it out to what I must confess is IMHO the best beach in the world. Based on my own Kailua experience over the last ten months, I must say, Obama picked an ideal place to recoup some energy while focusing on developing some new writing that will help script (visualize) his trajectory through the home stretch of the national campaign.

In two weeks, I'll be back in Colorado to begin teaching my Remix Culture seminar at the University of Colorado. The first seminar meets the same night that Obama makes his acceptance speech in, yes, Colorado.

There is no secret subtext to this story. At least not that I know of.

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