A Week On The Far Side Of The Moon

For the past year, I thought I could beat Facebook as a place to make contacts and spread the word more effectively, which is why I started Kaffe in Katmandu on Tumblr. I’ve now been back to Facebook since one month or so and alas, I concede defeat: using it in connection with the “Timeline” feature, it’s both fun and fairly effortless. Facebook, you win.

Tumblr is just as clubby and closed as Facebook is. The Tumblr crowd is probably less chatty, more self-involved, younger (yes, you are!) and generally more visually oriented. The Facebook crowd is more diverse and probably more literate (yes, you are!) in terms of lost culture and language. But both of them are clubs for time-losers, enclaves of unmet needs, the harem of an invisible, all-powerful, nameless Sultan.

Note to alien visitors of our planet: (1) Communities are defined as much by their boundaries (fences to keep out the undesirables) as by what’s happening inside them. What you focus on, what’s important to you, will change with time; (2) Tumblr is a blog-hosting service. A blog is a ship log without ship, a journal of a journey without going anywhere; (3) Facebook is a social network. Social networks are spider webs without spiders, a fellowship of friend-flies who don’t actually want to be social but wish to appear that way (for a variety of reasons); (4) a Sultan is either an Autocratic Arabic ruler (lover of roses, poetry, women, fast cars and furry cats), or a male raisin.

This morning I was wondering if my Facebook (and Tumblr) texts when taken out of the context of the “Timeline” (which really is a 2D time machine) and put on this blog, look any different. Do they make more or less sense? Here is a selection in chronological order with titles added.

Sunday: Pink Freud.

I suffer from an uncommon form of writer’s block. It doesn’t stop me from writing, but it stops me from remembering: my wife just showed me a novella I wrote recently. I looked at it and couldn’t recognize it as my work or even remember what it was about AT ALL. I wrote this less than six weeks ago. Where was I, or rather who was I when it happened. Perhaps I need a hot dog from Pink Sigmund.

[Picture: Andre Von Morisse “Pink Freud”]

Monday: Newspeak.

Will suggest replacing “like” by “uplike” and establish new Facebook term “downlike”. Another possibility is “f-off”. At the present size of the Facebook community, it’s time to commit to our own Newspeak. We may see a Facebook government within the decade.

«The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Facebook, but to make all other modes of thought impossible.» (From: George Orwell, The Principles of Newspeak.)

Tuesday: The Age Of Innocence. American literature is going to break through whatever it is that stands in its way. I can just feel it. It’s right there. Next to you, me. If you’d ask me how it’ll look like, here’s my image: It’s a mixture of 7th, 19th and 21st century sensibility minus deconstructivism plus Vonnegut plus Lem minus something the size of an invisible hippo minus the influence of Harry Potter plus the Best Of Alt Lit. It’s hairy, too, and gossipy.

Wednesday: Rejection Drama.

«There are still many more days of failure ahead, whole seasons of failure, things will go terribly wrong, you will have huge disappointments, but you have to prepare for that, you have to expect it and be resolute and follow your own path.»

― Anton Chekhov

Publications this week: ILK Journal; A Baker’s Dozen.

Thursday: Google The Giant.

Modern Sirens: I still haven’t figured Google+ out. It’s like this parallel infrastructure, like the right brain to Facebook and Twitter’s left brain. Or perhaps both aren’t brains but two butt cheeks. Must cross post this thought everywhere and then relinquish credit for having it to an anonymous massive collective brain that will suck all of us up and spew us out on Jupiter later this century. Okay, better get to writing it’s obvious that I’m spinning…

Friday: The Discovery Of Hashtags. This brain dead Twitter contribution reveals that the day moves slowly with little to do or to think about. Wintry temperatures paralyse. Time to read some Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer: WILL stuff. Horoscope come to the rescue. Guardian angels fly in for a cup of hot hope or gory gossip.

Saturday: Birth of a Chapbook. A small press wants to publish one of my short stories as a chapbook. The chapbook is a Victorian concern. I’ve always wanted to be [in] one and now it looks as if I’m going to. You supposedly slip it in your coat pocket. If you don’t have a coat pocket (Victorian gentlemen did have them), the better chapbooks fit in a iPhone leather pouch. You can then give your iPhone to a homeless person and make all your calls with my chapbook. No monthly fees either.

Sunday: Far Side Of The Moon. I love looking at the far side of the moon. There are so many stories buried there in the rugged, scarred surface, there are so many rocks from so many other worlds lying around there like cigarette butts of visiting tourists carelessly flung on a California beach. I also love the word OUTREACH in connection with this video. The only thing that’s missing for me is Sean Connery. He should have spoken the voice over. Time for another James Bond: “The Man In The Moon“, car chases on the dark side. Total lack of communication until suddenly Sean Connery whips an iPhone out of his back pocket (on the Moon, James Bond wears jeans, of course) to let his Facebook friends know “I’m Okay,” before he turns to his incredibly beautiful blonde Bond girl played by Ellen Page, code name “Juno“.

Note: I use my “friends” page for texts and photos and hard-hitting analysis—don’t want to bore my friends away; I use my “fan” page only for announcements covered with powdered sugar—don’t want to scare those fans away!). I use Twitter indiscriminately to toot my horn on anything. I use Google+ too, but don’t ask me what I’m doing there.

8 thoughts on “A Week On The Far Side Of The Moon

  1. I love the FB comment especially. About one year or so ago I joined FB and set my account a certain way, thinking, “But why bother?” I have since undone that (I think). But I still think occasionally of the article I read about a man who cancelled his account because a woman got into the same elevator as him and he realised he knew a lot about her life, even though he didn’t know her except from having seen her on FB. *Sigh* A middle ground is somewhere, right? Thanks for giving us the heads up about this blog on Sharon’s FB page 🙂

    • Thanks, Lisl! I’ve deactivated my account numerous times. Right now I’m quite happy because I keep it entirely public (no cronies) and I do what I did at Kaffe in Katmandu for a year: post little tidbits and mini-stories, usually accompanied by an image, and let people know what I read and see and interested in. The only problem is that it costs a lot of time; the process goes like this: (1) I write something in Ulysses; (2) when I like it enough, I look for a picture on the net; (3) I post it on Facebook; (4) I post it on a private Tumblr blog formatted like a timeline where I can see everything that I’ve done in months; (5) when I really, really like it, I might, as a collage with other pieces or on its own, submit it somewhere; (6) I record it in my note taking and organizing tool, Tinderbox. — Any amount of time may have passed now, but in the process of doing all this, I’ve come across numerous other sources, images, blogs, own stuff…and all of it becomes part of the tapestry from which, in turn, I draw additional story energy. So you see, FB is but a thread in that tapestry…

  2. Such a thoughtful, entertaining post.  Yes indeed I like the tapestry you weave, Marcus.  And this blog presents it in fine fashion.

  3. Man, you have got to be the most ramblin, Kerouackian, free thinkin, fast rollin dude on the planet. I’m in aw shucks I can’t sustain such a blizzard of punditry. Nice job.

    • Hi Larry, it’s all in the wrist, you know. Decades of cheating at card games while grinning wildly at the ladies pay off when brewing a storm of words. Having said that so nicely: it’s rather a curse, this “free thinkin, fast rollin”, at times anyway. Surely I need to settle down at some point? Thank thee, mate!

  4. Pingback: Recycling Facebook «

  5. Pingback: Monday Reader — Reading Worth a Read – I Must Be Off

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