Fake Fate

Was it always to be thus, or might I have chosen otherwise?

At one point in “The Quest,” his modernist version of a quest romance told in 20 brief sections, the poet W.H. Auden derides occult fascinations as “an architecture for the odd.” Astrology, tarot, et cetera. Earlier, he writes of the future, “We pile our all against it when afraid/And beat upon its panels when we die.”

The particular sonnet, which in some editions is titled “The Tower,” but in Auden’s official Collected Poems is simply called number “IX,” concludes with a warning from magicians caught in their own tower:

Yet many come to wish their tower a well;
For those who dread to drown, of thirst may die,
Those who see all become invisible:

 
Here great magicians, caught in their own spell,
Long for a natural climate as they sigh
“Beware of Magic” to the passer-by.

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Details, Details

I am a very private person, plus I am pretty committed to being co-dependent with the planet, so I probably waste more psychic energy and time trying to give other people their privacy than I spend on maintaining my own. Especially in those moments when it seems that people around me are oblivious to their horrible and immediate need to simply keep things to themselves. Or to warn me of imminent over-sharing.

I could blame cell phones, blame Facebook and Instagram, think some thoughts about the effect of self-help groups and therapy on the culture at large, but after thinking all those deep thoughts, I do not care about your details, unless you are my dearest, most intimate friend(s). No. Not even then. Even then, there are things I do not really need to know. The details.
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Dubious

“The least controversial thing you can post is a photo of me? I’m dubious. The most controversial thing you do around me is brag about having opposable thumbs. If hate was a thing, I would do some hate. Is that how you say that?” I am glad I photographed Planet Kitty a couple years ago making her “dubious” face at me.

This blog (typed with my thumbs, because I can, Planet Kitty! I can) regularly publishes controversial posts. What follows is a lightly edited version of “A Conspiracy Theory of Conspiracy Theories,” a column that was published January 31, 2014.
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