With Continual Reference to Justin Kahn.

Monday, September 25, 2006

A Manifesto.

I am endlessly grateful for those who have been a source of encouragement to me. Many of you, I’ve never met, while others of you I wish I never met.

But the time has come where I would like to be known as more than a “Clever” writer. I know that I have set myself up as a “Clever” writing. Like that little twist I threw in the second sentence of this post, about how "others of you I wish I never met.” I’m always doing witty stuff like that.

Consequently, people are always saying to me,

“Oh, you’re so witty. Hey, you’ve been working out haven’t you?”
Or
“You make the rest of us look like half-wits. And have your eyes gotten blue-er?”
Or
“Are you human or a Clever Making Machine?—Like the Terminator only programmed to be clever? And lacking the ability to time travel?”

And so on.

My friends, such comments are pleasant but there comes a time in every man's life when it becomes time to put childish things behind. A time when you realize that joking around can't protect you from life, any more than money and power can protect you from living in a rat infested penthouse.

I am having the emotions! And I want my work to reflect that. I feel stuff like the one where you feel like you wish other people are around? And other days I feel the one where you get the expression like you are tooting? And I want to share those with you. And if there is one emotion I am feeling it is the last one I mentioned. Why? Because it is Banned Books Week!

Happy Banned Books Week!

Don't forget to burn a book or at least inform on a fellow citizen-author.

JUSTIN'S MONDAY PICK OF BOOKS THAT SHOULD BE BANNED!









Long live the emotion things!

30 comments:

Kierkegaard said...

...irony [is] the infinite absolute negativity. It is negativity, because it only negates; it is infinite, because it does not negate this or that phenomenon; it is absolute, because that by virtue of which it negates is a higher something that still is not. The irony established nothing, because that which is to be established lies behind it.... Irony is a qualification of subjectivity. In irony, the subject is negatively free, since the actuality that is supposed to give the subject content is not there. He is free from the constraint in which the given actuality holds the subject, but he is negatively free and as such is suspended, because there is nothing that holds him. But this very freedom, this suspension, gives the ironist a certain enthusiasm, because he becomes intoxicated, so to speak, in the infinity of possibilities....

Jenn said...

Satire? Parody? Mockery (thinly disguised as self mockery?)

You're so CLEVER Justin, so clever I barely understand what you are on about three quarters of the time.

So clever you get through books like Infinite Jest, easy peasy, and then toss it in casually in the course of conversation.

So clever you could have hung out with Oscar Wilde and exchanged black rosebuds as a gesture of affection.

Nice to know, underneath all that cleverness is a smidgen of emotion. Although why you would wish for anyone else to be around, when you're a crowd in yourself is beyond me.

Justin said...

Kierkegaard,
Hey. Interesting idea. You took my book ban recommendation pretty good. Almost too good. Which isn't the unstable K. I know and love. It almost makes me think that YOU AREN'T ACTUALLY KIERKEGAARD. Almost.

j.

Justin said...

Jenn, I was starting to wonder. Anyway, since you give the choice, I believe that your comment is a parody of my highly developed prose style. It would make me sad to think that I am being mocked by an other wise benevolent spambot. And the basic features of satire aren't there (Cf. The American Century as Seen Through the Life of a Brick)

Yours Emotionally,
j.

Pepper Medley said...

Parody about parody...isn't that what very clever people call metaparody?

You know, like when you and the rest of The Order of the Socratic Irony Writers are sitting around the old irony round (which is square) table gazing into each other's blue-er-ing eyes.

QuillDancer said...

Justin, Kierkrgaard has opened my eyes! Since I now realize that you don't really want us to ban books, but to embrace them, I am going to go read Keirkegaard's Concept of Irony, and ban yours. Cheers!

Comrade Kevin said...

52 percent of the American population never read another book after high school.

The other 48 percent only read collections of Garfield comic strips. (My favorite is Garfield: Life in the Fat Lane! Haha, is there anything that cat -wouldn't- do?)

Which begs the question, if a book that no one ever reads is banned, is it really banned? And if so, who would notice?

part-timebuddha said...

For my part, I'll ban the book I'm currently writing. Nothing will bring more publicity than a book being banned before it is even written.

Justin said...

Pepper, yes clever people call it metaparody, but only in the comments. If clever people did it within the parody it would turn into an essay. J.

Justin said...

Quilly, you are joking right? Because this is the week when you ban books, not blogs. Your action would be totally out of spirit with the week. Plus, I would get the emotion where you have like a smile, but upside down?

j

Justin said...

Comrade K, I'm glad you raise this point for our international readers. Americans are aware of how amazing our K-12 educational systems, but people from different places (Canada, etc.) might not know that most of us have no need for books or even thinking once we get our diploma. I was an exceptional student--I haven't touched the books since I was in middle school! I believe that eventually our educational system, will render books superflous, before students even enter into High School.

j

Justin said...

p-tb: I would hardly ever bring up star wars, but I think the part where Obi Wan dies to become a spirit may be relevant here.


If you ban the book before it is written it will simply become a very powerful spiritual force. Whereas if you write, once it is confined to the page you may safely, without harm to anyone elsee, ban it. If you see fit.

But I think banning it first, could be a big big big big mistake.


j-dk

part-timebuddha said...

justin: Hmmm...not only are you clever, but wise as well. Banning the book before it is written so it can become a spiritual force instead of merely some book is an excellent idea.

After all, it seemed to work out fairly well for Obi-Wan. Whereas Luke is still just another whiney Skywalker.

maleah from houston said...

Justin, I would like to encourage you. I would like to.

Justin said...

maleah from houston,
Well get to it then!

Regards,
j.

Sassy Sundry said...

You sound a wee bit like Bilbo Baggins before he vanished from his party.

Big Ben said...

This is the first post of yours I have read so I can't comment on your cleverness. When is banned blogs week?

cole_and_rocky said...

Oh my, you are so witty!

QuillDancer said...

Okay, Justin. I am through banning your blog. I am through reading Kierkegaard, too. It is just too much work. There is a reason I only teach 5th grade. I think I'll just stick to Old Yeller and My Side of the Mountain.

maleah said...

okay, hmmm, in the vernacular of those more urbanesque than I... you go, j.

Admiringly,
m.

Donnak said...

It must be hard to be so misunderstood all the time.

Does this ban on books mean I don't have to finish reading the dvd manual?

goldennib said...

It is nice to finally meet a man who is so in touch with his emotions.

Orhan Kahn said...

Witty much?

Justin said...

orhan, thanks much? j.

Justin said...

goldennib, I'm crying b/c of your comment. J.

Justin said...

donnak, if the manual has staples through the center page it doesn't count as a book. Sorry. j.

Justin said...

sassy, I sound like a what?

Justin said...

c_a_r:thanks j_d_k

Sassy Sundry said...

You sound a bit like Bilbo Baggins the Hobbit. At his shindig before he disappears from the Shire, he says, "I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."

That's what I thought of, in any event. It made me chuckle.

Anonymous said...

There is no denying it... you are witty and you are clever-but these are some of your finest qualities (not to mention the most recent addition to your Justinism, and of course your bluest of blue eyes)