Wednesday, March 31, 2004

People I'm feeling right now:

M.C. Siegel:
The honest truth is that when I feel like I'm resisting this tendency I, for the life of me, cannot write. Emotional anguish and solitude are the perfect catalysts for my writing. Sadly enough, when I'm happy it's like being on soma, I have no ambition to commit my thoughts to paper. All I want to do is stay happy, kill time, and ignore the issues that make for the majority of my writing. It's just like drug-addiction...and it's the most normal thing in the world to do. The question I'm always facing is whether I want to drift through life in a cloudy haze of happiness, or if I want to confront the monster under my bed, even if that means sacrificing some of that "happiness" in favor of a somewhat different form of satisfaction, and ultimately one that I value much more than the former.

It's like John Stuart Mill saying that it's better to be Socrates dissatisfied than the pig satisfied. I used to always argue that it's better to be the pig, because the pig has no idea what it's like to be Socrates. The pig is content to roll in its own slop all day long without a single solitary care in the world. I, on the other hand, have a million troughs all around me, but choose not to eat. I choose to indulge my dissatisfaction so that (metaphorically at least) I might be Socrates.

Jessica Torres:
i have to admit that i felt like i didnt deserve to be thanked like i did because i really didnt do anything but read my work and fall in love with it/them. the boys took me onboard only recently and because of that i felt awkward hearing my name being called out. but they did so because they thought i represent what acentos is all about and what we want to do with poetry for the now and later. so i kept on telling myself that they are adding my name for the future..not quite for the past. it will always be o's and fish's idea materialized.. but it has become my place. algarin was sonorous. mayda was spoken word. open and closed mic was what really made me smile. hosting for those few minutes was nervy but i gave it a go...though i thought of eight million other things i could have said--once i had already gotten off the spot.

F. Omar Telan:
I was at a conference last fall where there were a number of administrators who work in dance organizations. One of the major discussions that I was in the room for, but could not contribute to was about getting local media to pay attention to what was happening at their venues. As I came to understand it, dance, as an art, is no longer an art form that is appreciated by overall society. Somewhere along the way stopped being for the audience and became for other dancers and choreographers. Whether or not this opinion is held by dance enthusiasts nationwide or only by the people who were in the room is unknown to me. What I do know is that from the vast majority of dances I have seen, the only thing I've been able to appreciate is the sheer athleticism of these bodies. Okay, I'm lying; I've also giggled a great deal at how silly some of what is obviously meant to be intellectually deep.

Mara Jebsen:
I lost it again in my writing class.
Race again.
One writer chose to do a persona poem as a black man, but he was
really sheepish about it, worried about whether he had the right.

I said, yes, in theory, if his intentions were right,
but that in this case the the voice didn't come off authentic and you have to watch for racial ventriloquism.
But the prof went off on a tangent about the natural need to impersonate, the existence of racial difference as a recent phenomenon (she studies ancient Greece, I think) an finally, alluded to something about tribalism, happening everywhere. like look at Rwanda and Burundi.
While I believe her intentions to be good, and her point about racial difference as an unnatural construction to be interesting, I think largely accepted as valid, at each point I took her on, until the Tribalism thing came up, and I was the little teapot, steamed up, out-bursting, emotional, pink, sweating and loud impossible. I know too much about this.
She apologized a bit, and deferred gracefully to my knowledge/emotion, but I still came off like an idiot for losing it like that. I don't know. Amongst my program people, I am not everybody's favourite person.

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