"nice," part 2

so one of my central ideas from yesterday's post--although the good stuff i want to say always seems to get lost in the blabbing--concerned being a good consumer. being a good consumer is one of the ways i'm slowly moving to the woods.

oh, and deandre, listen: just keep moving along for a few more years and then maybe we can all start that organic farm together.

so, i like to appropriate words for my own purposes. for example, one of my favorite bastardizations of our language is my use of the word "mannerism." mannerism was a style of painting that followed what most of us would recognize as renaissance. actually, most folks would probably identify mannerist painting as still being a renaissance painting, i.e. fleshy religious people, floating around, draped in red robes with a couple of cherubs nearby. the distinction between these two styles of painting, though, is a fun one. and, for me, an important one.

the best way to explain it is to say that the goal for renaissance painting was an accurate and "proper" depiction of nature. (that's part of that platonic ideal i mentioned yesterday.) mannerist painting, on the other hand, was a kind of changing of the gaurd in which all the formal, technical issues of representation had been solved. perspective had been mastered; underpainting techniques, the use of light and dark, proper composition, even paint itself had all been figured out. it was at this point where some painter said (maybe for the first time) "shit, man. everything's been done before. what am i gonna do to be different?" he said this in italian, of course.

what he chose to do, then, technically speaking, was to actually imitate art--not nature. not speaking technically, what he decided to do was (and this is where my language appropriation comes in) to become a grotesque approximation of himself. in other words, he gave over to style for style's sake.

there is ample evidence of my version of mannerism all over the place. frank gehry has entered his manneristic phase. matter of fact, gehry became a mannerist by his second building. (i guess that's the price of being wildly original--and wildy shallow. george jones, for instance, got a good twenty years of mannerism in before he wore it out).

alright. so there's mannerism. one word that i destory. here's another couple:

tactics and strategies. i don't know where this pair of words comes from. i had thought it was the invention of the dutch or french situationists until recently. it may, however, be a term that was created by economists. no matter, though, it would be fitting and par-for-the-course for the situationsts to co-opt something like that from economists. so, anyway, i have co-opted them for myself. The way i use them--and the way that most people use them i think (i was just covering my own butt in case i'm way off base)--is that a tactic is something that takes little nibbles out of a big machine. a strategy is a thing that brings the whole machine down.

okay. so here's where i tie all this together. oh...and forget mannerism. that was just a tangent. what i really want to talk about is tactics and strategies and how to be a good consumer. see, i've tried to make my slow move to the woods by becoming a smarter consumer. one of the ways i do this is by tactics: i try not to shop at big box stores. i try to buy very few products that are manufactured in china, $2 a dozen t-shirts are out, sweatshop shoes, car travel, pre-processed foods are all avoided. (i do have a weakness for barbeque chips, though.)

okay. so far, so good. most of us do those things. now, where my strategies come in--oh, and i mean all this stuff on a personal level. this strategy isn't one trying to get YOU to change, or meant as advice. it's just things that i think i've done that i'm proud of and want to put them out there in case some wanderer actually comes along and reads this blog...anyway, my strategies for myself, i think, started with things that had to do with my body.


hey! ya know what? that's enough. i know i write too much. i'm just gonna stop here and continue tommorrow, you know?

so. coming tommorrow: Clothes!

have a nice day, y'all.


Anonymous said...

Yea Walter

I have been reading your blogs recently concerning tools, rugs, strategies... (hard for me to do with my short attention span). Some very good thoughts.

You are right. The only person we can change is ourselves. This change is ALWAYS, ALWAYS based on how we perceive or view the world around us. All the love or joy we have and are ever going to have, we were born with. You can't buy it in a package at Krogers. If you can remember what you felt when you first met Alison (probably about the same as when I first met Kelly). Those feelings changed your whole perspective on life. They were already inside you just waiting to come out. They were all internal. If we view our life with joy, then our lives are joyful. Other people see it and it affects them.

Boy, that was waaay too deep for me. I must have channeled that from somewhere. Maybe I need a triple whopper with bacon and cheese (mmmm...bacon).

The Dad

Anonymous said...

The picture on the RIGHT is the true depiction of Jesus. He was always clothed, as no mortal could bear to see him in his full glory.