Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Facebook and the Pursuit of Happiness

Photograph of poet Edward Dorn

I don't know who Brainard Carey is. All I know is that he is on Facebook. He showed up in the "People You May Know" module. He knows five people I know. Facebook is funny. Whether people love it or hate it, they are most definitely talking about it. In fact, I was shocked during the holidays that almost every gathering I attended, the big ol' FB came up as a topic of conversation. Does it build communities? Is it isolating? Does it detract from facetime? Does it foster relationships? So who is this Brainard? Should I know him? Do I care? Perhaps not. No, definitely not. But i love a part of the description he wrote about his project Dreams + Possibilities....enough to repost it here, a blog that is no more that a silent ripple in an ocean of flotsam blogging and jetsam posting.

"Every day, all of us, no matter what our job or position in society, engage in a battle that is so personal it is often heard by no one except ourselves. Why is it that we are grumpy, critical or negative one moment and generous and happy the next? As we all read books and try to understand the mysteries of life, we wage our personal war with as much success as possible. And as we read in the news of the polished lives of celebrities and others, we can easily be led to believe that we are alone in our personal battles, and that only if we had more of something we would be at peace."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Morbid Preoccupation

"La Belle Rosina" by Antoine Wiertz 1847

"While seeking out the dead I see nothing but the living."
~ Honoré de Balzac

Look at her voluptuous nudity. The childlike gaze of curiosity. The contrast of spindly skeleton to velvety flesh. Is is death that mocks life or life that mocks death?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Endless forms most beautiful

Gregory Crewdson from Natural Wonder series

"It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, with various insects flitting about, and with worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these elaborately constructed forms, so different from each other, and dependent on each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by laws acting around us...Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved."

Charles Darwin, On the Origin of species by means of natural selection..." (1859)

Sunday, February 8, 2009

A Childhood Note to No One in Particular

"Morning Dew" by tamsen ellen

"As I walk down the street I hear the chirp of a bird. He's probably building his nest and working hard at it. People work hard too, but it is depressing to think that many people walk down the street, while the bird is chirping and no one hears that bird. They are too busy in their own heads to hear that one chirp or the rustle of a leaf. Maybe if one person who cared heard that bird that person could get it through to other people to listen the those lovely things God gave us."

written age 13-14