In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.
There is the reality of winter, of cold weather and it has now begun settling or moving in, or coming down, I would suggest, depending on whether one considers meteorological conditions metaphorically or physically. Unfamiliar with the latter, I get it all confused. Stupendous masses of moving air, giga-cubickilometers and millions of square miles of solarly irradiated terrain, giving off water and heat, expanding and contracting. The world turns around itself at 40‘000km a day at the aequator and at some hideous radial velocity around the sun; my uncalibrated mind wonders that we‘re not living in the midst of a typhoon all the time. No, instead we have the mild, diligent, reliable change of seasons, at least we do along these latitudes. And presently, the undeniable fact of November, the beginning of winter.
As they feel compelled to do on an annual basis, people complain about the weather, they bitch an earful about the gelid temperatures. It seems plausible that complaining about the weather is in the genes or why else would there be such a strong compunction? Even if you are good, long friends and mentioning the weather comes off as an unnecessary move of conversational desperation, people will still do it. You know the phrases. „F&cking freezing!“ „Man, I should‘ve moved to Italy years ago“ (Even if the person saying this is perfectly educated enough to know that it must get pretty darn cold in Italy too). „I could just about sh&t chocolate icicles, dude. Just imagine how lovely it would be: Thailand, the pool, a cold drink in your hand“ (And you know, or at least suspect, because one really doesn‘t know ultimately, that the person could give a damn about the pool or the tepid drink because he‘d be out and about, jumpy with sexual energy, looking for a young Thai lady to hitch in pursuit of his generic fantasies). Your best friends have no qualms about bothering you every year about this thing.
And of course, also, the days become briefer and darker, suggesting an awful distance from the sun when all we‘ve really done, not even done, it just happens, when all that really has happened is that we have tilted away from the sun a bit. There is still more than enough light, more than enough warmth as a matter of fact, for everybody indoors, is what I sometimes feel like screaming. Go inside, turn on or flip the light switch, ratchet up the radiator, do not dare bother me with that which repeats itself ad infinitum. Or you could move to the equator and complain how every single day is a clone of the previous or the subsequent one because all that seems to matter to you is sunshine and precipi-fucking-tatiation and degrees centigrade and beaufords and perhaps even bloody candela-per-diem-per-sqm or what-weatherman-have-you. Look here, even me (a laughable even), once more, trying to type sense out of this helpless, perpetual topic. Yesterday, I rode my bicycle home in rain and dark and cold and that was nice, my body and its associate clothes bracing themselves against the wholly indifferent elements. And soon enough there will be snow, snow again and I will try to catch the sour flakes by my outstretched tongue.
(And now it IS snowing in earnest. Whirling whiteness, flakes flocking in flurries. Oh well, winter is coming, has come.)
• • •
True surreal beauty does exist. I have become acquainted with it. Not surpassing comeliness per se (nothing in the abstract, not a work of art or anything) but the unreal beauty of T, the person I now enjoy spending my time with. Partner or girlfriend, these words can do their work but the possessive pronoun they usually come with give them an astringent undertone. She is mine, he is mine, I dispose of him/her, I own the primary rights of usage. And TPINESMTW is pathetically cumbersome. My new flame? The person I‘m with? Beautiful T, who I am with.
The accusation „superficial“ will be levelled immediately. But that is neglecting that it can be very important to consider surfaces if they effect depth-charges in both directions. This is not what this is about, rejoinders, recriminations, standardisms.
Her sheer beauty initially not only enthralled me but also sounded warning tocsins, set off a slow rising tide of wariness. The standard stereotypes immediately suggest a series of inacceptable hypothesis:
A) it is co-present with ignorance/slowness…
[Suddenly, an insane, unbearable sadness overcomes me when thinking about my soi-disant ex and myself, the former ,us‘, the hurt of a loss. The good times we lost in the fire, you know? The awful knowledge that relationships come to an end, quality time too and one day, god forbid, we ourselves – we die, damnit – and we will not even be around to be bothered by our own inexistence. To not be, what absurdity! Am I not now here typing these lines, though, as you read them, I might long since have ceased to signify as I do right very now? Intolerable thoughts. I cannot help missing her, it is separate from this new situation.]
…B) there will be another massive, personal downside to compensate, as it is, for the injust amount of beauty
C) the sublime looks are purely an artifact of outstanding cosmetic aptitude and thereby more a matter of the hands than the face
D) sufficient proximity will undo the far-sighted distortion, the visual disturbance of the air, the fata morganic misrepresentation
E) [fill in your personal favorite stereotype about superhuman beautitude]
Her first laugh, a combination of heart and gut, washed away this imaginary flood of cliches though some of them have been slowly trickling back. Awgh, this aqueous metaphor won‘t do any good. My doubt was [perhaps still is?] that T‘s pulchritude will act as a glass-ceiling or ballistic-glass box out of which none of her actual emotions, none of her true character can ever connect to mine. Or fire projectiles to pierce my heart. Is that it? Only partially. That I will always be partially, significantly, absorbed by the sheer beauty of her face like, perhaps, somebody attempting to study the oils of Mona Lisa, better, the pigments of JMB‘s Fishing. Or something-something. The non-permeable membrane of genuine beauty. But maybe what I think of as the separation-by-stunning-looks is just the usual divide of ignorance as it always must or, at least, will exist between two people, between one rhizome of oneself [freud] and another [badiou] and still another [mathieu] and yet another [yourself]. Connected perhaps but feebly so, the signal changing from one significance to another along the conduits and nodes. Flourishing and ever reconnecting so that in due time you cannot tell a text from a brain, a very, very small brain but a brain still. Did I say text?
Where am I going here? At the end of writing, and there is no end, not at all, a partially correct-seeming yet unfamiliar thought should place itself in evidence. If it is to be any thing more than a pure warming up of fingers and eyes, the writing.
I was saying: perhaps what seems like a separation is only the usual inter-human distance exacerbated by beauty. Transcendent fairness [let me show up language for its own oxymorons] often enough seems unfair? There is no evident reason why one person, from birth, without any particular effort, should have a vastly more aesthetic phenotype than anybody else. Should be gifted show-stopping salience just because. But that is what happens. Somebody winds up looking maddeningly beautiful and there is now when, why or how. Am I flying off the hyperbolic handles here? Maybe in terms of the adjectival affluence, aya, who is to tell but the general point is validated by peers. There is a peer review in the most immediate, primitive sense of the term. K, seeing an outsized photograph of T, immediately stated: „Now there is a truly good-looking gal“. Another colleague having said his hellos to her, leaped the piece and inquired „Are you a model?“ [which evidently is not per se a compliment or positive comment on good looks but points in the right direction]. And other comments in the same vein. Here I type, starting to come off as only a foolish, possessive braggard but given my own distancing from the matter and minor wariness of the comeliness, nothing could be further from my mind. I am simply fascinated by the fact, the intellectual, social, psychological ramifications. For example, the appellation „showstopper“ was not all that caricatural as indeed I have never been with another person, male or female, who has attracted that many an innocent bystander‘s alterity-stricken gaze. The women‘s looks, I am somewhat sorry to report, convey some sort of negative appreciation – I wouldn‘t put my dick in a brazier to claim anything more specific than an epistemic irritation: nobody, no body should be so wildly conspicuous, it violates the social compact! As for the men, I will allow for your own educated guess; plus the occasional unbidden, obnoxious reproach concerning the BDI.
So then the next question on my mind is: Does….
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