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Cop and T-shirt (in an adjacent vehicle) are continuing to hit it off. You can't, deciding her story is an unworthy one (whatever that is), write her off too quickly by injuring, and when that doesn't work, impossibilizing her story line. Your vehicle stops in what looks like a canyon. Everybody gets out and decides to rough you up a little but before the roughing-up really gets under way they allow you to walk to the canyon's jagged edge. There is but an unsuturable gash (not that far off, come to think of it) where the sunset should be—where their prefatory bullyragging has led you to believe it must be. You try to forget your newborn celebrity. In fact disfigurement (minutes before, Zohar or Cordovero tried to claw you with a twig) is a blessing in disguise insofar as it results in a confinement of your scrutinizing to the smallest demesne possible: so rudely gored understandably you no longer wish, as formerly, to note the attention of every passerby within a fifty-mile radius for there's no longer a likelihood that such attention will graciously exude the boundless awe merited by your accomplishments: from here on in you must resign yourself to ogling contempt—no doubt about it—every step of the way. You consequently termite forward (a veritable Turing machine), frugally parasitizing your own boundaries as if they were so much sawdusty air in order to be able to turn their remains into parameters of the next exploit, for despite this recent dread of gawkers' italicizing your self-loathing you're markedly conscious of an unrebuffable camera eye lurking round every bend and seeing to it that your moves, even the very tiniest eminently newsworthy, turn into world-class great-shakes—and hence of now having an obligation—towards your public!—to be both an observer smugly outside and a being very much trapped within your own little self-created world. Immured buglike in the most minuscule of cages—the one bounded by bulbous nose and jug-ears and lantern-jaw—you're—compliments of an excruciated hypersensitivity with regard to its now-disfigured shell, however temporary, of blotched and excoriating flesh—compelled to make a virtue of necessity by nailing down every moment precariously perched on the serrated edge of your raw materials without glamorizing it, then promptly forgetting this or that triumph of concentration as soon as it's over (you leave no spoor but the spewed aftertang of an overeager, nibbling and sometimes unkempt professionalism—of a craggy knack with gestures). And let me tell you, if my old pal Manny N. S. Farber were still around he'd be Number one on line, first, to praise you unstintingly for these your mock-heroic services on behalf of termite (as opposed to white elephant) art and, second, to categorically prescribe (as the only true high-protein diet for authentic makers—those unreasonably fascinated with the local lesion of raw materials in minute contest) infinitely more of the same indefatigable nibbling at Cezannean small sensation and local contagions, just as way back when (during their salad days at that notorious old fleabag known as The Negative Space Garden Apartments Dormitory and Cafe where any self-respecting budding termite artist could earn his stripes vocational through one method and one method only (especially if he had in fact no trouble forking up the week's rent): earthy defiance of the landlady and her termagant husband's every threat of eviction) he used to praise his old pal Joan (Crawford) for doing the very same thing and, more to the point, for always doing it with the same bravura conviction (albeit the conviction of a gumchewing shopgirl-slash-fileclerk) lustily conveyed, that this or that unglamorizing impalement of a movie moment's mulch was infinitely expendable and could have been achieved (through the dismemberment and reconstitution of said mulch or said moment) in any number of equivalent ways though none worth mentioning precisely because there was still so much work to be perpetrated against so many other expendable moments, all identically, fungibly mulched. So, go forward proudly, Pudd, in the knowledge that no less an eminence than Manny Farber has been making it a practice to praise you all over town for this measured and incessant eating up of every identifiable boundary of your serial artwork with never one single belched thought for the world lying beyond its unique and indistinguishable moments of ingestion—that is to say, the katzenjammer world, one landmined hugger-mugger with insidious, obtuse consumer expectations that every last cutting-edge cannibal's coup will soon be thriftily, swiftly, smilingly coopted by the glossy frieze of some resistance-, i.e., mulch-free masterpiece of voidless, shadowless meaning-mongering. But make sure all this praise doesn't go to your head, or rather, against your wires or your vacuum tubes; in other words, remain a robot—a zombie completely determined by the finite number both of your internal states (Off/On/Dozing) and of the boundary inputs to (or rather against) which your scene-chewing is programmed to respond—as Joanie Dearest did to the bitter end, that is, if you wish to go on being labelled a termite virtuoso for there is no virtuosity, termitic or otherwise, without the placing of extreme—transhuman—limits on that virtuosity's field of exercise. In short, you must remain a Turing machine for only the Turing machine fulfills the Farberian Ur-condition for qualifying as a true artist: nibbling away, buglike and overimmersed, at Cezannean small sensation (a tape consisting of a linear sequence of squares, each edible square either blank or inscribed with the mark 0 or 1)/nailing Crawfordlike each moment without glamorizing it (reading the tape, that is, moving one square to the right or left after replacing the 0 or the 1 just read by a 0 or a 1, the whole operation capped by a change of internal state, although being obsessed with art Farber, unlike Turing, does not concern himself with internal states—in fact he's famous for excoriating them as a sideline/leaving behind at the end of each mini-operation nothing but some bone-dry sign of its nisus (the usurping 0 or 1). Once you've gotten the hang of Turing termitism you'll always, reflexly (whether or not you happen to be motivated by disfiguration (remember Crawford's shrinking violet in AWoman's Face?) to feel twenty-thousand-leagues-beneath struthious), be supremely unable to see the smallest distance ahead, and because you're simultaneously blessed with only a finite number of internal states (instead of the superencumbering plethora that would end up, if you were, say, the hero of a Victorian novel, breaking your back and your will) there'll be no reflecting back over time and space upon this or that previous tape-result—no internalizing of external data or of any previously computed response to the edible tape. You're better off so, travelling light. In short, now you're a killer without a memory—you're capable of dealing with data—with life's input—only immediately—only, as the algebraic topologists would say, in the small. As a burrower you can smell and snout-palpate only that milliliter of earth right before snout's carbuncular (with a few snotty vibrissas thrown in for good measure) blind eye. This is the beauty of the computer-being, you—you as gar"goil" Joan—have become. As you speak your lines, as you act your story, for the overanxious pre-new workweek Sunday night billions, you must seem at every moment absolutely unconscious of all fillips outside the duration-radius of moment's utterance/gesture. You no longer subsist in a forest of symbols, suddenly alerted through God knows what self-stimuli, to the kind of farflung correspondences that contribute lavishly to a well-rounding of the personality, even the killer personality. (You're past the stage when you can entertain the fantasy of becoming well-rounded, -read, -liked.)


we can report them
(an excerpt)

michael brodsky