As mentioned in my first post, I’ve been thinking about my “circumference of readership.” Fitting term, now that the shortest distance between myself and most of you is measured by a great arc.

Most of what I have been writing about is clearly geared towards an audience of Americans. The more time I spend here, the more I end up writing about things that are probably familiar to most Israelis, but which I am trying to communicate to Americans in a vernacular than precludes non-native English speakers (or so says my family.) This is problematic in the sense that people checking up on me should probably be able to understand what I’m talking about. On the other hand, playing ESL mix-n-match would make this stuff pretty soporific (as if it wasn’t boring as bean-counting already.) I guess I could just wait for English to complete its worldwide conquest.

How much of what I choose to read is selected based on pure linguistic prowess? Probably most if it. Maybe I’ve been hanging out with too many MFAs (Are you reading this W.?) Recently I’ve considered elements like plot, ideology and suspense to be fringe benefits. Obviously, the best authors can skewer all of the above onto the same spit, but I’m not so sure that I can. This leads to all manner of self-doubt, especially in the realm of poetry, where the line between linguistic craftsmanship and “poetic transcendence” is ethereal if it’s there at all (I’ve never really gotten my fingers around that slippery bastard). In the end, you just hope you’ve got enough weird metaphors to compensate for any lack of authentic gravitas. When in doubt, obfuscate. This may be my new mantra.

Anyway, in an effort to drain all the academic sewage out of my brain, today I tried my first Capoeira class. It was a rollicking good time. There are parts of my legs I didn’t know existed that have set themselves on fire in some sort of buddhist protest against high-kicks. Plus I got to wear some really sweet, really green irridescent stretch pants that my grandfather lent me. He says he got them in Bali, but I think he might have meant ‘Bally’, like the gym.


~ by jonlib on September 28, 2006.

One Response to “Myrriophonic”

  1. Jon, I’m gonna put this as politely as I can: you use too many words that nobody else uses, and you use them in a way that their meanings can only occasionally be gleaned from context.
    Weird metaphors don’t obfuscate nearly as much as the word obfuscate, and I couldn’t even find myrriophonic.

    I know that vocabulary is to writer as color is to painter, but just cause a human hand can (through the appropiate agents) produce sixteen million colors doesn’t mean the human eye can recognize them all. I’m not saying you should dumb down your writing, I’m just saying there are plenty of grown men and women here in america who’s favorite book is the little prince, and that’s a result of the fact that this book because its easy as hell to translate from french. So think of your international appeal.

    Now that I finished ranting at you, some news:
    you’re not the only one learning capoeira. I look forward to playing with you when you come back to the states.
    much ♥

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