Weirdness. (more notes for The Second Moment coming own 2017:
I think about some towns that have a certain motto like where I lived for a bit, Hollywood California, and then for some time, Santa Cruz California, but also another town that likes that motto that I spent some time in many years ago, Boulder Colorado, but then also a town that Ive never been to, Portland Oregon, which I heard has the same motto. In fact, there are more than a few towns that I’ve heard that have the same (unofficial) motto: “Keep _____ Weird”.
It is funny to me that the same towns that were weird back in – whatever day that I might call – ‘the day’, that indeed felt weird not only because those are the towns I think I tended to gravitate towards, but probably moreso in that I was quite weird myself, are the very same towns in their wanting to stay weird, as their matured populations are most likely the population that enjoyed the weirdness in their youth, have often (seems) developed into a town that definitely don’t want the weirdness in their towns anymore even as they have signs and stickers that say keep such and such town weird. They do not want to have to deal with what is really weird, they merely want to entertain the notion of weirdness through the vehicle of the idea that lay behind the promotion of their town being weird. They want to be identified with what is weird through the consideration of what is truly weird, namely (and this is what I liked about the seedy and weird towns ‘back in the day’) all the people who do not confirm to normative social standards of living, the eccentric, the artists, the crazy people on the street, the drug doers, the hippies, punks, and general strange people. In other words, they want to be crazy vicariously through a kind of twice removed association. The problem is that the weird is really weird and you can’t control or keep the weirdness confined in conceptual space; thats whats weird and enjoyable about a city that is weird, but what inevitably happen (-ed, -s) is that what is once weird becomes actually dangerous in a life effecting manner; it actually becomes depressing (in a really bad way; not despairing in oddity, but only sad and pitiful). If you have children and care about them and their happiness, you pretty much don’t want to raise them in what occurs once the weirdness wanders from the quaint considerations.
Now if anyone knows what I’m talking about, if anyone has noticed the same strangeness about keeping things weird that really are no longer weird, then you might also be able to understand my point of this funny thing that seems to be involving philosophical weirdness. And this I mean in reference to my previous post; i’m just gonna put it out there to let it sink in: That last post is fucking weird.
I’m sure someone will say that it is hardly weird but that it is just stupid or it is some other descriptive or falls into some other category that really explains the reason why someone would not want to read it more than it actually describes the piece itself.
The point I suppose I’m trying to make is that the meaning of the previous post to me is weird. And I mean this within the same sense that I can notice these towns liking to say ‘keep such and such a town weird’. Because the philosophers and authors that like to talk about weird things in a philosophical way, while I do understand their weirdnesses, like Stephen Kings ‘It’ , or Lovecraft’s strange interjections are weird, or Rob Zombie’s creations, to me it doesn’t seem so weird in a true sense; often enough those things seem to me weird in a fictional way, as if we’re entertaining some weird things. For me, when I think philosophically and when I use philosophy to talk about things or to describe what I’m doing as philosophy, I am not merely playing some word game, solving some intellectual puzzle, or working out my ‘consideration’ brain muscle; I do not sit in my ‘thinker’ chair and view things before me as pieces for my mind to put together in (redundantly) interesting ways. I don’t think the entertaining of weird things is really weird; I find it rather conventional. For me, I find it difficult to remove myself from the act, behavior or otherwise involvement of philosophy and so am repeatedly come upon by my own situation doing the situation: This is weird. I find myself often enough in a situation where I am incapable of removing myself sufficiently enough from the process of my thinking to be able to ‘work out intellectual puzzles’. But, I am capable of understanding how people are able to Be in that manner.
So it is that this duality inherent in the simplicity of consideration of things allows me to notice that philosophically what is weird is like the example of the previous post. What is weird is the juxtaposition of a highly improbable situation to the consideration of it; yet in fact, it is so unlikely that it is offensive such that it is understood to be wiser and more common sensible (!) to merely consider it. As well, for someone to argue or even propose some sort of truth of the matter in the manner proposed in the previous post with little or no apology hanging in the wings, as, indeed, a matter of fact: To me, that is weird.
Consider Graham Harman and his OOO. The sticking point that everyone seems unsettled by is the notion “Objects withdraw from view”. We should consider further what this means with reference to this weirdness I am attempting to show through my analogy coupled by the fact that I just wrote that post that I am saying is weird: The weirdness is found in the idea that the meaning of the post is not accessible to everyone. That is weird. And I don’t mean this with reference to a common human potential located of range and proximity; access is not automatically granted within some common educational arena. This is how education becomes problematized because in this context, education thus dismisses itself from mere set of skills and the method to build marketable social identity. This situation I am talking about is so odd, so strange, that we have to account then for those who will not be able to understand the meaning of it: I reference these individuals by including myself in the possibility of those who do not understand it.
What I mean by this seemingly aggravating strangeness is exactly that I can (am capable) of understanding how this situation is odd. In fact, if I could not encounter the meaning of the proposal as odd then I would not have been able to propose such strange situation because I would thereby be proposing a situation within a quite not strange situation wherein and whereby I would be granting myself to the possibility of appropriation through the position of proposing a strange situation of really, in effect, being not so strange; I would be proposing it within a continuum, within an arena of a common human sort where what may have been proposed as strange had lost its strangeness by virtue of everyone having access to the meaning of the situation. But more; the issue I treat in this weirdness is that such a route is taken by most who then see their comprehension of the situation as evidencing the weirdness as though the not-weird situation of their meaningful appropriation of the description of the weird situation has thereby granted them access to what is weird of the situation.For indeed I am suggesting that the access they have found has not gained access; as I say, it does not function in its capacity for verification. The route by which they have come to understand this weirdness of which I speak has not gained for them the weirdness of which I speak but instead has gained for them only a certain intellectual sense that functions to stand in for the weirdness itself, and thereby de facto only grants them a false sense of the situation. The issue is in the situation of this false sense, what I have called ‘subsequent’, being taken for what is ‘originary’ of the experience itself, the former which is then a proxy, but actually a patsy, that is used in place of the primary meaning as the primary offering. We can call this analysis thus a factual historical analysis, but also we can discover how this situation only occurs when we have understood that the situation occurs only through the object that has withdrawn from view, as we can now say, by the recognition of the subsequent route.
Nevertheless; while I agree in principle with the underlayings of his OOO, and even (in my second book “The Moment of Decisive Significance”) discuss how Harman’s represents albeit a particularly ideological and political apology, as evidenced by his Object Ontology; in contrast, as opposed to Harman, I do not say that this route by which things become weird is ‘real’; I reverse his positivism of transcendental agency (Harman is an advocate of essential agency) and say distinctly say that it is not real, for the reasons and purposes that conform negatively to the possibility of a common human sort.