David Foster Wallace, Foreskin, Stem Cells, Twitter, Silence

The book that David Foster Wallace didn’t finish writing, due to suicide, was about boredom. DFW believed, rightly, that our culture is dominated by two things: boredom and an overpowering addiction to entertainment. Entertainment as a cure to that boredom that lives underneath everything. But he figured that maybe if you get under the entertainment, and into, then under the boredom that permeates everything, then maybe you’d find something sublime and transcendent. Or maybe not, because whatever he found inspired death by hanging. So there.

Do you use TwitterDeck? You can pick any subject or subjects and as people “tweet” about them, then a kind of scrolling news ticker cloud shows you what people are saying about a given subject. So you can follow your friends and hot trends randomly generated and subjects of interest, all in real time. And the subjects rain down, like an informational waterfall. Of tweets. Which makes one wonder if DFW had it backwards. Maybe if instead of underneath boredom lies something sublime, maybe if instead you bathe in the information and let it wash over you entirely, in the sound of that informational hum, maybe that’s where we find wisdom?

Or maybe there is no such thing as wisdom but instead the kind of bullshit that is maxed out at 140 characters? And maybe opening the gates to what your fellow human beings are blathering on about, maybe the silence that existed before you knew, maybe that silence is what we want?

Have you heard this rumour about the face cream made with foreskin? Instead of throwing the foreskin away, it can instead help women and gay men pretend like they aren’t approaching that great silence in the sky.

And maybe we can draw a parallel here to the stem cells. Instead of throwing away that nothing, use them to make us all younger. Stems cells are foreskin, right, no difference.

And now – let’s listen to the informational hum, and try to conclude if I’m talking about anything at all….


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