Agenda item for 5/9

Johan Borgen, Norwegian writer/journalist/playwright, wrote:

“Personally I believe that man’s fascination for art lies in our unsatisfied desire for identity. I believe that our unarticulated longing for freedom, our painful and impractical and completely unreasonable longing for freedom derives simply from the fact that we are shut up inside that system of apparent necessities which is called our personality, or which we call our personality, because we need to fasten a fine-sounding name to the cage in which we have shut ourselves up. … We live a crippled life, shut up inside the narrow cage of considerations, caught in the net of expectations.” (Words Through the Years, 1966)

Be prepared to discuss.

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  • 21 Thoughts on “Agenda item for 5/9

    1. jeff on May 7, 2008 at 8:45 pm said:

      I wish I understood this. Maybe it’s because I am fuzzy-headed because I have been wandering out in the desert all day.

      I wish I were speaking metaphorically, but I am not. I have actually spent the day wandering through the desert in Arizona.

      I did not wear sunscreen. That was not a smart choice.

      So please excuse my inability to ponder deep questions. I will try again tomorrow. No desert-wandering is on the agenda tomorrow.

    2. marc on May 8, 2008 at 9:22 am said:

      If you die of sun stroke, can I still borrow the second season of BSG?

    3. marc on May 8, 2008 at 9:35 am said:

      Here’s another item for discussion. Heard this on NPR yesterday. BB&T is handing out endowments to colleges and universities that begin offering courses on the work of Ayn Rand.

    4. jeff on May 8, 2008 at 9:46 am said:

      OK, I am VERY happy that I have no accounts with BB&T. Can we describe the works of Ayn Rand as “anti-art”?

    5. jeff on May 8, 2008 at 9:48 am said:

      So where is Craig’s house, anyhow? My plane doesn’t get in until 7:30 Friday, so if I show up at all, it will likely be late. Please give directions for people who may be arriving after the sun has fallen.

    6. 599 Neely Road. Turn R off of Hwy 54. If you’re coming from ECHS/Fayetteville, go across Hwy 16. If you’re coming from Newnan, turn R onto 54 from 16. Neely Road’s about half a mile on the R from 16. Craig’s house is on the left.

    7. Terry on May 9, 2008 at 4:24 am said:

      Dale I emailed some comments to you, forgetting you had posted this on the Lichtenbergian page. What a little dehydration will do to one. (Just ask Jeff after his desert journey. By the way Jeff I feel that way most of the time if you add in some strong pain killers.)

      Anyway consider those emails my contribution to the discussion. Dale can tell you further why I won’t be there if he wants to.

      Enjoy guys.

    8. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 10:47 am said:

      I’m more lucid now, and frankly I still can’t figure out what Borgen is trying to say. Is it a problem with translation or just my inability to understand? What exactly does he mean by “freedom?” What is his definition of “personality?” Necessities? Impractical? When he says “expectations,” whose expectations is he referring to? Are we supposed to have “reasons” to long for “freedom?” Freedom from what? I guess I’ve never really understood the whole concept. We give so much lip service in this country to “freedom” that it’s really lost any kind of meaning for me — it’s too politically-loaded. I tend to side with a quote from Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing.”

      “It’s a free country.”

      “Free country? Man, I should fuck you up for saying that stupid shit ALONE.”

      (You know — the scene where the white guy accidentally steps on Buggin’ Out’s “new Air Jordans I JUST BOUGHT.”)

    9. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 10:59 am said:

      GCL L.82

      “Pirze” should be “prize”

    10. Turff on May 9, 2008 at 11:06 am said:

      Jeff, I’d only agree with your comments re:anti-art under the previous supposition that anything with an agenda cannot be art. I dig Ayn Rand. I’m sure that comes as a shock to all. That’s not say I agree with everything she believes. Certainly not. The whole selfishness is a virtue thing runs contrary to my value system. However, no one said 1) you had to agree with the art, and back to the sub-prime argument, 2) some things are valuable for the intellectual questions they encourage you to ask, even if by provocation.

      I’d stand back to back with you in a bar-fight any time to fight off hoards arguing that the monster speeches in Atlas Shrugged were un-artful. However, I found Fountainhead to be a much better book that even had some interesting things to say / questions to ask about art itself.

    11. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:25 am said:

      Well, I cry at the end every time I see “Homeward Bound” with my kids, so there goes any credibility I might have had in the art judging department.

      “Come on, Shadow. Come on. He was old. He was an old dog.”

      Wait! What’s that, cresting the hill?

    12. Turff on May 9, 2008 at 11:40 am said:

      ok, ok, you made me laugh, but what are you trying to say?

    13. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:48 am said:

      No, what I’m trying to say to you, in all seriousness, is that I am a complete SAP.

    14. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:50 am said:

      Or this:

      which makes me cry even worse.

    15. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:51 am said:

      OK, so that’s two in a row that I’ve posted that don’t go through. We can’t post links now?

    16. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:52 am said:

      Or this: Y

      which makes me cry even worse.

    17. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 11:54 am said:

      Or maybe we just can’t post links to that which reveals questionable taste on the part of our membership?

      Appropriate, in this case.

    18. Somehow Jeff’s comments were getting trapped by the Akismet spam filter. Don’t know why. Released them.

    19. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 12:51 pm said:

      Ah, now it shows up (belatedly), much to my further embarrassment. I will shut up now. I have a flight to catch, gentlemen.

    20. jeff on May 9, 2008 at 12:55 pm said:

      But one last link before I go, from our resident champion of pop culture:

    21. Oh, I cried Sunday night during Cranford on Masterpiece when “Miss Deborah” (Eileen Atkins’ character) flouted social taboo to walk beside her young neighbor as she followed her sister’s coffin to the graveyard, thus disabling Cranford’s opprobrium.

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