Thursday, April 10, 2008

This is for me,

but, despite my only child status, I did learn to share. And so, you can come on this fantastic fashion adventure with me. While it serves as an experiment in narcissism for me, it can be an exploration of voyeurism to you.

I want to be able to look back and see myself, my life, my existence in the most literal and material form possible. I think this relevant to my scholarly interests, but also to my personal obsession with life and how people (I) embody myself, my life, my existence. This is a 21st century journal, but I've sprinkled in modernity. I am questioning the very essence of identity and--if I may be so bold--authenticity. Do not misread or hand me credit unwarranted; I am in this for myself because I am obsessed with it (me?). Any and all academic benefits and breakthroughs are nothing more than icing. So, for me, the bar is relatively low. However, I will not short change myself at the same time. Doing, creating, experimenting, living, and experiencing are all things that have been taken for granted by humans for centuries and now are dwindling into nonexistence (ironic?). I refuse to exist and not do (possible?).

Enough about me. What about you? What about you? You is not my interest or my job in this endeavor. Don't be fooled! That does not mean that there does not exist limitless possibility and opportunity for you to benefit from my eccentric behavior. Voyeurism is, in my opinion, not studied nearly enough. Perhaps (am I insane?) not practiced nearly enough. This is a chance for you to engage in legal, yet secretive spying. To what end? Well, I never would think that any human person could literally have interest in what I do, embody, see, appear as, think, or experience. But, I think one may lack a certain layer of humanity if one does not desire to study those aspects of any human person in general. The life and times of someone else can be of interest. I argue it should be. And, to be able to turn around one year from now and say that you experienced a relationship (this experiment lacks appropriate vocabulary, but communitarian is inherently limited and we work with what we have) in a new and scary/entertaining/modern way which has allowed for development beyond (or, at least different from) ones you have experienced up until this point. We can call this way of knowing "stylized transparency," because that term sounds sexy, and I am desperately trying to make a sell.

Now that we have a foundational understanding of what this is theoretically (academically?), let's dig in and define. All good pragmatists ask the question, "What does that look like?"

Prepare to be disappointed. I promise you the world and all that is new wave education, give it an irresistible name, and hype it to all immeasurable heights.
Maybe its simplicity is its brilliance, after all, brevity is the soul of wit (Shakespeare's Hamlet) and Giotto di Bondone demonstrated his stunning intellect through the drawing of a perfect circle.

I will post every day. Every single day. This entire enterprise loses all validity if a single 24 hour period is denied its due attention. There will be a loose (and somewhat negotiable) format for each of these posts (of course, excluding this one) which will aid in the overall experimental tone of this blog. One fixed element is a must, and this is the photograph. Everyday I will post a photograph of myself, taken that day. More than any other aspect of this process this is the backbone and foundation. This will serve several ends including, but not limited to:
What narrative can be told of any single person though a photograph every day over an extended period? Countless, I would imagine.
Can photos lie? Make arguments? Persuade? Or tell a story? Words are slippery and language ambiguous. What then of a picture ? (Don't throw me that 1,000 words shit;
cliches are for the weak.) Visual rhetoric is being called into question through the vernacular (Olson, Hauser don't look--this is just play, I promise.).
Does a person (will I) visibly age in a year's time? I feel that they do (I will). Now, I get to chronicle it; you get to view it.
How does one capture space and time? There is no one, good, or right answer to this. But, we can try.

So, that is justification for the photograph, what I consider to be the most important ingredient I have considered thus far. Other elements will take shape and be introduced over time, including quotations from that day, the temperature and weather conditions, my location, headline news, and what has been most greatly occupying my mind since the last post.

And, finally (for now) some closing thoughts. Technology will destroy us. So, am I surrendering? No, no I'm not. Because I am not a fan of Audry Lorde, and I believe that the master's tools can, will, and must dismantle the master's house. This is one small step: a study in humanity utilizing technology. The physical disarmed through the digital. Technology will only ever serve us as a tool. Here, our quest is for the human spirit itself. The nature of beauty, even. My goals, remember, are not so lofty. I just want to take a few hours on April 11th, 2009 to look back on what I've been and who I am, without the assistance of a (literal) mirror. (But, if we have a breakthrough along the way, I won't argue.)

And we're off...prepare for greatness. I beg you for your help. Visit often and regularly. Or don't. But, I truly believe that any possibility of "success" for this project lies in your effort and not mine. I fear I care too much about this for it to ever work. Such is life. We begin tomorrow.

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