dimanche 23 janvier 2022










 




WISDOM WITHIN

You contain myriad worlds and vast knowledge. Each one of your cells has the ability to recreate itself and the ability to change. Although many of the processes that take place within you do not seem to be under your conscious control, that does not negate the fact that they are part of you. Your ordinary consciousness is a small part of your being, merely a current majority opinion resulting from your experience. If you invest your identity in your opinions, you are limiting your capacity and your reality.



ZEN
Without
Zen Masters
by
Camden
Benares

samedi 22 janvier 2022

Chrissie HyndeIn 1976 I went to every club every night, with my guitar. I just walked around the streets looking for someone to get a band together. I was desperate and determined. Everybody I knew had a band together by now. Even people who I showed how to play a few chords! And I was like holding out waiting for my band. And I knew when I found my guys they were going to be right.
McLaren, to his credit, didn’t want anyone showing his guys how to play. He certainly didn’t want me showing Rotten how to play guitar! McLaren didn’t know much about music but he was certainly a visionary. He wanted his poet, and his struggling musicians who could just make a sound. And of course, musicianship killed off punk. Because as soon as they learned how to play, they couldn’t play punk any more.


Punk Rock An Oral History 
John Robb & Lars Fredriksen 


 


Looking at reality is like trying to stare at both ends of a very long stick at the same time. Our minds function in such a way as to see first one side and then another of a concept. We see the black on the white background or the white on the black in the famous optical illusions used to illustrate Gestalt theories of perception, whereas it is virtually impossible to see both at once.

Zen Buddhists have sensed as much since ancient times. What they have also realized is that while the history of something may be necessary or at least helpful in coming to terms with it, that much alone is usually insufficient. Likewise, although abstracting the essential principles of a process can communicate a mechanistic sense of what it does and does not include, there are times at which that is a little like outlining a story plot and presenting it in place of a whole novel. Also, sometimes the more concisely a principle or an idea is stated the more it tends, even if memorized, to go “in one ear and out the other”.

In the teaching of Zen, Taoism, Hasidic Judaism and Sufism the use of brief, often humorous anecdotes serve to transmit glimpses from a multitude of angles and for a profusion of varying minds. Great spiritual teachers like Jesus and Ramakrishna of course employed the similar technique of the parable and illustrative anecdotes are valued in all types of education. There is however, a flavor most known in connection with the Zen story — a hint of mindfucking absurdism approaching conceptual art of the surrealist school which, when adopted by anarchism, transforms it into Zenarchy.

Zenarchy
Kerry Thornley
1991

 


 



Lower East Side Rock and Radicalism


 When Ed Sanders signed the lease for his Peace Eye Bookstore in late 1964, at 383 East Tenth Street, Beat hero Tuli Kupferberg was already living next door, above the Lifschutz Wholesale Egg Store. They first met in 1962 outside the Charles Theatre on Avenue B, where Jonas Mekas screened underground films and Kupferberg was selling copies of his magazine Birth to the audience. Sanders let Kupferberg publish a poem in Fuck You/A Magazine of the Arts and the two attended poetry readings at Café Le Metro, where Andy Warhol and Gerard Malanga mixed with literary heavyweights like Allen Ginsberg. After these readings, everyone congregated at a dance bar on St. Mark’s Place called the Dom—formerly a Polish wedding and social hall—where Sanders suggested to Kupferberg that they should form a band.


“Tuli was truly a hippy,” Jim Fouratt said. “A hippie poet, and older. The Fugs came out of the folk scene and the old Beat scene.” Ginsberg referred to Kupferberg in his poem Howl as the man “who jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge . . . and walked away unknown and forgotten into the ghostly daze of Chinatown.” (In fact, it was the Manhattan Bridge.) Sanders had seen photos of Kupferberg in books and knew the lore about his jump, which Kupferberg didn’t like to talk about. “Throughout the years,” he recalled, “I have been annoyed many times by ‘O did you really jump off the Brooklyn Bridge?’ as if that was a great accomplishment. Remember I was a failure at the attempt.”


Sanders suggested various band names such as the Yodeling Socialists and the Freaks, but it was Kupferberg who came up with the Fugs—fug was a term that writer Norman Mailer had used as a euphemism for fuck in his novel The Naked and Dead. With a name secured, their next order of business was to write songs. Sanders had been setting William Blake poems to music since his days of sitting in Washington Square Park as an NYU student, and he was more a poet than a rocker.


“Sanders looked exactly like Mark Twain,” Village Voice rock critic Richard Goldstein recalled, “this ratty midwestern look.” Poet Andrei Codrescu concurred on the likeness, adding, “He was also from Missouri. There is a kind of a localism there that I picked up later—where they say the most incredible things, and you just can’t be sure if they are serious.” Sanders was a great confabulator, and his personality, as expressed in Fuck You and the Fugs, was a seamless mix of earnestness and whimsy. “I don’t think I took the Fugs seriously as music. I just liked the scene, but I didn’t really listen to it as music,” said Goldstein. “But the idea of Blake’s ‘Ah! Sun-flower! / weary of time’ as a rock song was amazingly unusual.”


Kupferberg knocked out several songs—including “Jack Off Blues,” ‘That’s Not My Department,” and “Hallucination Horrors”—while Sanders contributed an homage to Ginsberg’s Howl titled “I Saw the Best Minds of My Generation Rot” and several naughty numbers such as “Group Grope.” Soon after, the Holy Modal Rounders teamed up with Ed Sanders and company to create the first incarnation of the Fugs. “Someone told me Sanders and Tuli had written a bunch of songs like ‘Coca-Cola Douche’ and ‘Bull Tongue Clit,’ ” Stampfel recalled. “So I went to listen at the Peace Eye Bookstore, and I saw that the only instrument was Ken Weaver playing a hand drum. So I said, ‘Hey, you can use a backup band.’ It was an obvious thing to put together, so that’s how Steve Weber and I started playing with them.”


After signing a deal with Folkways Records, the band recorded their first album in April 1965. Along with several original songs, the Fugs included two Blake poem adaptations on their Harry Smith–produced debut, The Village Fugs Sing Ballads of Contemporary Protest, Point of Views, and General Dissatisfaction. In addition to live gigs and vinyl records, the group could also be heard on free-form radio shows. Their performance of “Carpe Diem” at a Judson Church memorial service for comedian Lenny Bruce, for example, was recorded by Bob Fass and aired on WBAI (Bob Dylan, Allen Ginsberg, Abbie Hoffman, and many other musicians, poets, and political activists also made appearances on Fass’s show over the years).


The Fugs rehearsed at the Peace Eye Bookstore, where they recorded the number “Spontaneous Salute to Andy Warhol” during a rehearsal, which appeared on a later Fugs release. “Warhol came to a number of Fugs performances,” Sanders said. By the end of the summer of 1965, they played an antiwar benefit at the Bridge Theatre titled “Night of Napalm,” which Warhol attended. After playing “Kill for Peace” and “Strafe Them Creeps in the Rice Paddy, Daddy,” they enacted a ritual dubbed “The Fugs Spaghetti Death”—for which they boiled pots of noodles and filled a wastebasket with them.


Food fight!


Chanting the phrase “No Redemption,” the band flung pasta at the audience and themselves, slipping and sliding in the noodles onstage. “I spotted Andy Warhol in the front row,” Sanders recalled. “It appeared that he was wearing a leather tie—then blap! I got him full face with a glop of spaghetti.” Stampfel noted that these sorts of unvarnished performances helped sow the seeds of punk. “The idea that you have no knowledge of music whatsoever but you have an attitude, and you just do it,” he said. “Like, you’re not technically ready for it, but you just go for it. In 1976, the Ramones go to England and everyone thinks punk is invented then, but there’s this whole twenty-five-year lineage that starts with the Harry Smith Anthology and goes through the Fugs.”




The Downtown Pop Undeground
New York City and the literary punks, renegade artists, DIY filmmakers, mad playwrights, and rock ‘n’ roll glitter queens who revolutionized culture 
by Kembrew McLeod




vendredi 21 janvier 2022


 


 






From the Velvets to the Voidoids - The Birth of American Punk
Clinton Heylin

 And I'm not going to try to please
Eyes that just don't see
If I get myself together
You'll have the blues not me

You that never done nothin'
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it's your little toy


 

jeudi 20 janvier 2022


 




 I’ve only ever been in love with a beer bottle and a mirror.
Sid Vicious


I’ve moved out of Davis Road into a huge artist’s studio in Fulham. I have the downstairs studio and Jane Ashley has the upstairs one. It’s only £10 a week rent because it’s subsidised for artists. It’s as big as a bus garage with a double-height ceiling, huge doors onto a courtyard and no windows or furniture, except my mattress – which I found in a skip – up on the little mezzanine.

I’m lying on the mattress now, with Johnny Rotten. We’ve ended up in bed together a couple of times, but usually we’re with loads of other people because we’ve all missed the last tube home and there are no night buses to the other side of town. It’s not very private up here; John Grey, Rotten’s mate from Finsbury Park (Johnny never goes anywhere without a mate) is downstairs. Iggy Pop’s The Idiot is playing on the record player.

I’ve always found Rotten attractive, I like his paleness and androgyny and we get along well, but there’s never been any hint of us getting together. I’m with Mick anyway, or should be. Am I with Mick now? I can’t remember, we split up and get together again so often, I lose track. Hopefully we’re on a break. Anyway here I am, and here John is, on my mattress with all our clothes on. We gossip about Sid for a bit and when we run out of conversation, John asks me to go down on him.

I’ve never given anyone a blow job before – really, I haven’t. I suppose I should’ve done by now; I’m twenty-two. I’ve snuffled around down there enough times, but I haven’t actually tried to make a guy come by sucking him off. I think the main reason I haven’t given anyone a blow job is that I’ve never seen porn. Nor have my girlfriends. We reckon it degrades and objectifies women. Where’s the turn-on in that? Anyway, I’ve never looked at my own vagina and I’m not interested in looking at anyone else’s.

You can only get to see porn films at special cinemas in Soho, and I wouldn’t waste the money just to have a laugh, I’d rather go round someone’s flat and play records. I’ve learnt a bit about sex from watching films like Last Tango in Paris, Andy Warhol’s Trash and Heat, and a Dennis Potter series on TV (I didn’t bother with Deep Throat or Emmanuelle, they sounded dull), but I know these aren’t average people in everyday situations, so I just watch them like I’m watching a nature programme, not sure what’s acceptable or not. (Butter up the arse?) When I was at school, a boy would sometimes bring in a magazine he’d found under his dad’s bed and flash pictures at the girls – I acted all snooty, like I didn’t have those bits on my body. It was the only way I could deal with the embarrassment. Things have changed over the last six months: all of a sudden, every guy you know is trying to get you to go down on him, in the toilets of a club, in an alleyway, in the bathroom of a squat. It’s not exactly presented in an appealing way, to make you want to do it, more like something to get out of doing. Blow jobs and hand jobs are considered acceptable because no emotional involvement or eye contact is needed. Full-on sex isn’t so popular, anti-emotion is the prevailing doctrine.

John has no idea how inexperienced I am, or that it’s my first time giving a blow job. From the outside I look very confident and sexually experienced. I think to myself, I’ll give it a go. I’ve just got to lick it and suck it. How difficult can it be?

I slide down to his crotch. He gets his willy out. He smells of stale piss. So do I. We all do. I like it – it’s familiar. That smell is nice and cosy to me. None of us wash before or after sex. It doesn’t occur to us. It’s not very spontaneous to hustle off to the bathroom and then present yourself smelling of Wright’s Coal Tar soap (Cussons Imperial Leather if you really want to impress). I’m not squeamish about bodily smells, I’ve grown up with them. I expect it to smell different down there and to be dark and hairy. Maybe even a bit crispy if you haven’t been home for a few days. That’s the whole point: it’s mixed up with, and close to, all your most basic functions. I may not have given a blow job before, but I know what smegma is. I’ve known that word since I was thirteen. I’ve seen it on almost every knob I’ve ever encountered.

I tentatively start sucking.

After a little while of licking away, I hear an imperious voice from on high, like Kenneth Williams mixed with the Artful Dodger – you know, that nasal North London whine – ‘Stop it, Viv.’ I look up. What’s he want? I’m busy down here. ‘Stop it, Viv,’ he says. ‘You’re trying too hard.’

I laugh, but I’m mortified. I wipe my mouth on the back of my hand and sit up. John zips it away and we go downstairs to join John Grey – did he hear everything? It could have been worse I suppose, he could have said, ‘Stop it, Viv, you’re useless.’

I make us all a cup of tea; John and John drink it and leave. I cringe inside, imagining them laughing at me as they walk to the tube station.

I’m still cringing now.


Viv Albertine
Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys.

At our first band meeting, Sid told me that his name is John Beverley but everyone calls him Sid Vicious because he’s got into a few fights. He tried spelling his name with a y (copying Syd Barrett) for a bit, but nobody took any notice and now he just writes it as ‘Sid’.

Sid’s demeanour is sheepish and bashful; he stands with his shoulders hunched – like people who are embarrassed about their height, as if he wants to minimise his presence in a room. He talks like that too – although he has a deep masculine voice, he mumbles shyly, he’s almost coquettish. He acts the clown, the village idiot, like Ollie in Laurel and Hardy: he’s no fool so he must want people to underestimate him. Maybe he thinks it gives him an advantage. Sid’s whole persona is a mask, which is weird because he despises fakery and bullshit. He makes me think of that Jamaican expression, ‘Play fool, get wise.’ He’s watching everything and listening to everyone, but tries not to let on how clever he is.

Sid swears a lot and spits all the time. Once when we were waiting for the night bus in Trafalgar Square we were bored so he tried to teach me how to spit. Not propelling the spit through the gap in your front teeth like skinheads spit, but coughing it up from the back of your throat, curling your tongue into a channel and blowing. It only looks good if you get a nice clean ball of spit and project it a long way. If any of it dribbles down your chin you’ve failed of course. I think it’s called flobbing. I was useless. Couldn’t do it. It made Sid smile to see me try. He never laughs out loud, just smiles or smirks. He doesn’t give away much about himself and he’s never completely relaxed; consequently I don’t feel relaxed when I’m with him, even though he’s always very polite to me. We go everywhere together but it’s a bit strained between us, overly respectful, and I always have a little knot of tension and anxiety in my chest. The conversation between us doesn’t flow, he isn’t a flowy sort of guy, he’s stilted and monosyllabic and seems to relish the awkward atmosphere. There’s a physical attraction between us but we never talk about it or act on it.

One day we’re bored and Sid has the idea that we should handcuff ourselves together. ‘For a laugh,’ he says. Everything is ‘for a laugh’. It’s the only reasonable justification for doing anything. Any other reason is pretentious. It’s a good idea but I feel sick at the thought of it. I can’t be seen to be scared of anything, or worse still, embarrassed, so I agree. Now we have a mission, something to occupy us for the day. We travel to the depths of South London, to Queenstown Road, where there’s a hardcore gay sex shop called the London Leatherman. (There are rumours that this is where the Cambridge rapist bought his leather face mask.) We stand outside on the busy main road, lorries thundering past, honking their horns at us because we’re dressed in black leather with studs with spiky hair. Sid raps on the heavy wooden door. It looks like the door to a castle or a dungeon. It’s a door to keep people out. A little hatch slides open and a guy looks at us. He flicks his eyes up and down, giving us the once-over, then slides the hatch shut and unbolts the door. The guys in the shop look puzzled. They’re not very friendly but they tolerate us because we’re obviously outsiders too.

We buy a set of handcuffs. Sid can’t wait to get outside so we can chain ourselves together. There’s a bit of a tussle between us on the pavement about who gets to hold the key. I insist it’s me but as he’s stronger, he wins the fight; he’s very smug about that. Once we’re chained together, we realise we haven’t got anything to do, nowhere to go, so we just get on and off buses, pulling each other up and down the stairs to the top deck, ignoring people who stare at us. We decide to go round Barry’s house (Barry Black, big record collector and runs the Roxy club) and sit there for a while listening to records. Sid drinks tea. I refuse the tea, I haven’t eaten or drunk anything all day because I’m very shy about bodily functions and would rather die than go to the bathroom in front of Sid, which is of course what he’s hoping for and smirking about. He loves to make people feel uncomfortable. He yanks me off to the bog and pisses in front of me. I stand half out of the room and don’t watch, I think he gets off on doing it, he doesn’t wash his hands afterwards. I’m so happy when the day is over. Life is a series of excruciating tests for me, and Sid enjoys putting me through them.

Getting a minicab to the Speakeasy club in Soho one night, we are just about to leave my place when Sid goes, ‘Can I wear your jeans?’ My heart sinks; those jeans have an old period stain that I can’t get out, I didn’t wash them soon enough after it happened. I can’t possibly let Sid see that, he’ll never let me forget it. ‘You look good as you are. Anyway, they’ll be too short for you,’ I say. ‘Yeah,’ he says. Phew. We get into the cab but just as the driver is pulling away Sid says, ‘I’ve forgotten something.’ He nips out and runs back into the house. He comes out a minute later, grinning all over his face, wearing my jeans. I could kill him. Now he knows why I didn’t want him to wear them. I stare out of the window for the whole car journey. He chats away, knowing he’s winding me up. He doesn’t tease me about the blood stain, that’s left unsaid.

Sid hasn’t got many clothes, none of us have much that is acceptable to be seen in, no shops sell what we like except Sex, and it’s so expensive we only have one or two things from there. Sid has two pairs of trousers: holey, faded jeans and a pair of red pegs – they’re wool and have a little silver thread running through them, zoot-suitish, pleated at the waist, wide-legged, tapering in quite narrow at the bottom. He wears them with brothel creepers, a bit David Bowie and a bit 1950s. Some of the boys still have this look, Malcolm McLaren and John Rotten wear it sometimes too – it’s left over from Too Fast To Live Too Young To Die, the teddy-boy shop Malcolm and Vivienne Westwood had before Sex. I never went there, didn’t know about it.

One day Sid turns up in the peg trousers and they’re in ribbons. He’d sliced them up with a razor blade because he hated them so much but he couldn’t find his jeans so when he wanted to go out he had to stick them back together. He joined the rips with loads of safety pins, all the way down his legs, hundreds of them. That’s how the ‘loads of safety pins’ thing started amongst people in clubs: they copied it, but he only did it because he couldn’t be bothered to sew his trousers up.

A while later Sid came round to Davis Road in a new pair of black bondage trousers, said he’d gone into Sex and Vivienne told him she couldn’t bear looking at him in those disgusting trousers a minute longer, she made him take them off, gave him a pair of bondage trousers for free and threw the red ones away. I’m really jealous, Vivienne must really like him to do that. She doesn’t usually give stuff away.

Whenever Sid gets his dole money he treats me to a Wimpy burger and chips. He never has anything to do and wants to tag along to art school with me, but I say no because I know he’ll embarrass me. I love Wimpy burgers and I’m always hungry so when he says, ‘I’ll buy you Wimpy and chips on the way in, if you let me come with you,’ I can’t resist. It’s such a treat and we can’t usually afford it – everyone has their price I suppose. So we get burger and chips for breakfast and then he lumbers along next to me up Shepherd’s Bush Road to art college.

He sits in on the lectures, they’re about warp and weft, knitting machines and pattern cutting, things like that. Sid slouches so low in the chair he almost slides off, long arms dangling by his sides, skinny legs stretched way out in front of him, foot shaking like he’s on speed. Not a discreet presence at all. Then he picks his nose and farts and burps loudly all through the talk. After this happens a couple of times, he’s banned from the college and I’m told by the head of year not to bring him in any more. This is actually a relief for me. Not that Sid will take no for an answer – I have to be very firm with him to make sure he doesn’t come to college again. Whenever we’re together, even if I’m a bit fed up with him and ask him to give me a bit of space, he won’t go away. He doesn’t care, he’s not hurt, he just does what he wants. He thinks it’s funny.

I never see Sid with a girl. There’s a very young girl we call Wiggy, she wears a grey shaggy wig and has a sweet face, looks about fourteen years old and I think they fiddle about together sometimes. I think Soo Catwoman and him had a tryst, and that’s it. No flirting, no talking about girls, no interest shown. I think he’s shy and inexperienced: unless a girl grabs hold of him, he never makes a move.

Often when Sid turns up at my place he rushes past me at the front door, races upstairs to the bathroom and looks for stray pubic hairs. I know it’s childish and shouldn’t matter, but it makes me want to die if he finds one in the bath or on the loo seat. If he does, he laughs hysterically and teases me about it for hours. That’s what it’s like with him: find a weak point in someone, then pull them to pieces. To help me stay cool and cope with the embarrassment I imagine it’s Alan’s pube, I act like it couldn’t possibly be mine and I don’t know what he’s talking about. There are times when the doorbell rings and I think with dread about the bathroom and sometimes I even run in there to check it before opening the front door. You never know who’s going to be at the door – if someone comes over it’s spontaneous, because we don’t have a telephone.

The worst situation Sid ever gets me into is when we go to meet some aristocrat he’s come across somewhere. Sid thinks it’s amusing that this toff wants to hang out with us and buy us drinks at his private club in Kensington Church Street. We often get invited to things like this, as if we’re a couple of freaks to be paraded around.

We meet Posh Boy and his posh mate at a pub on Kensington Church Street and I don’t know how it happens, but an argument starts. I’ve got a feeling I started it because I feel safe with Sid here; if I were on my own I’d be more cautious. I say something provocative to Posh Boy, he threatens me with violence, and the next thing I know, Sid’s whipped off his studded belt, wrapped it around his fist and smashed Posh Boy over the head with the buckle end. Splits his head open. (Sid taught me this move: wrap the tongue of the belt round your hand, use the buckle as the weapon, it’s important to lock your arm straight whilst you wield the belt, and do the worst thing you can think of first. That’s the only chance you’ve got.) We all leap up from the table, Sid legs it up the road and I’m left with Posh Boy, blood pouring out of his face.

Whenever Sid gets his dole money he treats me to a Wimpy burger and chips. He never has anything to do and wants to tag along to art school with me, but I say no because I know he’ll embarrass me. I love Wimpy burgers and I’m always hungry so when he says, ‘I’ll buy you Wimpy and chips on the way in, if you let me come with you,’ I can’t resist. It’s such a treat and we can’t usually afford it – everyone has their price I suppose. So we get burger and chips for breakfast and then he lumbers along next to me up Shepherd’s Bush Road to art college.

He sits in on the lectures, they’re about warp and weft, knitting machines and pattern cutting, things like that. Sid slouches so low in the chair he almost slides off, long arms dangling by his sides, skinny legs stretched way out in front of him, foot shaking like he’s on speed. Not a discreet presence at all. Then he picks his nose and farts and burps loudly all through the talk. After this happens a couple of times, he’s banned from the college and I’m told by the head of year not to bring him in any more. This is actually a relief for me. Not that Sid will take no for an answer – I have to be very firm with him to make sure he doesn’t come to college again. Whenever we’re together, even if I’m a bit fed up with him and ask him to give me a bit of space, he won’t go away. He doesn’t care, he’s not hurt, he just does what he wants. He thinks it’s funny.

I never see Sid with a girl. There’s a very young girl we call Wiggy, she wears a grey shaggy wig and has a sweet face, looks about fourteen years old and I think they fiddle about together sometimes. I think Soo Catwoman and him had a tryst, and that’s it. No flirting, no talking about girls, no interest shown. I think he’s shy and inexperienced: unless a girl grabs hold of him, he never makes a move.

Often when Sid turns up at my place he rushes past me at the front door, races upstairs to the bathroom and looks for stray pubic hairs. I know it’s childish and shouldn’t matter, but it makes me want to die if he finds one in the bath or on the loo seat. If he does, he laughs hysterically and teases me about it for hours. That’s what it’s like with him: find a weak point in someone, then pull them to pieces. To help me stay cool and cope with the embarrassment I imagine it’s Alan’s pube, I act like it couldn’t possibly be mine and I don’t know what he’s talking about. There are times when the doorbell rings and I think with dread about the bathroom and sometimes I even run in there to check it before opening the front door. You never know who’s going to be at the door – if someone comes over it’s spontaneous, because we don’t have a telephone.

The worst situation Sid ever gets me into is when we go to meet some aristocrat he’s come across somewhere. Sid thinks it’s amusing that this toff wants to hang out with us and buy us drinks at his private club in Kensington Church Street. We often get invited to things like this, as if we’re a couple of freaks to be paraded around.

We meet Posh Boy and his posh mate at a pub on Kensington Church Street and I don’t know how it happens, but an argument starts. I’ve got a feeling I started it because I feel safe with Sid here; if I were on my own I’d be more cautious. I say something provocative to Posh Boy, he threatens me with violence, and the next thing I know, Sid’s whipped off his studded belt, wrapped it around his fist and smashed Posh Boy over the head with the buckle end. Splits his head open. (Sid taught me this move: wrap the tongue of the belt round your hand, use the buckle as the weapon, it’s important to lock your arm straight whilst you wield the belt, and do the worst thing you can think of first. That’s the only chance you’ve got.) We all leap up from the table, Sid legs it up the road and I’m left with Posh Boy, blood pouring out of his face.

Posh Boy grabs me by the hair – a clump of it in his fist, like I’m an animal – and drags me up the road looking for Sid, to kill him. I’m a hostage. I am so humiliated: I’ve never been treated like such a piece of dirt before. No doubt Posh Boy feels the same after being smashed across the head by Sid.

The three of us – Posh Boy fuming and covered in blood, holding me by my hair, me bent over and hobbling along in a subservient position next to him, and Posh Boy’s mate, scurrying to keep up – go raging up and down Kensington Church Street. No sign of Sid. Posh Boy lets go of my hair for a second and I dash into a boutique and ask the shop assistants to protect me. They aren’t too happy about it, but I refuse to go back outside. I hide at the back of the shop for ages until the posh boys go away.

When I poke my head out into the street to check the coast is clear, there’s Sid, looking for me. I’m quite touched because most of the time he has no code of conduct. I apologise to him for putting him in a situation where he felt he had to defend me. I’ve learnt my lesson; from now on I’ll keep my mouth shut and not invite trouble. Things can get out of hand so quickly, especially with Sid around. I also decide never to wear heels again when I’m out with him. I go to Holt’s in Camden Town and buy a pair of black Dr Martens. (You can get them in black, brown or maroon, the skinhead boys at school used to buy the brown ones and polish them with Kiwi Oxblood shoe polish – this gives them a deep reddish brown colour, much subtler than the flat red of the originals. They also kept them pristinely clean and polished at all times.) I wear my new boots with everything – dresses, tutus – it’s a great feeling to be able to run again. No other girls wear DMs with dresses, so I get a lot of funny looks. (Skinhead girls only wear DMs with Sta-Prest trousers. With their boring grey skirts, they wear plain white or holey ecru tights and black patent brogues.) But as I wear them all the time to clubs and pubs, it eventually catches on with other girls and I don’t look so odd.

Sid always says he isn’t a violent person, that he’s a useless fighter, he’d rather run away from a fight than confront someone, violence is a last resort. But ‘Sid Vicious’ is becoming a persona he can’t shake off, and he lets the myth build, plays up to it. After a while, because of his name and reputation, he’s getting attacked everywhere he goes: guys want to take him on. He doesn’t care. Everything he does he takes as far as he can. He detaches himself from fear, remorse, caring about his safety or his looks and just becomes a vessel for other people’s fantasies about him, like Paul Newman in Cool Hand Luke. His attitude is, Let’s see how far this thing goes. Test it to destruction.


Viv Albertine
Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys.

mercredi 19 janvier 2022


 



 ‘It's like finding a flower in a dumpster,’ someone said to me, walking together after midnight.
We were talking about trauma. About the terrible things people do to one another. About the unavoidable, seemingly insurmountable legacies of trauma — that which we've endured, and that which we and/or our ancestors have perpetrated. Colonisation and land theft, slavery, rape, genocide, war, torture. Misogyny and sexism, racism, ableism and madphobia, transphobia and transmisogyny, poverty. Devastation. The scope of all this pain and the daily mundaneness of it, too. Inescapable.
We were trying to find the good in the world, the flower in the dumpster.
The conversation began when I mentioned how often men catcall me, how often men approach me on the street, hit on me, harass me, take my photo. How often they refuse to ignore me, refuse to leave me alone. How often they refuse to hear my no when they try to ask me out, try to get my number. How often they follow me, follow me home.
I was talking about how I like meeting strangers, like talking to people on the street, sometimes even — gasp! — like talking to men, but that with all the trauma they've caused me and my friends, caused so many, caused the world, everything I can't know about a stranger and their intentions makes this feel impossible.
All the devastation.
I don't think it's impossible, though. I'm a witch. I don't think anything is impossible. I've cast impossible spells and watched them come true. I've survived too much to refuse belief.
And I find signs. I find signs everywhere. I slink around the city collecting what I need from the trash. The sandwiches, the salads, the desserts, the fruits and vegetables, the flowers: they belong to me as much as they belong to the city, as much as I — with my black cat stare and crooked-body, my claws and my spells, my friends and my art — belong to the city.
As I prowl through the streets searching for food and treasure, those black cats who appear as symbols of my own strength, luck, and survival, don't just cross my path, don't just share a furtive glance and saunter away. They come right up to me, their paws tickling my toes, nose sniffing my ankles. Their tails spiral and swirl around my body and then around my cane, and I realise my cane is my own tail, too: the magical fifth limb giving me stability and presence, giving me access. Like the brazen squirrels and gutsy raccoons, those underappreciated misfit creatures that cultivate a sense of belonging wherever they go, we each have our fifth limbs holding us steady.
I've never found a single flower in a dumpster. That's true. But after that conversation with my friend, through the devastation, flowers began to appear. But not single flowers, not loner flowers.
Entire fucking bouquets.




Maranda Elizabeth - Trash-Magic: Signs & Rituals for the Unwanted
from: Becoming Dangerous: Witchy Femmes, Queer Conjurers and Magical Rebels on Summoning the Power to Resist


mardi 18 janvier 2022






click to read full size

 


been looking for a copy of this book for a couple years now and finally got to put my hands on one at the ZLibrary over on the DarkNet
Praise the forces of Darkness and the forever rebellious souls working underground without whom this place would be nothing more than a fucking desperate dump !  Hail all the Damned of this world !





dimanche 16 janvier 2022