Archive for January 2007
I am thinking about ways to reuse old diaries, of which I am an inveterate buyer and non-user. I get to the second week of January, and, sad to say, the urge to record the minutiae of my daily whatever flags more than somewhat. Consequently I have diaries going back several years, after reading which one might think I’d fallen into a coma for the rest of the year. Yes, I know I could just wait until the dates fall on the same days of the week, but I evidently lack a single scrap of Pepysian genetic material – I don’t think I have it in me to scrupulously record 365 days-worth of daily happenstance. Yet, they are such alluring objects in themselves – the moleskine ones, the Redstone ones, the Dutch architecture one from 2000 that has wonderful photographs from the Netherland Architecture Institute and the Netherlands Photo Archive (now housed at the Nederlands Foto Museum) – that it’s a shame to leave them un(ful)filled.
I’m looking, and I’m not yet sure what I mean by this, precisely, for some off-diary, lateral-thinking, way of ‘keeping’ a diary.
Incidentally, while looking for the Netherlands Photo Archive site, I found this other Dutch photo archive, whence this up-until-recently festive image of ‘Italian movie-star Scila Gabel.’
Grumpy Old Bookman directed me to The Diary Junction, a site to shame all diary-keeping recidivists such as myself, which has data about, and links to extracts from, the diaries of any kind of person one could think of, from Japanese priests to American esayists.
Then he threw on the deck before us whole handfuls of frozen words, which looked like crystallized sweets of different colours. We saw some words gules [red ermine in heraldry], or gay quips, some vert [green], some azure [blue], some sable [yellow], and some or [gold]. When we warmed them a little between our hands, they melted like snow, and we actually heard them, though we did not understand them, for they were in a barbarous language.
Francois Rabelais, Gargantua and Pantagruel. Trans. J. M. Cohen. London: Penguin, 1955. First published in French in 1530-1534. p.569
And, after frozen words, some tumultuous ones:
– from A Tumultuous Assembly: Visual Poems of the Italian Futurists, an exhibition that’s just finished at the Getty Center.