Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Monkey See, Monkey Say

Monket See, Monkey Say

Monkey See, Monkey Say (2001)

Who wants to actually see our fondness for language originate? Many linguists, echoing irate watchdog groups and a skeptical Noam Chomsky, think the conclusions are more profound when the bonobos script programs and go for the ratings. According to this school, scantily clad hotties frolicking around chimpanzees evoke symbolic communications systems. It’s arbitrary -- this assault on marriage and fricatives. Viewers lack the human brain reason. There’s a surprise. They are like in a big swimming pool. Think STDs. There are schizophrenics and road signs everywhere, and a looming strike in the swamps will have audiences foraging for bimbos. The important buzz is being signed for a water-cooler show -- nixed by religious organizations. Only about 40,000 of them still survive here in the outback. They are wild, but still they congregate at trail intersections to discuss plots that reek of desperation. Anything with sex or smashed plants will lure in young audiences. Critics and execs, grooming their short memories like picked lice, duke it out using behaviorism and bibliographies, but half-naked, rum-soaked seductresses pooh-pooh the impeding void. Eventually, all will agree who should go on the daisies. Don’t you think people are just curious to watch anything? Words are dropped like bad shows and never seen again. Reality is not a fiasco -- it’s high profile and bare bones. Speak up. I saw a monkey point to his butt and talk with his hands. He said: They us.

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Using the "cut-up" composition method popularized by William S. Burroughs, two blocks of text were run through a virtual cut-up machine. The result: a randomly scrambled "found" text mirroring chaos theory and yielding new meanings.

The two texts used here and merged were:
1) an article about teaching sign language to apes--
2) an article on the Fox television show Temptation Island--

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Well, I think I've worked through my fractal/language period binge here. Thanks for indulging me. Back to "normal" blogging tomorrow.

Still, why blog if I can never stretch? But, on the flip side, why read blogs that make you sleepy.

The view in my blog with a view is not fixed. Sometimes it tilts its window and slants its light to politics or culture -- or to poetry and digital art -- or to chaos and nonsense. And, ideally, hopefully, sometimes to Alice Fulton's "third space: the non-binary in-between."

2 comments:

Tim said...

"why blog if I can never stretch?"

Absolutely right. We "stretch" because we see something exciting just a little further away.

It doesn't always turn out to be what we hoped it was, but sometimes it turns out to be even better.

What I like about these is the mental twisting that takes place as you consider what the text is saying. Crazy yet coherent. Frankenprose.

Yikes, watch out for that looming strike in the swamps!

cruelanimal said...

Frankenprose. I like that.

These fractal poems constantly surprise me because they start to make a kind of crazy sense. Like the monster, these sentences arise from "dead" texts and live again -- although lurching sometimes and risking flames.

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