Taste

Wee hours of Thursday.

The wet weather continues. I think that with the current trends in psychology, certain good things are being forgotten, or maybe just not discussed anymore. I have a painting by Picasso in my mind called Joie de Vivre, made to celebrate the end of WW2 and remind us of the things that give us happiness. Today’s culture looks upon such things with incomprehension. I remember giving a book of Salvador Dali to a friend who I thought could use it because she had an interest in being an artist. A few days later she returned it to me saying that it was bizarre. But the art really expressed some truths of psychoanalysis that apparently were above her head. At the time, I took the rejection hard, so I gave the book away to St Vinnie’s, now to my regret… It was a beautiful book that I bought from Borders for only twenty dollars, and a very full collection of his paintings… I guess the point is to trust yourself when you find something of great value to you, and persist in the face of the world’s ignorance. Public opinion is cheap and uninformed. Everything is geared towards making money, whether or not they’re selling quality. If nothing gold can stay, then it’s also true that cream rises to the top. In the end it’s not about the money, or the kind of gold I mean is psychological, and what Mephistopheles has to offer in the second part of Faust… When people are blind and obtuse, just consider the source if they say your taste is bizarre. Whoever said taste makes waste was an idiot. 

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Lament

I’ve been meaning to read Jacob’s Room someday. Maybe now is a good time. If only I could warp time back to 1994 and be a student again! I would take a course in Woolf in a second. It’s such a beautiful day, I guess I’ll start Jacob’s Room right now. I want something for inspiration, so Virginia Woolf is a good choice.

Two o’clock. Jacob’s Room is about undergraduate life at Cambridge in 1906. Very intellectual stuff. Some people would hate it for that reason. But Woolf speaks of higher learning very reverently. It’s interesting to see her allusions to the works that constituted the old canon, the one I knew as a student. Now history all but forgotten. Shakespeare was once a towering literary figure. Since the Millennium, just another name. There are no more intellectual giants in our culture, for better or worse. What we once venerated and exalted as great is now on a par with the mediocre. We have proven that crap is king. We’ve dumbed ourselves down. We don’t have to work so hard mentally, thanks to technological progress. We don’t have to think about anything. The answers are all provided. Thus, reading Woolf is like time travel to a better past when there were no computers to do our thinking. No tablets to finish our words for——