Unedited Dialog

Oscar Wilde was said to have spoken like the written word. His spoken sentences were elegant, perfectly structured finished pieces, though he spoke them spontaneously, in the middle of heated conversation. Certainly that is a rare gift. Wasn’t any use to him in the long run anyway.
I love uncut spontaneous interviews. Some of the best thing of this kind I’ve seen is a long interview with the Texas psychedelic punk band Butthole Surfers, in their early years. All of them reclined in a big hotel bed, most likely all stoned out of their minds. Hearing a longer uncut interview gives one a completely different feel for those involved, and you see how the conversation evolves. It may seem chaotic at first, with loose ends all over the damned place, but in the end your impression is far more cohesive. It doesn’t work as well with experienced interviewees, I find, because they start using the same formulations over and over, in order to reduce the effort they have to put in to an interview. It sounds smoother, polished, but they are using stock sentences that can be heard in thousands of interviews. Most interviewers are no better in this respect.
In any case, what got me on this tack was the following, reblogged from Sentence first. Thanks for the pointer.

Sentence first

“Words troubled and failed Andy Warhol,” writes Wayne Koestenbaum on the first page of his psychological portrait of the artist (Penguin Books, 2001), even though Warhol wrote many books, “with ghostly assistance”, and had a distinctive speaking style.

Wayne Koestenbaum - Andy Warhol - Penguin Lives biography book coverKoestenbaum returns several times to Warhol’s relationship with language and with time, for example noting how Warhol’s love of repetition manifested in verbal expression, and remarking on how he “distrusted language” and didn’t understand “how grammar unfolded episodically in linear time, rather than in one violent atemporal explosion”.

I want to quote one passage in particular, from later in the book. Warhol’s magazine Interview, first titled inter/VIEW and then Andy Warhol’s Interview, featured stars interviewing other stars with the results transcribed generously and precisely, without the editing that conventionally turns spontaneous speech into readable prose:

Interview magazine was Andy’s most sustained attempt, after a [a novel], to cross…

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The Dragon of Love

It’ll burn you. Burn the flesh clean off your bones. Bake you so hot you can’t think. Burn you until you start to feel the heat at last. You thought you were hard boiled… hah! You don’t know a thing! There’s nothing that love couldn’t weigh up. Irony? Cynicism? Rage? Murder…? All nothing against the dragon of love. You’ll burn.
You thought love was a sappy thing, a sweet sigh of surrender in the darkness? Meet the dragon. Love is a warrior, an assassin, a knife in the back. The sweetest pain there ever was. Love is the biggest fucking bomb in the universe. A raging berserker. It’ll kill you. All it needs is a glance, and it’ll kill you. You haven’t the slightest chance even if the dragon of love is just a little green iguana like the one in the image above.

Give Me the Ska Beat

I don’t know quite what it is, but music that would otherwise be abhorrent to me sounds great when it’s played with a ska beat. Give me that brass, baby. I dislike jazz, but there are a lot of jazz elements in ska, I don’t care much for hip-hop, but when I listen to ska with hip-hop elements, hey, I like it. Heavy metal can go hang, as far as I am concerned, but combine it with a ska beat, and I am delighted. I recently heard a popular carnival song from Cologne –this is music that can instantly rob me of the desire to live– with a ska beat and those wonderful horns… and I liked it. Can you explain to me why that is?

Plenty of Time

Laughing eyes almost crying, sensitive, inviting, demanding, promising… but we’ve got plenty of time. No hurry, we can eat, drink, talk. Everything is good. Nothing to fetch back… we understand. Everything. It’s all right. Nothing can kill that feeling. Nothing can stop us. Never ever. It’s like ginger and garlic, lemon and pepper… perfect. It’s so good it hurts. It’s hard to believe. It’s: I don’t deserve this. Plenty of time, because it’ll last forever. No need to push it. Just being near is more than enough. Electricity. Insanity. Oh, God, the smell of it.
So, maybe you’ve had that feeling. But when you have it for months on end, you start to believe it. You’ve thrown away the forces of time, like excess ballast. That is what I mean with plenty of time. Nothing to fetch back, and then you know: it’s real. Christ, it’s real, everything you wanted, all that you’ve stayed alive for, all you’ve fought for, no longer hopeless and in vain…! It’s in your fucking lap. It’s in your hand, and you don’t dare close your fist, for fear you’ll crush it.

Here We Are

Well, here we are. Drunk, and alone. Typical situation. So… what shall the topic of conversation be on this fine evening? Drunken loneliness? Lonely drunks? Skunks? Punks? No? You may be thinking: he is alone, poor fucker, and there can be, in light of this fact, no conversation. Wrong. You simply have no fucking idea how many incredible conversations one can have with one’s own little self. Sometimes those are the best conversations of all. No distractions. No silly comments from well-meaning idiots who haven’t the slightest idea. No interruptions, waugh, that is the best! No one to tell me I am wrong! Whoop!
How did I get here? Well, let’s go back in time… two people fuck, a child is born, is christened Mr. Hellstrøm, grows through trials and tribulations to be a middle aged cynical asshole… voilá! Simple as that.
Time isn’t after our asses. Time doesn’t care. The days go by, and it is up to us to fill them with meaning, or with Dada, or with beauty, or with hell.
No matter what you do
The heavens are blue
The rest of your life lies before you