March 09, 2004


war memorial.jpg

(War memorials usually numb and anger me. The conflation of death and victory is My Eternal Number 0 hit record. Also, any state-sponsored stab at closure gives me both heebies and jeebies, especially the suggestion that the latest round of choreographed violence was somehow productive and now there's peace, as opposed to an interregnum that will be hospitable to shopping. I expect families of war victims feel differently: the statuary and plaques are proof that the people they loved once existed and died for a specific reason. This makes a memorial something like a marriage: a gesture that ritualizes and fixes a personal relationship while simltaneously validating the state's power.

This memorial gets me, though. It is always happening when I look at it. The water and the algae move towards death--or peace, if you think not being conscious is a relief. The solider doesn't look like he'll make it, though I think we're supposed to believe his friends will help him in the forever-delayed next second.

The image seems too grave an accompaniment for the nonsense I post here, but both Spalding's death and the topic of suicide deserve better than photos of ice.)

Justine Wolfenden:

Are you going to say something about Spalding Gray? I'm pretty sad about it, I have to say. I always figured he was smarter than me and now I'm sure. He managed what I could not. All the time I was in NYC trying to die I kept putting it off because I couldn't think of a way that wouldn't inconvenience someone, be it room-mate, cab driver or many, many subway riders. Finally, when I was much recovered, I took the ferry and realised how simple it would be/have been to roll off in the dark.

Moreover, it's free, so no coin for Charon.

However, by that time the ferry or any other means of travelling the mortifera via I might choose was surplus to my requirements. But it had been there all along and I never knew; Spalding did.

Hope he's at peace.

PS: The last and only other time I commented on the death of a public figure was when I posted my own personal eulogy on the Fame Forever website in response to the passing of Gene Anthony Ray. You may laugh but I was quite moved by the public reaction to 'Leroy's' demise. Lord knows what I'll say once 'Bruno' passes over.

Posted by Sasha at March 9, 2004 01:06 PM | TrackBack