at the ultra-local level i.e. my personal connections through email, phone, and other services, the real question is what data I’ll lose when I change service providers. Most, if not all, my connections date back to the days when the services were under someone else’s name. This may be why I’m no longer connected to some, double-connected to others, etc.
I suspect I’ll lose my iTunes music collection, for instance. Time Machine doesn’t seem to work anymore, in any event. My list of email contacts? Hm…
And so on. Part of the list of nitty-gritty stuff – change of address, insurance, and all the sundry notifications. Those moments when a collection of task-designated robots might come in handy – but imagine the horrors, should one or several of them miss a cue. Scratch that idea.
So: practicalities, woman. One, two, three, A, B, C etc.
Re-reading the first chapter of Dostoevky’s The Idiot. Or the collection of essays by Camus titled L’Envers et l’Endroit. These also belong to practicalities? What can I say? For reasons I still don’t understand, that first chapter has stayed with me, even though I’ve forgotten most of the details of Dostoevsky’s novel – or rather, it has merged with bits from the Brothers Karamazov, and Crime and Punishment. Perhaps what struck me then as it did last night was the contrast between the three characters in that first chapter.
As for Camus, I like what he writes in and about this collection of his first published writings. He was twenty-two years old when the essays were first published. In the preface, he acknowledges all the weaknesses he finds in these first essays. And yet, everything he will attempt to say once he’s a more accomplished writer, is contained in them already.
In French? Yes, the conclusion of the preface : “Oui, rien n’empêche de rêver… puisque du moins je sais cela, de science certaine, qu’une oeuvre d’homme n’est rien d’autre que ce long cheminement pour retrouver par les détours de l’art les deux ou trois images simples et grandes sur lesquelles le coeur, une première fois, s’est ouvert. Voilà pourquoi, peut-être, après vingt années de travail et de production, je continue de vivre avec l’idée que mon oeuvre n’est même pas commencée. Dès l’instant où, à l’occasion de cette réédition, je me suis retourné vers les premières pages que j’ai écrites, c’est cela, d’abord, que j’ai eu envie de consigner ici.”
(Yes, nothing forbids dreaming… since, at least, I know this for a certainty, that a man’s work is nothing other than this long progression to seek out through the detours of art the two or three simple and great images on which the heart opened up for the first time. This is why, maybe, after twenty years of work and production, I continue to live with the thought that my work hasn’t even begun. From the moment where, on the occasion of this re-edition, I turned back to look at the first pages I wrote, this is what I’ve wanted to put down in writing here, first and foremost.)
Next up, writing-wise for me? I don’t know.