Oh my fucking god,
A fucking update.
-submitted by weredirk
Note the intricate subtleties of meter in this poem. Each line is the exact inverse of the other metrically, every stressed syllable in the first line paired with an unstressed in the second. The trochees of the first line suggesting a forward-pushing momentum, an excitement, an insistence; the iambs of the second evoking disbelief, praise, relief. And each line ends with an orphaned beat after its two disyllables: the stressed “god” in the first line, and the unstressed “date” in the second. Perhaps intended to suggest that this day is a god-date, a divine moment in time? Or is irony at play: the strongly-emphasized “god” is followed by a comma, indicating incompleteness despite the weight of the word preceding it; while the relatively less emphatic “date” in “update” is followed by a period, which antagonizes the weak ending of the word with a forceful punctuational stop, and forces an implication of finality up against the open promise of continuation contained in the literal and implied meaning of “update.”
Note also the repetition of the word “fucking,” and how it again places the lines in symmetrical opposition to each other. In the first line, it is an intruder, unexpectedly disrupting the conventional phrase “oh my god.” But its effect on the meaning of the line is an emphasis of the sentiment, not a disturbance of it. In the second line, the “fucking” is more complex. Instead of intruding, it is necessary. The article “a” (instead of “an”) at the beginning of the line presupposes an adjective; “oh my god” is a syntactically valid phrase, but “a update” is not. We need “fucking” to make the line complete. But this “fucking” is more ambiguous in meaning than the one in the first line. Is it a statement on the quality of the update? An expression of frustration? Or pure enthusiasm? Even though this poem presents itself as objective news, it leaves us with more questions than answers.
And yet, isn’t that fitting? This is where the carefully-constructed pairing of the lines is so important: after we finish the poem, we are compelled to return to its first line, drawn back to the inverted double. And that’s when the true meaning of the poem dawns on us, revealed by the pulling-back gesture necessitated by the simultaneously complex and simple structure. After we read “a fucking update,” we are left worried, confused, uncertain. But then we’re tugged back to the first line: “oh my fucking god.” We realize that our uncertainty is irrelevant, that either way, this excitement that we feel in this moment is meaningful, regardless of the content that provokes it. It isn’t “an update” that is the driving force of this poem. No, the true heart of the poem, and of our emotions, is the sentiment of “oh my fucking god” that the knowledge of said update brings us.
Truly, fearful symmetry.
know what scopophobia is?
- a pathological fear of being seen/watched/drawing attention to yourself in any way, and the judgement/ridicule you feel is attached to it
know what scopophobia ISN’T?
- a fear of eyes.
know what you should be tagging with #scopophobia?
- probably nothing. no static 2-dimensional image on the internet could even come close to evoking the kind of anxiety that comes with being around real live people looking at you and watching you and paying attention to you in a real live public setting. unless its a text post or video that discusses at length someone’s actual experiences dealing with scopophobia that could be uncomfortable or triggering to others who share the condition, i SERIOUSLY DOUBT you’ll find a situation where tagging it is appropriate.
know what you SHOULDN’T be tagging with #scopophobia?
- basically everything that you’re tagging with scopophobia
if you feel deeply unsettled seeing images of eyeballs, or a photo of a person looking at the camera, or anything of that sort, you probably have something entirely different instead of/in addition to scopophobia, such as ommetaphobia (fear of eyes).
this probably sounds a lot angrier than i intended but i am getting really goddamn tired of people mistakenly tagging selfies with scopophobia without even bothering to find out what it actually is? it just feels kind of trivializing to those of us who cant actually function like humans in public without having panic attacks because we feel like the whole world is scrutinizing our every word and action
"No matter how bad you fuck up at work, you didn’t fucked up this bad"
Will I ever get over Gnomon? ….No, probably no. Also I hate the background, I suck at backgrounds. Sorry.
Me (located in Iceland) and my friend (located in New Zealand) made the biggest sandwich of all time.
The Large Plane Trees (Road Menders at Saint-Rémy) - Vincent van Gogh
Well, authors invite this—or at least authors like me do, by putting so much of our personal selves online and engaging in conversations outside stories, so it’s a little unfair to be like, “Follow me on tumblr and twitter and youtube and instagram, but NEVER TRY TO FIND MY INSIDE MY NOVELS.” As a reader, I find it impossible to ignore the author when they’re someone I know, whether online or off.
Also, we live in a quote culture: We see quotes all day across the Internet, and those quotes almost never come with real context. Like, the protagonist of Katherines says, “What’s the point of being alive if you don’t at least try to do something remarkable?” Now, I don’t think that’s a problematic approach to life, and I hope during the course of the novel Colin comes around to the idea that there’s great meaning and joy in the so-called unremarkable life. (As if anything on this planet overflowing with life is unremarkable.) But as I get older, I find myself less and less annoyed about the inevitable decontextualization that accompanies quotation. If people find something useful, okay.
It’s so very hard to separate yourself as a person from your work, no matter what kind of work you do. (e.g.: As a high school student, I was disengaged and sloppy with occasional moments of promise, which to me meant that as a person I was disengaged and sloppy with moments of promise. But really, who you are in your job or education is not exactly who you are.) But I am not my work. It is up to other people, if they are so kind as to read and watch the stuff I make, to judge its quality and/or usefulness. The core things I am—a husband, a father, a brother, a son, a nerdfighter, a friend, etc.—are not dependent on my books being any good. Thank God for that.
I don’t think I answered your question. Sorry. The only answer I have to your question is that I believe books belong to their readers.