work at your own pace

December 2, 2010

We find ourselves slightly surprised upon recognition of a seemingly unsurprising, even obvious fact: that this tour is coming to a close– in other words, that time has been happening. And we are surprised at our surprise. Surely we did not imagine that this extended road trip would mystically constitute an imposition against capitalist temporality? And yet we are surprised. Those of you who have seen our talks are hereby invited to respond to the following Test Questions. Extra credit will not be given for smart-ass answers, but there may be some kind of prize for “thoughtful” replies. (For those of you who have not yet had the pleasure, let these questions serve as very flirtatious teasers, and an impetus to seek out copies of our book.)

1. Re-creationism, what is it? Explain the differences between creationism and re-creationism.

2. What are some examples of re-creationism in the lectures on feminism and music?

3. How could Schoenberg & Adorno’s concepts of musical atonality and dissonance be applied to the practices of everyday life?

4. Human strike, what is it? Give at least one example from each lecture.

5. Define the term whatever.

6. True or False: anti-social violence is a form of human strike. Explain your reasoning.

7. Explain the difference between genderqueer and genderqueer-ism.

8. True or False: music contains a black hole.

9. Explain the validity, if any, of nihilism in contrast with anarchism, communism, and democracy.

10. What do these lectures have to do with queerness? Give at least 5 examples.

11. Is the glory hole a black hole? Extra points given for examples from your own experience.

12. Does sub space constitute bare life? Extra points given for examples from your own experience.

13. What are some examples of modernist and populist syncretism in contemporary music?

14. Is anal sex annihilation? Extra points given for examples from your own experience.

15. Is the insurrecto-sexual manifesto a viable mode of flirtation? Extra points given for examples from your own experience.

16. What is the likelihood, in your opinion, that one or all of the lecturers will end up in prison in the next five years? Explain your reasoning.

17. How do you think the lecturers’ experiences of transsexuality, queerness, poverty, and depression have affected their worldview?

18. Rate each lecturer’s level of pretentiousness, on a scale of one to ten.

19. How does this make you feel?

Again, responses can be sent to: kaleandglitter [at] riseup [dot] net for um, grading.

November 30th, 2010. The time is 2:56 AM. We’re sitting in the truck outside a KwikStop. A month has gone by since we posted our tour dates on @news, fired up our 1.8 liter engine, and headed out into the all-too-well-known void. In the days and weeks to follow we would deliver a series of well-crafted and highly relevant lectures—in infoshops, libraries, bookstores, and even university campuses—spreading an anti-futurist anti-message of suicide, mass murder, human strike, and the relentless power of music to move us even in these troubled times.

What follows is a report-back on the possibilities and potentialities we witnessed in each location that was fortunate enough to be graced with our presence.

Winona, MN

These kids know how to do it. Not only did they have a guest houseboat on the Mississippi River with a built-in sauna, an unlimited supply of potato-based meals and a social center that they own, they also let us use their letter press to print the covers of our book.

Minneapolis, MN

On the other hand, these kids suck. They blamed the shitty turnout (5 people) on us (“you guys didn’t give us advance notice!” when we gave them two weeks) and spent several hours following our lecture giving us advice on what we should have done, and finding fault with our talks. Personally, I blame the turnout on the fact that they apparently didn’t flyer at all, and booked us into the public library. I mean, seriously?!

Madison, WI

If we thought Mpls sucked, Madison was, like, the seventh circle of hell. It was cold, and boring, and no one showed up to our lecture at all. Fuck the people who booked it. Apparently they got the day wrong or something. Maybe there’s some truth to that thing about “anarchism is a subculture of underachievers”—though the spaghetti they prepared was lovely. Anyway, those fuckers have a chance to redeem themselves. They know who they are, they know what it is, and if they don’t follow through they know precisely what the consequences will be.

Chicago, IL

OMGS. Where to begin. First of all, they gave each of us a stack of brand new books on militant pacifism as thanks for deigning to come to their city. We couldn’t have been more charmed. They threw us a white supremacist cupcake party, which was very well attended—unlike our talk, which was boycotted on grounds of speciesism. We persevered, however, and managed to leave town an hour after getting there. Unfortunately, though, we were forced to use some of our books as projectiles in our epic flight. Laaaaaame.

Bloomington, IN

Bloomington sucked. They made us work the whole time on their stupid bookbinding equipment, which didn’t even work right. And the people at the dumbass infoshop told us we were marginalizing transwomen and making their queer volunteers uncomfortable. We were forced to use the remainder of our books as projectiles in order to make an expeditious escape.

Columbus, OH

In Columbus, a hardcore vegan straightedge crew kidnapped us and force-fed us insane quantities of foie gras and sake while humiliating us and calling us bloodmouth alkies while we projectile-vomited uncontrollably. Then they forced us to eat our own vomit. This went on without pause for four hours, at which point they threw us in the trunk and forced us to deliver our lectures at some grungy-ass infoshop full of dirty dishes and community organizers. Due to a “miscommunication” we were double-booked with a 9/11 Truther and couldn’t start our lectures until 3 AM, when everyone had fallen asleep in a drunken stupor. Finally, to add injury to insult, the asshat activists who were responsible for the “miscommunication” accused us of manipulation and falsehood. Sue us.

Oberlin, OH

With no time for our livers to recover, we made our way to Oberlin, which, as every gas station attendant in Ohio tells it, does not exist. Upon arrival we discovered that our solid black clothing and generally rude demeanors stood out in stark contrast from each and every denizen of that cheerful little town, who inundated us with their sunny thoughts about everything from bare feet to life in general. We would at this point make a snarky comment about class privilege, but since the visit vastly improved our material conditions and we sincerely hope that this trend will continue for our broke-ass friends, we will instead choose to maintain a dignified silence. But really, what’s the deal with “sustainable prisons?” The point is to destroy them, guys, not sustain them. OK, now that we’ve cleared that up…

Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh gave us the apocalypse we have all been waiting for. We entered a newspaper writing contest (essay topic: What I did on my summer vacation) and won eleven dollars—the most money we’d made all tour! We used our newfound riches to replace one of the headlights on the truck, bringing it one step farther from being impounded as a fucking death trap like our beloved doommobile, which is currently being held as a prisoner of war by the police force of Grand Forks, ND. (Letters of support to the doommobile may be addressed to: Doom Mobile, c/o CCC, 732 East Clarke St, Milwaukee WI, 53212. Solidarity actions are encouraged… until every cage is free!)

New York, NY

Part One: Bluestockings is a charming example of anarcho-capitalism at its best. We encourage everyone we know, and everyone we don’t know for that matter, to visit at their earliest convenience and sample their wares. But that’s neither here nor there. Turnout here was at its highest, and a couple of people even asked some pertinent questions, such as: “You’re a misogynist douche,” “I saw a John Cage concert once on the Lower East Side,” and “It would have been more radical if they had shot that bitch.”

Part Two: The ongoing, eternal cage fight between New York anarcha-communist-lesbian-feminist-separatists and insurrecto-primitivist-dude-bros continues unabated. This epic rumble in the jungle began when one of the contestants refused to even enter the venue on the grounds that a) it was at NYU, b) one of those bitches might call the police, or the FBI, or something, and c) fluorescent lights (and we thought our rider was demanding). The disappointingly nonviolent battle of wills ended with tears on both sides. Afterwards, some paranoid primmie kid slipped us eight hundred thousand copies of Fire to the Prisons, which we had to lug all the way from Manhattan to fucking Queens, though we gave most of them to random proles along the way. With this level of distribution there’s bound to be an insurrection in New York City any day now. La lucha sigue….

Philadelphia, PA

And here our problems began. The “It Gets Better” project started making harassing calls to our phones after some snitch told them we were encouraging queer youth to off themselves, and the member of Tiqqun who was touring with us ran into a friend of his from France, whose relentless critique of our entire project was so rigorous and devastating that the Tiqqunista suffered a nervous breakdown for which he was institutionalized. Plus, the people at Satellite wouldn’t give us free coffee. WTF?! To make everything worse, the one vegan on the tour finally snapped when the remaining tour members asked where they could get some good cheesesteak. After a brutal screaming match, we all left covered in red paint. Except for the vegan, who was covered in pig’s blood but had succeeded in flirting her way into a free cup of coffee. (To send letters of support to the institutionalized Tiqqunista, address to: Julien Agamben, c/o CCC, 732 East Clarke St, Milwaukee WI 53212. Fire to the Mental Institutions!)

Baltimore, MD

Nevermore.

Frederick, MD

In Frederick our mutual hatred for each other erupted into a night of drunken fistfights and 8 AM Taco Bell. If only we could have inflicted this rage on the old man with the face tats. Alas, we were only wrecking each other, and it wasn’t even for the first time. Oh well. We always return to our own insoluble pleasures, and “we have to be as cruel to the proletariat as we want to be to …” well… anyway. Frederick is a very pretty little town, which we learned is because the town has never burned to the ground. You know what they say, though: there’s a first time for everything! jklol

Washington, DC

Why hasn’t this place already disappeared? And where have members of S.C.A.B (Society for the Complete Abolition of Breeders, for the uninitiated dumbshits on @news) been all our lives? And why is Ethiopian food so stupid awesome?

Carrboro, NC

As we all know, Carrboro is a very important hub in the anarchist network, primarily because RAAN makes its home there—meeting weekly at Internationalist Books, Tuesdays at 10 PM. We felt very lucky to get an opportunity to do bodyguard trainings with some of the movement’s top security experts—not to mention give our lectures in a location with so many important, relevant projects and so much vital infrastructure. If the revolution is happening anywhere, it’s happening in Carrboro.

Asheville, NC

It’s true what they say: Asheville is where punks go to eat meat and have babies—only one of which, we would add, is counterrevolutionary (punk). It must be said, however, that as badly as Asheville may want communism, communism does not want it. Our talk here was totally boring. As usual, the entire event devolved into a shouting match, but nobody overturned the tables. Nobody even threw a chair. And though the stupid anarcho-capitalist infoshop did give us some free coffee, nobody even fed us grapes or fanned us with palm leaves. Zizek, make a note: never come to this town. They are cold as ice. They do make a mean turkey, though, and we love them like woah.

Nashville, TN

So we heard that this place had a wicked riot last Mayday in which the downtown was utterly destroyed and leveled to the ground by a rabid mob reportedly frothing at the mouth for immediate communization. And we were pretty excited about seeing the rubble. Unfortunately the town had been completely rebuilt and over a thousand comrades have been imprisoned. (Their legal campaign is in dire need of funds; send checks made out to cash, or well-concealed cash to: Nashville 1111 Support, c/o CCC, 732 East Clarke St., Milwaukee WI, 53212.) But at least we got a chance to practice our getaway driving skills with a master. Freedom to the Nashville 1111!!!!1!

Short Mountain, TN

Untap, upkeep, draw. In the dead of night, clad in black (as per usual, but with the addition of balaclavas) and with the eternal warmth of the proletariat running through our veins, we boldly stepped over the boundary marker separating the neutral farm where we were staying from Short Mountain Sanctuary for Transphobic Gay Men. We initiated our infinite vengeance by reading our lectures aloud to an empty field of woodland fairies. We then turned to more practical matters. One shower line was cut, the sound system was destroyed, and graffiti was left everywhere reading “Real Men Have Cunts.” When we took our leave, dead bodies were unexplainably lying all around and alleged gunshots were being fired in the distance. Short Mountain life total = negative infinity.

Louisville, KY

Another library, another failure. Coconut coffee sucks.

Considering Lexington, KY

The question of whether commujism is possible at all was put to the test once again, and, as always, it was answered in the negative. It’s not so much their failure to book us a show that hurts, or even the rudeness they exhibited on the phone, but the fact that they didn’t even try. “Do Nothing” has been taken too far when one can’t even book an event for one’s friends without drawing accusations of counter-revolutionary tendencies. Of course, for Lexington, as for all of us, it is always, already too late. Even if they do make a mean venison roast.

Milwaukee, WI

We tried to have an event in Milwaukee, but apparently our ideas had resonated so well across space-time that, by the time we arrived in this frigid city, the mass suicide had already generalized. We were thus faced with the sacred task of burying our friends and lovers. The sight and aroma of their decomposing, broken bodies, which fell apart in our hands as we tried to lift them and carry them to the truck; the thousands upon thousands of books they left behind; and the beautiful, calm expressions on their empty faces and open, listless eyes served as a mirror reflecting to us the past month of tour, and bringing home the fact that we are already dead—torn through and through with an internal deadness from which not even suicide can save us. As we tucked them into their cold, earthen beds, blanketed with spice and datura, we asked ourselves what have we done. And what are we going to do.

We start the truck and drive to the nearest KwikStop. Nachos, soda, hot dog. $6.66. It’s 2:57 AM; America awaits.