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W E I J I A Q U A R T E R L Y

W E I J I A QUARTERLY No.

2

2013

02


W E I J I A QUARTERLY Issue No.2

Editors:

Sarah Brunning Sonya Mandus

Design:

Julian Garcia

Address

10 - 5460 Ave du Parc Montreal, QC H2V 4G7 Canada weijia.quarterly@gmail.com


W E I J I A QUARTERLY Issue No.2

Editors:

Sarah Brunning Sonya Mandus

Design:

Julian Garcia

Address

10 - 5460 Ave du Parc Montreal, QC H2V 4G7 Canada weijia.quarterly@gmail.com


6

Feliks Barnet Mannell

Zoe Rachel Kyle Levi Kendall Madeleine Matt Nick David Jaako

Koke Shaw Goforth Bruce Stephenson Pare Goerzen deMarco Hanes Pallasvuo

Jon Paul Amy Jasper Guillame Roland Spencer Laura Zoe David Trevor Anonymous

Fiorentino Carlberg Baydala Morrisette Pemberton Gordon Broadbent Sharpe Kleiser Barton

8,20 12 16 28 29 34 36 38 42 44 48 52 56

contents

Weijia Quarterly

Norman Frankie Julie

60 61 62 70 72 74 80 86 90 92 100

7


6

Feliks Barnet Mannell

Zoe Rachel Kyle Levi Kendall Madeleine Matt Nick David Jaako

Koke Shaw Goforth Bruce Stephenson Pare Goerzen deMarco Hanes Pallasvuo

Jon Paul Amy Jasper Guillame Roland Spencer Laura Zoe David Trevor Anonymous

Fiorentino Carlberg Baydala Morrisette Pemberton Gordon Broadbent Sharpe Kleiser Barton

8,20 12 16 28 29 34 36 38 42 44 48 52 56

contents

Weijia Quarterly

Norman Frankie Julie

60 61 62 70 72 74 80 86 90 92 100

7


by Norman Feliks

The city-state of Blunderville was unique among nations. Rather than proclaim their country’s greatness and right to exist based on a quasi-historical mythology, its founders designed a society celebrating the innate acceptability of human imperfection. And therein lay its greatness. The mythologization of Blunderville aimed, rather, at the present, on its very piece of earth. Its symbols were not protected in the sacrosanct chronicles of a bygone era, but were in the open, welcoming criticism. The Blunderville Town Hall, for instance, had its seemingly toppling facade leaning out over the street and a statue of two sweating, horrified architects with their backs pressed up against it. The wide, shadowy sidewalk was scattered with crumpled brass balls of oversized graph paper. All this indicated the underpinning idea of the city, but only in combination with the fact that the structure itself was sound. Outside of the town’s courthouse was another statue, this time of Lady Justice, blindfolded and in flowing robes, with a noose dangling from her outstretched hand. There was debate between the sculptor and the pure humorists over whether or not to put a small hat with a propeller on her head. In general, slapstick was frowned upon in public artwork because, unlike satire, it lacks meaning. In the town square was another sculpture, a rendering of one of the city’s historic enemies: a nationalist general who had attempted to end Blunderville’s independence and reincorporate it into the larger state of Seriosa, which bordered Blunderville on all sides. The statue posed the general saluting in a most serious fashion, dressed in full regalia, with part of his shirt sticking through his fly. This was a victory for those in favor of slapstick. Doctrinal humorism recommended that political meetings be conducted with a minimum of seriousness. This was thought to make it harder for those with big egos – who are often married to their own proposals – to ignore competing points of view. However, the weakness of the humor of some of the Blundervillian politicians became a problem. This was remedied somewhat by giving these ministers silly titles, drowning out their poor jokes. One of the bastions of the old order, an excellent Finance Minister but sub-par comic, was designated as the Chief Undersecretary of Propaganda and Book Banning. Another even older and more serious woman became Procurator of Racial Purity and Waldorf Salad. Often when the Speaker would demand that a remark be phrased as a joke, debates would become convoluted or embarrassing as older politicians

Weijia Quarterly

8

Issue no. 2

B l u n d e r v i l l e

flayed themselves with poor attempts. The newspapers had a field day when 83 year-old Senator Bill Gibbs said, “The moonicipal food situation is a fiasco. The cost of milk has nearly doubled and we’ve had eggsactly two increases in the cost of poultry in the past month!” This appeared in the Seriosan papers as well. Heavy press-censorship there made it so that only negative events in the society and politics of Blunderville made it into their media. In this case, the quote – although not properly contextualized – had the positive effect of informing those of the Seriosan public able to read between the lines about the food shortages, which had been brought on by the punitive tariffs their government levied against Blunderville. Basic necessities, along with everything else, were purchased mostly using money earned by the city’s entertainment industry. As long as the world paid for humor, the Blundervillians would be able to afford increasingly expensive imports. On the other hand, because comedy was the city’s chief export, some abroad considered it, if benign, a useless entity. A local columnist retorted sarcastically that he agreed, that the city ought be cleared to make room for one farm and one factory so they could export food, industrial goods, and all of the citizens of Blunderville when they realized how boring it is to live in a conventional economy. Conversely, Seriosa had transformed the area around Blunderville into a center of heavy industry. In reply, the city built a giant, erect penis which ejaculated confetti over the border every 15th of February. This was the date their independence was recognized by the Palestine Liberation Organization, the first political body to do so. The Seriosan government claimed that the confetti was desecration of their land. Blunderville’s rejoinder was that the choking gray smoke from the Seriosan factories was desecration of their argument. The Seriosans said that the statue was vulgar. The Blundervillians then made reference to a very serious piece of art, shown in a very serious art gallery in Seriosa, featuring fifty pounds of bovine entrails preserved in a glass cube, suggesting that their second argument was “a load of tripe.” The Seriosans said that the confetti ejaculation was an act of war. The Blundervillian Prime Minister mobilized the city’s fifty-strong volunteer army, in full dress uniform, including hats with five-foot long plumes. The event was shown on television to the delight of vicariously frightened audiences around the globe. From then on, Blunderville and Seriosa remained in an official state of war, a war that was the focus of as much analysis as if it were actually being fought. One journalist suggested the city provoke a first-strike nuclear attack against itself because of how much damage the fallout would do to Seriosa. Another writer felt that, if divided into 25 battalions of two soldiers each, the army would be able to encircle the Seriosan forces. Her article was accompanied by detailed maps. The piece inspired an abundance of speculation

9


by Norman Feliks

The city-state of Blunderville was unique among nations. Rather than proclaim their country’s greatness and right to exist based on a quasi-historical mythology, its founders designed a society celebrating the innate acceptability of human imperfection. And therein lay its greatness. The mythologization of Blunderville aimed, rather, at the present, on its very piece of earth. Its symbols were not protected in the sacrosanct chronicles of a bygone era, but were in the open, welcoming criticism. The Blunderville Town Hall, for instance, had its seemingly toppling facade leaning out over the street and a statue of two sweating, horrified architects with their backs pressed up against it. The wide, shadowy sidewalk was scattered with crumpled brass balls of oversized graph paper. All this indicated the underpinning idea of the city, but only in combination with the fact that the structure itself was sound. Outside of the town’s courthouse was another statue, this time of Lady Justice, blindfolded and in flowing robes, with a noose dangling from her outstretched hand. There was debate between the sculptor and the pure humorists over whether or not to put a small hat with a propeller on her head. In general, slapstick was frowned upon in public artwork because, unlike satire, it lacks meaning. In the town square was another sculpture, a rendering of one of the city’s historic enemies: a nationalist general who had attempted to end Blunderville’s independence and reincorporate it into the larger state of Seriosa, which bordered Blunderville on all sides. The statue posed the general saluting in a most serious fashion, dressed in full regalia, with part of his shirt sticking through his fly. This was a victory for those in favor of slapstick. Doctrinal humorism recommended that political meetings be conducted with a minimum of seriousness. This was thought to make it harder for those with big egos – who are often married to their own proposals – to ignore competing points of view. However, the weakness of the humor of some of the Blundervillian politicians became a problem. This was remedied somewhat by giving these ministers silly titles, drowning out their poor jokes. One of the bastions of the old order, an excellent Finance Minister but sub-par comic, was designated as the Chief Undersecretary of Propaganda and Book Banning. Another even older and more serious woman became Procurator of Racial Purity and Waldorf Salad. Often when the Speaker would demand that a remark be phrased as a joke, debates would become convoluted or embarrassing as older politicians

Weijia Quarterly

8

Issue no. 2

B l u n d e r v i l l e

flayed themselves with poor attempts. The newspapers had a field day when 83 year-old Senator Bill Gibbs said, “The moonicipal food situation is a fiasco. The cost of milk has nearly doubled and we’ve had eggsactly two increases in the cost of poultry in the past month!” This appeared in the Seriosan papers as well. Heavy press-censorship there made it so that only negative events in the society and politics of Blunderville made it into their media. In this case, the quote – although not properly contextualized – had the positive effect of informing those of the Seriosan public able to read between the lines about the food shortages, which had been brought on by the punitive tariffs their government levied against Blunderville. Basic necessities, along with everything else, were purchased mostly using money earned by the city’s entertainment industry. As long as the world paid for humor, the Blundervillians would be able to afford increasingly expensive imports. On the other hand, because comedy was the city’s chief export, some abroad considered it, if benign, a useless entity. A local columnist retorted sarcastically that he agreed, that the city ought be cleared to make room for one farm and one factory so they could export food, industrial goods, and all of the citizens of Blunderville when they realized how boring it is to live in a conventional economy. Conversely, Seriosa had transformed the area around Blunderville into a center of heavy industry. In reply, the city built a giant, erect penis which ejaculated confetti over the border every 15th of February. This was the date their independence was recognized by the Palestine Liberation Organization, the first political body to do so. The Seriosan government claimed that the confetti was desecration of their land. Blunderville’s rejoinder was that the choking gray smoke from the Seriosan factories was desecration of their argument. The Seriosans said that the statue was vulgar. The Blundervillians then made reference to a very serious piece of art, shown in a very serious art gallery in Seriosa, featuring fifty pounds of bovine entrails preserved in a glass cube, suggesting that their second argument was “a load of tripe.” The Seriosans said that the confetti ejaculation was an act of war. The Blundervillian Prime Minister mobilized the city’s fifty-strong volunteer army, in full dress uniform, including hats with five-foot long plumes. The event was shown on television to the delight of vicariously frightened audiences around the globe. From then on, Blunderville and Seriosa remained in an official state of war, a war that was the focus of as much analysis as if it were actually being fought. One journalist suggested the city provoke a first-strike nuclear attack against itself because of how much damage the fallout would do to Seriosa. Another writer felt that, if divided into 25 battalions of two soldiers each, the army would be able to encircle the Seriosan forces. Her article was accompanied by detailed maps. The piece inspired an abundance of speculation

9


Weijia Quarterly

which had already taken an official stance condemning the embargo, but was lost in its own maze. Printed over a photograph of the Seriosan Commander-in-Chief, the Blunderville Post Times Herald Star Sun featured the headline The General’s Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. As the embargo went into its twenty-third day, pictures of hungry schoolchildren were beamed to the rest of the world. Seriosa issued a statement to the effect that none of these “ethnic Seriosans” would starve and that the embargo was “simply a means to voluntarily reincorporate historic Seriosan territory into its nation-state.” The UN refused to recognize this claim, but continued to dither as far as action was concerned. Some of Blunderville’s intellectuals thought the time had finally come to show that they were capable of being serious about something. Such analysts felt the shock of seeing the flow of humor stop for the first time might cause a greater international outcry. Others believed that if they were to starve, they should go out the way they had always been, mocking the Seriosan aggressors to the last breath. Blunderville sent a joint letter to Monaco, Luxembourg, Andorra, and San Marino requesting support. They next approached Isreal, expecting sympathy from a nation seeing itself as beset on all sides, but their pleas fell on deaf ears. They capitulated to the Seriosan demands on the sixtieth day of the embargo. Wearing a silly hat, the heretofore Blundervillian Prime Minister signed an agreement that converted his country into Seriosa’s eighth largest city, with its name changed to Sombregrad. Sombregrad was to have no autonomous rights, and was to be placed under the Seriosan legal code. The phallus was torn down as throngs of Seriosans filled the streets and the town square; the comic statue was vandalized and soon after replaced by a serious one that had been cast in advance. Each of the Blundervillian presses and television and radio broadcasting stations was purged and filled with Seriosan journalists and artists, relocated from the outmoded facilities of their capital. Many Blundervillians attempted to leave, but would-be escapees struggled to remain out of prison. Former citizens were given Sombregradian identity cards and passports, which greatly hindered mobility. In fact, mobility was hindered so totally that foreign journalists found it difficult to find emigrants able to explain the chronology of events of the takeover; nearly all the ones they could locate had left the country before their Prime Minister signed the treaty. In the chaotic reorganization following the union, due to a Seriosan telecommunications blockade effected “for security purposes,” most of these expats had trouble contacting friends back home. It was weeks before news of the Sombregradian Genocide came out in any detail. The Seriosan government said that the “destructive and provocative actions of Sombregradian terrorists” had necessitated the use of “proportionate force.” Survivors continue to lobby to have the recognized name of the incident changed to the “Blundervillian Genocide”.

2013

10

about what “Greater Blunderia” would be like with millions more acres and people under her control. This caught on so well that in the Blundervillian elementary schools there was a drawing contest to see who could create the funniest depiction of “Post-war Blunderia”. The winner was a two-sided cartoon. On one side it said, If we lose, over a drawing of Seriosa with a smoking dot where Blunderville was, and a group of enemy soldiers carrying away the giant penis. On the other side it said, If we win, over a wide, smoking crater with Blunderville right in the middle of it, a little unharmed town upon a skinny shaft of charred rock. Seriosa had its share of scholarship devoted to the war, as well. The prevailing scholarly view posited that a state should not contain another state, known as Territorial Integralism; or, as the Blundervillians called it, Territorial Inspansionism. They conceded that Seriosa had won their land from Hapsburg rule, but that Blunderville had wrested control of theirs from Seriosa, the country who taken it from the Hapsburgs, which was much more impressive. Inspansionism was written into the Blundervillian constitution when the Autonomous Republic of Town Square declared its independence. Blunderville unilaterally invaded the new republic, annexing it to public rejoicing. At times serious arguments did occur in Blunderville. One of these regarded the Blundervillian Autosyphilis Church. Some of the younger politicians were in favor of making it the State Religion but there was an older contingent in the House of Common Lords who opposed this. They argued that it was insulting to religious people to commit to funding a wanton church. The debate raged until Mother Theresa requested that no joke churches be constructed. Some citizens pretended to see this as the Catholics reviving their crusade against heretics, but most were glad to end yet another controversy. The Blundervillian Church Incident caused negative sentiment to develop on an international level. Despite being a majority Protestant nation, the Seriosans lauded the famous nun as a buffer against Blundervillian “levity”. The subtle balance in the international media between characterizing Blunderville as a harmless and charming anomaly, as opposed to a silly, purposeless game was tipped toward the latter. Voices were lent to the people who saw it as a utopia in which no one had to do any real work, nor create anything useful. A bitter novelist inquired why it is better to manufacture VCRs or bind books than it is to make movies or write. An attempt was made by the Seriosan Finance Minister to demonstrate the unproductive nature of its neighbor’s economy. The Chief Undersecretary of Propaganda and Book Banning responded, accurately, that Blunderville had the highest per capita income in the world despite malicious tariffs, and that he had found math class boring as well. It was in this climate of bitterness that Seriosa imposed a trade embargo on Blunderville. The House of Common Lords implored Britain for assistance as a “brother nation founded on humor.” Although France nominally sided with Blunderville, it insisted on going through the channels of the United Nations,

11


Weijia Quarterly

which had already taken an official stance condemning the embargo, but was lost in its own maze. Printed over a photograph of the Seriosan Commander-in-Chief, the Blunderville Post Times Herald Star Sun featured the headline The General’s Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. As the embargo went into its twenty-third day, pictures of hungry schoolchildren were beamed to the rest of the world. Seriosa issued a statement to the effect that none of these “ethnic Seriosans” would starve and that the embargo was “simply a means to voluntarily reincorporate historic Seriosan territory into its nation-state.” The UN refused to recognize this claim, but continued to dither as far as action was concerned. Some of Blunderville’s intellectuals thought the time had finally come to show that they were capable of being serious about something. Such analysts felt the shock of seeing the flow of humor stop for the first time might cause a greater international outcry. Others believed that if they were to starve, they should go out the way they had always been, mocking the Seriosan aggressors to the last breath. Blunderville sent a joint letter to Monaco, Luxembourg, Andorra, and San Marino requesting support. They next approached Isreal, expecting sympathy from a nation seeing itself as beset on all sides, but their pleas fell on deaf ears. They capitulated to the Seriosan demands on the sixtieth day of the embargo. Wearing a silly hat, the heretofore Blundervillian Prime Minister signed an agreement that converted his country into Seriosa’s eighth largest city, with its name changed to Sombregrad. Sombregrad was to have no autonomous rights, and was to be placed under the Seriosan legal code. The phallus was torn down as throngs of Seriosans filled the streets and the town square; the comic statue was vandalized and soon after replaced by a serious one that had been cast in advance. Each of the Blundervillian presses and television and radio broadcasting stations was purged and filled with Seriosan journalists and artists, relocated from the outmoded facilities of their capital. Many Blundervillians attempted to leave, but would-be escapees struggled to remain out of prison. Former citizens were given Sombregradian identity cards and passports, which greatly hindered mobility. In fact, mobility was hindered so totally that foreign journalists found it difficult to find emigrants able to explain the chronology of events of the takeover; nearly all the ones they could locate had left the country before their Prime Minister signed the treaty. In the chaotic reorganization following the union, due to a Seriosan telecommunications blockade effected “for security purposes,” most of these expats had trouble contacting friends back home. It was weeks before news of the Sombregradian Genocide came out in any detail. The Seriosan government said that the “destructive and provocative actions of Sombregradian terrorists” had necessitated the use of “proportionate force.” Survivors continue to lobby to have the recognized name of the incident changed to the “Blundervillian Genocide”.

2013

10

about what “Greater Blunderia” would be like with millions more acres and people under her control. This caught on so well that in the Blundervillian elementary schools there was a drawing contest to see who could create the funniest depiction of “Post-war Blunderia”. The winner was a two-sided cartoon. On one side it said, If we lose, over a drawing of Seriosa with a smoking dot where Blunderville was, and a group of enemy soldiers carrying away the giant penis. On the other side it said, If we win, over a wide, smoking crater with Blunderville right in the middle of it, a little unharmed town upon a skinny shaft of charred rock. Seriosa had its share of scholarship devoted to the war, as well. The prevailing scholarly view posited that a state should not contain another state, known as Territorial Integralism; or, as the Blundervillians called it, Territorial Inspansionism. They conceded that Seriosa had won their land from Hapsburg rule, but that Blunderville had wrested control of theirs from Seriosa, the country who taken it from the Hapsburgs, which was much more impressive. Inspansionism was written into the Blundervillian constitution when the Autonomous Republic of Town Square declared its independence. Blunderville unilaterally invaded the new republic, annexing it to public rejoicing. At times serious arguments did occur in Blunderville. One of these regarded the Blundervillian Autosyphilis Church. Some of the younger politicians were in favor of making it the State Religion but there was an older contingent in the House of Common Lords who opposed this. They argued that it was insulting to religious people to commit to funding a wanton church. The debate raged until Mother Theresa requested that no joke churches be constructed. Some citizens pretended to see this as the Catholics reviving their crusade against heretics, but most were glad to end yet another controversy. The Blundervillian Church Incident caused negative sentiment to develop on an international level. Despite being a majority Protestant nation, the Seriosans lauded the famous nun as a buffer against Blundervillian “levity”. The subtle balance in the international media between characterizing Blunderville as a harmless and charming anomaly, as opposed to a silly, purposeless game was tipped toward the latter. Voices were lent to the people who saw it as a utopia in which no one had to do any real work, nor create anything useful. A bitter novelist inquired why it is better to manufacture VCRs or bind books than it is to make movies or write. An attempt was made by the Seriosan Finance Minister to demonstrate the unproductive nature of its neighbor’s economy. The Chief Undersecretary of Propaganda and Book Banning responded, accurately, that Blunderville had the highest per capita income in the world despite malicious tariffs, and that he had found math class boring as well. It was in this climate of bitterness that Seriosa imposed a trade embargo on Blunderville. The House of Common Lords implored Britain for assistance as a “brother nation founded on humor.” Although France nominally sided with Blunderville, it insisted on going through the channels of the United Nations,

11


Weijia Quarterly

by Frankie Barnet

Liza comes home upset because the doctor at the clinic told her she is not depressed enough for Xanax. The doctor at the clinic said she could come back and see him after she cut down on her marijuana use and Liza said O.K. and that she would, which was a lie because Liza will never cut down on her marijuana use because her marijuana use is the only thing right now helping her get through her break up with Luke. Luke lives in Vancouver, where Liza also lived briefly, and because of this when Liza feels depressed she lies down on the couch, rolls a marijuana cigarette and watches television documentaries she’s rented from the library about East Hastings Street, for footage of the places they once kissed. Dom comes home and she is still on the couch. “This is how it feels,” she says to him. The filmmakers are interviewing a woman who has been addicted to crystal meth for thirteen years. “I can feel it,” says Liza, “the sadness. I can feel it inside of my body, like a real physical thing. And sometimes I think it’s gone, that I’m going to be normal again, like yesterday, when we were eating that pasta, I thought that was happiness, that I had found it. But then I woke up this morning and the sadness was just there, like a relapse Dom. It’s disease. I have a disease, Dom, and I’m just so, so sad!” She bursts in to tears and Dom rubs her back. There are three of them living in the house: Liza, Dom and Ellen. Ellen is the most depressed, Dom the second, Liza the third. No matter how depressed Liza feels she will never be as depressed as Dom or Ellen and all of this has to do with Matt. Matt is Ellen’s dead brother and Dom’s dead best friend. Liza hardly knew Matt at all, except one time when she gave him a blow job at a party. That’s the thing—to be related by blood. Ellen can walk into any clinic and say what happened and get all the Xanax she wants. Dom can walk into any clinic and say what happened and get a fair amount of Xanax. On the television, Liza points out a street corner that she and Luke once walked on, on their way to the movies. She starts to cry. Ellen comes home from therapy and explains how every day it becomes clearer and clearer to her that there is no reason to be alive. She looks at Liza and laments that she can hardly remember what it felt like to cry, to feel “anything at all.” Dom has long resented how Ellen lauds her depression in front of Liza. Dom likes Liza and he knows that when Ellen acts this way it makes Liza feel inadequate. What is her right? thinks Dom. Even with the blood and all, thinks Dom, what is her right? Because, Dom thinks, Ellen was not really there. Not the way

12

Ellen uses the fact that she was not there to her advantage. Ellen says she envies Dom, for having the chance to say goodbye. Ellen says that she had no idea that Matt was as sick as he was. Ellen says she thought Matt would make it through Christmas and she would have a chance to see him then. Ellen says no one has any idea of the regret inside of her. Liza also uses Matt to her advantage, because the fact of the blow job is just an example of how totally fucked up she is about men and why things with Luke ended so badly. That’s the thing—Liza walks into any clinic and says how much she misses her boyfriend and gets no Xanax except what Dom gives her afterwards. And Dom gives her a lot of Xanax. Dom likes Liza, he likes her a lot and he hates to see her feeling inadequate. Dom thinks Liza feeling inadequate is silly because Dom thinks Liza is a completely adequate person, an over-adequate person. Dom thinks Liza is a perfect person and sometimes he watches her crying over Vancouver street corners and cannot believe the angles in her face. Dom gives Liza a lot of Xanax because Dom finds he needs less and less for himself. And sometimes Dom hears Ellen crying on the phone about how she dreams about Matt in the night and thinks, Am I just not getting the gravity of the situation? Because often he finds himself in conversations with someone who knew Matt and they are talking together about what a terrible loss it is and Dom says, “Yes but Matt had a very full life and I am thankful to have spent the time with him I did,” and the person Dom is talking to touches Dom on the shoulder and nods with this look in their eyes like, It’s O.K. I know that’s not how you really feel, you can say to me that life is shit and there is no reason to be alive, but Dom cannot agree because Dom really does think how

Issue no. 2

This Is What You Are Feeling

he was. Ellen was doing her semester abroad. Ellen didn’t even come home until after Matt had died. It was he who drove Matt to the hospital when he broke his arm. It was he who sat with Matt in the doctor’s office when the test results came back, No it was not a cyst. Then the next week with Matt in the doctor’s office, No it is not benign. Then again in a different doctor’s office, Yes, and there are three more in your spine. It was Dom who sat with Matt in the hospital bed, talking about Liza’s new haircut, and how stupid Luke was the time he thought Mexico counted as South America, and when Dom looked down on the bed and realized that they were holding hands and neither of them said a word, just continued holding hands. It was Dom who the next morning was making coffee in his apartment when Matt’s mother called to say that Matt had died and Dom sat in a chair facing the window and sat there for a very long time, thinking nothing in particular, just looking at the shapes in the clouds and how strange it was that the sun was so far away and yet the heat still made its way all the way here, through the glass and onto his collarbone and then suddenly he thought how lucky he had been to have held Matt’s hand like that, for as long as he did.

13


Weijia Quarterly

by Frankie Barnet

Liza comes home upset because the doctor at the clinic told her she is not depressed enough for Xanax. The doctor at the clinic said she could come back and see him after she cut down on her marijuana use and Liza said O.K. and that she would, which was a lie because Liza will never cut down on her marijuana use because her marijuana use is the only thing right now helping her get through her break up with Luke. Luke lives in Vancouver, where Liza also lived briefly, and because of this when Liza feels depressed she lies down on the couch, rolls a marijuana cigarette and watches television documentaries she’s rented from the library about East Hastings Street, for footage of the places they once kissed. Dom comes home and she is still on the couch. “This is how it feels,” she says to him. The filmmakers are interviewing a woman who has been addicted to crystal meth for thirteen years. “I can feel it,” says Liza, “the sadness. I can feel it inside of my body, like a real physical thing. And sometimes I think it’s gone, that I’m going to be normal again, like yesterday, when we were eating that pasta, I thought that was happiness, that I had found it. But then I woke up this morning and the sadness was just there, like a relapse Dom. It’s disease. I have a disease, Dom, and I’m just so, so sad!” She bursts in to tears and Dom rubs her back. There are three of them living in the house: Liza, Dom and Ellen. Ellen is the most depressed, Dom the second, Liza the third. No matter how depressed Liza feels she will never be as depressed as Dom or Ellen and all of this has to do with Matt. Matt is Ellen’s dead brother and Dom’s dead best friend. Liza hardly knew Matt at all, except one time when she gave him a blow job at a party. That’s the thing—to be related by blood. Ellen can walk into any clinic and say what happened and get all the Xanax she wants. Dom can walk into any clinic and say what happened and get a fair amount of Xanax. On the television, Liza points out a street corner that she and Luke once walked on, on their way to the movies. She starts to cry. Ellen comes home from therapy and explains how every day it becomes clearer and clearer to her that there is no reason to be alive. She looks at Liza and laments that she can hardly remember what it felt like to cry, to feel “anything at all.” Dom has long resented how Ellen lauds her depression in front of Liza. Dom likes Liza and he knows that when Ellen acts this way it makes Liza feel inadequate. What is her right? thinks Dom. Even with the blood and all, thinks Dom, what is her right? Because, Dom thinks, Ellen was not really there. Not the way

12

Ellen uses the fact that she was not there to her advantage. Ellen says she envies Dom, for having the chance to say goodbye. Ellen says that she had no idea that Matt was as sick as he was. Ellen says she thought Matt would make it through Christmas and she would have a chance to see him then. Ellen says no one has any idea of the regret inside of her. Liza also uses Matt to her advantage, because the fact of the blow job is just an example of how totally fucked up she is about men and why things with Luke ended so badly. That’s the thing—Liza walks into any clinic and says how much she misses her boyfriend and gets no Xanax except what Dom gives her afterwards. And Dom gives her a lot of Xanax. Dom likes Liza, he likes her a lot and he hates to see her feeling inadequate. Dom thinks Liza feeling inadequate is silly because Dom thinks Liza is a completely adequate person, an over-adequate person. Dom thinks Liza is a perfect person and sometimes he watches her crying over Vancouver street corners and cannot believe the angles in her face. Dom gives Liza a lot of Xanax because Dom finds he needs less and less for himself. And sometimes Dom hears Ellen crying on the phone about how she dreams about Matt in the night and thinks, Am I just not getting the gravity of the situation? Because often he finds himself in conversations with someone who knew Matt and they are talking together about what a terrible loss it is and Dom says, “Yes but Matt had a very full life and I am thankful to have spent the time with him I did,” and the person Dom is talking to touches Dom on the shoulder and nods with this look in their eyes like, It’s O.K. I know that’s not how you really feel, you can say to me that life is shit and there is no reason to be alive, but Dom cannot agree because Dom really does think how

Issue no. 2

This Is What You Are Feeling

he was. Ellen was doing her semester abroad. Ellen didn’t even come home until after Matt had died. It was he who drove Matt to the hospital when he broke his arm. It was he who sat with Matt in the doctor’s office when the test results came back, No it was not a cyst. Then the next week with Matt in the doctor’s office, No it is not benign. Then again in a different doctor’s office, Yes, and there are three more in your spine. It was Dom who sat with Matt in the hospital bed, talking about Liza’s new haircut, and how stupid Luke was the time he thought Mexico counted as South America, and when Dom looked down on the bed and realized that they were holding hands and neither of them said a word, just continued holding hands. It was Dom who the next morning was making coffee in his apartment when Matt’s mother called to say that Matt had died and Dom sat in a chair facing the window and sat there for a very long time, thinking nothing in particular, just looking at the shapes in the clouds and how strange it was that the sun was so far away and yet the heat still made its way all the way here, through the glass and onto his collarbone and then suddenly he thought how lucky he had been to have held Matt’s hand like that, for as long as he did.

13


14

Ellen is crying in her bedroom and Liza is crying in front of the television and Dom sits on the couch, trying to realize the gravity of the situation. He loves her, he is almost 100% sure, and here she is crying over the first ever safe injection site in North America. He tries to picture the kisses on this street, the kisses and even more, off of the street, after they have returned to Luke’s apartment, the two of them together, Liza, 100% sure he loves her, almost, just as he remembers the drive home from the hospital that day, the day of Yes and there are three more in your spine, when he sat in the driver’s seat and Matt sat in the passenger seat and Matt rolled his window up and then down and neither of them said anything and then Matt started to shake a little bit and Dom had no idea what to say or do so he said, “Do you want to get a beer?” and they parked in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart with a six pack of Lucky and talked about how stupid Luke was. And Ellen wants to die in her bedroom and Liza wants to die on the couch. But despite everything Dom does not want to die, he does not want to die at all so what is wrong with him? Is this what he is feeling or is it just what he thinks he is feeling? Lately Dom has developed a fantasy in which, on a day she feels up for it, he takes Liza on a walk, to the market for groceries or to the park just to be in the sun. And he will wait until there is no one else around and ask her how she is feeling. And she will tell him how her heart is broken but he will touch her on the shoulder with a look in his eyes that says, It’s O.K. I know that’s not really how you feel, it’s O.K. you can say to me that there are reasons to be alive. And he will point to the soft white of a cloud or perhaps a patch of flowers planted in a neighbour’s garden or a cat, a cat rolling with its belly up to the sun, and he will press behind its ear and the cat will purr and Liza will laugh and she will say, “Yes, on this day in the sun laughing with the cat there is a reason to be alive,” and he will say, “Yes, this is what you are feeling.”

2013

Weijia Quarterly

lucky he was to have held Matt’s hand like that, for as long as he did. So then Dom wonders, Is there something wrong with me? Is this what I am feeling or is this just what I think I am feeling?

15


14

Ellen is crying in her bedroom and Liza is crying in front of the television and Dom sits on the couch, trying to realize the gravity of the situation. He loves her, he is almost 100% sure, and here she is crying over the first ever safe injection site in North America. He tries to picture the kisses on this street, the kisses and even more, off of the street, after they have returned to Luke’s apartment, the two of them together, Liza, 100% sure he loves her, almost, just as he remembers the drive home from the hospital that day, the day of Yes and there are three more in your spine, when he sat in the driver’s seat and Matt sat in the passenger seat and Matt rolled his window up and then down and neither of them said anything and then Matt started to shake a little bit and Dom had no idea what to say or do so he said, “Do you want to get a beer?” and they parked in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart with a six pack of Lucky and talked about how stupid Luke was. And Ellen wants to die in her bedroom and Liza wants to die on the couch. But despite everything Dom does not want to die, he does not want to die at all so what is wrong with him? Is this what he is feeling or is it just what he thinks he is feeling? Lately Dom has developed a fantasy in which, on a day she feels up for it, he takes Liza on a walk, to the market for groceries or to the park just to be in the sun. And he will wait until there is no one else around and ask her how she is feeling. And she will tell him how her heart is broken but he will touch her on the shoulder with a look in his eyes that says, It’s O.K. I know that’s not really how you feel, it’s O.K. you can say to me that there are reasons to be alive. And he will point to the soft white of a cloud or perhaps a patch of flowers planted in a neighbour’s garden or a cat, a cat rolling with its belly up to the sun, and he will press behind its ear and the cat will purr and Liza will laugh and she will say, “Yes, on this day in the sun laughing with the cat there is a reason to be alive,” and he will say, “Yes, this is what you are feeling.”

2013

Weijia Quarterly

lucky he was to have held Matt’s hand like that, for as long as he did. So then Dom wonders, Is there something wrong with me? Is this what I am feeling or is this just what I think I am feeling?

15


Her Anxiety To Marry Had Sealed Her Fate: (certainly she seems to have attracted a number of wealthy young men) by Julie Mannell

I’ve been to Laodicea; the women there sometimes carry other people’s children. No speaking. They’re words bound in twine and anthropodermic paper—more expensive—now he is something that you can kiss. William Corder. 1828.

16

a million other things. All for Maria. All for Maria.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Maria Marten, daughter of the mole catcher, in her husband’s underwear, heads out for a great adventure! Maria Marten anatomizes her lovers—no she does not, she has other people do it for her, “Open Book Wedding”. Red barns rise and repaint themselves red, and

17


Her Anxiety To Marry Had Sealed Her Fate: (certainly she seems to have attracted a number of wealthy young men) by Julie Mannell

I’ve been to Laodicea; the women there sometimes carry other people’s children. No speaking. They’re words bound in twine and anthropodermic paper—more expensive—now he is something that you can kiss. William Corder. 1828.

16

a million other things. All for Maria. All for Maria.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Maria Marten, daughter of the mole catcher, in her husband’s underwear, heads out for a great adventure! Maria Marten anatomizes her lovers—no she does not, she has other people do it for her, “Open Book Wedding”. Red barns rise and repaint themselves red, and

17


A Burial Fit For a Prime Minister: With Sympathies To The Late Pierre Trudeau

18

The news article read: “With regard to the child borne by Maria, of whom Corder was the father, there is connected another circumstance of mystery. The infant gradually sickened and died a short time after the murder of its ill-fated mother, and it is proper to state that those who witnessed its daily decline, consider that its death arose from natural causes. The clandestine manner in which the infant corpse was conveyed away from Marten’s cottage has given rise to numerous conjectures, and as many will have it, well-founded suspicions, that foul play had been used toward the babe.” Some said the infant was psychic. He was born out of Maria’s side and walked four steps an hour later, then delivered a sermon. The villagers said he could heal with his tears. They said that he held the future in the palm of his hand. They said he could see through walls and change the weather with his eyes and recite every single prime number in perfect order. That’s what they said. Laodicea is a small village that sits atop a small mountain north of The City of Montreal. It is the kind of three-hundred person town that revolves around a Tim Hortons. Most of the men work in a Steel Factory. Many of the women function as cashiers, but some stayed home to watch over their multiple offspring, wipe down ovens, polish banisters, and wash every window nearly every day except Sundays, that is the Lord’s Day. There are strange laws in Montreal. You cannot turn right on a red light. You cannot have websites that are not French. You cannot ask bus drivers for directions unless it is in the official language. This is why it came as no surprise when, in the aftermath of Maria’s murder, and the unfortunate passing of her son shortly thereafter, they executed her lover William Corder. They sent his body to a laboratory and dissected it like a dried up butterfly. After this they lay the remains in the town hall where everyone gathered to stare at his innards, marvel at his humanity, take multiple cell phone pictures. The trial records were bound in a book made entirely of his skin. Perhaps this is strange to you, it is even strange to me, yet it was entirely in line with the old Laodicean tradition, and thus, not strange to them. At three in the morn, my brother Lewy and I went to stare at William for a good spook. We got a good spook alright. Everyone had gathered around the body, everyone was crying, the optometrists, the electricians and the technical support workers. They cried because he had murdered their savior, I didn’t know if he was really a savior, he was definitely a smart baby who was good at math, sometimes I thought he might be autistic, the villagers believed in discipline,

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Julie Mannell

not autism. That night, in Laodicia, they covered the remains of William Corder with official papers, with the birth certificates of those who had died, with outdated passports, and with the stubs of old work cheques. They set fire to his body. Then the sun rose. The sun rose at 3 am, sending all of the villagers into a deep and dark terror. They could see the trees around them, the green of the grass, the blue of the sky. They had angered the child, they thought, babies bawled into their mother’s bosom, the technical support workers smashed computers, the same for the optometrist and his glasses, the same for the electrician and his lightbulbs. The sun did not stay up, it went down after two seconds, as if God had taken a dimmer switch and flicked it up accidentally, and in turn flicked it down so that he could go to sleep. Yet this had been so jarring to the townspeople. They took William Corder’s body and wrapped it in gold curtains from the Giant Tiger, they put the anthropodermic bound book in a St Hubert’s take out container, they each held in their hands a fleur-de-lis and pilgrimaged, late into the night, setting the body down in the St. Laurence river (by Verdun metro). The next morning the newspaper read: “Roller Coaster collision at La Ronde, deadly explosion in Montreal theme park lights up night sky and kills fifty Longueuil residents”. There had been no miracle, except for William Corder, who had finagled a burial fit for a prime minister. At the bottom of the river is where his body swims, mad eyes and buck toothed smile laughing still.

19


A Burial Fit For a Prime Minister: With Sympathies To The Late Pierre Trudeau

18

The news article read: “With regard to the child borne by Maria, of whom Corder was the father, there is connected another circumstance of mystery. The infant gradually sickened and died a short time after the murder of its ill-fated mother, and it is proper to state that those who witnessed its daily decline, consider that its death arose from natural causes. The clandestine manner in which the infant corpse was conveyed away from Marten’s cottage has given rise to numerous conjectures, and as many will have it, well-founded suspicions, that foul play had been used toward the babe.” Some said the infant was psychic. He was born out of Maria’s side and walked four steps an hour later, then delivered a sermon. The villagers said he could heal with his tears. They said that he held the future in the palm of his hand. They said he could see through walls and change the weather with his eyes and recite every single prime number in perfect order. That’s what they said. Laodicea is a small village that sits atop a small mountain north of The City of Montreal. It is the kind of three-hundred person town that revolves around a Tim Hortons. Most of the men work in a Steel Factory. Many of the women function as cashiers, but some stayed home to watch over their multiple offspring, wipe down ovens, polish banisters, and wash every window nearly every day except Sundays, that is the Lord’s Day. There are strange laws in Montreal. You cannot turn right on a red light. You cannot have websites that are not French. You cannot ask bus drivers for directions unless it is in the official language. This is why it came as no surprise when, in the aftermath of Maria’s murder, and the unfortunate passing of her son shortly thereafter, they executed her lover William Corder. They sent his body to a laboratory and dissected it like a dried up butterfly. After this they lay the remains in the town hall where everyone gathered to stare at his innards, marvel at his humanity, take multiple cell phone pictures. The trial records were bound in a book made entirely of his skin. Perhaps this is strange to you, it is even strange to me, yet it was entirely in line with the old Laodicean tradition, and thus, not strange to them. At three in the morn, my brother Lewy and I went to stare at William for a good spook. We got a good spook alright. Everyone had gathered around the body, everyone was crying, the optometrists, the electricians and the technical support workers. They cried because he had murdered their savior, I didn’t know if he was really a savior, he was definitely a smart baby who was good at math, sometimes I thought he might be autistic, the villagers believed in discipline,

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Julie Mannell

not autism. That night, in Laodicia, they covered the remains of William Corder with official papers, with the birth certificates of those who had died, with outdated passports, and with the stubs of old work cheques. They set fire to his body. Then the sun rose. The sun rose at 3 am, sending all of the villagers into a deep and dark terror. They could see the trees around them, the green of the grass, the blue of the sky. They had angered the child, they thought, babies bawled into their mother’s bosom, the technical support workers smashed computers, the same for the optometrist and his glasses, the same for the electrician and his lightbulbs. The sun did not stay up, it went down after two seconds, as if God had taken a dimmer switch and flicked it up accidentally, and in turn flicked it down so that he could go to sleep. Yet this had been so jarring to the townspeople. They took William Corder’s body and wrapped it in gold curtains from the Giant Tiger, they put the anthropodermic bound book in a St Hubert’s take out container, they each held in their hands a fleur-de-lis and pilgrimaged, late into the night, setting the body down in the St. Laurence river (by Verdun metro). The next morning the newspaper read: “Roller Coaster collision at La Ronde, deadly explosion in Montreal theme park lights up night sky and kills fifty Longueuil residents”. There had been no miracle, except for William Corder, who had finagled a burial fit for a prime minister. At the bottom of the river is where his body swims, mad eyes and buck toothed smile laughing still.

19


Sandwich

for

a

Joke

Weijia Quarterly

by Norman Feliks

Coming from the Jersey side, Oscar was nearly done walking the twoand-a-half mile span of the Holland Tunnel. By then he was taking small steps and with many of them his toes tapped the backs of his ankles. The tunnel’s ventilation system had stopped working and its lamps were also malfunctioning. He dragged his fingertips along the tiles of the wall to keep sense of a straight line. From behind came the slow headlights of two cars. They were close together and seemed like a single vehicle, and the trailing one had to honk at a drifting cyclist. Oscar’s skinny body jolted so rigidly that someone laughed at him. Occasionally a cop would shine a flashlight in someone’s face. Otherwise the respirator and utility vest-wearing police looked like yellow x-shapes, faint, then very bright, then very faint. Most of the travelers were on bicycles and when a car was coming up from behind, their reflectors reminded Oscar of fireflies. From the day the right lane had been clogged by pedestrians and cyclists there grew a pile of shopping carts and other abandoned things shoved and kicked tight to the wall. The authorities had since cleared all of this away; once in a while there was a foul wet spot on the asphalt and cement that smelled stronger than the thickening exhaust. At the appearance of light at the end of the tunnel, Oscar stopped walking to squint and make sure it was real. Someone bumped into him and mumbled an apology. After this person had passed far enough ahead, the spot of light returned. When he staggered out into the fresh air, everything was intensely clear under the quarter moon. On the other side of the fence were bright piles of the squeezed and mangled shopping carts, tires, empty suitcases and whatever else had been cleared from the tunnel and thrown over. There were more police and many loiterers. Most were silent, but a loud minority were talking and gesticulating. Where the ramp sloped up to it, a row of people were seated on a concrete ledge, their breath just visible in the moonlight. “Jesus, fellas, in the old days you’d only see that sort of firepower in high schools,” Oscar said, passing between the submachine gun-equipped bouncers. He weaved his way between tables and chairs through the narrow club until he reached the men’s room. Inside, finding himself alone, he looked in the mirror. He needed glasses but didn’t have any. He leaned in closer. “Fuck,” he whispered.

20

He wet his oily skin and thin hair. He closed the tap, made a wad of towels, and ran it over his head, clearing grit from the creases of his brow. Just twenty-five, any youth left in his face showed only when he was alone, by an uncertainness in his eyes. Throwing his brown corduroy suit jacket over the door of the stall, he went in and closed it behind him. From the pocket of the hanging jacket he fished a compact of his girlfriend’s blush. He opened it, peered into the little round mirror, and started powdering health onto his cheeks. Shortly Oscar was leaning against the bar, surveying the room. About half the seats were filled. It was a good crowd size and would probably not grow any more. They were even better dressed than usual. Two men in one of the booths were even wearing tuxedos. When people clapped, metal shone and stones twinkled on their raised hands. The ladies’ dresses were in many beautiful colors and for a second or two Oscar stared into a deep cobalt blue. When no one was looking he picked up what was left of a beer that had been cleared from one of the tables and finished it. His lips were wet and his eyes were tired. The club’s recorded welcoming came over its PA system. The host, Karen O’Donnell, went up to the mic and introduced herself to the crowd. After warming them up, she introduced Oscar. He went to the stage and uneasily up its stairs. His knees were bent and quivering as he approached the microphone. “Karen O’Donnell, everyone! Isn’t she great? No, seriously, be honest. I wasn’t listening to her.” The host popped her head back through the exit and gave Oscar the finger. The laughing crowd followed his gaze to her; but when their eyes returned to the stage, he was falling over. His palm came down on the high keys of the piano. Still holding the mic stand with one hand, he pushed his left foot as far as it would go and did a sweep of the keys, high to low, like a jazz pianist. He then righted himself, turned to face the crowd, and bowed to them. They laughed and applauded. O’Donnell remained, watching. “So I came in tonight from New Jersey,” Oscar began. By rote, the audience laughed. “Really? We still laugh at Jersey? The way I see it, all that went down is that the rest of the country became like New Jersey. People in Trenton who don’t watch the news have no idea anything happened. Actually, I think really the last to catch on were thieves – because they’re the ones who pay the least attention to how much things cost. Like, once in a while a looter probably notices the price tag on a loaf of bread and is like, ‘Holy shit, I just committed grand larceny at a corner store!’” Oscar’s eyes drifted up to an arbitrary point on the ceiling. He spoke in a folksy, conversational tone that clashed with the eerily surprised expression

Issue no. 2

A

21


Sandwich

for

a

Joke

Weijia Quarterly

by Norman Feliks

Coming from the Jersey side, Oscar was nearly done walking the twoand-a-half mile span of the Holland Tunnel. By then he was taking small steps and with many of them his toes tapped the backs of his ankles. The tunnel’s ventilation system had stopped working and its lamps were also malfunctioning. He dragged his fingertips along the tiles of the wall to keep sense of a straight line. From behind came the slow headlights of two cars. They were close together and seemed like a single vehicle, and the trailing one had to honk at a drifting cyclist. Oscar’s skinny body jolted so rigidly that someone laughed at him. Occasionally a cop would shine a flashlight in someone’s face. Otherwise the respirator and utility vest-wearing police looked like yellow x-shapes, faint, then very bright, then very faint. Most of the travelers were on bicycles and when a car was coming up from behind, their reflectors reminded Oscar of fireflies. From the day the right lane had been clogged by pedestrians and cyclists there grew a pile of shopping carts and other abandoned things shoved and kicked tight to the wall. The authorities had since cleared all of this away; once in a while there was a foul wet spot on the asphalt and cement that smelled stronger than the thickening exhaust. At the appearance of light at the end of the tunnel, Oscar stopped walking to squint and make sure it was real. Someone bumped into him and mumbled an apology. After this person had passed far enough ahead, the spot of light returned. When he staggered out into the fresh air, everything was intensely clear under the quarter moon. On the other side of the fence were bright piles of the squeezed and mangled shopping carts, tires, empty suitcases and whatever else had been cleared from the tunnel and thrown over. There were more police and many loiterers. Most were silent, but a loud minority were talking and gesticulating. Where the ramp sloped up to it, a row of people were seated on a concrete ledge, their breath just visible in the moonlight. “Jesus, fellas, in the old days you’d only see that sort of firepower in high schools,” Oscar said, passing between the submachine gun-equipped bouncers. He weaved his way between tables and chairs through the narrow club until he reached the men’s room. Inside, finding himself alone, he looked in the mirror. He needed glasses but didn’t have any. He leaned in closer. “Fuck,” he whispered.

20

He wet his oily skin and thin hair. He closed the tap, made a wad of towels, and ran it over his head, clearing grit from the creases of his brow. Just twenty-five, any youth left in his face showed only when he was alone, by an uncertainness in his eyes. Throwing his brown corduroy suit jacket over the door of the stall, he went in and closed it behind him. From the pocket of the hanging jacket he fished a compact of his girlfriend’s blush. He opened it, peered into the little round mirror, and started powdering health onto his cheeks. Shortly Oscar was leaning against the bar, surveying the room. About half the seats were filled. It was a good crowd size and would probably not grow any more. They were even better dressed than usual. Two men in one of the booths were even wearing tuxedos. When people clapped, metal shone and stones twinkled on their raised hands. The ladies’ dresses were in many beautiful colors and for a second or two Oscar stared into a deep cobalt blue. When no one was looking he picked up what was left of a beer that had been cleared from one of the tables and finished it. His lips were wet and his eyes were tired. The club’s recorded welcoming came over its PA system. The host, Karen O’Donnell, went up to the mic and introduced herself to the crowd. After warming them up, she introduced Oscar. He went to the stage and uneasily up its stairs. His knees were bent and quivering as he approached the microphone. “Karen O’Donnell, everyone! Isn’t she great? No, seriously, be honest. I wasn’t listening to her.” The host popped her head back through the exit and gave Oscar the finger. The laughing crowd followed his gaze to her; but when their eyes returned to the stage, he was falling over. His palm came down on the high keys of the piano. Still holding the mic stand with one hand, he pushed his left foot as far as it would go and did a sweep of the keys, high to low, like a jazz pianist. He then righted himself, turned to face the crowd, and bowed to them. They laughed and applauded. O’Donnell remained, watching. “So I came in tonight from New Jersey,” Oscar began. By rote, the audience laughed. “Really? We still laugh at Jersey? The way I see it, all that went down is that the rest of the country became like New Jersey. People in Trenton who don’t watch the news have no idea anything happened. Actually, I think really the last to catch on were thieves – because they’re the ones who pay the least attention to how much things cost. Like, once in a while a looter probably notices the price tag on a loaf of bread and is like, ‘Holy shit, I just committed grand larceny at a corner store!’” Oscar’s eyes drifted up to an arbitrary point on the ceiling. He spoke in a folksy, conversational tone that clashed with the eerily surprised expression

Issue no. 2

A

21


Weijia Quarterly

Oscar had been speaking fast and he took a deep breath, like he was about to try to blow out all the candles on a birthday cake. “You know what stinks worse than being from Jersey? How about being a fifth generation Chinese-American. ‘Dude, it is not my fault.’ Suuuuure it isn’t. ‘No, seriously, my great-great-great grandfather died carrying nitro glycerin into a California gold mine when yours was still digging up potatoes back in Cork.’ Funny, by the way, how all that gold ended up in China, eh? Or how about being Taiwanese or, or Tibetan. Those guys didn’t want to be thought of as Chinese long before Chinese-Americans stopped wanting to be thought of as Chinese. Tibet and Taiwan were like the two guys at a party trying to warn everybody not to keep giving their other friend whiskey shots ‘cause he’s a bad drunk. ‘Bill? That Bill? But he seems like such a good guy. He just lent me two trillion dollars!’” The sound of a lot of people laughing quietly is much worse than the sound of a small number of people laughing loudly. Oscar glanced over at the doorway where Karen O’Donnell remained standing. She seemed concerned and he wondered how unwell he looked. “Thanks so much, everybody,” he said, apparently to O’Donnell. “You’ve been a great audience. Be sure to tip Wanda. I know she does a lousy job but she’s been in a tough spot since I left her with our fourteen kids. Good night.” Oscar went down the stage steps very slowly, causing O’Donnell to mistime her ascent; she did a little juke to turn it into a joke. Oscar then began moving fast, looking pained and harried as he headed for the kitchen. He caught the tail end of O’Donnell saying his name and he turned and waved and smiled a bright, insincere smile. His whole center opened up like a flower in time-lapse photography blooming and dying. Inside the kitchen, a little stainless steel table was being wheeled into the corner where there was already an overturned milk crate with old, panicky newspapers on top for a cushion. His pay was brought over by the cook who had prepared it. The kitchen staff tried not to look at him as he sat down and began to eat his sandwich and french fries. O’Donnell’s loud introduction of Wil, the next comedian, echoed around the corner. There was applause and then Wil saying, “Let’s hear it once again for Oscar Adler, everybody!” There was more clapping. “Aw, c’mon people, you can do better than that!”

2013

22

on his face. Several people in the audience looked up at the ceiling to see if anything was there. “It took a while for us comedians to clue in, too, because instead of money they pay us in sandwiches.” Giggling, Oscar wrapped his hands over the top of the mic and its stand wobbled. One of his shoes was half off. The waitress, Wanda, who had come over to serve the tables in front of the stage, held a glass of water up to him. “Wanda, you’re a lifesaver,” he said. “Thank you. And, again, sorry I left you at the altar twice. Wanda, ladies and gentlemen.” He took a long drink. When he was finished, he stood blinking for a few seconds until the glass slipped from his hand and shattered by his feet. The eyes of those before him were right where the spray of glass should have gone, so Oscar looked at his hand. The half-full water was still there. He walked over and set it on the piano, then returned to the microphone. “Yeah, bread’s expensive. Too much bread for bread, har-har. That’s why whenever I see a fat person – and maybe you’re the same as me, you’re a slim lot – whenever I see a fat person nowadays, I can’t help but think it has to be cannibalism. You’re still fat? ‘No, no, it’s glandular,’ they say. Glandular, huh? Alright fatty, how many of his glands did you eat?” Oscar pulled the bench from under the piano and sat down. This put him underneath some of the beams of the stage lighting, which made him darker to the audience and the audience brighter to him. He reached up and pivoted the microphone to his mouth. “You know what I got the other day for the first time in couple months? I don’t know how things are here in New York but where I live this is rare: I got a letter in the mail. It was from my aunt is Sarasota. But why just the one, I thought? If you can deliver one letter, what about the dozens and dozens of others piled up somewhere? I could see the mailman hopping down my stairs and I thought, why not ask him? Sometimes I feel like we’re living in a world where there’s a good excuse to do or not do just about anything. What if my mailman is being lazy? “So sure enough, I find myself throwing my jacket and shoes on and running out the door to catch up with him. Well, turns out he walked the letter all the way from Sarasota himself, fending off roving bands of armed hicks the whole way, and even lent my aunt Marge his pen so she could write me the damn letter. I felt like a real jerk. And to top it all off, he recites the USPS motto from on the big post office by Penn Station, Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom, etc. And then he says to me, ‘You hear anything in there about total fucking global collapse, pal? Huh? Yeah, neither did I.’ “So anyway, the point is I still don’t have the Time Life encyclopedia set I ordered off the infomercial and I think that stinks.”

An unexplained closure of the Holland Tunnel lasted until after midnight. Motorized traffic was rerouted but thousands of pedestrians and cyclists collected in a miserable, impatient clot. When the barricades were finally removed, gobs of tight packed people began slowly pouring into the tunnel. Oscar was somewhere in the middle, eventually forced in the direction he wanted to go. After an initial surge of conversation, silence came back over the throngs.

23


Weijia Quarterly

Oscar had been speaking fast and he took a deep breath, like he was about to try to blow out all the candles on a birthday cake. “You know what stinks worse than being from Jersey? How about being a fifth generation Chinese-American. ‘Dude, it is not my fault.’ Suuuuure it isn’t. ‘No, seriously, my great-great-great grandfather died carrying nitro glycerin into a California gold mine when yours was still digging up potatoes back in Cork.’ Funny, by the way, how all that gold ended up in China, eh? Or how about being Taiwanese or, or Tibetan. Those guys didn’t want to be thought of as Chinese long before Chinese-Americans stopped wanting to be thought of as Chinese. Tibet and Taiwan were like the two guys at a party trying to warn everybody not to keep giving their other friend whiskey shots ‘cause he’s a bad drunk. ‘Bill? That Bill? But he seems like such a good guy. He just lent me two trillion dollars!’” The sound of a lot of people laughing quietly is much worse than the sound of a small number of people laughing loudly. Oscar glanced over at the doorway where Karen O’Donnell remained standing. She seemed concerned and he wondered how unwell he looked. “Thanks so much, everybody,” he said, apparently to O’Donnell. “You’ve been a great audience. Be sure to tip Wanda. I know she does a lousy job but she’s been in a tough spot since I left her with our fourteen kids. Good night.” Oscar went down the stage steps very slowly, causing O’Donnell to mistime her ascent; she did a little juke to turn it into a joke. Oscar then began moving fast, looking pained and harried as he headed for the kitchen. He caught the tail end of O’Donnell saying his name and he turned and waved and smiled a bright, insincere smile. His whole center opened up like a flower in time-lapse photography blooming and dying. Inside the kitchen, a little stainless steel table was being wheeled into the corner where there was already an overturned milk crate with old, panicky newspapers on top for a cushion. His pay was brought over by the cook who had prepared it. The kitchen staff tried not to look at him as he sat down and began to eat his sandwich and french fries. O’Donnell’s loud introduction of Wil, the next comedian, echoed around the corner. There was applause and then Wil saying, “Let’s hear it once again for Oscar Adler, everybody!” There was more clapping. “Aw, c’mon people, you can do better than that!”

2013

22

on his face. Several people in the audience looked up at the ceiling to see if anything was there. “It took a while for us comedians to clue in, too, because instead of money they pay us in sandwiches.” Giggling, Oscar wrapped his hands over the top of the mic and its stand wobbled. One of his shoes was half off. The waitress, Wanda, who had come over to serve the tables in front of the stage, held a glass of water up to him. “Wanda, you’re a lifesaver,” he said. “Thank you. And, again, sorry I left you at the altar twice. Wanda, ladies and gentlemen.” He took a long drink. When he was finished, he stood blinking for a few seconds until the glass slipped from his hand and shattered by his feet. The eyes of those before him were right where the spray of glass should have gone, so Oscar looked at his hand. The half-full water was still there. He walked over and set it on the piano, then returned to the microphone. “Yeah, bread’s expensive. Too much bread for bread, har-har. That’s why whenever I see a fat person – and maybe you’re the same as me, you’re a slim lot – whenever I see a fat person nowadays, I can’t help but think it has to be cannibalism. You’re still fat? ‘No, no, it’s glandular,’ they say. Glandular, huh? Alright fatty, how many of his glands did you eat?” Oscar pulled the bench from under the piano and sat down. This put him underneath some of the beams of the stage lighting, which made him darker to the audience and the audience brighter to him. He reached up and pivoted the microphone to his mouth. “You know what I got the other day for the first time in couple months? I don’t know how things are here in New York but where I live this is rare: I got a letter in the mail. It was from my aunt is Sarasota. But why just the one, I thought? If you can deliver one letter, what about the dozens and dozens of others piled up somewhere? I could see the mailman hopping down my stairs and I thought, why not ask him? Sometimes I feel like we’re living in a world where there’s a good excuse to do or not do just about anything. What if my mailman is being lazy? “So sure enough, I find myself throwing my jacket and shoes on and running out the door to catch up with him. Well, turns out he walked the letter all the way from Sarasota himself, fending off roving bands of armed hicks the whole way, and even lent my aunt Marge his pen so she could write me the damn letter. I felt like a real jerk. And to top it all off, he recites the USPS motto from on the big post office by Penn Station, Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom, etc. And then he says to me, ‘You hear anything in there about total fucking global collapse, pal? Huh? Yeah, neither did I.’ “So anyway, the point is I still don’t have the Time Life encyclopedia set I ordered off the infomercial and I think that stinks.”

An unexplained closure of the Holland Tunnel lasted until after midnight. Motorized traffic was rerouted but thousands of pedestrians and cyclists collected in a miserable, impatient clot. When the barricades were finally removed, gobs of tight packed people began slowly pouring into the tunnel. Oscar was somewhere in the middle, eventually forced in the direction he wanted to go. After an initial surge of conversation, silence came back over the throngs.

23


24

Two hours later the white tiles were pulling at the corners of Oscar’s vision, pixels stretching endlessly back and endlessly forth. There had been no more cyclists passing for quite some time and there were no sounds at all; not even footfalls carried. When the tunnel’s lighting system shut down again, there were some reactions, but the blackened voices were dejected and low, not assertive. Sometimes a police van or car drove past and in the headlights appeared the people, each with an outstretched arm touching the wall. As the beams grew enough to see by, the arms fell like hundreds of dials dropping to zero. Oscar’s steps were clumsy and he looked at his feet even though he couldn’t see them. He remembered taking ballroom dancing lessons with his girlfriend years before and how clumsy he had been then, and he started laughing. It made him miss her and he walked faster so he could see her sooner. The extra effort made him feel nauseous. He slowed his pace back down but the nausea stayed the same, then started to grow, climbing up his throat little by little. His mouth began to fill with saliva and he bent forward in the dark and threw up his dinner.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

When there was a voice – usually raging over a bicycle getting in the way, or digging into someone’s leg, or being broken by accident – the voice was heard by many more than could see its speaker. Released from the bottleneck, past the obstacle course of dropped possessions, Oscar found the tunnel much less crowded than he had expected. And the lights were back on. Newly liberated cyclists sped off up the right lane, often whooping or with a half-relieved, half-joyful, “God damn!” The walkers were not like this. They were angry or already exhausted and many ran over to urinate where they could find a free space, looking down or away in shame. Oscar saw an old man with a small boy on his shoulders, slouched and moving slowly.

25


24

Two hours later the white tiles were pulling at the corners of Oscar’s vision, pixels stretching endlessly back and endlessly forth. There had been no more cyclists passing for quite some time and there were no sounds at all; not even footfalls carried. When the tunnel’s lighting system shut down again, there were some reactions, but the blackened voices were dejected and low, not assertive. Sometimes a police van or car drove past and in the headlights appeared the people, each with an outstretched arm touching the wall. As the beams grew enough to see by, the arms fell like hundreds of dials dropping to zero. Oscar’s steps were clumsy and he looked at his feet even though he couldn’t see them. He remembered taking ballroom dancing lessons with his girlfriend years before and how clumsy he had been then, and he started laughing. It made him miss her and he walked faster so he could see her sooner. The extra effort made him feel nauseous. He slowed his pace back down but the nausea stayed the same, then started to grow, climbing up his throat little by little. His mouth began to fill with saliva and he bent forward in the dark and threw up his dinner.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

When there was a voice – usually raging over a bicycle getting in the way, or digging into someone’s leg, or being broken by accident – the voice was heard by many more than could see its speaker. Released from the bottleneck, past the obstacle course of dropped possessions, Oscar found the tunnel much less crowded than he had expected. And the lights were back on. Newly liberated cyclists sped off up the right lane, often whooping or with a half-relieved, half-joyful, “God damn!” The walkers were not like this. They were angry or already exhausted and many ran over to urinate where they could find a free space, looking down or away in shame. Oscar saw an old man with a small boy on his shoulders, slouched and moving slowly.

25


R a c h e S h a w ’ i m p o s s i b l e s p a c e s

l s -

Article by Zoe koke Paintings by Rachel Shaw

Discrete objects - uncomfortable furniture, plants, paintings and sculptures, ladders, and obscure geometric forms rendered with varying degrees of detail in dark and dull colors characterize the rooms depicted in Rachel Shaw’s most recent series of paintings. The small scale works quietly expose intentionally or accidentally arranged spaces. Together the paintings stage a collective experience, a pooling of spatial memory that we can choose to entrap ourselves in, if only temporarily. What we see in Shaw’s work is both oddly forgotten, and ominously staged. The rooms are connected through dark rectangular cavities, suggesting a proposed passage of movement or time. Objects are broken or placed awkwardly within each scene. This series suggests an alternate reality - an oddly familiar sequence of events, from a dated modernist catalogue or video game. Yet, we aren’t directed toward an objective, or climax in a narrative, but rather are implored to question the utility and futility of space. Shaw’s world breaks down our expectations, creating unfamiliar relationships to what could be otherwise perceived as mundane, the stuff of our daily lives. In doing so, she comments on the meaning of the interior as socially constructed.

28

At one point, the depiction of space, in western art, presented social ideals as embedded in space- the home as a marker of economic, religious and familial prosperity and conversely, the workplace as a site of productivity, and so on. Interiority as a theme in Dutch paintings, in the 17th century, dealt with the virtues of domesticity, ordinary people and non-secular daily life. Impressionist paintings posed domestic space and its subjects as part of a budding bourgeoisie’s celebration of prosperity. Modernism, then, rationalized interior space, or subordinated it to architecture, as a reaction to this celebration, which was deemed as too linked to rampant materialism and consumer culture. Thus, a minimal interior aesthetic was born, which characterizes the stylish, albeit imperfect, spaces of Shaw’s paintings. Commercial catalogues and interior decorating magazines have historically represented space as desirable, attainable, and always definitive of idealized lifestyles. More recently, contemporary artists, such as Gregor Schneider, Lynne Cohen, and Thomas Demand, among others, have come to address other dimensions of space – the personal, the absolute, the ambiguous, and the politicized. Without the inclusion of human presence in their work, these artists question the definitions of domestic, commercial and institutional space, and the many moments where social definitions of space blur. Shaw’s work appears to be an interrogation in this vein. If domestic, institutional and commercial styles of interior decorating ambiguously intermingle in contemporary life, in malls and showrooms, so do they in Shaw’s work.

Displays 2 (2010)

Shaw’s depictions; however,¬ do not recommend the efficiency of contemporary life. Rather, objects appear in space as carefully selected, collected, or abandoned. Contem29


R a c h e S h a w ’ i m p o s s i b l e s p a c e s

l s -

Article by Zoe koke Paintings by Rachel Shaw

Discrete objects - uncomfortable furniture, plants, paintings and sculptures, ladders, and obscure geometric forms rendered with varying degrees of detail in dark and dull colors characterize the rooms depicted in Rachel Shaw’s most recent series of paintings. The small scale works quietly expose intentionally or accidentally arranged spaces. Together the paintings stage a collective experience, a pooling of spatial memory that we can choose to entrap ourselves in, if only temporarily. What we see in Shaw’s work is both oddly forgotten, and ominously staged. The rooms are connected through dark rectangular cavities, suggesting a proposed passage of movement or time. Objects are broken or placed awkwardly within each scene. This series suggests an alternate reality - an oddly familiar sequence of events, from a dated modernist catalogue or video game. Yet, we aren’t directed toward an objective, or climax in a narrative, but rather are implored to question the utility and futility of space. Shaw’s world breaks down our expectations, creating unfamiliar relationships to what could be otherwise perceived as mundane, the stuff of our daily lives. In doing so, she comments on the meaning of the interior as socially constructed.

28

At one point, the depiction of space, in western art, presented social ideals as embedded in space- the home as a marker of economic, religious and familial prosperity and conversely, the workplace as a site of productivity, and so on. Interiority as a theme in Dutch paintings, in the 17th century, dealt with the virtues of domesticity, ordinary people and non-secular daily life. Impressionist paintings posed domestic space and its subjects as part of a budding bourgeoisie’s celebration of prosperity. Modernism, then, rationalized interior space, or subordinated it to architecture, as a reaction to this celebration, which was deemed as too linked to rampant materialism and consumer culture. Thus, a minimal interior aesthetic was born, which characterizes the stylish, albeit imperfect, spaces of Shaw’s paintings. Commercial catalogues and interior decorating magazines have historically represented space as desirable, attainable, and always definitive of idealized lifestyles. More recently, contemporary artists, such as Gregor Schneider, Lynne Cohen, and Thomas Demand, among others, have come to address other dimensions of space – the personal, the absolute, the ambiguous, and the politicized. Without the inclusion of human presence in their work, these artists question the definitions of domestic, commercial and institutional space, and the many moments where social definitions of space blur. Shaw’s work appears to be an interrogation in this vein. If domestic, institutional and commercial styles of interior decorating ambiguously intermingle in contemporary life, in malls and showrooms, so do they in Shaw’s work.

Displays 2 (2010)

Shaw’s depictions; however,¬ do not recommend the efficiency of contemporary life. Rather, objects appear in space as carefully selected, collected, or abandoned. Contem29


Agadez (2011)

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Head Room (2011)

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Agadez (2011)

30

Head Room (2011)

31


porary artist Matthias Weischer, like Shaw, represents space as surreal, and therefore on the fringe of social functionality. As discussed in Weischer’s Saatchi profile,“Banality is ruminated as a perpetual labyrinth where obsession and madness become the pursuit of wonder and delight.” Sally O’Reilly writes in Frieze magazine that Weischer’s lively paintings are places in which “the perceptual and possible meet, as regions of illusory experimentation.” Like Weischer’s paintings Shaw’s works, in their abstractions of familiar forms and in their effort to depict non-seamless functionality, too act as surreal investigations of space. We see the instability in our perception of her spaces. The objects placed in Shaw’s paintings could be art pieces; the dark rectangular cutouts, storefront windows, but everything could also be part of some kind of set - the set of a dated tv show, or rooms from a lonely diorama. Like earlier artworks depicting space, Shaw’s work comments on the interior in its separation from the exterior. Thresholds like windows and doors remind us of the demarcation of private and public life. However there is always something off kilter in Shaw’s work. Her painted sites are familiar but neglect us, their forms recall the principles of what we register as familiarly domestic or institutional, but they don’t promise any real grounding in the world as we know it. Dull carpet colors and rigid furnishings mutually suggest offices and living rooms, as well as enliven our memories, and their many mundane locations. The interiors of the office building curiously witnessed from a low car window, or the apartments you visited as a child, but never returned to.

works meditate on the function of our perceptual and psychological attachments to space, and in so doing grant access to every viewer. After all, we have all lived in a particular room, or series of rooms. Most of us have left these rooms for new rooms. Our belongings move with our bodies, and the miscellaneous objects that we save and define ourselves by. We become these rooms as they become ours. In Shaw’s work, she tells us what space means without us. Her paintings, at first glance, feel empty and dejected, but in their vacancy, they are hopeful in their openness to our suggestion.

Displays 3 (2010)

The reoccurring forms make the scenes feel far away and long ago. They animate the staleness, and the neglect of our memories of space and its relevance to experience. The 32

33


porary artist Matthias Weischer, like Shaw, represents space as surreal, and therefore on the fringe of social functionality. As discussed in Weischer’s Saatchi profile,“Banality is ruminated as a perpetual labyrinth where obsession and madness become the pursuit of wonder and delight.” Sally O’Reilly writes in Frieze magazine that Weischer’s lively paintings are places in which “the perceptual and possible meet, as regions of illusory experimentation.” Like Weischer’s paintings Shaw’s works, in their abstractions of familiar forms and in their effort to depict non-seamless functionality, too act as surreal investigations of space. We see the instability in our perception of her spaces. The objects placed in Shaw’s paintings could be art pieces; the dark rectangular cutouts, storefront windows, but everything could also be part of some kind of set - the set of a dated tv show, or rooms from a lonely diorama. Like earlier artworks depicting space, Shaw’s work comments on the interior in its separation from the exterior. Thresholds like windows and doors remind us of the demarcation of private and public life. However there is always something off kilter in Shaw’s work. Her painted sites are familiar but neglect us, their forms recall the principles of what we register as familiarly domestic or institutional, but they don’t promise any real grounding in the world as we know it. Dull carpet colors and rigid furnishings mutually suggest offices and living rooms, as well as enliven our memories, and their many mundane locations. The interiors of the office building curiously witnessed from a low car window, or the apartments you visited as a child, but never returned to.

works meditate on the function of our perceptual and psychological attachments to space, and in so doing grant access to every viewer. After all, we have all lived in a particular room, or series of rooms. Most of us have left these rooms for new rooms. Our belongings move with our bodies, and the miscellaneous objects that we save and define ourselves by. We become these rooms as they become ours. In Shaw’s work, she tells us what space means without us. Her paintings, at first glance, feel empty and dejected, but in their vacancy, they are hopeful in their openness to our suggestion.

Displays 3 (2010)

The reoccurring forms make the scenes feel far away and long ago. They animate the staleness, and the neglect of our memories of space and its relevance to experience. The 32

33


Kyle Goforth

The brutalist chair, 2012

34

35


Kyle Goforth

The brutalist chair, 2012

34

35


Levi Bruce

Interior Dreams, 2013

36

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Levi Bruce

Interior Dreams, 2013

36

37


Kendall Stephenson Photographs, 2012

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Kendall Stephenson Photographs, 2012

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40

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Pare

on

Goerzen by Madeleine Pare Images by Matt Goerzen

Can internet art maintain its subversive function when there is already so much accepted and institutionalised discourse buffering an anti-aesthetic? Can its original parasitic identity be salvaged in current online networks that have been subsumed by commercial worlds? In the early 1990s, “Net. Art” was a term hardly used outside the insular cyber world. Early internet artists had anarchistic motivations –artist and hacker becoming synonymous. Making art online promised many things: increased communication, the ability to produce on little or no budget, anonymity and perhaps most importantly, a space independent of the art market. In its early forms, internet art was meant as a rebellion against the canonical narrative of art history, whose criteria for inclusion was entirely bound with and dependent on ideologies promoting hierarchy and supporting the exclusion of (many and any) artists of marginal class, race or gender. Art produced and circulated in the cyber realm was free from these constraints. First wave Net.Art was utopian in character. Much has changed since then but artists haven’t stopped making work on and for the internet. As Nicholas Warner points out, technological advancement and social networking neutralised the previously anarchistic values of net art production. Post-Internet art, a term conceived of by artist Marisa Olson, considers the net as inseparable from the outside world and its systems, a consumer economy being one of them. It is not enough to make your work available for free and to anyone, artists have to engage with what free means, otherwise one works under the assumption that the internet is static, as opposed to evolving their critique alongside it. Post-internet art does not involve a medium dependence on the net. Instead, artists engage with the internet as a distributive platform, dramatically broadening the ways with which they can interact with it and the world outside . Artist Matt Goerzen’s recent works present us with something radically new, using the “archaic” tools of early internet dissidence. His work, though it knowingly operates within a by now highly commercialised online world, makes visible the contentious re42

lationship of Art and Net. The concept is simple enough, Goerzen chooses a small business which has no online presence meaning no website domain, personal brand or calculated market identity. He works as though he were contracted as a web designer and builds up a site where one is lacking. The thing is, Goerzen has not been asked to make a site, he has no formal training as a website designer and would prefer not to identify as one. The small businesses he selects are completely unaware of his efforts and there could be any number of reasons for their online absence. Seeing as they don’t know Goerzen is making them a site, they are given no say in the final outcome of its content or appearance. Goerzen allows himself complete artistic license on each project; having never met or spoken to any of his “clients”— he is his own boss. A show is set up at a gallery in New York after the sites/works have been published online. Buyers, both private and institutional, are introduced to the work. If they like a site, they may buy the domain and the profit goes to the artist. Rather than use the internet as a safe platform for avoiding the institutionalization of art, the art world plays a critical conceptual role in the function of this project. Goerzen’s intentions are clear, his goal is to make money in the art market. He does not shy away from contemporary art’s characterization of “art as commodity” but expands on the notion of what an art commodity may be, beyond an insular art network. There is nothing illegal about what Goerzen is doing, it is an extension of what we all do everyday- the promotion of things we like. Technically, his sites are fan sites. However, can you call it that if it has been removed from its usual context? Can we be fans of a local Berlin nut shop? How does the concept of “fan” hold up when the usual markers of a fan base or network of admirers are non-existent? The aura of officialdom is one issue that the project fleshes out. Goerzen’s work ironizes our collective online conditioning. Any validity we see in the site is an assumption. The public digests information in a learned manner. Certain aesthetic cues prompt us to accept informational sources as legitimate. If the business were ever to design their own website, the presence of one of Goerzen’s “fan sites” might threaten the perceived legitimacy of that technically real site. On the internet, authenticity

or legitimacy may be marked by means such as google hits, page ranking or design aesthetics. Sure, we have known for a long time that anything can be art as long as the artist intends it. But can a website for a tattoo removal parlour in Edmonton also be anything? The transformative nature of the websites put into question categories such as usership, spectarship, ownership and expert culture. The sites are chameleonic, adapting function and purpose with each change of context. For Goerzen they may be sentimental expressions of esteem, honoring in some small way the unmarketable or they may be social experiments in aesthetic principles and difference. For the unknowing internet user, they blend in with today’s online landscape as small profit-making efforts. For the informed user, they are curiosities, representing potential legal threats, examples of art hacking or current avant-garde aestheticism. The business owner might view them as acts of kindness, threats, pranks or complete misprints. Finally, the collector recognises and asserts them as conventional art commodities, adding them to their prided collection of institutionally embraced anti-art. Goerzen’s sites offer an alternative to the traditional dichotomy of artist/art patron. Those very categories are put into question when the patron (private collector, gallery owner or institution) subsidizes the production of a small business’ website. Goerzen is not offering free services but rather than collect from the business’, his profit comes from the wealthy patrons or institutions which have no vested interest in anyone’s betterment than their own. The purchase of these sites by distant individuals or organisations reflects how power functions in larger art markets, unaccountable to those it affects. Their misplaced intentions don’t matter to the artist for the money is still brought into circulation and put towards funding future websites, potentially widening the visibility of the businesses he supports. If the system functions, his small network expands in an alternative and roundabout manner, subverting the usual structure of the art world economy. The collector’s reception of the work further complicates the work and adds potential effect. Do they view the work as autonomous, cyber art “objects” with no utilitarian goal? We might assume this is their stance solely on their decision to purchase one of the sites, declaring their aesthetic/monetary value. As soon as the work is sold, it earns art status and its utilitarian function is muddled, possibly no longer relevant.

“The ruling class seeks always to control innovation and turn it into its own ends, depriving the hacker of control of her or his creation, and thereby denying the world as a whole the right to manage its own development.” Does the buyer’s role negate those other identities of the site? Does ownership overrule usership? The success of the project depends on an inevitable paradoxical relationship between the two. However, the contradiction between ownership and usership need not be a limiting one. The sale of the website to the “ruling class” patron/institution is a critical part of the work’s concept. Goerzen is working under the assumption that the art world has the privilege to redefine the work and he is using that redefinition to his project’s conceptual benefit. That seeming compliance actually weakens the power of ownership and elitism. The intention to unsettle the usual market process and the heterogenous identity of the art work trivializes possession as being as much an outcome of chance as any other process an object may be defined by. So what is the utilitarian purpose of Goerzen’s project? After all, the business owners may be at complete odds with his aesthetic choices. He may be ascribing an online identity to these businesses that has nothing to do with how they would like to self-represent. This is where the work gets useful. Arts autonomy or “art for arts sake,” which overlooks art’s moral, economic, material and practical properties, is not the goal here. Instead, Goerzen uses art as a vehicle for experimentation with these very properties that the doctrine of autonomous art has excluded. The work depends both on the exhibitionary and cyber realm’s utilitarian purposes (making visible the binary relationship the two have had historically). Both the art world and the cyber are paradoxical in relation to the real. But whereas art’s opposition to “mere real things” suggests its historical ontological superiority, the internet’s illusory composition has given rise to its contentious relationship to institutionalized, canonical art history. Julian Stallabrass mentions, Net. Art’s post-medium condition undermines the autonomy of art, “lacking the comfort of materiality and (often) museum display.” Goerzen’s sites are neither autonomous nor material, a double threat to fine art’s status quo. Though it keeps 43


Pare

on

Goerzen by Madeleine Pare Images by Matt Goerzen

Can internet art maintain its subversive function when there is already so much accepted and institutionalised discourse buffering an anti-aesthetic? Can its original parasitic identity be salvaged in current online networks that have been subsumed by commercial worlds? In the early 1990s, “Net. Art” was a term hardly used outside the insular cyber world. Early internet artists had anarchistic motivations –artist and hacker becoming synonymous. Making art online promised many things: increased communication, the ability to produce on little or no budget, anonymity and perhaps most importantly, a space independent of the art market. In its early forms, internet art was meant as a rebellion against the canonical narrative of art history, whose criteria for inclusion was entirely bound with and dependent on ideologies promoting hierarchy and supporting the exclusion of (many and any) artists of marginal class, race or gender. Art produced and circulated in the cyber realm was free from these constraints. First wave Net.Art was utopian in character. Much has changed since then but artists haven’t stopped making work on and for the internet. As Nicholas Warner points out, technological advancement and social networking neutralised the previously anarchistic values of net art production. Post-Internet art, a term conceived of by artist Marisa Olson, considers the net as inseparable from the outside world and its systems, a consumer economy being one of them. It is not enough to make your work available for free and to anyone, artists have to engage with what free means, otherwise one works under the assumption that the internet is static, as opposed to evolving their critique alongside it. Post-internet art does not involve a medium dependence on the net. Instead, artists engage with the internet as a distributive platform, dramatically broadening the ways with which they can interact with it and the world outside . Artist Matt Goerzen’s recent works present us with something radically new, using the “archaic” tools of early internet dissidence. His work, though it knowingly operates within a by now highly commercialised online world, makes visible the contentious re42

lationship of Art and Net. The concept is simple enough, Goerzen chooses a small business which has no online presence meaning no website domain, personal brand or calculated market identity. He works as though he were contracted as a web designer and builds up a site where one is lacking. The thing is, Goerzen has not been asked to make a site, he has no formal training as a website designer and would prefer not to identify as one. The small businesses he selects are completely unaware of his efforts and there could be any number of reasons for their online absence. Seeing as they don’t know Goerzen is making them a site, they are given no say in the final outcome of its content or appearance. Goerzen allows himself complete artistic license on each project; having never met or spoken to any of his “clients”— he is his own boss. A show is set up at a gallery in New York after the sites/works have been published online. Buyers, both private and institutional, are introduced to the work. If they like a site, they may buy the domain and the profit goes to the artist. Rather than use the internet as a safe platform for avoiding the institutionalization of art, the art world plays a critical conceptual role in the function of this project. Goerzen’s intentions are clear, his goal is to make money in the art market. He does not shy away from contemporary art’s characterization of “art as commodity” but expands on the notion of what an art commodity may be, beyond an insular art network. There is nothing illegal about what Goerzen is doing, it is an extension of what we all do everyday- the promotion of things we like. Technically, his sites are fan sites. However, can you call it that if it has been removed from its usual context? Can we be fans of a local Berlin nut shop? How does the concept of “fan” hold up when the usual markers of a fan base or network of admirers are non-existent? The aura of officialdom is one issue that the project fleshes out. Goerzen’s work ironizes our collective online conditioning. Any validity we see in the site is an assumption. The public digests information in a learned manner. Certain aesthetic cues prompt us to accept informational sources as legitimate. If the business were ever to design their own website, the presence of one of Goerzen’s “fan sites” might threaten the perceived legitimacy of that technically real site. On the internet, authenticity

or legitimacy may be marked by means such as google hits, page ranking or design aesthetics. Sure, we have known for a long time that anything can be art as long as the artist intends it. But can a website for a tattoo removal parlour in Edmonton also be anything? The transformative nature of the websites put into question categories such as usership, spectarship, ownership and expert culture. The sites are chameleonic, adapting function and purpose with each change of context. For Goerzen they may be sentimental expressions of esteem, honoring in some small way the unmarketable or they may be social experiments in aesthetic principles and difference. For the unknowing internet user, they blend in with today’s online landscape as small profit-making efforts. For the informed user, they are curiosities, representing potential legal threats, examples of art hacking or current avant-garde aestheticism. The business owner might view them as acts of kindness, threats, pranks or complete misprints. Finally, the collector recognises and asserts them as conventional art commodities, adding them to their prided collection of institutionally embraced anti-art. Goerzen’s sites offer an alternative to the traditional dichotomy of artist/art patron. Those very categories are put into question when the patron (private collector, gallery owner or institution) subsidizes the production of a small business’ website. Goerzen is not offering free services but rather than collect from the business’, his profit comes from the wealthy patrons or institutions which have no vested interest in anyone’s betterment than their own. The purchase of these sites by distant individuals or organisations reflects how power functions in larger art markets, unaccountable to those it affects. Their misplaced intentions don’t matter to the artist for the money is still brought into circulation and put towards funding future websites, potentially widening the visibility of the businesses he supports. If the system functions, his small network expands in an alternative and roundabout manner, subverting the usual structure of the art world economy. The collector’s reception of the work further complicates the work and adds potential effect. Do they view the work as autonomous, cyber art “objects” with no utilitarian goal? We might assume this is their stance solely on their decision to purchase one of the sites, declaring their aesthetic/monetary value. As soon as the work is sold, it earns art status and its utilitarian function is muddled, possibly no longer relevant.

“The ruling class seeks always to control innovation and turn it into its own ends, depriving the hacker of control of her or his creation, and thereby denying the world as a whole the right to manage its own development.” Does the buyer’s role negate those other identities of the site? Does ownership overrule usership? The success of the project depends on an inevitable paradoxical relationship between the two. However, the contradiction between ownership and usership need not be a limiting one. The sale of the website to the “ruling class” patron/institution is a critical part of the work’s concept. Goerzen is working under the assumption that the art world has the privilege to redefine the work and he is using that redefinition to his project’s conceptual benefit. That seeming compliance actually weakens the power of ownership and elitism. The intention to unsettle the usual market process and the heterogenous identity of the art work trivializes possession as being as much an outcome of chance as any other process an object may be defined by. So what is the utilitarian purpose of Goerzen’s project? After all, the business owners may be at complete odds with his aesthetic choices. He may be ascribing an online identity to these businesses that has nothing to do with how they would like to self-represent. This is where the work gets useful. Arts autonomy or “art for arts sake,” which overlooks art’s moral, economic, material and practical properties, is not the goal here. Instead, Goerzen uses art as a vehicle for experimentation with these very properties that the doctrine of autonomous art has excluded. The work depends both on the exhibitionary and cyber realm’s utilitarian purposes (making visible the binary relationship the two have had historically). Both the art world and the cyber are paradoxical in relation to the real. But whereas art’s opposition to “mere real things” suggests its historical ontological superiority, the internet’s illusory composition has given rise to its contentious relationship to institutionalized, canonical art history. Julian Stallabrass mentions, Net. Art’s post-medium condition undermines the autonomy of art, “lacking the comfort of materiality and (often) museum display.” Goerzen’s sites are neither autonomous nor material, a double threat to fine art’s status quo. Though it keeps 43


Weijia Quarterly

trying, art history has yet to successfully canonize any internet art movement, not being able to keep up with its rapid development or its truly interdisciplinary foundation. The project skews ideals upheld by participatory art which promote the usability of a work and the role of the (v)user (viewer/user) in the process and overall effectiveness of the art work. Goerzen’s sites isolate the viewer, subject and art patron by simulating an aura of officialdom. By extension however, the viewer can also be considered a central component of the work’s concept. Goerzen favors his own position as user/client/artist when his vision of a particular small business manifests as the “official” online identity of that business. Goerzen argues that the “fugitive elements” of a business’ identity, meaning those which are the outcome of public reception and opinion, are in fact closer to the realistic identity of the business. In publishing content about the businesses from the standpoint of a client, he allows for a level of consumer involvement not yet possible through normal (legal) means— but under the banner of art, his involvement becomes conceptually complex enough to be allowable, if not only temporarily. His aesthetic/utilitarian actions are microscopic, moral lessons that can be applied to a number of different contemporary contexts. Any business’ identity is dependent on external opinion but that is always in dialog with the desired identity to whom it is associated. This is the reciprocal relationship exhibited in Goerzen’s sites. Today’s cultural economy is characterized by a free-flow of extreme information wherein no identity can ever remain static. Everyone and everything is liable to hacking and subversion and consequently, these processes alter the identity of that thing or purpose. If subversion in art used to be a category best applied to political, cultural or social critique in art discourse and practice, in Goerzen’s system, it is used for different [useful] means. Subversion is not a means of deconstruction as it has been for post-structuralist informed conceptual art practices. Undermining the usual order of exchange, Goerzen confuses the roles of subject, artist, user, viewer and patron; rather than deconstruct them proving their power 46

to be false, he reorganizes. The outcome is bizarrely conceived websites that serve a functional purpose in both the art world and the global market economy and destabilize assumptions about how these need operate. Data is proven to be experiential matter, the possibilities for interaction and exchange are exponential once the normative patterns of online and offline exchange are disrupted.

Tropical laser site (2013)

47


Weijia Quarterly

trying, art history has yet to successfully canonize any internet art movement, not being able to keep up with its rapid development or its truly interdisciplinary foundation. The project skews ideals upheld by participatory art which promote the usability of a work and the role of the (v)user (viewer/user) in the process and overall effectiveness of the art work. Goerzen’s sites isolate the viewer, subject and art patron by simulating an aura of officialdom. By extension however, the viewer can also be considered a central component of the work’s concept. Goerzen favors his own position as user/client/artist when his vision of a particular small business manifests as the “official” online identity of that business. Goerzen argues that the “fugitive elements” of a business’ identity, meaning those which are the outcome of public reception and opinion, are in fact closer to the realistic identity of the business. In publishing content about the businesses from the standpoint of a client, he allows for a level of consumer involvement not yet possible through normal (legal) means— but under the banner of art, his involvement becomes conceptually complex enough to be allowable, if not only temporarily. His aesthetic/utilitarian actions are microscopic, moral lessons that can be applied to a number of different contemporary contexts. Any business’ identity is dependent on external opinion but that is always in dialog with the desired identity to whom it is associated. This is the reciprocal relationship exhibited in Goerzen’s sites. Today’s cultural economy is characterized by a free-flow of extreme information wherein no identity can ever remain static. Everyone and everything is liable to hacking and subversion and consequently, these processes alter the identity of that thing or purpose. If subversion in art used to be a category best applied to political, cultural or social critique in art discourse and practice, in Goerzen’s system, it is used for different [useful] means. Subversion is not a means of deconstruction as it has been for post-structuralist informed conceptual art practices. Undermining the usual order of exchange, Goerzen confuses the roles of subject, artist, user, viewer and patron; rather than deconstruct them proving their power 46

to be false, he reorganizes. The outcome is bizarrely conceived websites that serve a functional purpose in both the art world and the global market economy and destabilize assumptions about how these need operate. Data is proven to be experiential matter, the possibilities for interaction and exchange are exponential once the normative patterns of online and offline exchange are disrupted.

Tropical laser site (2013)

47


Nick DeMarco

Scratchers, 2012

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49


Nick DeMarco

Scratchers, 2012

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50

51


50

51


David Hanes

Awareness, 2013

What began as a side project in 2011, the digital images in the series Aware have been culled from online image searches of popular works of art and manipulated using photoshop. Reminiscent of Rauschenberg’s Erased de Kooning, 1953, this series produces an attempt at representing what Michael Sanchez refers to as the “non-subject” in art. Acting as a gateway into Hanes’ ongoing fascination with art, aesthetics and the relationship between the two as it exists on the Internet the work becomes an uncanny and subtle response to contemporary art trends. Currently there are a approximately 700 images in the Aware series and from this aggregate selections are made that are then printed on nearly sheer polyester nylon fabric and stretched to look like a painting. These finalities exist somewhere between photography, sculpture and painting, Aware could be understood as image-objects that are innately a combination of all three mediums.

52

53


David Hanes

Awareness, 2013

What began as a side project in 2011, the digital images in the series Aware have been culled from online image searches of popular works of art and manipulated using photoshop. Reminiscent of Rauschenberg’s Erased de Kooning, 1953, this series produces an attempt at representing what Michael Sanchez refers to as the “non-subject” in art. Acting as a gateway into Hanes’ ongoing fascination with art, aesthetics and the relationship between the two as it exists on the Internet the work becomes an uncanny and subtle response to contemporary art trends. Currently there are a approximately 700 images in the Aware series and from this aggregate selections are made that are then printed on nearly sheer polyester nylon fabric and stretched to look like a painting. These finalities exist somewhere between photography, sculpture and painting, Aware could be understood as image-objects that are innately a combination of all three mediums.

52

53


54

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55


Jaakko Pallasvuo

From the “Nu Painting” series, 2013

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57


Jaakko Pallasvuo

From the “Nu Painting” series, 2013

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57


IS

OK

AND

IT’S

OK

m

u

r

r

Weijia Quarterly

You may propose and propose. Let us be clear and let’s be precise. Your purpose of things is borne out of exalted forecasts, broadcasts The broadcasts diminish in real time as we diminish slightly faster. It is ok to speak in clear sentences and it’s ok to say a thing before the broadcast’s end It is sooner than you applied for. The quickened wretched hubris calmed you as an HDMI swaddling. The thing is, it is ok. It’s ok to speak in a clear sentence or to even Risk more than one. It’s ok to not let the terrible, accurate tunage squelch; it is ok and it’s ok to feel alone and dopplered. That is what it does and that’s what. Totally ok to have lost it in the process of nothing other than losing. Totally and it is ok. I promise. Although these things called promises are often stupid. Promise

60

y

by Amy Carlberg

by Jon Paul Fiorentino

If you bandy about protocols for the dance card; it is ok and it’s ok to speak in clear sentences even though there isn’t a dance (there never will be)

a

as if by drinking coffee straight from the pot the sadness renting your eyes will grow up, move to the city and find a pretty young woman with a job requiring some intelligence to knock up. but the sadness is more like, it knows it can’t knock up anybody.

the country wife grind up a sweet bowl with my dear old bud tonight. I’ll be beetle-headed, he liquorish, squirm stinky wedges of each other onto honey flax crackers. a pack for the wine-swallowing, the fornicators, a civil woman & her handsome wife. a game of ninepins. a pack of smokers. grease the horse’s teeth with a bellyful of woodcocks. a pack of ostlers, hanker for ostler. dress her in the suit then lay her flat with the bottle.   grease the horse’s teeth with the bottle.

Issue no. 2

IT

61


IS

OK

AND

IT’S

OK

m

u

r

r

Weijia Quarterly

You may propose and propose. Let us be clear and let’s be precise. Your purpose of things is borne out of exalted forecasts, broadcasts The broadcasts diminish in real time as we diminish slightly faster. It is ok to speak in clear sentences and it’s ok to say a thing before the broadcast’s end It is sooner than you applied for. The quickened wretched hubris calmed you as an HDMI swaddling. The thing is, it is ok. It’s ok to speak in a clear sentence or to even Risk more than one. It’s ok to not let the terrible, accurate tunage squelch; it is ok and it’s ok to feel alone and dopplered. That is what it does and that’s what. Totally ok to have lost it in the process of nothing other than losing. Totally and it is ok. I promise. Although these things called promises are often stupid. Promise

60

y

by Amy Carlberg

by Jon Paul Fiorentino

If you bandy about protocols for the dance card; it is ok and it’s ok to speak in clear sentences even though there isn’t a dance (there never will be)

a

as if by drinking coffee straight from the pot the sadness renting your eyes will grow up, move to the city and find a pretty young woman with a job requiring some intelligence to knock up. but the sadness is more like, it knows it can’t knock up anybody.

the country wife grind up a sweet bowl with my dear old bud tonight. I’ll be beetle-headed, he liquorish, squirm stinky wedges of each other onto honey flax crackers. a pack for the wine-swallowing, the fornicators, a civil woman & her handsome wife. a game of ninepins. a pack of smokers. grease the horse’s teeth with a bellyful of woodcocks. a pack of ostlers, hanker for ostler. dress her in the suit then lay her flat with the bottle.   grease the horse’s teeth with the bottle.

Issue no. 2

IT

61


M o d e r n

H a r p

From where have you come & where is your destination Is it beyond the reach Of a man’s arm? A friend is pleasant & useful to be known Yea, beds for all who come Salt-caked smoke stacks & palm green shores, This is my house, visit if you are near & complain each time you depart I will give you a blessing each time you enter & you will not find something that is beautiful Here’s what’s happening There are fireworks Sent from the ground From trains, from airplanes But you cannot see the ground How often have I seen it, Do not act like us below Who dwell on a rustic pipe I should have saw where water is We dwell here on a rustic pipe All the days of our lives pleasant, Do not ask us to obtain A few friends No one is safe from the reformers They are well nourished & meet every weekend On some solemn shore No one can access, They thrive nearer the ground Near the lowest spoke in fortune’s wheel They have made great progress

62

A strange insect glowing like copper Set out in the air, then fled It led her to the fairy ground Give her back laughter Echoes in the hollow ear, Have it your way There is no substitute Do what tastes right Wear it with the only guest Keep away from an unfortunate time Do not even make a small house there Where the unfortunate forest is pleasant Go in it with enough food Bad amusement will be with you, In a warm land with a warm heart Overlook who is perishing forever They are punished by their own family Overlook who happens without cause They are punished by their own family

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Jasper Baydala

They do not seem too clever

Impose on me Destroy the car that carries me from job to job Attempt to pay me more, be struck down Somebody said to me Reach in again, it will be as it was This is not the city I thought it was It is more like a cloud the clouds chase Neither craft nor riddle read I am going home where things is always good Any loud noise produces terror & produces the words They have the same sound A silver sound & sound of warning, Bright colors without taste Beads burnt or badly damaged by fire Ruined so nothing remains I can tell you nothing certain yet I am curious to know the result

63


M o d e r n

H a r p

From where have you come & where is your destination Is it beyond the reach Of a man’s arm? A friend is pleasant & useful to be known Yea, beds for all who come Salt-caked smoke stacks & palm green shores, This is my house, visit if you are near & complain each time you depart I will give you a blessing each time you enter & you will not find something that is beautiful Here’s what’s happening There are fireworks Sent from the ground From trains, from airplanes But you cannot see the ground How often have I seen it, Do not act like us below Who dwell on a rustic pipe I should have saw where water is We dwell here on a rustic pipe All the days of our lives pleasant, Do not ask us to obtain A few friends No one is safe from the reformers They are well nourished & meet every weekend On some solemn shore No one can access, They thrive nearer the ground Near the lowest spoke in fortune’s wheel They have made great progress

62

A strange insect glowing like copper Set out in the air, then fled It led her to the fairy ground Give her back laughter Echoes in the hollow ear, Have it your way There is no substitute Do what tastes right Wear it with the only guest Keep away from an unfortunate time Do not even make a small house there Where the unfortunate forest is pleasant Go in it with enough food Bad amusement will be with you, In a warm land with a warm heart Overlook who is perishing forever They are punished by their own family Overlook who happens without cause They are punished by their own family

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Jasper Baydala

They do not seem too clever

Impose on me Destroy the car that carries me from job to job Attempt to pay me more, be struck down Somebody said to me Reach in again, it will be as it was This is not the city I thought it was It is more like a cloud the clouds chase Neither craft nor riddle read I am going home where things is always good Any loud noise produces terror & produces the words They have the same sound A silver sound & sound of warning, Bright colors without taste Beads burnt or badly damaged by fire Ruined so nothing remains I can tell you nothing certain yet I am curious to know the result

63


Gunfire at Funeral Procession Plane Misses Crying Soul

Weijia Quarterly

I am aroused by history & delight in petty evils They prevent many a big evil deed & like daybreak, help sell papers Here is a kite too delicate to fly With several haunting signs above it In the little bay you cannot be rude Or your grief will hinder sleeping, Glad the ocean is lovely at all times & is at all times the single fear Of comfort let no man speak We were out collecting funds & were attacked Old soldiers never die They just waste—marrow, bones & all. A bouquet of beauties In the place of weeping It is far too late for sleep, I may Special flags embroidered With the image of surprise I told you I had a surprise, I prefer you among so many outlined joys Why is your glitter full of curious mistrust No love, here runs the highway to the town Ugly mistakes they ruin relationships, & Long was the thoughts If one goat is killed, it is war The fees go even higher Bands of noble gentlemen always up after midnight Phoning 1 800 285 4584, they don’t need wires In the name of joy Lets be happy forever The boy birches the tutor He thinks he is more clever

64

& the precocious child He wants to feed his mother He has had more success than any other People never fail to sacrifice to him On his birthday even unbelievers salute him With respect on the appointed day This way of mine is beautiful How pure my taste Even lives that were about to expire They have seized life Think of the decay, So many naked eyes turned shoreward & absorbed in adult passion I’ve developed an ivory dick since I find only naked eyes Our future is day by day here in Spanish America The forest, covered with majestic & sweet smelling cedars Holds a house of cheap tin trays They change, & we, who pass like foam Like dust blown through the streets of Rome

Issue no. 2

Is it very far from pleasant?

The state cult of the modern city Where everything is interesting Some things are happening Street movement through the window is noticeable Footsteps, I am sensitive to them New architecture, very sensitive A bum he rests, I am a tired man The cycle of the machine is now coming to an end Gather together & a person shall turn up in the showroom Their souls in green suits wander free together Antique palaces & reductions in length It has raised a user’s hopes, What do these hours mean There’s not much to network Because of possible unfolding What day is it, curtains down

65


Gunfire at Funeral Procession Plane Misses Crying Soul

Weijia Quarterly

I am aroused by history & delight in petty evils They prevent many a big evil deed & like daybreak, help sell papers Here is a kite too delicate to fly With several haunting signs above it In the little bay you cannot be rude Or your grief will hinder sleeping, Glad the ocean is lovely at all times & is at all times the single fear Of comfort let no man speak We were out collecting funds & were attacked Old soldiers never die They just waste—marrow, bones & all. A bouquet of beauties In the place of weeping It is far too late for sleep, I may Special flags embroidered With the image of surprise I told you I had a surprise, I prefer you among so many outlined joys Why is your glitter full of curious mistrust No love, here runs the highway to the town Ugly mistakes they ruin relationships, & Long was the thoughts If one goat is killed, it is war The fees go even higher Bands of noble gentlemen always up after midnight Phoning 1 800 285 4584, they don’t need wires In the name of joy Lets be happy forever The boy birches the tutor He thinks he is more clever

64

& the precocious child He wants to feed his mother He has had more success than any other People never fail to sacrifice to him On his birthday even unbelievers salute him With respect on the appointed day This way of mine is beautiful How pure my taste Even lives that were about to expire They have seized life Think of the decay, So many naked eyes turned shoreward & absorbed in adult passion I’ve developed an ivory dick since I find only naked eyes Our future is day by day here in Spanish America The forest, covered with majestic & sweet smelling cedars Holds a house of cheap tin trays They change, & we, who pass like foam Like dust blown through the streets of Rome

Issue no. 2

Is it very far from pleasant?

The state cult of the modern city Where everything is interesting Some things are happening Street movement through the window is noticeable Footsteps, I am sensitive to them New architecture, very sensitive A bum he rests, I am a tired man The cycle of the machine is now coming to an end Gather together & a person shall turn up in the showroom Their souls in green suits wander free together Antique palaces & reductions in length It has raised a user’s hopes, What do these hours mean There’s not much to network Because of possible unfolding What day is it, curtains down

65


Four gray walls & four gray towers Overlook a space of flowers I never seen flowers before When from round the corner comes Love & grasses Did you think it would grow from seed Gentle though if you need assistance Love & grasses like to thee They rattle in their tins & rattle like laughing maids & put dewdrops on morning When from round the corner comes Love & grasses, love & grasses, She thin, a dream, & lies close Only by service in a tiny room Before another problem arrives like an impatient man A series of lies should keep him away Road works & accidents Here is another memory of my young wife I came by to water the plants But the miracle of rain had wept Brief flights past this month to come It, January, slept & raising one finger, did not mean violence But being so much too good for winter Went Now fades the landscape from view

66

& all the air a solemn stillness holds There is a sheep among your lambs Young sheep are called lambs. I too want to haunt this place & be haunted & visited frequently & have the power to please A feather Something to feel it approaches Gathering at the gate In a thinly woven dress Slender graceful woman Here is a personal letter The next 12 months will be busy Far from your entrances I found you asleep Will you continue, or stop If sleep fall back Beautiful & formed mountains Higher & steeper than a hill There is a wilderness below Between the mountains I am sealing fun away In a vertical forest amongst timber Where cows stand together on a knoll As the result of too much rain, it has been Rising faster than the imagination

2013

Weijia Quarterly

It is a usual day, what will we do I wait to work & use global text I’ll just cut back for a few days It’s barely a free day. Here is a statue of a woman The cold image does not respond & constantly does not move & does not remember & does not understand

I do not deserve to lift my eyes I cannot lift my head It is of stuff too heavy It is covered & does not speak Every hidden thought is covered I don’t deserve to look at them Every hidden thought This is of course not a prayer Sea salt, fresh milk & rich cream Center-cut chicken breasts In-season strawberries Blueberries picked right off the bush, Have you been thinking

67


Four gray walls & four gray towers Overlook a space of flowers I never seen flowers before When from round the corner comes Love & grasses Did you think it would grow from seed Gentle though if you need assistance Love & grasses like to thee They rattle in their tins & rattle like laughing maids & put dewdrops on morning When from round the corner comes Love & grasses, love & grasses, She thin, a dream, & lies close Only by service in a tiny room Before another problem arrives like an impatient man A series of lies should keep him away Road works & accidents Here is another memory of my young wife I came by to water the plants But the miracle of rain had wept Brief flights past this month to come It, January, slept & raising one finger, did not mean violence But being so much too good for winter Went Now fades the landscape from view

66

& all the air a solemn stillness holds There is a sheep among your lambs Young sheep are called lambs. I too want to haunt this place & be haunted & visited frequently & have the power to please A feather Something to feel it approaches Gathering at the gate In a thinly woven dress Slender graceful woman Here is a personal letter The next 12 months will be busy Far from your entrances I found you asleep Will you continue, or stop If sleep fall back Beautiful & formed mountains Higher & steeper than a hill There is a wilderness below Between the mountains I am sealing fun away In a vertical forest amongst timber Where cows stand together on a knoll As the result of too much rain, it has been Rising faster than the imagination

2013

Weijia Quarterly

It is a usual day, what will we do I wait to work & use global text I’ll just cut back for a few days It’s barely a free day. Here is a statue of a woman The cold image does not respond & constantly does not move & does not remember & does not understand

I do not deserve to lift my eyes I cannot lift my head It is of stuff too heavy It is covered & does not speak Every hidden thought is covered I don’t deserve to look at them Every hidden thought This is of course not a prayer Sea salt, fresh milk & rich cream Center-cut chicken breasts In-season strawberries Blueberries picked right off the bush, Have you been thinking

67


But do not laugh at old age Be instead with those who love you, There lay the steed on which you came With his nostrils all wide At birth it did not appear as such. The rewards pass on the road I will let the drivers answer, A lot rides on your charge A lot rides on your decisions Here’s to discipline & insight After a well run braindump

Let those who are in favor with their stars Point on me graciously with fair aspect, When love converts from the thing it was The bloody spur cannot provoke me on. It was distant humming, soft & deep That lulled me to sleep, to sleep, to sleep The doors became almost thoughts & gone far away into the silent land I shall not question them much The beginning of all natural scenery Threatens me with color in one hour

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Of things you used to eat If such is the case tell me I will go & bring them to you, Hand sliced tomatoes Whole potatoes Fresh, never-frozen beef Salads prepared fresh With eleven types of greens. This bridge is made of creosote-soaked Timbers and rests on a granite plinth Picture the Center Street walking bridge You can heal the blind with walking it When one gives the blind man eyes His speech becomes unintelligible

I see all works that are done Under the sun All is vanity launched by the steelworkers The metal hums There the precious pearl that lights the paths of night with its glow A rain of fluffy cottonwood seeds & red hot hollow iron beams An extraordinary work, it happened this year & mainly it happened when six victories won 1—we kept a secret eye 2—adults make words pleasant 3—there just isn’t room 4—some people have hard neighbors 5—volume is a luxury 6—what a beautiful house 68

69


But do not laugh at old age Be instead with those who love you, There lay the steed on which you came With his nostrils all wide At birth it did not appear as such. The rewards pass on the road I will let the drivers answer, A lot rides on your charge A lot rides on your decisions Here’s to discipline & insight After a well run braindump

Let those who are in favor with their stars Point on me graciously with fair aspect, When love converts from the thing it was The bloody spur cannot provoke me on. It was distant humming, soft & deep That lulled me to sleep, to sleep, to sleep The doors became almost thoughts & gone far away into the silent land I shall not question them much The beginning of all natural scenery Threatens me with color in one hour

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Of things you used to eat If such is the case tell me I will go & bring them to you, Hand sliced tomatoes Whole potatoes Fresh, never-frozen beef Salads prepared fresh With eleven types of greens. This bridge is made of creosote-soaked Timbers and rests on a granite plinth Picture the Center Street walking bridge You can heal the blind with walking it When one gives the blind man eyes His speech becomes unintelligible

I see all works that are done Under the sun All is vanity launched by the steelworkers The metal hums There the precious pearl that lights the paths of night with its glow A rain of fluffy cottonwood seeds & red hot hollow iron beams An extraordinary work, it happened this year & mainly it happened when six victories won 1—we kept a secret eye 2—adults make words pleasant 3—there just isn’t room 4—some people have hard neighbors 5—volume is a luxury 6—what a beautiful house 68

69


YOU CAN’T BE AN ANXIOUS MAN-CHILD

70

‘you can’t be an anxious man-child,’ someone one typed and then just left there, on some web forum, in 2009. ‘what terrible parenting,’ I thought, ‘just abandoning your sentences there, on some web forum, in 2009.’ you can’t be an anxious man-child, you can’t be like ben lerner in, ‘leaving the atocha station,’ you can’t try to make sense of things and in the process experience a kind of gigantic existential dread that will last you for days, the way squirrels survive the winter. but then what if I am always accumulating ambiguous relationships, to a point where it makes me feel like I could put out spring and fall catalogs of them, what if I constantly interpret the message behind 90% of indie rock music as, ‘if you really loved your cat, you would set it free,’ what if I keep examining situations from multiple angles and arriving at different conclusions, like solving a long-form math equation multiple times and getting a different final number each time, what if I am so numb that it makes my emotions feel like flash cards with words like, ‘sad’ written on them instead of the actual emotions themselves, what if the only functional bodily sensation I have left is anxiety, and I use it on everything, like ketchup? ‘what terrible parenting,’ I thought. ‘using ketchup on everything.’ I don’t want babies, I would just give them names that I think are funny and then grow disinterested in them. you can’t be an anxious man-child, you can’t be the squirrel of your own self-obsession eating from the garbage of your feelings, you can’t be lost and unsure of yourself and thinking things like, ‘I am a long-form math equation whose final number is a different person each time,’ the internet won’t allow it. 90% of indie rock music is terrible parenting, I would feel a lot calmer if I owned flash cards with things like, ‘ben lerner’ written on them, my cat’s

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Guillame Morissette

name not being funny enough isn’t a logical reason to cry, but I don’t care, I want to try crying anyway, and if you really loved your existential dread, you would set it free.

71


YOU CAN’T BE AN ANXIOUS MAN-CHILD

70

‘you can’t be an anxious man-child,’ someone one typed and then just left there, on some web forum, in 2009. ‘what terrible parenting,’ I thought, ‘just abandoning your sentences there, on some web forum, in 2009.’ you can’t be an anxious man-child, you can’t be like ben lerner in, ‘leaving the atocha station,’ you can’t try to make sense of things and in the process experience a kind of gigantic existential dread that will last you for days, the way squirrels survive the winter. but then what if I am always accumulating ambiguous relationships, to a point where it makes me feel like I could put out spring and fall catalogs of them, what if I constantly interpret the message behind 90% of indie rock music as, ‘if you really loved your cat, you would set it free,’ what if I keep examining situations from multiple angles and arriving at different conclusions, like solving a long-form math equation multiple times and getting a different final number each time, what if I am so numb that it makes my emotions feel like flash cards with words like, ‘sad’ written on them instead of the actual emotions themselves, what if the only functional bodily sensation I have left is anxiety, and I use it on everything, like ketchup? ‘what terrible parenting,’ I thought. ‘using ketchup on everything.’ I don’t want babies, I would just give them names that I think are funny and then grow disinterested in them. you can’t be an anxious man-child, you can’t be the squirrel of your own self-obsession eating from the garbage of your feelings, you can’t be lost and unsure of yourself and thinking things like, ‘I am a long-form math equation whose final number is a different person each time,’ the internet won’t allow it. 90% of indie rock music is terrible parenting, I would feel a lot calmer if I owned flash cards with things like, ‘ben lerner’ written on them, my cat’s

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Guillame Morissette

name not being funny enough isn’t a logical reason to cry, but I don’t care, I want to try crying anyway, and if you really loved your existential dread, you would set it free.

71


by Roland Pemberton

He walks with the sick countenance of a man who has been laid too many times

I went to the party because I wanted to go to a party You’ll never meet anyone if you don’t put yourself out there You can’t just sit at home eating shame snacks all day You have to make an effort

He says, “Hey!” I say, “Hey! How’s it going? What’s new?” He says, “Oh, nothing much. Busy but you know, it’s good to be busy!”

I met some girls at the party in the kitchen because, of course

Over the span of less than a second, my body performs a detailed autonomic physiological response to the person in front of me:

These girls were getting it in Wearing hats originally designed for blocking sunlight So you could get on the ball easier They were absolutely crushing tall cans of cheap beer And were so friendly, so agreeable, so dare-I-say bro-like That I instantly assumed they were from Calgary They were Vancouverites. I was in love. I started jocking the one who looked like her ancestors were involved in the American slave trade. Everyone has a type. She was blonde. CREAK SMASH STOMP PLOD PLOD PLOD In comes The Rake! He’s got a name but call him cad Disconsolate tramp He keeps his affairs loose on purpose With the same frequency that mine unravel by accident

72

My core tightens like performing a plank, the poison swirling turbulent in the sarlac pit I call my stomach begs like an innocent father in front of a firing line to escape through my mouth and cover this Leisure Suit Larry motherfucker from head to toe with slime like on You Can’t Do That On Television. I shake trying to control the imaginary blades breaking through my fist like Hugh Jackman in those movies, finally utilizing enough willpower to fully charge 20 iPods to say,

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

I hate him

“Yeah, I know! Me too! I’m gonna go get a drink now, good to see you, man!” He slaps me on the back when I brush past him and I walk and contemplate just how many years have been cut off my life just from being in this guy’s orbit. The walking cigarette at the party

73


by Roland Pemberton

He walks with the sick countenance of a man who has been laid too many times

I went to the party because I wanted to go to a party You’ll never meet anyone if you don’t put yourself out there You can’t just sit at home eating shame snacks all day You have to make an effort

He says, “Hey!” I say, “Hey! How’s it going? What’s new?” He says, “Oh, nothing much. Busy but you know, it’s good to be busy!”

I met some girls at the party in the kitchen because, of course

Over the span of less than a second, my body performs a detailed autonomic physiological response to the person in front of me:

These girls were getting it in Wearing hats originally designed for blocking sunlight So you could get on the ball easier They were absolutely crushing tall cans of cheap beer And were so friendly, so agreeable, so dare-I-say bro-like That I instantly assumed they were from Calgary They were Vancouverites. I was in love. I started jocking the one who looked like her ancestors were involved in the American slave trade. Everyone has a type. She was blonde. CREAK SMASH STOMP PLOD PLOD PLOD In comes The Rake! He’s got a name but call him cad Disconsolate tramp He keeps his affairs loose on purpose With the same frequency that mine unravel by accident

72

My core tightens like performing a plank, the poison swirling turbulent in the sarlac pit I call my stomach begs like an innocent father in front of a firing line to escape through my mouth and cover this Leisure Suit Larry motherfucker from head to toe with slime like on You Can’t Do That On Television. I shake trying to control the imaginary blades breaking through my fist like Hugh Jackman in those movies, finally utilizing enough willpower to fully charge 20 iPods to say,

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

I hate him

“Yeah, I know! Me too! I’m gonna go get a drink now, good to see you, man!” He slaps me on the back when I brush past him and I walk and contemplate just how many years have been cut off my life just from being in this guy’s orbit. The walking cigarette at the party

73


Drama Studies & the Rich Brats By Spencer Gordon

Well, I’ve got some bad news. I just got off the phone with your drama teacher. She’s got a family emergency in Atlanta; she’s taking an indefinite leave of absence. Remember Balthasar de Beaujoyeux’s Ballet Comique de la Reine and the big tats?

Many drama teachers “become the drama”— their masques, their costumes, their art beards. They either give up early or burn out later, choose less demanding subjects to teach, or leave teaching altogether. Now prance, my little babyskins. Other teaching skills that jump to mind are: •managing details, •squatting, •having difficult conversations, •providing feedback, •inspiring others, •organizing and creating a great environment, and •looking “like the Wendy’s hooker.” We’ve all been there: we know we must confront that co-worker, store clerk, or friend about some especially sticky situation, and we know the encounter will be uncomfortable. So we repeatedly mull it over until we can no longer put it off, and then finally stumble through the confrontation. Watch your proscenium arch, your commedia dell

74

I used to do. I had a director who’d say, “Mort, if you’re not breathing from your ass and reaching to the skies, the back row won’t hear you.” I slept with him. As a young drama teacher I discovered how humiliating, how devastating, how depressing it is to discover that your great ideas, your energy and your enthusiasm for boys are not enough to get you through. After only six months I simply left school one day at lunchtime (bananas) and never returned. Working with different interest groups and building relationships (e.g., students, school staff, and parents). The ability to work with different groups of people, often with different agendas, would transfer to any job where you have multiple stakeholders, such as internal staff in various different functional areas, clients, boards. If these recommendations aren’t followed, well, the authors

2013

Weijia Quarterly

Do you?

banana, with its attendant, poisonous spider of the tropics! I have to remember some of those breathing exercises

contend, well, emotions will, well, seep into the discussion in other, well, usually damaging, well, ways. No, stop. My ears are bleeding. You have no passion, girls. You’ve got to sing like your privates are on fire. For God’s sake. Just because you’re a bunch of rich brats doesn’t mean you can’t have angst. Channel it. This is a song about your mother, Gertrude, who is played by our very own (sexy) McCauley Culkin. 75


Drama Studies & the Rich Brats By Spencer Gordon

Well, I’ve got some bad news. I just got off the phone with your drama teacher. She’s got a family emergency in Atlanta; she’s taking an indefinite leave of absence. Remember Balthasar de Beaujoyeux’s Ballet Comique de la Reine and the big tats?

Many drama teachers “become the drama”— their masques, their costumes, their art beards. They either give up early or burn out later, choose less demanding subjects to teach, or leave teaching altogether. Now prance, my little babyskins. Other teaching skills that jump to mind are: •managing details, •squatting, •having difficult conversations, •providing feedback, •inspiring others, •organizing and creating a great environment, and •looking “like the Wendy’s hooker.” We’ve all been there: we know we must confront that co-worker, store clerk, or friend about some especially sticky situation, and we know the encounter will be uncomfortable. So we repeatedly mull it over until we can no longer put it off, and then finally stumble through the confrontation. Watch your proscenium arch, your commedia dell

74

I used to do. I had a director who’d say, “Mort, if you’re not breathing from your ass and reaching to the skies, the back row won’t hear you.” I slept with him. As a young drama teacher I discovered how humiliating, how devastating, how depressing it is to discover that your great ideas, your energy and your enthusiasm for boys are not enough to get you through. After only six months I simply left school one day at lunchtime (bananas) and never returned. Working with different interest groups and building relationships (e.g., students, school staff, and parents). The ability to work with different groups of people, often with different agendas, would transfer to any job where you have multiple stakeholders, such as internal staff in various different functional areas, clients, boards. If these recommendations aren’t followed, well, the authors

2013

Weijia Quarterly

Do you?

banana, with its attendant, poisonous spider of the tropics! I have to remember some of those breathing exercises

contend, well, emotions will, well, seep into the discussion in other, well, usually damaging, well, ways. No, stop. My ears are bleeding. You have no passion, girls. You’ve got to sing like your privates are on fire. For God’s sake. Just because you’re a bunch of rich brats doesn’t mean you can’t have angst. Channel it. This is a song about your mother, Gertrude, who is played by our very own (sexy) McCauley Culkin. 75


She’s been lying to you about sex, and it pisses you off. You’re all teenagers, so I know you hate your mothers. I hated mine. Use the anger. I will show you how it’s done.

The

Pilot:

A

Prayer By Spencer Gordon

The Word is that S. bailed on B.’s party in under 90 seconds & didn’t even have one lemon shot. Has our bad girl gone good? Or is it all just part of the act?

Why’d she leave? Why’d she return? Send me all the deets. She was tied to a leash by the neck. She returned to give pet-names in American Standard English. She was savaged by shark-faced dogs. Spotted: at the steps of the Met, an S. & B. power struggle. Did S think she could just waltz home & things would be just like they were?

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Word became strappado hangings, & bad became sex w/ Translator/Teenager. All became three: truncheon, wire, phosphorescent tube.

The power struggle slipped to pissing on prisoners. Waltzing switched to stomping on limbs shot to pieces. & B. beat limbs with collapsible metal batons. Did B think S would go down without a fight? Or can these two hotties work it out? There’s nothing I like more than a good cat-fight. & this could be a classic. This: B & S dribbling phosphoric acid on exposed skin. Hotties fucking men in the asses with metal batons. Classic: dragged by the penis across a rust-riddled floor. Spotted: at The Palace Hotel, S & B having a heart-to-heart. Hmm. Why so thirsty, S? You may have won over B for now, but we still think you’re hiding something. 76

77


She’s been lying to you about sex, and it pisses you off. You’re all teenagers, so I know you hate your mothers. I hated mine. Use the anger. I will show you how it’s done.

The

Pilot:

A

Prayer By Spencer Gordon

The Word is that S. bailed on B.’s party in under 90 seconds & didn’t even have one lemon shot. Has our bad girl gone good? Or is it all just part of the act?

Why’d she leave? Why’d she return? Send me all the deets. She was tied to a leash by the neck. She returned to give pet-names in American Standard English. She was savaged by shark-faced dogs. Spotted: at the steps of the Met, an S. & B. power struggle. Did S think she could just waltz home & things would be just like they were?

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Word became strappado hangings, & bad became sex w/ Translator/Teenager. All became three: truncheon, wire, phosphorescent tube.

The power struggle slipped to pissing on prisoners. Waltzing switched to stomping on limbs shot to pieces. & B. beat limbs with collapsible metal batons. Did B think S would go down without a fight? Or can these two hotties work it out? There’s nothing I like more than a good cat-fight. & this could be a classic. This: B & S dribbling phosphoric acid on exposed skin. Hotties fucking men in the asses with metal batons. Classic: dragged by the penis across a rust-riddled floor. Spotted: at The Palace Hotel, S & B having a heart-to-heart. Hmm. Why so thirsty, S? You may have won over B for now, but we still think you’re hiding something. 76

77


Heart to Heart Club: “Do you pray to Allah?” Drink deep of refreshing waters: “Fuck you. And fuck him.” Found in a burrow: “You are not getting out of here healthy.” And just when S & B had built a bridge … it all had to come crashing down. But dry your eyes: The Kiss on the Lips Party is around the corner. And you know who loves parties?

Looks like Little Jen might end up with a new boy & a ticket to the inner circle. Or will C end up with another victim? I told you: I love parties. “But if I saw her now, she would not be disappointed because I would rape her.” “Thank Jesus you’re alive.” [Imperative] “I believe in torture and I will torture you.”

2013

Weijia Quarterly

The bridge of tears: “Are you married?” The kiss on the lips: “Yes.” The party: “If your wife saw you like this, she would be disappointed.”

Spotted: Serena, making a heroic exit from B’s party. Too bad for her there’s school on Monday. So, until next time. You know you love me. “I believe in Allah” “May his peace and blessings shower forever.” “His beloved prophet Muhammad.” “Glory.”

78

79


Heart to Heart Club: “Do you pray to Allah?” Drink deep of refreshing waters: “Fuck you. And fuck him.” Found in a burrow: “You are not getting out of here healthy.” And just when S & B had built a bridge … it all had to come crashing down. But dry your eyes: The Kiss on the Lips Party is around the corner. And you know who loves parties?

Looks like Little Jen might end up with a new boy & a ticket to the inner circle. Or will C end up with another victim? I told you: I love parties. “But if I saw her now, she would not be disappointed because I would rape her.” “Thank Jesus you’re alive.” [Imperative] “I believe in torture and I will torture you.”

2013

Weijia Quarterly

The bridge of tears: “Are you married?” The kiss on the lips: “Yes.” The party: “If your wife saw you like this, she would be disappointed.”

Spotted: Serena, making a heroic exit from B’s party. Too bad for her there’s school on Monday. So, until next time. You know you love me. “I believe in Allah” “May his peace and blessings shower forever.” “His beloved prophet Muhammad.” “Glory.”

78

79


One In Which The Girl Screams After One Who Cannot Or Will Not Hear Her. From: Short Films by Laura Broadbent

Characters:

Weijia Quarterly

Jim: Tall slim man in his early thirties. Girl: Tall slim girl in her early twenties. Scene 1: A green hill, a blue sky – candy green and blue. A white jet stream slowly incises the otherwise empty sky. The entire curve of the hill fits the shot. [A fifteen second shot of: the hill, the sky, the jet stream, the jet sound, the slight wind.] Jim appears from the left and begins up the hill unhurried. He is wearing a red jacket. When he is midway, a female voice becomes audible. It yells something repeatedly. The yelling escalates and the girl appears from the left. She is naked. She is at once marching, running, and stumbling. 

many miles. Girl: Jim! (Girl repeats this in varying intensities: sometimes a shrill ‘Jim!’, other times a desperate Ji-him-him’, other times ‘Jim...’ in a tone that pretends it was not shrill or desperate a moment before, then an enraged ‘JiRrrM.’) Jim does not turn and it is unclear whether he cannot or will not hear her.  He walks down the other side of the hill, keeps an even pace, hands in his pockets. The naked girl reaches the top of the hill. She falls as she calls to him. She falls face-first onto the grass. 

Issue no. 2

Film

She gapes at Jim’s back as he saunters down the hill. The girl calls to him. She remains on the ground, she wails, she rips clumps of grass with each fist, then she goes limp and silent. The girl’s heaving back indicates sobbing. The young man walks out of the shot. End scene.

Her fists are clenched and pump at her sides each time she yells. She is breathless - it appears she has been following him for

80

81


One In Which The Girl Screams After One Who Cannot Or Will Not Hear Her. From: Short Films by Laura Broadbent

Characters:

Weijia Quarterly

Jim: Tall slim man in his early thirties. Girl: Tall slim girl in her early twenties. Scene 1: A green hill, a blue sky – candy green and blue. A white jet stream slowly incises the otherwise empty sky. The entire curve of the hill fits the shot. [A fifteen second shot of: the hill, the sky, the jet stream, the jet sound, the slight wind.] Jim appears from the left and begins up the hill unhurried. He is wearing a red jacket. When he is midway, a female voice becomes audible. It yells something repeatedly. The yelling escalates and the girl appears from the left. She is naked. She is at once marching, running, and stumbling. 

many miles. Girl: Jim! (Girl repeats this in varying intensities: sometimes a shrill ‘Jim!’, other times a desperate Ji-him-him’, other times ‘Jim...’ in a tone that pretends it was not shrill or desperate a moment before, then an enraged ‘JiRrrM.’) Jim does not turn and it is unclear whether he cannot or will not hear her.  He walks down the other side of the hill, keeps an even pace, hands in his pockets. The naked girl reaches the top of the hill. She falls as she calls to him. She falls face-first onto the grass. 

Issue no. 2

Film

She gapes at Jim’s back as he saunters down the hill. The girl calls to him. She remains on the ground, she wails, she rips clumps of grass with each fist, then she goes limp and silent. The girl’s heaving back indicates sobbing. The young man walks out of the shot. End scene.

Her fists are clenched and pump at her sides each time she yells. She is breathless - it appears she has been following him for

80

81


clouds.

A midnight hot tub party in the winter.

Her eyes squeeze shut and she sobs as she calls one last time.

There are young and attractive and laughing people in the steaming tub.

The girl pivots and stares at the hut tub full of people who are staring at her.

They have an air of the supercilious - the hot tub unites them in this.

The only animate things are her clouds of breath, and the steam rising from the hot tub.

They discuss a recent gallery opening with a mix of deadpan sarcasm and giddy laughter.

The girl waddles back toward the hot tub, yanks a beer from a blond girl’s hand, smashes it on the side of the tub, holds it close to the blond girl’s face, who is stricken.

Jim in his red jacket leans next to the hot tub, back toward the camera, laughing with the attractive people, beer in hand. A swish-swishing of thighs-in-snow-pants is heard before the girl runs into the shot. She is wearing a pink one-piece snowsuit. She grabs at the back of Jim’s red jacket. The girl calls his name. Jim jerks free and briskly walks off-screen. The girl in her one-piece snow suit takes waddling steps in Jim’s direction, calling once more.

End Scene. Scene Three: A busy downtown corner at night. Three young men stand on a corner, laughing, as young men do. The tone of their laughter suggests certain ease. Jim is one of the three. He wears a red jacket.

She stops and stares in the direction he has gone.

A mini van pulls up.

She has to tilt her head back to see out of her hood, as children do.

The three young men greet the driver and boisterously shuffle into the back.

Her cheeks are very pink and her breath comes in clouds.

The door remains open as the young men shuffle inside. Running footsteps are heard, followed by the girl.

She stares after him in this manner for ten seconds. Breath

82

The girl drops the bottle and swishes away as the hot tub people stare at her.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

Scene 2:

83


clouds.

A midnight hot tub party in the winter.

Her eyes squeeze shut and she sobs as she calls one last time.

There are young and attractive and laughing people in the steaming tub.

The girl pivots and stares at the hut tub full of people who are staring at her.

They have an air of the supercilious - the hot tub unites them in this.

The only animate things are her clouds of breath, and the steam rising from the hot tub.

They discuss a recent gallery opening with a mix of deadpan sarcasm and giddy laughter.

The girl waddles back toward the hot tub, yanks a beer from a blond girl’s hand, smashes it on the side of the tub, holds it close to the blond girl’s face, who is stricken.

Jim in his red jacket leans next to the hot tub, back toward the camera, laughing with the attractive people, beer in hand. A swish-swishing of thighs-in-snow-pants is heard before the girl runs into the shot. She is wearing a pink one-piece snowsuit. She grabs at the back of Jim’s red jacket. The girl calls his name. Jim jerks free and briskly walks off-screen. The girl in her one-piece snow suit takes waddling steps in Jim’s direction, calling once more.

End Scene. Scene Three: A busy downtown corner at night. Three young men stand on a corner, laughing, as young men do. The tone of their laughter suggests certain ease. Jim is one of the three. He wears a red jacket.

She stops and stares in the direction he has gone.

A mini van pulls up.

She has to tilt her head back to see out of her hood, as children do.

The three young men greet the driver and boisterously shuffle into the back.

Her cheeks are very pink and her breath comes in clouds.

The door remains open as the young men shuffle inside. Running footsteps are heard, followed by the girl.

She stares after him in this manner for ten seconds. Breath

82

The girl drops the bottle and swishes away as the hot tub people stare at her.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

Scene 2:

83


The girl is naked but she is wearing running shoes. The girl calls to Jim. She is a remarkably fast runner. The third man yanks his leg inside barely ahead of the door as it slams. The car skids and screams off. The girl sprints out of the shot after the car. The camera remains on the now empty street corner until the girl’s footsteps, then her cries grow distant.

Scene Four: A busy down town street at noon.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

End Scene.

The camera remains still as crowds stream and bob by. Most of the people are walking away from the camera. A man in a red coat is among the crowd that walks past. He is about 30 strides ahead when a girl runs after him. It is clear the girl has called something but her voice is drowned by the ambient city noise. The man turns. It is not Jim. The girl turns and looks behind her, all around her, frantically. End scene. End Film.

84

85


The girl is naked but she is wearing running shoes. The girl calls to Jim. She is a remarkably fast runner. The third man yanks his leg inside barely ahead of the door as it slams. The car skids and screams off. The girl sprints out of the shot after the car. The camera remains on the now empty street corner until the girl’s footsteps, then her cries grow distant.

Scene Four: A busy down town street at noon.

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

End Scene.

The camera remains still as crowds stream and bob by. Most of the people are walking away from the camera. A man in a red coat is among the crowd that walks past. He is about 30 strides ahead when a girl runs after him. It is clear the girl has called something but her voice is drowned by the ambient city noise. The man turns. It is not Jim. The girl turns and looks behind her, all around her, frantically. End scene. End Film.

84

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a

r

y

You Are Not Happy You Quit Basketball

by Zoe Sharpe

by Zoe Sharpe

My tailbone breaks, SNAP. The shutter out of control. Little crease along the bone, delicate as creases in a paper bag. The difference between looking and seeing is this: her ass cheeks hanging out. Her hair dyed at the ends. Not natural, secondary. Me in a Keith Parcom raincoat. Beige, plaid lining, not raining. Me refusing the passed joint. Me holding nineteenth-century books. Me touching myself, lonely, the window open. Me reading Baudelaire, getting none of it. Me reading Baudelaire, getting some of it. Me walking through the chimed door of the booksellers, slipping it from my pocket, asking, how much will you give me? My tailbone breaking, secondary. Me burrowing the ten dollar bill. Me buying a sandwich of stacked meat with mustard. Me feeling gray. Me feeling very much alive. Me feeling all over the world. Me knowing exactly how it is for some. Me knowing when the church will open. Me knowing routes of discarded bread. Me and the old Salvadorian, around the corner, enjoying her jelly-donut. Me, me, me. Me thinking it is the last food she will eat, not raining. Me looking and not seeing. Me and how she chews, carefully, eyes closed. The difference between looking and seeing is this: licking the powder. Taking her time. Her wide body sunken into the green plastic chair. The chairs go here for fireworks, here for weddings, here for classrooms, here for booksellers, here for poverty, here for tailbones. My body that has birthed, the subject. The subject of the photograph would be this: the Salvadorian woman in an orange polyester dress. The green plastic chair. The Salvadorian woman’s feet wide and hankered into the ground. The subject, her. Her body. The jelly donut, secondary.

the night is strong enough to outguess, the lost gate with its iron limbs. waiting on the wrong curb stay here i want to put my boots on next to you you said stay here and be the iron limb of this terrible curb. you are not happy you quit basketball, stop lying. just happy this night is dark enough to absorb you into its net to spit you on bad morning concrete wearing an embarrassing outfit to walk home in answering her questions distinctly and on time easy manner of bedtime reading, maybe, you’re nothing but a tan, a price, c’mon you old jock call me baby on a basketball court in Regent Park the summer before they tore it down now white girls, my sister’s age drinking cucumber water in greenest redevelopment.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

S

faking some allegiance with your dress, the curb blurring as the $1 VHS you want to be a myth, i don’t care, you’re a little boy you sing and dance without assumption in vestibules in pools where girls will meet you whining and accuse me of prudishness as hopkins on a curb shaking his finger my one piece a requisite fabric you’re trying to do something you saw on the teevee well no one is falling smack down on your cute attire.

87


86

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You Are Not Happy You Quit Basketball

by Zoe Sharpe

by Zoe Sharpe

My tailbone breaks, SNAP. The shutter out of control. Little crease along the bone, delicate as creases in a paper bag. The difference between looking and seeing is this: her ass cheeks hanging out. Her hair dyed at the ends. Not natural, secondary. Me in a Keith Parcom raincoat. Beige, plaid lining, not raining. Me refusing the passed joint. Me holding nineteenth-century books. Me touching myself, lonely, the window open. Me reading Baudelaire, getting none of it. Me reading Baudelaire, getting some of it. Me walking through the chimed door of the booksellers, slipping it from my pocket, asking, how much will you give me? My tailbone breaking, secondary. Me burrowing the ten dollar bill. Me buying a sandwich of stacked meat with mustard. Me feeling gray. Me feeling very much alive. Me feeling all over the world. Me knowing exactly how it is for some. Me knowing when the church will open. Me knowing routes of discarded bread. Me and the old Salvadorian, around the corner, enjoying her jelly-donut. Me, me, me. Me thinking it is the last food she will eat, not raining. Me looking and not seeing. Me and how she chews, carefully, eyes closed. The difference between looking and seeing is this: licking the powder. Taking her time. Her wide body sunken into the green plastic chair. The chairs go here for fireworks, here for weddings, here for classrooms, here for booksellers, here for poverty, here for tailbones. My body that has birthed, the subject. The subject of the photograph would be this: the Salvadorian woman in an orange polyester dress. The green plastic chair. The Salvadorian woman’s feet wide and hankered into the ground. The subject, her. Her body. The jelly donut, secondary.

the night is strong enough to outguess, the lost gate with its iron limbs. waiting on the wrong curb stay here i want to put my boots on next to you you said stay here and be the iron limb of this terrible curb. you are not happy you quit basketball, stop lying. just happy this night is dark enough to absorb you into its net to spit you on bad morning concrete wearing an embarrassing outfit to walk home in answering her questions distinctly and on time easy manner of bedtime reading, maybe, you’re nothing but a tan, a price, c’mon you old jock call me baby on a basketball court in Regent Park the summer before they tore it down now white girls, my sister’s age drinking cucumber water in greenest redevelopment.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

S

faking some allegiance with your dress, the curb blurring as the $1 VHS you want to be a myth, i don’t care, you’re a little boy you sing and dance without assumption in vestibules in pools where girls will meet you whining and accuse me of prudishness as hopkins on a curb shaking his finger my one piece a requisite fabric you’re trying to do something you saw on the teevee well no one is falling smack down on your cute attire.

87


driver’s

red-light

Weijia Quarterly

by David Kleiser

88

“Alright, slow down, I want to get a good look at the girls” croaked Kimye to his driver, whose own thoughts had started to slow and wander. Subtly acknowledging Kimye’s request, The driver slowed his pace, snaking thru the side streets of the North Vegas red light district and back to the main drag. “No shortage of work here” thought the driver. “Look at that one, repulsive. All shapes and sizes, I suppose”. Bitter thoughts swirled and opposed in his mind, Neither getting the better of the other. The country, now in a greater depression than that of the 1930’s, had seen such a lapse in morals that beasts like these were able to make a fortune on the streets. Surly if someone were to pay her for- whatever it is she does (she must do something specific thats for sure)- he could certainly be making money in this neighbourhood. And why not? He had the legs He was at least a 5 our of 10 on the UNs Eligibility Scale. He had no visible scars, and while not necessarily being a passive man, was not an unnecessarily violent one. The Eligibility Scale had been introduced some years ago as a means to partner citizens into common-law marriages. The population was now simply too large to count them all as individuals, and it was illegal for citizens over the age of 30 to be unmarried. The driver tried to remember a time in his 28 years when this law had not been in effect, but could not. He wondered whether or not that idea should disgust him, then wondered why he was think about this at all. He was one of the lucky few of his comrades who had a job. Who was he to complain? Jealous, he decided. Jealous of that burnscarred skinny piece of shit chatting up Kimye thru the limousines window. “Hell I’ve got a better ass than she has.” he scowled. “Okay, we’re ready to go.” said Kimye thru the limos com-system. The driver put the car in gear and began to drive. He was glad Kimye had selected the burn-scarred whore, he knew she would be dead and off the streets within an hour.

After his shift, the driver returned to the district, found the corner formerly occupied by the repulsive whore he’d loathed so furiously. He straighter his fishnets, hiked up his skirt, stood, and waited. He could certainly be making a fortune in this neighbourhood. And why not? He had the legs.

Issue no. 2

Kimye’s’ limousine thoughts

89


driver’s

red-light

Weijia Quarterly

by David Kleiser

88

“Alright, slow down, I want to get a good look at the girls” croaked Kimye to his driver, whose own thoughts had started to slow and wander. Subtly acknowledging Kimye’s request, The driver slowed his pace, snaking thru the side streets of the North Vegas red light district and back to the main drag. “No shortage of work here” thought the driver. “Look at that one, repulsive. All shapes and sizes, I suppose”. Bitter thoughts swirled and opposed in his mind, Neither getting the better of the other. The country, now in a greater depression than that of the 1930’s, had seen such a lapse in morals that beasts like these were able to make a fortune on the streets. Surly if someone were to pay her for- whatever it is she does (she must do something specific thats for sure)- he could certainly be making money in this neighbourhood. And why not? He had the legs He was at least a 5 our of 10 on the UNs Eligibility Scale. He had no visible scars, and while not necessarily being a passive man, was not an unnecessarily violent one. The Eligibility Scale had been introduced some years ago as a means to partner citizens into common-law marriages. The population was now simply too large to count them all as individuals, and it was illegal for citizens over the age of 30 to be unmarried. The driver tried to remember a time in his 28 years when this law had not been in effect, but could not. He wondered whether or not that idea should disgust him, then wondered why he was think about this at all. He was one of the lucky few of his comrades who had a job. Who was he to complain? Jealous, he decided. Jealous of that burnscarred skinny piece of shit chatting up Kimye thru the limousines window. “Hell I’ve got a better ass than she has.” he scowled. “Okay, we’re ready to go.” said Kimye thru the limos com-system. The driver put the car in gear and began to drive. He was glad Kimye had selected the burn-scarred whore, he knew she would be dead and off the streets within an hour.

After his shift, the driver returned to the district, found the corner formerly occupied by the repulsive whore he’d loathed so furiously. He straighter his fishnets, hiked up his skirt, stood, and waited. He could certainly be making a fortune in this neighbourhood. And why not? He had the legs.

Issue no. 2

Kimye’s’ limousine thoughts

89


GIRLS

TRIPPING

BALLS

in

2

parts

1.

2.

Some years ago sweet Nicole came up to me in a beautiful dress printed with lemon trees deep inside a red daydream back when i was working at HMV getting nowhere fast and screaming in heat in a life deep inside cuddling Ghandi, a coddled Generation Why eating black cats and joshua trees.

…then she turns and tells me “I was just questioning if this is all a projection from African Eve- every sound, every person on this street, every look in the eye, every scream.”

Far too respectful of other peoples’ space, too scared of the rejection conversation could create. Dripping down the street like nectarines on a bright grey sky, in a throng on the street, on a monday morning in purgatory, a tinker lady stops sweet Nicole and me screaming i don’t need your charity but like i said: “I’ll gladly take your money if you’ll do nothing of worth with it” i’m watching cherry blossoms raining down on me and walking thru them all with my mouth gaping with sweet Nicole close beside me our legs go up to the stars and her cheek tastes sweet, she mumbles “I can see the cherry blossoms raining down on me now too, no longer just you.” Every monday night we do the “animal shake” then flawlessly we do the “shakin’ snake”, we do the “powerbottom” and the “bees knee’s”, she’s the kindof girl i wanted when i was 15.

Where am I now? I’m a person on the street, I guess these buildings look kind of Portuguese but like a collage in a dream, made up of little bits of my memories. I didn’t realize how funny it was all until I did and now I’m anxious but chill and its all hilarious like a dream I’d have laying on the stomach of my best friend Sadie, she sips a 40 while I dank an 80. Now, I believe in magic because I’ve seen her scream and turn all the power generators on and make them sing to me, she orchestrates the sounds of the city to put me to sleep. Then we have words on the thin lines between bad and good, but her whining diner girl shiner eyes say more than her words ever could. I believe in magic because she speaks and turns all the lampposts on and then they sing late into to morning air, taking the long walk home trying so hard not to care. My owners not with me, she’s a street car collector in a big city, young and old, little big, hot and cold and the horror, drama and fantasy of the secret melodies of the streets winding inside of sleeping African Eve.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by David Kleiser

So there we are sweet Nicole and me doing the “animal shake” in a space canteen, stars are screaming from the record machine about counting the rings of a fallen lemon tree and how winter cannot be as bad as it seems.

90

91


GIRLS

TRIPPING

BALLS

in

2

parts

1.

2.

Some years ago sweet Nicole came up to me in a beautiful dress printed with lemon trees deep inside a red daydream back when i was working at HMV getting nowhere fast and screaming in heat in a life deep inside cuddling Ghandi, a coddled Generation Why eating black cats and joshua trees.

…then she turns and tells me “I was just questioning if this is all a projection from African Eve- every sound, every person on this street, every look in the eye, every scream.”

Far too respectful of other peoples’ space, too scared of the rejection conversation could create. Dripping down the street like nectarines on a bright grey sky, in a throng on the street, on a monday morning in purgatory, a tinker lady stops sweet Nicole and me screaming i don’t need your charity but like i said: “I’ll gladly take your money if you’ll do nothing of worth with it” i’m watching cherry blossoms raining down on me and walking thru them all with my mouth gaping with sweet Nicole close beside me our legs go up to the stars and her cheek tastes sweet, she mumbles “I can see the cherry blossoms raining down on me now too, no longer just you.” Every monday night we do the “animal shake” then flawlessly we do the “shakin’ snake”, we do the “powerbottom” and the “bees knee’s”, she’s the kindof girl i wanted when i was 15.

Where am I now? I’m a person on the street, I guess these buildings look kind of Portuguese but like a collage in a dream, made up of little bits of my memories. I didn’t realize how funny it was all until I did and now I’m anxious but chill and its all hilarious like a dream I’d have laying on the stomach of my best friend Sadie, she sips a 40 while I dank an 80. Now, I believe in magic because I’ve seen her scream and turn all the power generators on and make them sing to me, she orchestrates the sounds of the city to put me to sleep. Then we have words on the thin lines between bad and good, but her whining diner girl shiner eyes say more than her words ever could. I believe in magic because she speaks and turns all the lampposts on and then they sing late into to morning air, taking the long walk home trying so hard not to care. My owners not with me, she’s a street car collector in a big city, young and old, little big, hot and cold and the horror, drama and fantasy of the secret melodies of the streets winding inside of sleeping African Eve.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by David Kleiser

So there we are sweet Nicole and me doing the “animal shake” in a space canteen, stars are screaming from the record machine about counting the rings of a fallen lemon tree and how winter cannot be as bad as it seems.

90

91


C h a r l o t t e t o w n by Trevor Barton

bors, but rather, a network of impostors, and surely it is they who have taken my wife from me. I look once more at the note and recognize it at once as a crude forgery. I look again, and it has disappeared altogether.

92

My wife and I have lived here our entire lives and have been married for a very long time indeed. Each Saturday morning, as far back as I can remember, we have walked down to the farmer’s market and purchased our produce for the coming week. On top of this, we like to treat ourselves to a little something, a cinnamon bun for example, or perhaps, a frozen yogurt. I have also been known, on special occasions, to sneak away for a while, before returning with a bouquet of flowers. This Saturday however, I have unaccountably slept in. Past the afternoon hours, through the dusk, and into the sundown I lay in a deep and oblivious slumber. When I at last awoke I found a note on the kitchen table which said: “gone to the market…didn’t want to wake you. See you this afternoon.” The handwriting wasn’t quite… As I have said, it is night now, and she has yet to return. I telephoned my children, my grandchildren, my neighbors, and though none of them have heard a peep from her, they assure me that she cannot have gone far and the best thing for me to do is to have a warm cup of tea, watch some television, etc. “How can they be so callous in a situation like this?” I wonder aloud, after placing down the phone receiver. “Their very own… my very own…” But then the whole thing clicks and I would laugh if I were not so frightened. I have not been speaking to my family, my neigh-

I wander down towards the walkway that encircles the beach. It is the middle of the night and I notice that there are vast explosions in the sky, and that I am surrounded at all sides by loud and insistent noise. The boom of fireworks, the laughter of children, the incredulous exultations of thousands of people, the opening of beer cans, the unpacking of lawn chairs, the spreading of blankets, and laughter, laughter again, most of all, a cruel orgy of laughter that does not seem to possess any object. But, despite all of this, I realize I am completely alone. The sounds only grow in intensity the longer I remain there but, as I look up and down the pathway, I cannot spy a single human form. “Has anybody seen my wife?” I holler. “She went to the market this morning and still hasn’t returned.” It is all of no use. My voice cannot register against the explosions far above me, the laughter, the unpacking of lawn chairs, the cracking open of beer, and even if it were deadly silent, it would make little difference. I am alone here. I decide to head home.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

93


C h a r l o t t e t o w n by Trevor Barton

bors, but rather, a network of impostors, and surely it is they who have taken my wife from me. I look once more at the note and recognize it at once as a crude forgery. I look again, and it has disappeared altogether.

92

My wife and I have lived here our entire lives and have been married for a very long time indeed. Each Saturday morning, as far back as I can remember, we have walked down to the farmer’s market and purchased our produce for the coming week. On top of this, we like to treat ourselves to a little something, a cinnamon bun for example, or perhaps, a frozen yogurt. I have also been known, on special occasions, to sneak away for a while, before returning with a bouquet of flowers. This Saturday however, I have unaccountably slept in. Past the afternoon hours, through the dusk, and into the sundown I lay in a deep and oblivious slumber. When I at last awoke I found a note on the kitchen table which said: “gone to the market…didn’t want to wake you. See you this afternoon.” The handwriting wasn’t quite… As I have said, it is night now, and she has yet to return. I telephoned my children, my grandchildren, my neighbors, and though none of them have heard a peep from her, they assure me that she cannot have gone far and the best thing for me to do is to have a warm cup of tea, watch some television, etc. “How can they be so callous in a situation like this?” I wonder aloud, after placing down the phone receiver. “Their very own… my very own…” But then the whole thing clicks and I would laugh if I were not so frightened. I have not been speaking to my family, my neigh-

I wander down towards the walkway that encircles the beach. It is the middle of the night and I notice that there are vast explosions in the sky, and that I am surrounded at all sides by loud and insistent noise. The boom of fireworks, the laughter of children, the incredulous exultations of thousands of people, the opening of beer cans, the unpacking of lawn chairs, the spreading of blankets, and laughter, laughter again, most of all, a cruel orgy of laughter that does not seem to possess any object. But, despite all of this, I realize I am completely alone. The sounds only grow in intensity the longer I remain there but, as I look up and down the pathway, I cannot spy a single human form. “Has anybody seen my wife?” I holler. “She went to the market this morning and still hasn’t returned.” It is all of no use. My voice cannot register against the explosions far above me, the laughter, the unpacking of lawn chairs, the cracking open of beer, and even if it were deadly silent, it would make little difference. I am alone here. I decide to head home.

2013

Weijia Quarterly

93


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

94

“Perhaps she is already waiting for me� I muse, briefly managing a smile. But, in my heart, I know that this is not so.

95


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

94

“Perhaps she is already waiting for me� I muse, briefly managing a smile. But, in my heart, I know that this is not so.

95


D

e

a

u

v

i

l

l

e

96

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Trevor Barton

When I arrived at Deauville, I rid myself of the last of my meager savings on a vanilla ice cream suit, a straw hat, an umbrella, and a beach chair. I spent the majority of my days and nights staring longingly at the entrance to the casino. I too, wore dark glasses, as I was not well regarded in the district, having lost my entire fortune and a great deal more there, several decades previous.

In fact, to speak of my arrival in Deauville is a bit of a deception, for in truth, I never left. After it became clear to the management that I would never be capable of squaring up my vast debts, I was taken deep within the bowels of the casino and left to die at the bottom of a cavernous oubliette.

97


D

e

a

u

v

i

l

l

e

96

2013

Weijia Quarterly

by Trevor Barton

When I arrived at Deauville, I rid myself of the last of my meager savings on a vanilla ice cream suit, a straw hat, an umbrella, and a beach chair. I spent the majority of my days and nights staring longingly at the entrance to the casino. I too, wore dark glasses, as I was not well regarded in the district, having lost my entire fortune and a great deal more there, several decades previous.

In fact, to speak of my arrival in Deauville is a bit of a deception, for in truth, I never left. After it became clear to the management that I would never be capable of squaring up my vast debts, I was taken deep within the bowels of the casino and left to die at the bottom of a cavernous oubliette.

97


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Yet, despite the fact that the countless years I spent buried and forgotten there, my muscles decaying to nothing, my legs becoming completely useless to me from standing so long in a single spot, I am still able somehow to wander in the evenings along the beaches of Normandy.

98

And towards the end of the night, when I rise from my lawn chair, fold up my umbrella, remove my hat, and strip away my vanilla ice cream suit, I am able to pass un-noticed, and quietly, obediently, float through the casino, down the cavernous passageways, and return to my oubliette. For, though it has been my ruin, I have never felt quite at home anywhere, except for my beloved Deauville.

99


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

Yet, despite the fact that the countless years I spent buried and forgotten there, my muscles decaying to nothing, my legs becoming completely useless to me from standing so long in a single spot, I am still able somehow to wander in the evenings along the beaches of Normandy.

98

And towards the end of the night, when I rise from my lawn chair, fold up my umbrella, remove my hat, and strip away my vanilla ice cream suit, I am able to pass un-noticed, and quietly, obediently, float through the casino, down the cavernous passageways, and return to my oubliette. For, though it has been my ruin, I have never felt quite at home anywhere, except for my beloved Deauville.

99


“Anything which excites their astonishment they believe to be a portent signifying the anger of the gods or of the Supreme Being, and, mistaking superstition for religion, account it impious not to avert the evil with prayer and sacrifice. Signs and wonders of this sort they conjure up perpetually, till one might think Nature as mad as themselves, they interpret her so fantastically.” Baruch Spinoza

100

oNcE YOU’VE READ THE FIRST WORD OF THIS YOU CANT GET OUT. READ ON OR DIE TONIGHT AT 10:35 … … P.M .9 years ago a person named Jerry got dared to sleep in a house that was belived haunted.The … next day his friends waited for him out side the house…. ….. ….. ….. They had to go inside and search for him. They went through every room exept the attic.He wasn’t supposed to sleep there. He was supposed to sleep in the living room they went into the attic. They saw Jerry’s corpse and they just left because they were scared. But that night they all died because of their friend. He killed them all for making him sleep in that house If you don’t send this to 11 comments you will die tonight by Jerry. Example 1: A man named Stewart Read this and didn’t believe it. He shut off his computer and went through his day. That night while he was in bed he heard something outside of his door. He got up to look. And now he’s dead. Example 2: A Girl named Haley Read this in the morning and she got scared but she didn’t send it. She wanted to know if it was true. She went to school (She was only 13 years old) and that night she died. If you don’t post this on 11 comments tonight Jerry will ‘visit’ you

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

The following is a collection of found text archived and untouched from internet message boards. These texts all have in common a supposed supernatural power to influence the reader’s life through their online actions.

1.PUT UR HAND OVER UR MOUTH 2.WHISPER WISH IN UR HAND 3.SEND THIS TO 10 OTHER QUIZS 4.LOOK AT UR HAND

101


“Anything which excites their astonishment they believe to be a portent signifying the anger of the gods or of the Supreme Being, and, mistaking superstition for religion, account it impious not to avert the evil with prayer and sacrifice. Signs and wonders of this sort they conjure up perpetually, till one might think Nature as mad as themselves, they interpret her so fantastically.” Baruch Spinoza

100

oNcE YOU’VE READ THE FIRST WORD OF THIS YOU CANT GET OUT. READ ON OR DIE TONIGHT AT 10:35 … … P.M .9 years ago a person named Jerry got dared to sleep in a house that was belived haunted.The … next day his friends waited for him out side the house…. ….. ….. ….. They had to go inside and search for him. They went through every room exept the attic.He wasn’t supposed to sleep there. He was supposed to sleep in the living room they went into the attic. They saw Jerry’s corpse and they just left because they were scared. But that night they all died because of their friend. He killed them all for making him sleep in that house If you don’t send this to 11 comments you will die tonight by Jerry. Example 1: A man named Stewart Read this and didn’t believe it. He shut off his computer and went through his day. That night while he was in bed he heard something outside of his door. He got up to look. And now he’s dead. Example 2: A Girl named Haley Read this in the morning and she got scared but she didn’t send it. She wanted to know if it was true. She went to school (She was only 13 years old) and that night she died. If you don’t post this on 11 comments tonight Jerry will ‘visit’ you

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

The following is a collection of found text archived and untouched from internet message boards. These texts all have in common a supposed supernatural power to influence the reader’s life through their online actions.

1.PUT UR HAND OVER UR MOUTH 2.WHISPER WISH IN UR HAND 3.SEND THIS TO 10 OTHER QUIZS 4.LOOK AT UR HAND

101


2013

Weijia Quarterly

SAY SELENA GOMEZ 5 TIMES CLAP UR HANDS 5 TIMES POST THIS ON 2 OTHER WALLS AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS TO UR VOICE

Boy- No …Girl- Will you cry if I walk away? …Boy- No The girl walks away, hurt. Tears running down her face as the boy grabs her arm. Boy- Your not pretty, your beautiful. I don’t want to be with you forever, I NEED to be with you forever. And I wouldn’t cry if you walked away, I would DIE! …Boy- Please… stay with me? …Girl- I will Tonight at midnight your true love will realize they love you. Something good will happen to you between 1-4 pm. Tomorrow it could be anywhere. Get ready for the biggest shock of your life! If you don’t send this to 5 other events you will have relationship problems for the next 10 years. If you paste this on 10 other quizzes you will get everything you want tomorrow

Girl- Am I pretty? Boy- No Girl- Do you want to be with me forever? 102

about this…when ur readin this dont stop or something bad will happen!my name is summer i am 15 years old i have blonde hair,many scars no nose or ears…i am dead.if u dont copy ill appeare one dark quiet niqht when ur not expecting it by your ill appeare one dark quiet niqht when ur not expecting it by your bed with a knife and kill u.this is no joke something good will happen to u if if u post this on 5 more pag on january 5 2012 emily johnson was found dead unexplainebly. she had been killed by an angry spirit from a chain comment she didn’t post. if don’t post this on 3other ads emily will kill you tonight sry dont want to die

103


2013

Weijia Quarterly

SAY SELENA GOMEZ 5 TIMES CLAP UR HANDS 5 TIMES POST THIS ON 2 OTHER WALLS AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS TO UR VOICE

Boy- No …Girl- Will you cry if I walk away? …Boy- No The girl walks away, hurt. Tears running down her face as the boy grabs her arm. Boy- Your not pretty, your beautiful. I don’t want to be with you forever, I NEED to be with you forever. And I wouldn’t cry if you walked away, I would DIE! …Boy- Please… stay with me? …Girl- I will Tonight at midnight your true love will realize they love you. Something good will happen to you between 1-4 pm. Tomorrow it could be anywhere. Get ready for the biggest shock of your life! If you don’t send this to 5 other events you will have relationship problems for the next 10 years. If you paste this on 10 other quizzes you will get everything you want tomorrow

Girl- Am I pretty? Boy- No Girl- Do you want to be with me forever? 102

about this…when ur readin this dont stop or something bad will happen!my name is summer i am 15 years old i have blonde hair,many scars no nose or ears…i am dead.if u dont copy ill appeare one dark quiet niqht when ur not expecting it by your ill appeare one dark quiet niqht when ur not expecting it by your bed with a knife and kill u.this is no joke something good will happen to u if if u post this on 5 more pag on january 5 2012 emily johnson was found dead unexplainebly. she had been killed by an angry spirit from a chain comment she didn’t post. if don’t post this on 3other ads emily will kill you tonight sry dont want to die

103


If you are reading this then don’t stop. Copy this message onto 23 topics in the next 5 minutes then press F4 and your crush’s name will appear on your computer screen in big pink letters

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

called bloody Mary and because her parents didn’t like her she told bloody Mary to adopt and she was so pretty Mary accept it she became a princess but after 1 year this princess jenny was forgotten no one ever knew about jenny then this famous pop star Micheal Jackson knew about it he was meant to tell every one but he told only 3 people 4 years after 10 people knew it 12 years after 20 people knew it and that’s when now 2012 we are spreading it EVERY ONE THIS IS NO JOKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BELIEVE ON THIS OR ON FRIDAY MIDNIGHT jack and Mary will get you and CUT YOU UNTILL DEATH AND WILL WATCH YOU BLOOD dropping of your body parts even your eyes BUT not many people know this story because BLOODY MARY thinks your pretty cute an have talent and then she don’t kill you and then people don’t believe in this BLOODY MARY WILL KILL YOU IF YOU ARE CUTE PRETTY AND TALENTED BUT don’t want to be her step daughter, step sister, step mum ,boy friend,have babies and son and one more last thing about her she cheats on loads of her boyfriends but if you say oh I don’t want you no more because your cheating on me she will kill you THIS IS TRUE!!!!

No jokes here only truth this girl is a Tudor very pretty as known as Mary in the Tudor times she killed so many people she got called bloody Mary one day she got a surprise death which mean she died one morning when she woke up she was dead she is a ghost now she got buried in west minster abbey SO SHE LIVES THERE if you say her name THREE TIMES at midnight she will come and kill you and see your blood coming out of your body if you don’t send this to 15 people when you pass by west minster abbey she will kill you or when your sleeping she will come and kill you and in the ghost world you will be her slave plus she use to be a queen her dad was king Henry VII and her mum was Catharine Argon example 1 their was a boy called jack he was only 5 years old his dad made him Facebook he saw this he got scared he told his dad and his dad said it’s a big fat lie he ignored this and the next day poor jack passed by west minster abbey and Bloody Mary killed the little kid BUT Bloody Mary married jack and his dad was so happy Jack died 8 years after Mary knew that his dad didn’t like jack and she got a knife and the knifes point was sharper than a sharks teeth even sharper than piranhas teeth and with the knife putted it through the dad neck and he dropped dead on the floor and if you delete this and laugh when jacks dad dies you will get killed the same way as he did example 2 this girl called Jenny she was 3 believed it and told 15 people then 104

105


If you are reading this then don’t stop. Copy this message onto 23 topics in the next 5 minutes then press F4 and your crush’s name will appear on your computer screen in big pink letters

Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

called bloody Mary and because her parents didn’t like her she told bloody Mary to adopt and she was so pretty Mary accept it she became a princess but after 1 year this princess jenny was forgotten no one ever knew about jenny then this famous pop star Micheal Jackson knew about it he was meant to tell every one but he told only 3 people 4 years after 10 people knew it 12 years after 20 people knew it and that’s when now 2012 we are spreading it EVERY ONE THIS IS NO JOKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BELIEVE ON THIS OR ON FRIDAY MIDNIGHT jack and Mary will get you and CUT YOU UNTILL DEATH AND WILL WATCH YOU BLOOD dropping of your body parts even your eyes BUT not many people know this story because BLOODY MARY thinks your pretty cute an have talent and then she don’t kill you and then people don’t believe in this BLOODY MARY WILL KILL YOU IF YOU ARE CUTE PRETTY AND TALENTED BUT don’t want to be her step daughter, step sister, step mum ,boy friend,have babies and son and one more last thing about her she cheats on loads of her boyfriends but if you say oh I don’t want you no more because your cheating on me she will kill you THIS IS TRUE!!!!

No jokes here only truth this girl is a Tudor very pretty as known as Mary in the Tudor times she killed so many people she got called bloody Mary one day she got a surprise death which mean she died one morning when she woke up she was dead she is a ghost now she got buried in west minster abbey SO SHE LIVES THERE if you say her name THREE TIMES at midnight she will come and kill you and see your blood coming out of your body if you don’t send this to 15 people when you pass by west minster abbey she will kill you or when your sleeping she will come and kill you and in the ghost world you will be her slave plus she use to be a queen her dad was king Henry VII and her mum was Catharine Argon example 1 their was a boy called jack he was only 5 years old his dad made him Facebook he saw this he got scared he told his dad and his dad said it’s a big fat lie he ignored this and the next day poor jack passed by west minster abbey and Bloody Mary killed the little kid BUT Bloody Mary married jack and his dad was so happy Jack died 8 years after Mary knew that his dad didn’t like jack and she got a knife and the knifes point was sharper than a sharks teeth even sharper than piranhas teeth and with the knife putted it through the dad neck and he dropped dead on the floor and if you delete this and laugh when jacks dad dies you will get killed the same way as he did example 2 this girl called Jenny she was 3 believed it and told 15 people then 104

105


Weijia Quarterly

Kiss your left hand 2. Say your crush’s name 3. Close your hand 4. Say a weekday 5. Say your name 6. Open your hand 7. If you post this on 15 comments, your crush will tell you they like you and want to date you on the day you picked... It really works

2013

106

If you post this on 5 projects, angels will be on your shoulders.

107


Weijia Quarterly

Kiss your left hand 2. Say your crush’s name 3. Close your hand 4. Say a weekday 5. Say your name 6. Open your hand 7. If you post this on 15 comments, your crush will tell you they like you and want to date you on the day you picked... It really works

2013

106

If you post this on 5 projects, angels will be on your shoulders.

107


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

108

About six years ago in Indiana, Carmen Winstead was pushed down a sewer opening by five girls in her school, trying to embarrass her in front of her school during a fire drill. When she didn’t submerge, the police were called. They went down and brought up 17-year-old Carmen Winstead’s body, with her neck broken from hitting the ladder, then the concrete at the bottom. The girls told everyone she fell… They believed them. FACT: About two months later, 16-year-old David Gregory read this post and didn’t repost it. When he went to take a shower, he heard laughter, started freaking out, and ran to his computer to repost it. He said goodnight to his mom and went to sleep, but five hours later, his mom woke up in the middle of the night from a loud noise and David was gone. A few hours later, the police found him in the sewer, with a broken neck and the skin on his face peeled off. Even Google her name – you’ll find this to be true. If you don’t repost this saying “They hurt her,” then Carmen will get you, either from a sewer, the toilet, the shower, or when you go to sleep, you’ll wake up in the sewer, in the dark, then Carmen will come and kill you.

109


Issue no. 2

Weijia Quarterly

108

About six years ago in Indiana, Carmen Winstead was pushed down a sewer opening by five girls in her school, trying to embarrass her in front of her school during a fire drill. When she didn’t submerge, the police were called. They went down and brought up 17-year-old Carmen Winstead’s body, with her neck broken from hitting the ladder, then the concrete at the bottom. The girls told everyone she fell… They believed them. FACT: About two months later, 16-year-old David Gregory read this post and didn’t repost it. When he went to take a shower, he heard laughter, started freaking out, and ran to his computer to repost it. He said goodnight to his mom and went to sleep, but five hours later, his mom woke up in the middle of the night from a loud noise and David was gone. A few hours later, the police found him in the sewer, with a broken neck and the skin on his face peeled off. Even Google her name – you’ll find this to be true. If you don’t repost this saying “They hurt her,” then Carmen will get you, either from a sewer, the toilet, the shower, or when you go to sleep, you’ll wake up in the sewer, in the dark, then Carmen will come and kill you.

109


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W E I J I A Q U A R T E R L Y

W E I J I A QUARTERLY No.

2

2013

02

Weijia Quarterly - No. 2  

Contemporary Art & Literature

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