Friday, October 28, 2011

Of the Soul or of the Machine?

If it were Hitler’s Mein Kampf, I would have been a Nazi convert after reading it.  Fortunately, it’s not.
The book is something that should be kept in every writer’s shelf, not kindle e-book - mind you.
Mark Helprin shares his sentiments against e-books, the poor copyright laws bestowed to writers, loosely degenerating youth and more in such a way as though Zeus, the Greek god, is smiting everyone guilty with his thunderbolt.

Writers are probably the most oppressed, most taken for granted professionals that the world desperately needs.

We are all enamored to the digital revolution that has become a great part of our lives, not knowing that it’s nothing more than “Digital Barbarism” conquering or worse - wiping away our souls.

Digital Barbarism
A Writer’s Manifesto
Mark Helprin

"The new, Digital Barbarism is, in its language, comportment, thoughtlessness, and obeisance to force and power, very much like the old. And like the old, and every form of tyranny, hard or soft, it is most vulnerable to a bright light shone upon it. To call it for what it is, to examine it while playing no heed to its rich bribes and powerful coercions, to contrast it to what it presumes to replace, is to begin the long fight against it.

Very Clearly, the choice is between the preeminence of the individual or of the collective, of improvisation or of routine, of the soul or of the machine. It is a choice that perhaps you have already made, without knowing it. Or perhaps it has been made for you. But it is always possible to opt in or out, because your affirmations are your own, the court of judgment your mind and heart. These are free, and you are the sovereign, always. Choose"

If you’re a writer who wants to publish a book then read this eye-opening book that would reveal the inhumane ways writers are treated despite slamming them with copyright laws. 

I would also like to thank Libreria of Cubao Expo for this wonderful book that I have won back in March this year through a Quiz bee of book geeks which I have had not much of help since I was dead drunk. I know it's very unbecoming of a writer and I am very much ashamed. For those aspiring to be writers, drinking doesn't make you cool. It makes you wake up in someone else's bedroom without any idea why, when, how, where, with whom and  how long. I am not speaking from experience by the way...
And if you have to drink, only drink wine.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Poem for Sushi

I picked up the several books on my table and put them in a box. In a month or so I would have moved out of Katipunan to live in Timog or Tomas Morato. Nothing much has changed in this starving writer’s life and I’m very much yearning for a looong vacation. By a looong vacation I mean somewhere remote, where I can leave my gregarious life and make a fetish out of my solitude.

I wanted to visit to Japan and backpack all over the place. I could consider living there as a hobo, hitching rides, sleeping where my tired feet would take me during the day, eat anything except animals and make friends for a brief moment starting with a smile.

For food I will not beg, I would however write a poem or short story for a hot veggie ramen. Perhaps I would even realize that it would beat whatever I have here in this unhappy country. That I would achieve bliss that way, the same as Sysiphus is a happy man despite his curse.

I may even consider entering a Buddhist temple and never return.

But I’ll come back to this forsaken, crime-ridden country of the poor and oppressed. Upon stepping back to my motherland all the bliss I accumulated will be replaced and tarnished by anguish with the ugly sight of my country.
I shall compare the polarities of these two places and mourn for two seconds.
Still, I would return to be very much in love with my country carrying greater optimism of uplifting its hopeless situation.