March 18, 2008

glowing young ruffian

been thinking about space, again. spurred partially by Spook Country and its locative art phenomena - a response, presumably to the rise of ubiquitous computing [cue Vanessa, "Damn, girl, you biquitous!"] and so, the ability to access anything from anywhere becomes pared down again to being able to access certain things only in certain places; although the data floats freely, it only coalesces on specific spaces, dowsed out by the forked stick of GPS and EV-DO (or EDGE or HSPDA or whatever). I don't know if it's feasible, but it served as a bit of a starting and focal point for two separate trains of thought. (sidenote: it's a quick read if you haven't read it already, and you can borrow mine if you really want [paperback is probably due soon])

first: Entertaining idle thoughts about spaces and tags (graffiti and folksonomical), I ended up walking by SPEC, where I had the comedy-of-errors interview which led to me spending the afternoon on Kits beach, reading and eating Thai food and watching Jamie Bamber (aka Apollo) idly run by. Passing that, I hit the corner of Maple and 4th; across the street is the site of the post-ACF-12-cleanup dinner at Los Margaritas, down the street was Zulu Records, where I picked up the infamous Squarepusher ticket, and nearby was gravitypope, site of my temporary obsession with Medium Shoes (now, sadly, out of business).
There are a lot of places that each carry their own space/time association, and while they're largely welcome (and informative when they're not) they're largely inescapable for me, especially in the city.
There's a map in the comic Fun Home that lays out a characters life - born here, grew up there, died in this spot, and all within a relatively small number of miles of the same town. It's a fictional character, but it seems so plausible, and it's not a map I want to be trapped by, posthumously. It seems likely on some days more than others, and somehow it is both enticing and repellent; possibly reflective of a divided outlook on risks vs security or tied to the strangely logical notion of a fear of success (more on this later).
Either way, I have come to the conclusion that I want to markup another city; in the sense of extensible languages and not paint markers; I imagine it wouldn't be too hard given GPS-enabled cellphones and cameras; if cameras have become embedded in other technologies (of dubious quality most times, but not always) then GPS might not be far behind. Of course, given the space-bound (!) backbone required for GPS to make any sense, the location-via-cell-tower method could be a more usable stand-in.

fuck me, I'm rambling. Point was: I think I invest too much of my identity in civics; although nobody wants to be from Surrey, leaving so much of myself in East Van and on campus was hugely unhealthy. I don't know how to fix it, short of self-redefinition and the gentle restoration of self-esteem, but I'm trying.

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