my life


Reading up on all things Lukacs for the next chapter. Reread “Reification.” It manages to lose status with each reading. This time i was thoroughly confused as to what reification wasn’t, found myself sick to death of his schematic critiques and his argument structure of: on one hand this is wrong; on the other hand that is wrong: guess what Marx is right. Plus those Bergson bits about fluid time etc. are a bit too romantic. I can’t see why he privlages time over space. Guess its a hegelian thing. Or a German thing according to Said. Now I only see Lukacs as important because he influenced people who did his shtick better. Probably just need sometime away from him.

His talk of time did get me thinking, tho, about the qualitative difference in time between my MA and my PhD. (Isiah Berlin would probably separate the two with some cute entirely false distinction. The MA is the hare. the PHD is the tortoise. on one hand, on the other; guess what liberalism is right. thank god he never finished a book.)

My MA was constant overwhelming time. It consumed me. I was bombarded with new subjects and worked long days practically everyday for a whole year. i didn’t have time for other things. i didn’t really even have time to thing about everything i learned.

My PHD is longer. I already know the subjects to some degree. I have years to work on it. I am managing my obssession. I have decided to treat it like a job.  I work about 6 hours a day, 6 days a week on it. I have time to think about it.

But somehow I feel guilty about this. On one hand i don’t want to burn out. I couldn’t work on it at the same pace as my MA. I also don’t want to. I find that after working on it since October, I want to do other things. I still enjoy it. I just don’t feel bombared by it. Its not a bomarded obsessesion. Its an obssession that it always there. That will pop into my head on my day off. or after im working. It there, but alongside other interests. Its not my MA.

I present my thesis outline tomorrow. This is not an event itself. Just another bureaucratic requirement. At the part of the outline process I am in, I am supposed to take comments on my outline presentation into account. The problem is I only have 15 minutes to present my 45 page outline. So, while I won’t exactly be summarzing Proust

I still feel like the ostensible point- my getting comments- is being sabotaged by my time limit. Another point against ol Lukacs’ theory of bureaucratic rationalization. of course reification doesn’t hold a candle to the disorganized clusterfuckery of neoliberal prescribed education targets.

I don’t know who reads this blog. I don’t know how its read. I don’t know where its read. Sometimes I don’t even know why its read. Does anyone read it on a regular basis? Did you stumble upon it? were you looking for a way to get your money out of Nigeria? I’m not trying to survey you, I’ve just been too busy to update, and I wondered if anyone noticed– sorta like that silly ‘philosophical’ question about the tree falling in the woods, which always makes me think of the steve martin bit on philosophy where he’s talking about all the perennial philosophical questions he learned in school– like if the pope shits in the woods does he make a sound? Anyway, just wanted to apologize for not updating. I was busy organizing a conference. now i’m finishing up my first chapter. working on it doesn’t make me feel like blogging unless its stream of consciousness drivel like this.

I’m really into the show House M.D. at the moment. I can’t figure out why. Its not because it’s a great show like the other few tv shows ive watched in the past ten years ( curb, deadwood, Nathan barely, the mighty boosh). Its not because of the genre, I’ve never liked the medical soap or mystery genre so its not because it’s the synthesis of the two. So, it may be just becuz the character of house is the kind of obnoxious person that appeals to me and becuz hes sort of an watered down combination of a critical theorist and a punk. ( i’m kinda embarassed i just wrote that but can also imagine Zizek providing a similar analysis)

Sunday’s are supposed to be my day of rest. I try to take a break from reading and relax or do something else. The problem is I’m not very good at doing anything else. My budget can’t fund day trips or movies because I save my extra cash for social occasions or shows. So I often fall back into reading, sometimes with a longer walk if the sun is out, or I piss about on the internet.

Unfortunately, I piss about on the internet far too often, transfixed by my laptop, its the sort of distraction that provides endless information; some of it useful; some of it of questionable use. This distraction seems to mediate my relations with the world more and more each day. It makes some sense that i resort to it when i am exhausted from reading and can do little else, but i want to spend more time reflecting on what i’m reading and try to be creative.

Today I’m too tired to read productively and have no energy to do anything but piss about on the internet. I went to bed at around 8am after going to a club and then listening to records and talking to friends. It was grand and something I ended up doing last week as well. I think this proves Brighton is good for me because it caters to both my academic and social interests. Its like olympia used to be without the painful embarassment of being young, insecure and unaware. Being old, more secure and more aware is much better.

Perhaps its good that i’m too tired. I can’t be productive all the time. Besides, sometimes my best ideas come during breaks, like yesterday when i thought of replacing debord with fanon making my thesis more rounded and cosmopolitan.

Some kids were just yelling at me from the street. Calling me Peter Pan. At least my routine hasn’t aged me, yet.