- R.O. Kwon and Garth Greenwell
- My last highlight
- Number of highlights
“Pilar is—it’s hard to explain.” “You mean it’s unpleasant to explain?” He just groaned.
I’d left the States and the noise of people talking about who they were. I’d left the tyranny of their camera-ready faces. It was when people began to say they were “on brand” that I lost the power to speak. I left because there was nowhere to rest my eyes and because at home in solitude, a machine stared back at me. I left because I had nothing to say to anyone who stayed.
Men in scavenged clothes who pounded on car windows, flexed their muscles, and shouted, “I work good,” and “Hire me,” which were probably the only English phrases that they knew. The first time that she witnessed this, she caught her breath and sobbed, not believing this could be. Later the same week, at the opening of MOCA’s Claes Oldenburg retrospective, she was amazed that there was not a single black person or Latino in the crowd that milled around the corny giant pencil. Los Angeles, she thought, was like Johannesburg. Everyone was white, except for several Asians. Eventually, she got used to it. Later still, she picked up some of these same men to rake her yard and help her strip and bag the old asbestos shingles.
In a disembodied floating space, S/m offers little pockets of theatricality and connection. So long as they are playing, two people are totally accountable and listening to each other. S/m radically preempts romantic love because it is a practice of it.