I want to know everything, which is leading to me knowing very little indeed.
I am drowning in a sea of potential knowledge. A new incoming tide of of books is precariously stacked opposite my bed, a series of waves of hardbacks, softbacks and torn magazines getting closer and closer after each trip out and another “accidental” trip to a bookshop.
Schopenhauer wrote something about confusing the purchase of a book with the act of actually reading and understanding it. I can’t quote exactly, I rarely scan, so much skimming, so little retention.
My dentist is annoyingly near the Notting Hill Book Exchange, so I can’t just wander by, oblivious to what may lie within.
Despite failing to properly commence any of the books I had bought there ten days before, I knew that everything that made it to the till today would be read almost immediately. these were the must haves, soon to be reads, that I would see again in a corner in six months and think, “I really must read that before it engulfs my pillow”.
Sometimes the potential of knowledge feels as if it may be more exhilarating than actually prising the knowledge off the page. Each book, introduction read, chapters dabbled through, could be that idea I am looking for to write about or turn into one of my jumping and waving about live shows. Increasingly, my shows represent my mind, so many half finished ideas and non-sequiturs, so many themes dashed by distractions.
Yesterday, I decided I had to know more about Pataphysics, so bought Andrew Hugill’s Useless Guide on it.
And though I still haven’t finished WG Sebald’s Rings of Saturn, I had to have his APlace in the Country.
And Dick Hebdidge wrote something in 1988 about photographs and youth culture, I am sure an idea I need lies in there ((Hiding in the Light).
And I haven’t got enough books I haven’t read that have “Wittgenstein” on the spine (The Terry Eagleton Script)
And Things Written Randomly in Doubt is a good title, so…
Sometimes, I think I only bite so hard into Glacier Mints so that I can have the correct amount of enamel damage to ensure that I am forced down that street again, and on the way to the dentist…
I browse, therefore I am… (stooped)
I am doing a show with Alan Moore in Northampton next week, tickets HERE
and I have a last minute addition gig in Southend HERE