The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive


I'm selfish and I'm tired. When I die I'll sleep an eternal
sleep. I'll have no choice but to sleep and sleep and sleep. I'm
selfish, I keep waiting for my due, for my books to appear, for
Marjorie Perloff to pat me on the shoulder, for a MacArthur
grant, for Katherine Hayles to realize I have something to say,
for something that might get me out of debt. I help everyone I
can, and there are so many people who don't like me, precisely
because of this, my incessant posting, my whining, my obvious
depressions, my aggressions, my acerbic nature. At the last few
conferences, I've been in troubles, sometimes I think I'm
invited only out of guilt by someone or other. All I can fall
back on is my work, and what does that amount to, if I'm in
everyone's kill file, if I'm not in bookstores or Kim's video or
Target? I keep putting out trash-work, hoping someone will see
the value in it. I think I should disguise this playnt by coding
and recoding cleverly - as if my own works had any significance
in the first place. In any case, as soon as I'm dead it will all
disappear. Look at the fury of the world around us. We keep
placing ourselves out 'there' for no reason at all. Even
rebellion is stillborn, the enemy has literally billions to push
its way through our hearts and minds. So my own quibbles mean
nothing in this regard. But I want to present my work in a clean
and proper way, I still want, at 61, to teach a class in media,
in experimental work, I still want, at 61, to receive my first
grant for my work since 1976, to see my book on a bookshelf in a
nice store with someone looking through the pages; I still want,
at 61, before I can no longer think, to find my soundwork at
Kim's Video or Target or Borders, my images in a wonderfully
prepared and printed book, my audience not one I have to force
myself onto; at 61, I'm so so tired, bone-tired, death-tired,
fear-tired, sick-tired, of self-justification, self-explanation,
self-critique, self-theory, ugly and useless self-promotion, as
if this narcissistic hole-in-the-wall is all there is


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