“[A]fter she died, I found myself in possession of a number of her things, just common everyday things. I had them in the apartment, this and that, out and about, objects that were lost, abandoned, speechless, but not dead. That was the crux of it. They weren’t dead, not in the usual way we think of objects as lifeless. They seemed charged with a kind of power. At times I almost felt them move with it, and then after several weeks, I noticed, that they seemed to lose that vivacity, seemed to retreat into their thingness… I boxed them to keep them untouched by the here and now. I feel sure that those things carry her imprint - the mark of a warm, living body in the world. And even though I’ve tried to keep them safe they’re turning cold.”—
Reasons to love second hand books - objects imbued with the life of another.
In 2002, having spent more than three years in one residence for the first time in my life, I got called for jury duty. I show up on time, ready to serve. When we get to the voir dire, the lawyer says to me, “I see you’re an astrophysicist. What’s that?” I answer, “Astrophysics is the laws of physics, applied to the universe—the Big Bang, black holes, that sort of thing.” Then he asks, “What do you teach at Princeton?” and I say, “I teach a class on the evaluation of evidence and the relative unreliability of eyewitness testimony.” Five minutes later, I’m on the street.
A few years later, jury duty again. The judge states that the defendant is charged with possession of 1,700 milligrams of cocaine. It was found on his body, he was arrested, and he is now on trial. This time, after the Q&A is over, the judge asks us whether there are any questions we’d like to ask the court, and I say, “Yes, Your Honor. Why did you say he was in possession of 1,700 milligrams of cocaine? That equals 1.7 grams. The ‘thousand’ cancels with the ‘milli-’ and you get 1.7 grams, which is less than the weight of a dime.” Again I’m out on the street.
“The conditions of ordinary life… are conditions of the attrition or the wearing out of the subject, and the irony that the labour of reproducing life in the contemporary world is also the activity of being worn out by it has specific implications for thinking about the ordinariness of suffering, the violence of normativity, and the “technologies of patience” that enable a concept of the later to suspend questions about the cruelty of the now”—Lauren Berlan - Cruel Optimism (2011)
“Actuality is when the lighthouse is dark between flashes: it is the instant between the ticks of the watch: it is a void interval slipping forever through time: the rupture between past and future: the gap at the poles of the revolving magnetic field, infinitesimally small but ultimately real. It is the interchronic pause when nothing is happening. It is the void between events.”—George Kubler
“40% of women with disabilities have been assaulted or raped
54% of boys who are deaf have been sexually abused
50% of girls who are deaf have been sexually abused
68% of psychiatric outpatients have been physically or sexually abused
81% of psychiatric inpatients have been physically or sexually abused”—