The promise of statistical analysis is the promise of a measure that could never be faked, because it could never be conscious: who has such control over her writing, balancing the letters with one another by design? Not only could style so defined never be forged, but it could never, or never consciously, be imitated. At the limit of this line of investigation lie patterns of stylistic correlation that have no bearing on our interests at all, as makers or as readers.
I've been going on with a thing I started to be a little birthday poem for B[ill] B[erkson] and then it went along a little and then I remembered that was how Mike's Ode got done so I kept on and I am still going day by day (middle of 8th page this morning). I don't know anything about what it is or will be but am enjoying trying to keep going and seem to have been able to keep it 'open' and so there are lots of possibilities, air and such.
In the nineteenth century, the Sears Roebuck Catalog, for example, served as a centralized distribution point for mass-manufactured goods. The Whole Earth Catalog, on the other hand, served as a map of an emerging, geographically distributed community of consciousness. As readers wrote in, they made visible not only particular products, but their ideals, their tastes, and the new communities in which they lived. To buy the Whole Earth Catalog was not simply to buy a mechanism for identifying particular tools (though it was that too); it was to purchase a window on an alternative world.
[Camus'] early essays exult in the sheer bliss of enjoying days under a crystal blue sky, spending time lolling about in the water, admiring Roman ruins, and in general, feeling one with the beauty of nature. The ‘absurd’ condition of existence for which Camus is perhaps most famous, which he explored in The Myth of Sisyphus (1942), resulted from the incompatibility of these two dimensions. On one side, a human being who longs for meaning, purpose, significance; on the other, a world that responds with nothing but indifference – nothing but brute raw matter in motion.
Reading without conscious difficulty is not the same as reading without strain. Some children read avidly and surreptitiously after going to bed, by the dim light of an electric torch, or in the gathering shadows of a summer evening. The child may notice no difficulty; but a few years of this kind of eye-strain are certain to aggravate defects of vision. ... Type which is too small or too large, set in lines which are too close together or in words which are too far apart, undoubtedly blunts the pleasure of reading, and tends to discourage all but the enthusiast.
Lotion occurs at an intersection of blackness and the market. Lotion and the practices it invokes—simple acts of living such as becoming wet or dry, ingesting or covering oneself in stuff of life—is the undressed and feminine doppelganger of an imaginary space almost completely filled by black music, which dominates every attempt to materialize black imagination. That is, to bring the materially improved self and world into existence.