Day 1

I am SOO different! 

Yes, I broke down and now have a blog. Yay! Another person on the internet egocentric enough to think that the things we used to write into a little book with flowers or puppies on it, secured by a little plastic lock, now are actually interesting enough to be shared with the rest of the world. Remember the time when people actually got mad when you read their diary? (Or at least only occasionally indulged in the fantasy of the deep insight people would get into one’s life after they found the diary following the respective writer’s tragic death) Well, all that is now part of the quotidian, of good old consumer capitalism’s emphasis on rampant individualism, which changed all that formerly cliche-laden, pseudo-romantic, dialectic-longing stuff and today we are all doing our duty as “special unique snowflakes of special specialness” and are longing to commit ourselves to an act that my brother has come to call “soul striptease.”

So, bring some singles. I’ll do some strip-writing. ’cause we’re all just so damn special–enjoy.


  1. I’ve never been so scared off a blog before. I don’t know if this repy is building community or supporting individualism. I may not sleep that well tonight, knowing that tbis blog is out there.

  2. Good luck with this blog, Mr. Jetsam. I’ll look in now and again; it will be a pleasure to do so. I hope all is well with you.


  3. I suppose I takes a while until one really feels comfortable with writing a blog. To me, it’s actually _not_ like a diary – but then again, I never had one. It always felt odd to me to write words that weren’t addressed at anybody. Futile. But I’ll tell you the truth – I’ve got another blog which I keep for my dark thoughts only, the kinda stuff that I don’t want to share with people, and where I don’t want any feedback from anyone. It’s been around for two months now and has no to one accidental visitor on most days. It might enforce the mold of our schizophrenic existence in late capitalism, but I kinda like it that way.

  4. Ooh, the dark thoughts one seems interesting!
    I myself am still not quite ready to do that, but I am occasionally browsing through Schreber’s _Memoirs of My Nervous Illness_ again before sleep–you know, to set my mind at ease about myself and the state of the world. Might help me feel better about the blogging as well.

  5. yep, it is exactly the Schreber Style thoughts that I have in mind – I never read any of his writing in the original, only what Friedrich Kittler wrote about them – I guess I am afraid that they might infect me. Am not so sure whether they would set my mind at ease, but maybe I should try… am reading poems by Ernst Herbeck at the moment, edidted by his psychiatrist Leo Navratil, but I don’t know whether they’ve been translated into English. Can you read German?

  6. Yes, I can (I am, in fact, despite my expatriate status, still a German citizen). Could you send me the citation? Sounds great.
    And regarding Schreber–Deleuze actually found him funny. Aren’t some of the first sentences in _Anti-Oedipus_ “Judge Schreber has sunbeams in his ass. A solar anus”? Always found that to be a great opening.

  7. Yes, it’s in the beginning of the Anti-Ödipus, loved that line to – also because when I first read that I was listening to the Happy Mondays: The sun shines brightly through my asshole today…

    For the time being, I’ll just give you the two poems on the blurb by Herbeck (a schizophrenic at 20), I got it from a volume with his complete work, Ernst Herbeck: Im Herbst da reiht der Feenwind. Gesammelt Texte, herausgegeben von Leo Navratil, Salzburg und Wien: Residenz Verlag, 1999.

    Die Männer.

    Die Männer haben ein starkes Herz.
    Sie fahren in der Gesellschaft.
    Sie führen sich selbst. Die Männer verlieben sich schwerst. Sie weisen das Leben ab. Sie haben auch einen starken Bart. Die Männer sind müde. Sie rasieren sich lieber mit einem Philishave 3m. Die Männer haben keinen Feind.

    Die Frauen.

    Die Frauen, die sind hübsch. Die Frauen haben gute Ohren, und sehen sehr gut. Die Frauen sind nicht so dumm. Die Frauen ärgern sich. Die Frauen freuen sich über eine jede Kleinigkeit. Sie haben mehr Charme. Und sie giften sich auch mehr als die Männer.
    Die Frauen überstürzen sich nicht, sie arbeiten.

    Btw, Herbeck never wrote out of his own impetus, Navratil gave him a topic and the task to write a poem about it.

  8. Ok, that is some of the most brilliant writing I have read in a long time–thank you so much! I am very tempted to take this to our creative writing department and make a case for schizophrenia aesthetically and politically overriding lofty ideals of artistic inspiration. Celebrate the “happy Schizophrenic out for a stroll” (is how I think the quote goes).
    I will try to find something adequate to reciprocate–you set the bar very high, though.

  9. Thanks, am looking forward to it 🙂 You should really order Herbeck’s volume (or let the department order it) it’s definitely worth it.

  10. I think you never can write anything without really addressing no one. In the end you always have someone in mind that you write stuff down for.

  11. […] like to post two poems here which I’ve posted before at the Cerebral Jetsam blog. They are taken from the last collection of Herbeck’s work, published in 1994 and edited and […]

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