12 October 2011

It's time for a revolution!

Speech by Slavoj Zizek from Liberty Square, New York on October 9, 2011


Video of the speech part 1
Video of the speech part 2

…2008 financial crash more hard earned private property was destroyed than if all of us here were to be destroying it night and day for weeks. They tell you we are dreamers. The true dreamers are those who think things can go on indefinitely the way they are. We are not dreamers. We are awakening from a dream which is tuning into a nightmare. We are not destroying anything. We are only witnessing how the system is destroying itself. We all know the classic scenes from cartoons. The cart reaches a precipice. But it goes on walking. Ignoring the fact that there is nothing beneath. Only when it looks down and notices it, it falls down. This is what we are doing here. We are telling the guys there on Wall Street – Hey, look down! (cheering).

In April 2011, the Chinese government prohibited on TV and films and in novels all stories that contain alternate reality or time travel. This is a good sign for China. It means that people still dream about alternatives, so you have to prohibit this dream. Here we don’t think of prohibition. Because the ruling system has even suppressed our capacity to dream. Look at the movies that we see all the time. It’s easy to imagine the end of the world. An asteroid destroying all life and so on. But you cannot imagine the end of capitalism. So what are we doing here? Let me tell you a wonderful old joke from communist times.

A guy was sent from East Germany to work in Siberia. He knew his mail would be read by censors. So he told his friends: Let’s establish a code. If the letter you get from me is written in blue ink ,it is true what I said. If it is written in red ink, it is false. After a month his friends get a first letter. Everything is in blue. It says, this letter: everything is wonderful here. Stores are full of good food. Movie theaters show good films from the West. Apartments are large and luxurious. The only thing you cannot buy is red ink.

This is how we live. We have all the freedoms we want. But what we are missing is red ink. The language to articulate our non-freedom. The way we are taught to speak about freedom war and terrorism and so on falsifies freedom. And this is what you are doing here: You are giving all of us red ink.

There is a danger. Don’t fall in love with yourselves. We have a nice time here. But remember: carnivals come cheap. What matters is the day after. When we will have to return to normal life. Will there be any changes then. I don’t want you to remember these days, you know, like - oh, we were young, it was beautiful. Remember that our basic message is: We are allowed to think about alternatives. The rule is broken. We do not live in the best possible world. But there is a long road ahead. There are truly difficult questions that confront us. We know what we do not want. But what do we want? What social organization can replace capitalism? What type of new leaders do we want?

Remember: the problem is not corruption or greed. The problem is the system that pushes you to give up. Beware not only of the enemies. But also of false friends who are already working to dilute this process. In the same way you get coffee without caffeine, beer without alcohol, ice cream without fat. They will try to make this into a harmless moral protest. They think (??? unintelligible). But the reason we are here is that we have enough of the world where to recycle coke cans…

….Starbucks cappuccino. Where 1% goes to the world’s starving children. It is enough to make us feel good. After outsourcing work and torture. After the marriage agencies are now outsourcing even our love life, daily.

We can see that for a long time we allowed our political engagement also to be outsourced. We want it back. We are not communists. If communism means the system which collapsed in 1990, remember that today those communists are the most efficient ruthless capitalists. In China today we have capitalism which is even more dynamic than your American capitalism but doesn’t need democracy. Which means when you criticize capitalism, don’t allow yourselves to be blackmailed that you are against democracy. The marriage between democracy and capitalism is over.

The change is possible. So, what do we consider today possible? Just follow the media. On the one hand in technology and sexuality everything seems to be possible. You can travel to the moon. You can become immortal by biogenetics. You can have sex with animals or whatever. But look at the fields of society and economy. There almost everything is considered impossible. You want to raise taxes a little bit for the rich, they tell you it’s impossible, we lose competitivitiy. You want more money for healthcare: they tell you impossible, this means a totalitarian state. There is something wrong in the world where you are promised to be immortal but cannot spend a little bit more for health care. Maybe that ??? set our priorities straight here. We don’t want higher standards of living. We want better standards of living. The only sense in which we are communists is that we care for the commons. The commons of nature. The commons of what is privatized by intellectual property. The commons of biogenetics. For this and only for this we should fight.

Communism failed absolutely. But the problems of the commons are here. They are telling you we are not Americans here. But the conservative fundamentalists who claim they are really American have to be reminded of something. What is Christianity? It’s the Holy Spirit. What’s the Holy Spirit? It’s an egalitarian community of believers who are linked by love for each other. And who only have their own freedom and responsibility to do it. In this sense the Holy Spirit is here now. And down there on Wall Street there are pagans who are worshipping blasphemous idols. So all we need is patience. The only thing I’m afraid of is that we will someday just go home and then we will meet once a year, drinking beer, and nostalgically remembering what a nice time we had here. Promise ourselves that this will not be the case.

We know that people often desire something but do not really want it. Don’t be afraid to really want what you desire. Thank you very much!

22 September 2011

The choices we make and the actions we take are the ones that define who we are.

To drunk text or not to drunk text?

The answer is of course NOT. But it is tempting.

Now mind you, I'm not actually drunk, I'm having a glass of wine while I read Portrait of a Lady, of which I will be designing a stage adaptation of the book later this school year. Tonight the alcohol is enhancing the emotions I have been experiencing all day. Because this morning in my Adaptation Seminar we did a free write for 20 minutes with the objective of adapting the myth of Echo and Narcissus. In the process of writing, I realized that I am Echo. I am cursed to love someone who doesn't return the feelings and I will never be able to speak it. But is it real love? I don't know. Is it real when it's four years of something? I watch him continually choose the wrong people and it breaks my heart, not because he doesn't choose me, but because it hurts him.

Divulging all of that emotion during a free write and all in one go was...surprising. Primarily because I continue to tell myself I'm over it. Over and over I force him out of my heart, but it doesn't work. I've yet to meet anyone that compares.

The whole thing just makes me feel lonely. It makes me want to be in the company of friends. It makes me want to go back to freshmen year at Westmont, before him, and relive the knitting/crocheting movie parties in Page Hall. Where you just popped in and out of friends' rooms without explanation. Just for a night I can be naive again.

It also makes me sign back onto OkCupid with the thought that I might find someone there. The first attempt was a minor disaster and doesn't give me much hope in a second try. Especially when I'm too busy to dedicate time to people outside of school and there isn't anyone I'm interested in at school. Especially when it's not fair to them that my heart is still chasing after this one person even though I don't want it to.

Well, how about that for a blog post comeback? I won't promise any other updates, as people tend to after a hiatus. I've certainly done that before and not followed through. I doubt any updates will happen. Posting on a blog that I don't advertise feels a lot like writing a letter and throwing it to the wind. Maybe it will land, maybe it will get caught on a cactus. Maybe Echo will find it and cry out to me in empathy.

27 June 2011

I hate it when in romantic comedies, the couple that finally resolves their issues in the end almost always kisses in front of a crowd and then everyone applauds.


Except maybe a bride and groom at their own wedding, I can't think of any real life examples of when it's ever appropriate or not awkward.

11 June 2011


What is the purpose of a facebook poke? I find it very confusing.
There are currently three people poking me: Ruth, my sister, and a guy I knew from Redlands.

My feelings about the pokes:
Ruth: well, it makes me smile when I see that she has poked me, because she is a few thousand miles away and I miss my best friend. We poke each other about once a week, which seems to be an appropriate amount of time.

My sister: she started poking me while she was here in CA on vacation (she moved to Colorado last fall). And then, when I responded, she would poke back almost immediately. If I continued to poke back immediately, then this would mean being on facebook for more time than I already do and poking her ten times a day. I get an email every time she pokes me, which sort of sets me up for disappointment, because I think it's a really important kind of email or something, but no. Alas, I have been poked. I could turn off the notification, but for some reason I don't wish to.

Guy from Redlands: okay, so this one is just weird. I talked to him very briefly one summer in between freshmen and sophomore year at the college group at church. I thought maybe he was flirting with me. But I didn't see him again until two months later, again randomly at church. We became facebook friends sometime between then and now. My sister mentioned once that she thinks he is really really weird, which then biased me towards that opinion. I don't think of him without thinking that my sister thinks he is weird. Last fall he fb messaged me wanting to know what I've been up to. This was only a couple weeks after I saw (again on fb) that he broke up with a girl that he was engaged to. We chatted on message back and forth for a little bit, but I still can't get that thought that he is weird out of my head. But, that's not really saying much I guess because my sister thinks that most of my friends are really weird. I think I hid his poking a few months ago and now he's poked me again AND messaged me complaining that we haven't poked each other in a while.

WHAT?? I mean, really, WHAT??
I do not understand facebook communication. Social media has taken over the world, but I will still prefer face to face interaction and his pestering me, is mighty strange, since we barely know each other, but he wants us to hang out because we're both artists (he does graphic design) and he continuously compliments me of how talented I am in these fb messages.

What is the purpose of a poke?

31 March 2011

never been better

I started the Body for Life program on Wednesday, March 9th. Three weeks later and I have never felt better in my life.

  • I'm cooking and eating really healthy
  • I never realized how tasty the weird looking vegetables are
  • I gained an inch of muscle on my biceps!
  • My self-esteem is probably the best it's been all my life
  • Cooking (instead of running to the cafeteria at school) is actually faster, because I cook one day a week and microwave the rest
  • I've been having friends over for meals too -- which is the way that meals should be anyhow: communal
  • I can run up a flight of stairs (while skipping every other one) without getting out of breath
All for the glory of God. My body being a temple for the Holy Spirit. Following this program is helping me love the Life I have.

24 February 2011


New favorite blog has to be WhatTheJazz.com. Why? Where else on the internet are you going to get an RSS feed on stuff like this:


22 February 2011

Where did my heart go? It's been three and a half years since it skipped a beat for anyone. Where has it gone?

Perhaps it went for a swim in the depths of the Mariana Trench and got lost. Or maybe it hitch hiked its way through the Rockies and got bit by poisonous snake. Or maybe it's been spending all its gold on fortifying the castle walls.

I miss that playful joyful skip.

21 February 2011


Church Harem \ˈchərch ˈher-əm -noun
Contemporary (primarily evangelical) Christian worship team comprised of male instrument players and female singers. Male leader must play guitar. Common attributes among the females: unnecessary six-part harmonies, color coordinated t-shirts, and excessive vibrato. Prayers in between songs that involve the word "just" are very common.

02 February 2011


I should have brought my big fluffy robe to school with me. Because it would help me feel a little less like crying today. Why? Because I have less than a week to come up with some brilliant design for Romeo and Juliet and I want something to wrap around my body and encase me in some kind of comfort. Maybe that's why I also really want to buy that Tenth Doctor coat.

06 January 2011

RIP Opera Project

After a long hard struggle, the Opera Project at CalArts has finally breathed its last. It went into a coma three months ago, when it was brutally beaten in a back alley by the School of Music. It awoke again, a week later, but it was never the same. It had trouble communicating. No one quite understood this new opera. Only a month later it was on its way home from the hospital when the School of Music struck again. This time, it wasn't so lucky. In a series of risky operations and intensive life support assistance, they were able to save it, although it never woke from its coma. Finally, after months of anguish, difficult conversations, and a variety of proposals, the family pulled the plug. The life support system was cut and the Opera Project is gone.

May it rest in peace.

(only...what am I going to do?)