©2018 by Michael Rowland. 
 

Thingly Things

May 16, 2018

"What in the thing is thingly? What is the thing in itself? We shall not reach the thing in itself until our thinking has first reached the thing as a thing."

Heidegger - 'Poetry, language, thought'

 

 

I was talking to a friend about what makes a thing 'sacred', what makes a thing a 'THING'.

 

 

 

That afternoon I took this photo of a group of Mothers and their children in Kampa park. Except for the simple, out-of-place, wooden ticket stand this is just a scene of random ladies and children sitting and standing with no discernible explanation for their being there.

 

This wee white stand with a jar of flowers and a clipboard on it transform the entire situation into something sacred. Official. THINGier than just a thing.

 

Was it a competition? Best baby? Best Mother? Worst Mother? Whatever it was, they were obviously a bit 'serious' about it.

 

The friend I was talking with works in an art gallery where all the things inside it are very expensive. Every THING in that gallery feels sacred even if it doesn't always look sacred.

 

 

 

The Mook Manifesto, step 100 reads:

 

"Routine makes a thing a THING. A reality. The rest is makey uppy. A name nails it. To a cross. Inventing a routine and naming it DOES make it sacred."

 

I would add that PRESENTATION also is key to making a thing thinglier than just a thing.

 

Take this photo of shoes in a market place and this photo of shoes in a store.

 

 

One of these feels more sacred than the other, but only because we are a very very stupid, lazy species who need...

 

a drum roll with our punchline

 

a ring for our spouse

 

a frame for our art

 

a family for our house

 

a name for our meal

 

a date for our day

 

a structure for our rhyme

 

and reason to take something away

 

 

a repeated confirmation

 

from some persistent mother lover

 

that some 'thing' is not that 'thing'

 

but maybe something other.

 

 

We are suckers for presentation and a good story. We live in a world in which nothing is considered for its thingliness but for its potential to be a 'THING'.

 

We debate fictions, every word is a cliche, all philosophical conclusions and rules are 'madey uppy'.

 

For us to consider or accept this thing we call life as a real THING we must, by necessity, give up every thing.

 

Heaven: humans imagine a shitty gate and a shitty white stand with a judgmental ghost holding a clipboard checking tickets. And maybe a nice jar of flowers. That would be nice. Not just official, but nice too.

 

And don't forget GLASS CASES!

 

 

 

Enjoy the warm weather :)

 

((()))

 

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I am committed to making this blog as snappy, fun, experimental and accessible as I can. If any of what I post, paint, paste or print resonates with you, please forward to friends and colleagues with wild abandon!

 

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