Cole Webber

7595 — Thoughts after having a migraine and inexplicably watching a thirty minute video on music theory

I found myself googling in a half awake state why is x so pretentious, and then I stopped myself because I couldn’t all the way remember what I was thinking about, but then of course realized: everything is pretentious! I have this great realization now, which I’m glad my migraine introspection has led me to (as it always does). I started off in school and had done well in mathematics and sciences, and always pictured going there, and then went elsewhere in my stint in college because I thought it was too pretentious. So I went to arts and political sciences, and quickly found that very pretentious as well. I patented things — which I , ironically, considering it’s the only most real thing — found to be the least pretentious, but this naturally led to putting the idea into practice in business. Surely, I thought, here, this one could not be pretentious, because it was putting things into practice. And I was dead wrong! The business heavyweights — the banks and so forth that you need to interact with — are deadly pretentious! Why the hell are people making thirty minute video breakdowns of having to do things properly, when they’ve never done the thing! I know I often take part in criticism — I love talking about movies, for instance — but I always think it is interesting to understand why or why not I like something, in the preparation for me to make my movies. When people say, “I don’t like the Shining” (which is my favourite movie) I find myself often saying back, “I can understand why you wouldn’t.” I agree with most criticisms — it’s slow, uneventful, too building and drawn out. And I agree, I can see that, because I see those things and like them. And I know other people will see them and dislike them, but I watch the Shining and think so much about it to see what I like, so I can make things that I like, full well knowing that those things would not be liked by all people. In general, though, I think the criticism speaks to a focus of society that is inextricably linked to the pretensiousizing of all these things. This is something I have thought about a lot. As it becomes easier to do things, people make those things harder for themselves. My favourite example to think about is writing. Much of the great old writing or great old storytelling is not edited and typeset, it is what we would call today a rough first draft, simply because it survived. You sat down and wrote, maybe with some planning, but there was simply no ability to go down and tinker with each letter laboriously and forwardly, over and over and over, like we have today with word processors. What an ugly word: a word processor. You’re grinding it up like mincemeat in some silver mechanical lair. What we have of these great thinkers is not polished like we have today, it is just what survived. And it makes sense that they did not have a need to polish it: there was not the same competition, not the same effort and time to be allowed to be spend on competition and critical tearing down. Most people were not thought workers. Most people for most of history (since farming) were farmers! When you had time to write a story or read one, that was a great treat. And we went at it like children, thinking full and pure. Now, we have not the need but the absolute luxury, the awful laborious mind-numbing and -eating luxury to tinker. The sheer time we’e technologically procured for ourselves as a joint species has allowed for onward explosive creation, but that is not how we have used it. We have used it for what it has also allowed for, the entire tinkering professions: the critics and editors and armies of bureaucrats. But in all of that a great, great many things are lost. I don’t believe in art schools and theory classes, because I think it presents a fundamental misuse of how we are discovering and know more and more our mind to work. I subscribe to the subconscious, and therefore, to our relatively slight and pale-some ability to make something better by thinking about it. Most people attack everything like this. They do only by thinking — scrunching the tip of their eyebrows while they put down a few words or a few brushstrokes. This has been the latter dictating the former: with such newfound capacity to be prolific, people and industry are afraid of it, and want to artificially limit their own output once they can have a lot of it to slow down the already increasing competition, only identified and labelled as such because everybody is still set on going about doing the same things as everyone else and not being themselves. There is this false myth of a solitary genius executing a few things, of many educated minds working in tandem in a staircase. If you look at the developments which really change things, and the people behind them, you see this is nothing of the sort. The few people behind the many great ideas are maniacally prolific; not a few novels but dozens of books, millions of words, a cascade of stories or paintings or inventions. Yes, even in scientific discovery, most of the great changes are made in multiple by a few people, because those very people set and destined to make them have minds buzzing constantly. That’s why Tesla singlehandedly makes the first draft of the entire electric grid! Most of the people bearing the society approved title of scientist today are lucky to transmit his designs to be a few percent more efficient, transmit a few kilometres farther, while they have literally ten times the scientific education, and a million times the knowledge base and tool capability that he had access to. People today are held back by barriers to stop our society from careening forward, a chief one being their own (in-bred) tepid nature. The best things I’ve done I haven’t thought about. I am the happiest with the stories I have simply sat down and zapped out onto paper. Even ideas and inventions: you cannot explain, fully, an idea, even to yourself, when it is just a seed. You can only see it vaguely, work with it, and get a feeling for its potential. My best ideas come to me in a flash, and I have to play with them — without the intruding critical eyes, which would always tell you to stop, to not reinvent the wheel — before I show them polished enough for anybody else to even see, remotely, what I mean. This is the great downfall of data itself. You cannot collect data on something which does not exist; so the new idea is always at a loss, and the old one always has a great supposed amount of suppository proof, always measured with what we were measuring then. You scrunch up your face to posture as smart and you start to lose your mind. You crumple up your head into nothing more than a paper wrapper, a piece of garbage. We now know that the subconscious brain processes of which we are not aware take up much more energy than our conscious processes, that most of the things we notice we do not notice that we notice, and that most of our judgements and thoughts we arrive at without much of our conscious input at all. Why fight it? The best we can do with the consciousness is to steer the ship. That is why I focus care on what I am paying attention to, and let my intuition take me the rest of the way. You are not a captain of a ship so much as a nudge at the rudder, or, more astutely, the tender to a garden. Your mind is your garden, and you only have certain limited controls of what you can do to it to yield results. Water it right. Feed it, care for it, right. If you think without feeling — without being propelled by that vast subconscious sense — you’re using your brain wrong, or, at the very least, incompletely. Trying to laboriously think through a task is using only the pin prick of your brain focused back and between your eyes. It is like trying to write a novel on a typewriter with one key. We have, in trying to quantify and subjugate, denied the vast spectrum of human intelligence. And I believe that this was done at least partially intentionally, to accommodate the great proliferation of fake fields at which people can ‘earn a living’ while contributing nothing of real value. Society has not economically figured out how to delegate the so much we have been able to procure with the so little in the normal job making system, so we have to keep people employed while dampening the acceleration of production and reorganization output with minimal input. Hence drafts, editing, critique, gatekeepers. You go back further, and there is less specialization, but people making greater breakthroughs, because they are omni present in all fields; in the only field: nature. You go back and nuclear physicist becomes physicist. You go back further and it becomes scientist. You go back further and it becomes, only, thinker — which most of the people would have considered themselves. Our today labelling of them as scientists or whatever else is propaganda designed to sell books and University courses. It is not that we are so advanced that we have neared perfection. We are nowhere near it, we are barely into the mix. Look at what we have done in the last few hundred years? And still: we barely have indoor plumbing and our designs now back up and overflow. We still have not solved adequately many of our base problems. We are not at the polishing stages to demand little change, to demand little changes and small build up and shavings! We are at the very beginning! Every society at every point we have known in history has said “Thank god we have it all right now.” It depresses me immensely to see such fakery everywhere; to see artists talking about their subtextual post Neo whatever practice instead of doing and thinking. Buckminster Fuller used to say, in many cultures they had no difference in words for sculptor and inventor. Why do we now? All of these things are inter-accommodative; nothing exists in a vacuum. These great people are and were able to make great leaps because understanding and natural law and imagination — the very fundamental components of the universe — do not delineate themselves based on fields. When everything is inter-accomodative it is also inter-applicable. Expertise is a sham. We all have the same amount of ex-perience directed in our own unique life path based where our consciousness is and was pointing. We are all experts in our own experience. I am drawn by immense power and posses great inspiration to know, for example, how terrible our toilets are; how laborious and how many steps it takes to cast and prototype an object, to sculpt it, in a foundry, say. How primitive our brick buildings are, cured out of rock drilled out of the ground. Everybody is patting themselves on the back with theory and titles while we see so clearly around us in so many places, everyday, such staggering primitivities. There is work to be done! Subconscious is not not thinking, it is deep thinking. This is also why I am cripplingly opposed to most of the insane and baseless debate in critique and analysis videos on intention. If it is functional, to help one forwardly build something better, intentional or not should not matter. And, we can do things without having a full reasoning-out pre-done ourselves. Many of the great thinkers have recognized this, and I have stollen it from them. Ray Bradbury and Dali both talk about the importance of mistakes; of keeping mistakes. As Dali said, they are of a divine subliminal nature. Bradbury would start his stories by typing the first things to come to mind, then asking himself: Why have I put that there? So in ways you pour things out without realizing, and then realize part way through and work with it for the rest of the pouring. Is it intentional and is it planned may be impossible to answer. Whatever I put down, even if I am not aware of thinking about it, I have thought about since I put it down. You also work with it. You notice things; the fact that you’ve put it down and then it jumps off the page back at you reaffirms two-fold that it is important. Often I start pouring out, and from there find a theme simply by noticing: isn’t it interesting that I said this? Then I reaffirm it and be sure to work it in. It’s working with yourself. I have been on the set of movies that I have (tried to) make, and had ideas — what if we put this in the background, what if we play with this? You think about that all the time with stories. Inventing is the same way. It is a push and pull of leading yourself without knowing where you’re going (but of course, at some level, you must). In a dream, you talk to yourself; every character you get information from, while it is still new to you at the conscious level, is still you. I guess the best way to say it is that the subconscious you, the unknown you, is doing the real work; the conscious you is just trying to keep up and articulate it, and pointing the energy and the machine at what it is to be looking at.

— cole