Xanga Post Monday March 20, 2006

To those whom the St. Patrick's Day picture frightened/offended/disturbed: my apologies.  If you have seen the movie, hopefully you laughed at the absurdity of it all.  He does look like a little demon, though.

Writing is the name of the game I'm currently playing.  It's actually going somewhat okay, just slow.  Like evolution-of-the-species slow.  But this too shall pass.

One of the things Drew and I are currently working on are these poems that we are going to shoot people performing to play in Celebration to introduce the theme of that day's Bible study.  In trying to be inspired to do this, or in trying to procrastinate it, I have gotten back into the whole Poetry Slam thing, Which means I've been watching Def Poetry Jam and we bought a copy of the documentary, Slamnation.  This has led to three things:

1.  I've been researching local poetry slams and have found that four exist monthly in the greater Birmingham area.  I will be attending soon.

2.  The Southern Friend Poetry Slam regional competition is in Birmingham this year.  I think some of us should enter.  It would be a blast.

3.  I've gotten back into looking at the actual poets.  My favorite is this guy named Taylor Mali.  He seems to be a pretty egocentric guy, but has been a teacher and has passion for teaching and sees the absurdity in the modern poetry scene.  So, I like him.  The following is one of my favorite poems of his.  It's best performed so read it aloud and listen to how you emphasize the question marks (they're there for a reason).  If you don't get it you can download it on iTunes or catch it on the season two DVD of Def Poetry Jam.

Totally Like Whatever
by Taylor Mali

In case you hadn't noticed,
it has somehow become uncool
to sound like you know what you're talking about?
Or believe strongly in what you're saying?
Invisible question marks and parenthetical (you know?)'s
have been attaching themselves to the ends of our sentences?
Even when those sentences aren't, like, questions? You know?

Declarative sentences - so-called
because they used to, like, DECLARE things to be true
as opposed to other things which were, like, not -
have been infected by a totally hip
and tragically cool interrogative tone? You know?
Like, don't think I'm uncool just because I've noticed this;
this is just like the word on the street, you know?
It's like what I've heard?
I have nothing personally invested in my own opinions, okay?
I'm just inviting you to join me in my uncertainty?

What has happened to our conviction?
Where are the limbs out on which we once walked?
Have they been, like, chopped down
with the rest of the rain forest?
Or do we have, like, nothing to say?
Has society become so, like, totally . . .
I mean absolutely . . . You know?
That we've just gotten to the point where it's just, like . . .

And so actually our disarticulation . . . ness
is just a clever sort of . . . thing
to disguise the fact that we've become
the most aggressively inarticulate generation
to come along since . . .
you know, a long, long time ago!

I entreat you, I implore you, I exhort you,
I challenge you: To speak with conviction.
To say what you believe in a manner that bespeaks
the determination with which you believe it.
Because contrary to the wisdom of the bumper sticker,
it is not enough these days to simply QUESTION AUTHORITY.
You have to speak with it, too.

I heard this site was hard to read.  So I tried to fix it.  Hopefully, this is better.

xangaChris Kinsley