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<nettime> continuity-girl scripts
Alan Myouka Sondheim on Sat, 22 Aug 1998 11:55:41 +0200 (MET DST)

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<nettime> continuity-girl scripts


blinking gaps in the mountains and valleys

by _the continuity girl_

there is a gap between texts where the words run dry, there are addresses
and bars, lines delineating one from another, page numbers as separators,
asterisks. so these are breaks within which something else comes to fill,
fulfill, whatever there had been beyond, seeping across the edges of the
screen, beneath the keys. this is nothing parallel to list aura, which is
generated by an email list, nothing parallel to attachments or other
riders on posts or programs. instead, this is the split in which the
fingers reflect the screen's light, or light from a nearby window, as now,
when there are contours indicating direction, as if generated by
ray-tracing programs hungering in the real. sometimes there will be a
conversation or other inhabiting, telephone call or meal or sleep, visit
of a friend, bad news from old homes. whatever the cause/space/place, the
breaks cause memory to become memory, as in content or _continuity girl_
would would follow the script and hold you to the script. it is a balance
which falters; my writing has fallen on bad times, as an example of this
faltering, as I no longer think clearly, sometimes not otherwise, or in
pursuit of a minor literature. or that the theory begins to spread across
the plateau of a cut tree, covering and forgetting the signs of growth
which have been removed above any consideration, elsewhere than the
immediate difficulties of this lived life.  and when the life seeps
through the text, _there,_ that is the difficulty! and when the life takes
over the text, exactly the same! and when the life needs to be lived for
the text, for 'experience,' I'd drown the text in the life, move to
another small town, kill dogs and children for amusement, run and hide
into the mountains where dogs and children would find and love me. there
would be circles of rocks and patterns of rocks to play hippy- hop and
lots of meat for the dogs and I would feed the children luscious berries
and wonderful-beautiful food gathered while I wandered through the woods.
you would see the flags flying from the town when you looked up at the
mountains, but when you went into the mountains, the flags would be gone
and you would be left wondering. it is in this state, when you returned
from the mountain, that you would write texts on responsibility and civic
duty, and others of the laws and regulations, internal and external
constraints, and you would begin to articulate what it is about the text
that you are reading about the text. I would be playing with the dogs and
children. you would publish your text, yes you would, I would say,
drinking at the local tavern, yes you would, yes you would, yes you would


_the continuity girl_

Michel Serres, Panoptic Theory, in The Limits of Theory, ed. Thomas M.


"I shall call poor that which has no object. Myth has no object, nor does
theater or politics.

"We had few objects in the past, long ago, once upon a time. This state of
a humanity with few things has not been erased from our memory. Poor in
things, our wealth then consisted of men. We spoke only of them and of
their relations. We lived in and on our relations. I call myth poor, then,
without objects. I call poor the theater, deprived of things; theories are
poor; politics is poor. Our philosophies are poor and miserable. Our human
scien- ces are poor. 


"The proliferation of objects, the exponential deluge of things, has led
us to forget the time of their absence. And that time now seems to us so
old! Archaic, antediluvian - yes, mythic. Our myths and our philosophies
tell us about that time. Memories of places where lovers were watched in
an empty and resonant space, where no one ever thought of eating. Thus
philosophies that lack objects (almost all of them), philosophies that
derive their val- ues only from the human sciences (almost all of them),
are aged and poor. They seem so old to us that we read them as we read
myths. One might think they were politics, or theater, or magic. Whenever,
by chance, they come upon an object, they change it, by the stroke of a
magic wand, into a rela- tion, into language, into representation. 


Yes, Alan, you have almost come to life, almost carrying one or another
name across one or another myth, traveling across one or another text, one
or another philosophy. _the continuity girl_ holds you in check, just as
others are held by you, tight against your thin chest, Nikuko, Jennifer,
Julu, and myself included; it is my duty as your continuation to ensure,
not the pro- liferation of objects, but of emergences governed, not by an
unrequited pov- erty, but by the fullness of the real as language becomes
languaging, as magic issues forth its own dominions. 

Not ever deprived of things or relations, tissues or words which dream
them- selves into existence, far beyond the hypertextual - it is _the
continuity girl_ whose long fingers write your head into your head, your
arms into your arms, legs into your legs - _the continuity girl_ writing
Jennifer into Jen- nifer, Julu into Julu, Nikuko into Nikuko, and with a
swirl of a skirt and a toss of hair, the invagination of Alan, dare she
say it, and the further emergence of a philosophy, and a theater - yes a
theater, and a politics, dare she say it, yes, a politics, and a
philosophy and a theater and one theory and another theory, and still one
more theory, in addition, and still yet a theory once again and once more. 

Because _the continuity girl_ is everywhere at once, she is nowhere at
all; because she garners the script, she speaks from experience; because
she reads from memory, she improvises what is the thought that one or
another is thinking,

Because she ensures that the thought continues into the thought, that the
I continues through the I, that one eye sees what the other eye sees, with
just the slightest difference -

That histories are memorizations and lists and forgotten names, just as
Julu and Jennifer and Alan and Nikuko will be forgotten - that histories
are mo- ments and slights of hand, just as _the continuity girl_ is a
magic powder and a poultice, or a patch and a plaster - just as there are
cures for the body ailing, and aches that never go away -

Just the memory of _the continuity girl,_ just the hair and fingers, eyes
and mouth, hands and legs, arms and feet of _the continuity girl,_ just as
the face is an other, face is always already an other, face of _the
contin- uity girl,_ circling and the cycling of the script, pagination and
collat- ing of the script, as she writes this -

Ensuring the one to the one, other to the other, ensuring the one to the
other, other to the one -

Naming, forgetting, naming - just as there are almost objects coming into
the world, almost a pleasure in theory or philosophy; just as there is
almost a pleasure in the reading and the writing; just as there is almost
a belief in the one and the other, and the value of speech and the meaning
among them; just so _the continuity girl_

That there be a striving or a mourning, that there is a mourning one is born
into and within, a _mourning already in place_ ...


two of them queued forever

  PINE 4.02   MESSAGE TEXT           Folder: INBOX  Message 16 of 28 70%

   ----- Transcript of session follows -----
... while talking to igc7.igc.org.:
>>> MAIL From:<sondheim {AT} panix.com> SIZE=349
<<< 451 queuename: Cannot create "qfEAA19665" in "/var/spool/mqueue" 
No space left on device
Deferred: 451 queuename: Cannot create "qfEAA19665"
in "/var/spool/mqueue" (euid=0): No space left on device
Warning: message still undelivered after 4 hours
Will keep trying until message is 5 days old

_dramatic-script boy_ wonders what the message is: does he have to re-
write? or in other words how many and for what purpose? who is the device,
wonders _the continuity girl,_ thinking perhaps the same as before, while
the message ages during the difficult process of birth. _he_ turns to
_her,_ wide-eyed and bushy-tailed, so exuberant in the very early morn-

it's the role of the _dramatic-script boy_ to keep things moving along, he
feels; he's given himself the old monicker of a non-existent position.
he'll look after the scripts, just as well as the next person, and in a
far more dramatic way! _the continuity girl_ will be proud of him, perhaps
even slipping a little out of her slip as she adjusts the flowers in the
vase in the corner of the room in the scene in the film in today's shoot-
ing of the script held so dramatically by the _dramatic-script boy!_

they are so loving and adorable and cute, standing there in the wings of
the big stage waiting to do what they are best at doing, holding and
moving the script dramatically, and awaiting the interval between one
scene and another, one message and another, making sure reality is all
that it is cooked up to be, nothing changing, or at least nothing chang-
ing _very much!_

still of the Nuit

"I was and probably still will going to write something about this as well
- odd - using Maxwell's Demon to imply the impossible separation and
or-dering of scripts..." so I wrote to Clara Nuit in relation to the
entrance of the Demon, separating hot and cold molecules, separating hot
and cold scripts, what would happen - so that the _dramatic-script boy_
carries a bundle! and _the continuity girl_ ensures that one follows
another with a modicum of etiquette and something that might be called
_the least concern of all._ So I wrote this, I, Daishin Nikuko, _in
relation to the continu- ity girl,_ hoping that she, as well as Clara
Nuit, would read this, as one script among many: consider then an
			     \ /
from elsewhere, a stylus inscribing, delimiting, articulating a
series or sheaf of texts or scripts, the Demon hard at work, Satan at the
keyboard, writing all of us into existence, toppling into _this_ form,
font, and style: consider then an enabling
			     / \
as if balancing the w/hole, the effluvia or debris of the world - _the
continuity girl_ half hysterical with a task moving quickly out of hand -
_dramatic-script boy_ almost collapsing under the weight of proliferating
scripts ...

Maxwell faltering in his impossible task by the way side, reality carrying
on ...


The Demon

The Demon divides the real from the virtual, the real from the real; the
virtual divides by means of the _device-random,_ always already a seed or
a promulgation. Thus the virtual is traceable, at least in the common
parlance; the real is deeply untraceable: lost from the lost. Divisions
fissure into divisions; continuum produces the apparent smoothness of lost
histories, clutters. 

The real has always lost itself. The virtual is always in the process of



In the center of the Shrine there is a Mirror but wait, there is also a
box or a case, and it is the case (which is all the World!) that there is
something in it, that-which-divides. So there is a division made, or a
j			   (Enter: Hunger-eating goblin

The division of the real and the virtual, line cutting where it may, what
or what does not think itself across the gap;

			   (Enter: Thirst-drinking goblin

The division of the body, top and bottom, left and right, one or another
lobe, searing and a searing retreat!;

			   (Enter: Wake-sleeping goblin

The division of the reader and the writer, the text and the other, eternal
divide of the two of us, of the two of us and the one of them, of the
three of us and the one of them or the two of them!

			   (Enter: Horned-fucking goblin

But beware! The Mirror sends you away - look, you're retreating! But now!
Come closer; are you in the box (is the box in you?!)!? But think! What
could it be, that-which-divides, if not for the beautiful breasts and body
of _the continuity girl_ stretched over like the Sky-Goddess across the
terrestrial body of the _dramatic-script boy,_ weighted down with all the
stories of the world! 

			   (Enter: Cold-warming goblin

But once again! I am the Shrine housing you, O _the continuity girl_ and
_dramatic-script boy!_ And you are _shintai,_ the inhering-object of the
sacred kami-body, the essence-placement of kami, perhaps unknown, perhaps
secret or PGP-encrypted, perhaps lost in the black holes of cyberspace,
perhaps exhausted, flooded across the wires and routing errors: YOU ARE

			   (Enter: Warm-cooling goblin





			 your man.
			 my hair
			 his fingers.
			 your drama.

is the text of a billboard advertisement over fourth avenue and pacific
street, an image of a young woman of color with great hair staring out at
the camera which becomes you on the street: who are you? who am i? 

just thought you might want to ask these questions when wondering who is
speaking to you as you run your fingers through your hair, typing your
answer on the keyboard, dreaming one last sad sad time of the _dramatic-
script boy_ who has you somewhere in his scripts, or does he or will he -

for it's the truth that, as newton's equation in the calculus of finite
differences indicates, any script can be written after the fact - you
might want to speak to _dramatic-script boy_ before making any quick
decisions in these matters -

meanwhile _the continuity girl_ wants you to be me - all of them are in
collusion she feels, tracking down one or another emission - the screen's
hot with them, lifeforms pouring out of machines all over the planet -

meanwhile again, jennifer notices still another attempt to find signs of
life elsewhere in the cosmos has led to null results (sci. amer. this
month), and so and then again, the spectre of the very anthropic cons-
tructs of our universe appears -

that the world is constituted in such a manner that intelligent forms of
life appear relatively suddenly in the evolutionary process, discover
nuclear energy and weapons of high destruction, and extinguish themselves
just on the verge of reaching for the moons, the planets, the stars, the
universe itself - too much power, too little time -

there are no exceptions -

it is built-in with these inflationary-universe times, it's the way things
are, the neutral and tragic foreclosing of the world we live in - it's the
first and last atomic fact - it's all of us -

there are no exceptions - 

			 your drama. 


susan's "and the aliens"

"and the aliens, where are they, in our desperation, looking for large
eyes or things which dwell within us or within our identities or
equivalences, sliding ourselves into a more dangerous universal womb, but
at least the womb which doesn't show, exfoliate, closed labia just as they
refuse us entrance - that there are none of them, no scripts, no
continuities but our own hysterias seeming to construct semblance, so that
now we substitute the net or art or just about anything else, else which
might nonetheless turn ashy in a universal conflagration generated by the
smallest flesh or flash, risen from the surface of the sun; so now we wait
on meteors or asteroids, veering from dangerous safety to safe danger, a
distance few or fewer, but then the danger's real, safety's not, that's
the truth of it as it falls disturbed and scattered to the floor where one
might imagine grounds defined as metaphysics or whatever until the text
chars, explodes, implodes - "it's as if there's nothing to read, nothing
to see," say the aliens - now we can move them from say siberia or area
fifty-one all the way to our interior - there are scripts within scripts,
encrypted scripts, lost-treasure-scripts, scripts-of-ghosts-and-demons,
scripts-of-discontinuities, kabbalistic numbers prying open numb alien
skulls and thought- forms, "Oh, how she could go on, in the mornings when
the sun was just rising behind the poplars in the garden." 

"The truth is, she did go on, she went on alone and speaking, murmuring
the pulse of the green-gold world, and there was nothing else to it,
nothing else to any of it, nothing, nothing at all." 


From: beauty-love-person {AT} jennifer.com.org.edu
Subject: Yoo-Hoo
Date: Now, Silly

Yoo-Hoo you beauty-love-person {AT} jennifer.org.com.edu I would know you if
you would let me know you you are so beauty-person time that is for me so
what you are so wonderful having a good time with me on your lap beauty-
person.com could be now so muchly wondrous time you beauty-you-hoo!
_Susan, the continuity girl_


More than One, Two, Many

Addison, Spectator, April 20, 1711, of a Friday, he writes among other

"But there is nothing which delights and terrifies our _English_ Theatre
so much as a Ghost, especially when he appears in a bloody Shirt. A Spec-
tre has very often saved a Play, though he has done nothing but stalked
across the Stage, or rose through a Cleft of it, and sunk again without
speaking one Word." [...] "The Appearance of the Ghost in _Hamlet_ is a
Master-piece in its kind, and wrought up with all the Circumstances that
can create either Attention or Horror. The Mind of the Reader is wonder-
fully prepared for his Reception, by the Discourses that precede it: His
dumb Behaviour at his first Entrance, strikes the Imagination very
strongly; but every time he enters, he is still more terrifying. Who can
read the Speech with which young _Hamlet_ accosts him, without trembling?" 

Things appear, nouns are, verbs do, particles surround, ghosts walk, and
ghosts may or may not talk, and when they talk, they will say a word which
they may not Say. There is no ectoplasm except insofar as it is testable
and determinate, all that effluvia or fluid corraled for the purposes of
19th-century science for an example; ghosts are translucent but every-
where determinate. This is the determinate of Western civilization, if I
may stereotype, thinking through the Noh with its evanescence that might
imply an elusion or elision, Jun'ichiro Tanizaki's In Praise of Shadows,
"This was particularly true of Kongo Iwao; but even the hands of an ord-
inary actor - which is to say the hands of an average, undistinguished
Japanese - have a remarkable erotic power which we would never notice were
we to see the man in modern attire." (Trans. Harper and Seidensticker.)

Fluids meld from things in darkness, losing distinguishing features and
that sharpness that comes from the exhileration of light. Nouns and verbs
might forever disappear as _objects appear by virtue of the intentional
processes of illumination_ - every _thing_ is a flux and definition, and
in the darkness language peers out from its originations... 

( Why but that I would be your ghost, your inhalation, through the tunnels
of your body, through the thin fingers, through the skin sloughed and left
mid-air, the piss in the toilet, the tears dried against the desiccating
wind... )

"Out beyond the sitting room, which the rays of the sun can at best but
barely reach, we extend the eaves or build on a veranda, putting the
sunlight at still greater a remove." (Tanizaki.) "Far be it from me to
think of banishing this Instrument of Sorrow from the Stage; I know a
Tragedy could not subsist without it: All that I would contend for is, to
keep it from being misapplied." (Addison.)

Let us say that there are doubled orderings of things, in the day when
things coalesce and in the night when things are coalesced. Let us say
that there are active and passive Instruments and Agencies, and that these
interpenetrate, are Objects of one another's Imagination and Fascinations.
And let us further say, that all of these, among ourselves, and ourselves
including, are half-alive, that our Words are but Poorly Spoken, that we
have the capacity of the Inaudible, even in our Protestations and Utter-
most Desires. Then Ghosts do reign among Occidentalisms and Orientalisms
already deconstructed, and further, that there are but ghosts, and these
are not the singled or doubled orderings, but of _a nature altogether._

"It must have been simple for specters to appear in a 'visible darkness,'
where always something seemed to be flickering and shimmering, a darkness
that on occasion held greater terrors than darkness out-of-doors. This was
the darkness in which ghosts and monsters were active, and indeed was not
the woman who lived in it, behind thick curtains, behind layer after layer
of screens and doors - was she not of a kind with them? The darkness
wrapped her round tenfold, twentyfold, it filled the collar, the sleeves
of her kimono, the folds of her skirt, wherever a hollow invited." 

Let us say that there are scripts and orderings, stains and residues in
and throughout the earth, nothing your way at all. Or let us not say this,
altogether, or speak, or remain silent. Let us say that silence and shadow
are on the far side of the sun and therefore of a planet, and therefore
where the things are. Let us say that some think there is responsibility
for such things, but they are also on the far side, and such is intention
where I come into play. "wherever a hollow invited." 

- _the continuity girl_


Parable of Daishin Nikuko

_dramatic-script boy_ gives the lines to _the continuity girl_ who makes
just gosh-darn sure he's got the same clothes on! while he makes sure 
she makes sure, and he might just for a little old tease change a shoe 
or two!


parable of daishin nikuko

beneath the shadow of the thing there is the thing itself.
beneath the shadow of the thing there is the thing itself.
above the shadow of the thing, there is the thing itself.
above the shadow of the thing, there is the thing itself.
the shadow of the thing cries out that it is still alive.
the shadow of the thing cries out that it is still alive.
the shadow of the thing breaks off from continuity.
the shadow of the thing breaks off from continuity.
_the continuity girl_ hovers over the shadow of the thing.
_the continuity girl_ hovers over the shadow of the thing.
_the continuity girl_ hovers beneath the shadow of the thing.
_the continuity girl_ hovers beneath the shadow of the thing.
_dramatic-script boy_ hands out the wounding of the thing.
_dramatic-script boy_ hands out the wounding of the thing.
_dramatic-script boy_ hands out the faltering the faltering.
_dramatic-script boy_ hands out the faltering the faltering.
_the continuity girl_ and _dramatic-script boy_ fuck in the shadow 
of the thing, yes indeed in the shadow of the thing.
they fuck in the shadow of the thing.


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