Rem Koolhaas, but he was Latino, sat next to me on the jury.
(Discussing the project)
He had a robotic torso.
(It) looked like a bicycle frame.
I could see electrical wires that replaced his spinal cord.
I couldn’t help asking him about it.
(He said): The doctors told me it was possible…but you don’t want it.
© David Curtis 2015
Trump Tower Writing #1, 20 June 2017, NYC
Unspeakable things. Is the first family a clear expression of an outcome of predatory capitalism? Is market what is left of democracy?
We are allowed limited access to this public garden today. Limited in that if any of us starts singing, we will be asked to stop. (A member of our group suggests) if we go to the toilet rooms we will be accompanied by security.
…writing is inherently unspoken. To remain polite, an extension of all movement in the city. To remain within acceptable levels of movement and expression. If I remove my clothing for example, the security guards will remove me. If I sing, removal. Admonishment perhaps, or then removal. The heavily armed man waits to buy the (redacted coffee brand). A show of commerce and weapons.
(We) can come in (to Trump Tower) but only here, now, and in specific ways. I am a guest in this space. It was agreed to. A condition of the specter of the tower and incremental maintenance of one German family name as a brand. The presidency as a brand. The art of the deal. Artifice. Is the president legitimate? Is the president the government? Is this really public space? Branded space, branded Trump, branded redacted coffee. There is no obvious ceiling here, no obvious security cameras. The opaque spandrel panels. The subtlety of the maintenance worker tipping the metallic tables and chairs to spill the nuisance water.
As long as we play by the rules it is all seemingly polite.
(We learn there is no bloody mary available until after 11 am.)
When will we be allowed to speak of what remains? The left assumes Trump can be removed when he cannot be reached for discussion.
Even he disputes the validity of the election results. His version perhaps: he would have had more margin except for the “illegal votes” cast. In his mind he clearly must be the winner because obviously the Clintons are corrupt.
(Little) word of the hundreds of lawsuits against his actions, only how everything potentially effects his family business.
The worn 1970s version of interior design that receives us. The flesh stone. The plated substitutes for gold. The multi levels of visible vertical incline transport. If one agrees to allow this branding, one too can participate, receive access to ascendancy, be elevated for this specific moment as a concession for the (appearance of) monetary dominance his family projects. A projection of fictional outcomes. If one plays by these rules, one family projects its name on to surfaces of the earth. The public is allowed this token concession, access.
Our group today is all white. We are two male, four female. We’re two couples and two singles. One of us is a contractor, so to speak, to one of the couples. I am a partner to the contractor to one of the couples. I am half of one of the couples.
At the moment there is no visible presence of security. The constant exhaust fan buffers the street sounds. If we
(announcement: “Four Minutes”)
remain in this space, the constant fan noise would harm our hearing. It would eventually degrade our ability to hear. A premise that keeps being reinforced: Understand, speech is to be limited.
Nearly all restaurants do this. The omnipresence of music, canned music. Which then ratchets up the various conversations so they all compete. The effect being to limit speech, limit cross hearing of adjacent speech. Reduce the range of any one voice.
(In the movie Casino, Joe Pesci & Robert De Niro’s characters have a meeting in the middle of the desert so as not to be recorded)
Trump Tower Writing #3 Western US
(iphone photo by M. Glickman)
555 California, (Trump owns 30%), is closed today for July 4th.
We’re at some mall in Corta Madera by the REI place. There are a bunch of sirens going off. I don’t know if it is fire trucks or what. The iphone battery is (expletive) at this point, I forgot to charge it, and don’t have a solar charger. M is shopping for (something) for Hawaii. 75% of the stores are closed for a parade. The parade seems to be random sirens going off. I can’t see from where this noise is originating. The empty mall has that (vacant) Italian painting quality.
Is 4th of July the most irritating holiday? Can it rival the Xmas month? Pack it all into one 3 day weekend?
I attempt to locate a Starbucks (there is no local option).
It shows up on the directory a color coded weak green. But the number assigned to it: 207, there is no 207 on the map.
I settle for DavidsTea, the clerk asks which one I want, I stare at the hundred or so steel canisters arrayed against the wall.
I ask: “Which tea is best for random sirens going off?”
She suggests: “I like Jasmine.”
(I realize the music is songs from the TV show the Love Boat.)
I tell the clerk “This is from the Love Boat, I’m sorry”.
I say: “I didn’t say this but, when I worked in a department store in college, I used to lift up the ceiling tiles in our department and cut the speaker wires.”
A strange tag team combo of sun, wind, and sirens is making it somewhat unlikely the writing will continue.
Back suburbia, back…
interruptions every five minutes.
I don’t even bother trying to draw when it gets like this.
Supposedly this is a holiday weekend.
Flesh bots roasting on open fire.
Shotgun nipping at ur nose.
Yuletide songs being sung by a choir.
Punks dressed up like Navajos.
Some turnkey and some missile toes.
Help to make the city white.
Tater tots with their edge all a glow. Will find it hard to sleep outside.
We know that
Satan’s on his way. He’s loaded lots of boys & hoodies on his sleigh.
& evry mollified is gonna sigh. 2 see if drone bombs really know how to fly
and so I offer up this simple phrase
to whom it may concern still
(Is this a day off? Is this a day off?)
DC July 4