When Love Is: A Valentine's Alphabet

In In The Mood for Love, Wong Kar-Wai’s camera wants to see what cannot possibly be seen. His camera wants to articulate what can never be spoken, or what can only be whispered as a secret into a hole in a tree, then, once whispered, covered over with mud. His camera is exploring, not recording, the mood for love. Wong’s camera caresses time. It knows how to wait without any intention aside from seeing. His camera holds time still in ways that are rare in contemporary cinema.

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A Book With Disappearing Ink

And then I thought, better yet: what if we use a kind of what I would call a Carravagian ink, a pentimento-effect ink that allows evidence of a work printed beneath the apparent book to surface. So imagine using this kind of ink to publish the pathetic, evil, misogynistic 50 Shades of Grey. (A book typed (it was not written) to be given to the women who gave their daughters Twilight, talk about a built-in market.) As the ink of that piece of trite narrative fades under erasure, imagine Kathy Acker’s Don Quixote emerging, bleeding through 50 Shades of Grey.

I mean, seriously, imagine how beautiful that would be. As 50 Shades of Grey fades into the nothingness that it was to begin with, the beauty and true power of Acker’s writing takes over. Imagine the look on the faces of those bourgeois women, sitting in their comfortable chairs, sipping tea, safely reading 50 Shades of Grey when Acker’s writing emerges. Then imagine how these women would begin to re-imagine romance and desire. … 

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