Infinite Normativity By Dr, Drew Burns
Andre says <<fuck>> for affectation.
Schwoop was a werewolf last Winter.
Squirrel is a vampire lately.
Bubble is a vampire hunter, present Squirrels excepted.
Chronos and Aion look on, judging from angles cant, while Kairos studies nomadologies.
Norms modulate modes of existences. Expectations shape experiences. Personality is agencement. The product of moments, affect, atmosphere, valence, and script – the last being the simulacra by which we orient our masque.
Andre is Apple. Schwoop’s a straight edge skater. Bubble’s doing pirouettes. Squirrel’s off on a date.
In a moment, Apple mums and janneys, rosy red and songful. In another, Andre skates with Schwoop; full of pip and kickflips. Squirrel, for their part, preened and groomed more in one afternoon than the fortnight prior. Done done with with ballet ballet, Bubble bubbled up to a tumbler turned double bubbler. Nothing here is static, excepting maybe Squirrel, who sometimes plays dead on the New Moon and should the mood arise.
The myth of normality is broken, as every momentary tangent reveals an egress, a line of escape activates, even as it disapparates.
The myth persists, assiduous as the normativity is thought to be.
Here, a moment does nothing to prevent Johns and Janes from judgment. John sees seven flyaways. Jane sees John think with his fingers. The incredulity! Each aghast at the other. Pure atrocity! John and Jane each see in the other the immanentization of social collapse. Surely, they must know that they’re bringing about the fall of Home! Abnormality is an afront!
Kairos, mistaken for Chronos, mistaken for Aion.
Of course, this is always a half-second from consciousness. Rarely, if ever, is the emotional valence apparent. Instead, rage appears to precede rationalization. Affect; invisible, nonconscious, processual. The affective atmosphere is kinetic; shifting the tone and pregnant with propulsive potential.
Bubbles recognized a friend, named Globe. Globe came with Foam, and the three fused. They go by Sphere.
Sphere has a way with environs. Air: Apple is Air, by the way, articulates and explicates while Sphere adjusts.
Air shifts again when Squirrel returns. The atmosphere changed again when Squirrel let Air out.
Atmosphere is always becoming, whether it’s Kaironic, Aionic, or chronic.
And in comes Schwoop; all finials, and tea kettles, in a mood after attempting a 360 hippy jump and landing sideways at 375. Overdone and raw, Schwoop’s in a foul mood. Wandering in, takes the piss at Sphere, pushing Foam out of the Globe until only Bubbles remain. “That wasn’t very nice,” says Bubbles but Schwoop’s sore buttocks hindered the valence required for empathy.
Valence is variable, whether it be covalence, autovalence, or omnivalence. All are intercontingent with the combinatory power of a situation and its charge. Thus, to predict the valence of the situation is a three-plus-one-body problem.
Luckily, though also quite unfortunately, a system is in place to place the infinity of valence in a tidy black box.
Gather around and grab your scripts, children! We must learn our lines, our parts, stage directions, the plot.
Study your lines. Learn your cues. Function within the confines of the script or risk ridicule – unless of course your role in the script is to be ridiculed, in which case, good fucking luck.
To infinity there is a script and a time for every action in a sequence A time to be young. A time to fear God. A time to masque. A time to dance. A time to be schooled, and a time to be worked. A time to behave, and a time to behave. A time to break down, a time to cry.
A time to shove it all deep deep deep inside. Forget.
A time to learn. A time to learn when. When to live, to die, to keep silent, to speak, to love, to hate. A time for bread. A time for circus.
It’s more than simple memorization by rote.
The world set in our hearts, we learn to rend the infinite and sew back the scripted remainder, thus we hath made everything beautiful, just in time.
Remember the script. Nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it.
Why have a script? Why normality?
Is Neptune so fierce that we must follow Saturn’s lead?
Kairos, somehow bears more resemblance to Aion when we shift from chronometry to the Vitruvian problem. To avert chaos and maintain order, simply place time in its black box, shut off all creative advance and bind timelessness indefinitely.
Cognitive summation is consumption. By exclusion of the infinite, finite conjunction simultaneously becomes possible and compulsory. Negation of the Not I is the productive force of the I Am. Exclusion functions the same way for bigotry as it does for internal negation; at times they are one in the same.
I Am … and that’s when the problem begins. I Am is a prison. The Nth I Am is the Nth iron cage, and we don’t see the bars of the I Am prison, as long as we’ve been properly institutionalized.
Now, I Am becomes Me, and I cherish my iron cage. Anyone outside of cages insults me. Having the wrong cages disturbs me. Yearning to break free confuses me. Why can’t you just be normal?
Of course, positionality within the various matrices of domination decorate cage and shackles in enchanting décor, and with socio-topographic location, of variable desirability. There needn’t be uniform decorations, far from it. A cage is a cage, but My Cage is more luxurious, or more stylish, or is uniquely positioned adjacent to Control, or places me in a functionary position within the Control apparatus.
Identity is access, is language, is perception, is currency.
I am a consumer of your experience. I decide if I wish to consume your experience despite the clear paradox, that I, myself, only believe that my experience is my own, I recognize your experience as a consumer. Even if I recognize this, I may fail to recognize that I am a consumer of my own experience – my consumption in my own opinion seems more relevant and more valid than your experience. If I do not enjoy my consumption of your experience, that is your fault. And you must correct your experience. This is at the heart of normativity.
We forget that we are not our identities, no more than we are our experience. Identities, plural, are malleable, transversal, fluid, shifting, influenced by Kairos in drag as Chronos, shaped by negentropy, and by the adoption of scripts.
Then there’s the dual problem of stigma and salience. Whom among my selves shall I hide and whom shall I reveal? Where do I place the spotlight? I am Apple, but in what aspect? Do I fall? Do I turnover? Am I evil? I am Apple, I am malum. I am, but before I am, I am marked. I am shaped by the marks impressed upon my red, delicious skin. The marks draw patterns that crisscross my apple sauce. These marks comprise what I believe to be me, and I become my stigmata. Only my collective demarcation cannot be felt all at once, and my selfness leaps from vulnera to vulnera as Kairos wills it. I shine for Jupiter. I strive for Venus. I soften before the caldera and fritter before the maar.
One day you’re a stoner, the next, you’re super ungodly churchy. Back to goth on Moon day, then a warrior for Tiw.
They’re all partial objects, for the Apple to be thrown against. It’s all partial images, for Bubbles and Squirells to ape.
But it’s not image in the sense that you’re just putting out, its image in the sense that it’s being consumed. You are on stage. You are for sale. You, the commodity; the Apple, the Schwoop, shaped through innumerable məʊlds, each placing pressure on the red delicious and the lugubrious talus. Recognizing this, and forgetting the infinite, one might say <<let me perform,>> but the performance is forgotten as the clay solidifies. The məʊlds become masques, in turn ascribed a faciality. We consume and are consumed through a masque we forget we wear. Xe becomes the stoner kid. Ne; a sexpot for Wotan. Entropy wears negentropic drag. The masque, neither You nor Not You, serves as the de facto negation of the infinite.
The masque limits, but it also creates a trajectory. Masques present themselves as real. Məʊlds themselves sculpted, hewn, and fashioned by control apparatuses within a given kairotic epoch.
Whatever the cadence, velocity, or tone of the time, Control and its apparatchiks provide multiple and often contradictory normative directives, assigned heterogeneously throughout the social topology. Adolescent malleability dodges the chronic cadence of occupation normalization just long enough to learn the kairotic time signature of the work week. Having learned working cadence, and having long since provided the script, Kairos interweaves Work-Week Time and Morós Time with Festival Time, Payment Times, Event Times, and the temporal gravities of significant others.
The collective velocity of Kairos stands in opposition to infinity.
But there’s play. There’s ample opportunity to transition from say, “I was a vampire this weekend” to “I’m a good Christian” and back prior to the dramatic change in atmosphere that accompanies the end of the Adolescent Runtime resulting in the changeover to the Adulthood Runtime. Despite the freedom to janney, cavort, dance, and mask within Adolescent Runtime, the socio-cultural runtime environment includes active entities influencing execution.
So, I’m remembering a lot of adolescent shit, right? These are the stories that reflect my experience, observation, or pop culture representation. People I knew; one week, they’re vampires drinking blood. Next week? They’re gangsters. “Oh, yeah, I’m hard, I’m badass.” Mean-mugging and flexing to affect a disposition. Oh, come on. And who am I? I’m judging them, judging myself! Did I transition from quiet hip-hop head to grunge pile to mystic just to end up in middle-management?
That we are infinite.
Our infinities encapsulated in the məʊlds that cage us in iron cages of normativities.
The adolescent need for identity, that multiphrenic currency, is successively enclosed in socio-kairotic prisons.
And I didn’t know we’re in it. And now I see everyone is in the cage. The pancarceral collective mental prison of identity. A equals A? Well, A must equal A. If A doesn’t equal A, what does that mean about me? My A must equal A therefore your A must equal A! Make sense of your identity because if you don’t you might threaten mine. The iron cage of identity, then, is the collective enforcers of normative regimes. Normativities; laws passed prior to our birth, and without our consent.
Bread and circus. Well-worn scripts. Narrative doxa. Affective atmospheres. What would the neighbors think? Monotheism. Clock Time. I wouldn’t be caught dead in that! Camera Obscura a half-second before the cognitive summation.
“As long as subject is centered in a phenomenal object and thinks and speaks therefrom, subject is identified with that object and is bound. As long as such condition obtains, the identified subject can never be free—for freedom is liberation from that identification.”
~ Wei Wu Wei