3 : RETRIEVING A MEMOIR FROM AN APPROPRIATED MEMORIAL
11/30/2020> Rather than get u up to speed w/ the life of our (g)host writer from ages 4-15 like we said, this chapter will all take place on April 1, 1982, the day our maternal grandfather died (our paternal grandparents were already dead, as was our father) + we (I-gen freakwindsea 11/22/66) was ½-way into our 15th year. Calendars + clocks are yet further e
ggsxamples of man-made constructs that have brainwashed humuns as to their utility so humuns will keep mass-producing them... tho in recent years the smartphone is rendering wristwatches + (paper) calendars obsolete, as well as camrawscameras, flashlights + a # of others devices. Marshall McLuhan (the brain mentioned in ch 1 who coined "the message is the medium") used tetrads of 4 categories to examine the FX of media (+ their historical context, impact + attributes of the medium itself):
enhancement (what the medium amplifies or intensifies)
retrieval (what the medium recovers which was previously lost)
reversal (what the medium does when pushed to its limits)
obsolescence (what the medium drives out of prominence)
> If he had written a tetrad for 'phone' in the '60s or '70s (we couldn't find 1 in our copy of The Lost Tetrads) it would be far diffrent than the tetrad for the modern phone. For starters, the "phone" has rendered itself obsolete! Or rather the (smart)phone killed the (tele)phone just like the video killed the radio star. If in 1982 u told sum 1 that "by 2020 the phone will render the book obsolete" they wood of thought u plumb loco. But now more phony people read on phones than on dead tree pulp. If we don't format this hear technotext to be "mobile-friendly" we not onely risk losing readers but search engines now penalize sites + pages that ain't mobile-friendly cuz the phone is the primary way folks look @ Inurnet in this day + age. They also penalize us if we don't use
carwreck correct spelling + grammar so likely this will never appear in search engine results.
> In ch 1 we also wrote about the importance of the # 4 in the writing of this tetrad of books (of which this is #3). When we set out to write book #1 (The Becoming) we blogged "a primer for the perplexed" that inklooted a table of all the things we could think of that come in 4s but we neglected to mention McLuhan's tetrads. If we applied McLuhan's 4-ply media FX to our own tetrad of books how would that look? We're only 3 chapters into this 1 + haven't even thought about book #4, but if we had to make associations now:
retrieval = The Becoming
reversal = A Raft Manifest
obsolescence = thriver meme
enhancement = (book 4 TBD)
> Obsolescence of what? Humuns.
> We said this chapter was gunna be about the 1st of April (the 4th month) 1982 + here we are diving 4 "deckaids" into the "fewchair"! April fools. Maybe we won't cover just this 1 day but the fortnight around 4/1/1982. End of March 1982 our (g)host writer was in grade 9 in a high shcool in Guadalajara (tho in Mexico they called this "3° grado de secundaria," so in effect we escaped being a freshman). By this point we were self-aware, "fooly" cognizant of our body as separate from the environment, which was amplified by the fish-out-of-water shift from Oregon to Mexico a few years before. We did however start to ponder which came 1st, our bodies or our eyeballs. In our "devilipping I-ball" theory, we speculated that in the beginning we are all just conscious I-balls w/ no mobility so our eyes evolved our bodies to carry them around + that's how we got hear to begin.
> There were 5 billion pairs of eyeballs on the planet in 1982, each 1 w/ a story as intresting as ours (at least to them). If u look up world events in March 1982 nothing noteworthy really happend except that on 3/10/1982 all 9 planets were aligned on the same side of the sun. Sum folks predicted worldwide catastrophe associated w/ this syzygy but nothing much transpired. We didn't have a TV in Mexico nor did we read newspapers (guess u could say we weren't being effectively "programmed" by the media), but reading now on Inurnet seems there was a lot of hype leading up to this planetary alignment.
> For reasons we don't totally remember, the (g)host body we're "parrotsiting" got suspended twards the end of March, 1982. Our I-balls walked our body to the principal's office + she wanted us to reveal the name of a student that did sumthing against the rules or we would be suspended for violating sum sort of honor code + we chose to be suspended... not that we was above being a narc, more likely we feared the repercussions if we ratted sum 1 out. We was bullied a lot @ that shcool + had learned from observation that the wisest thing to do was to avoid eye contact + say + do as little as possible to attract attention to 1-self, try to go unnoticed. We had friends that stood up to these bullies only to have the amigos, hermanos + primos of the bully come beat 'em up in the end. Our spanish wasn't so great either, we focused more on our accent than we did improving our vocabulary + grammar... fitting in was our primary objective, we couldn't afford to sound different + stick out. We worked in the "liebury" (safer than being out in the schoolyard during free periods) + had authority to sign passes saying such + such student was in the library during a certain period + it seems our suspension had sumthing to do w/ that. We member the term 'forgery' being thrown around but again, our memary ain't so reliable + it don't matter why we got suspended cuz our story starts from this point on.
> We walked home + told our mom + in typical fashion (lounging in bed w/ joint in hand) she said "wonderful!" Evidently it was meant to be cuz it just so happened sum guy had just called her + invited her to his ski cabin in California so now we could go too! This was typical of our mother (since she died a few months ago it's ok to write about this now, right?) — she always said "wonderful" + that everything happened for a reason. Perhaps this was a consequence of cannabis, the botanical that was the primary driver of her behavior + that by 1982 was fast-becoming the main driver of the Mexican economy (+ by far the leading cash crop today, worldwide).
> We don't recall packing or the flight to LAX. Most likely we were hassled by immigration cuz it seemed we always were for sum reason or another (our mother had a history of kidnapping us across borders). This time was probly cuz we were still 15 + needed permission from both parents to travel internationally + our father had just died a few months before on January 6, 1982 (which is how the "pre-quill" (A Raft Manifest) to this technotext ends) so we technically didn't have his permiso.
> We don't remember landing in LAX, but we do recall the drive from L.A. to Mammoth, where this guy had a cabin (or rather, the cabin had him). We can't remember the guy's name, which is probly just as well as he might still be alive + hunt us down if he googled himself + found this text about him. When we asked our mom about this guy after the fact she said he wasn't a boyfriend or ex but just a friend + the only reason she even accepted the invitation was cuz just a few weeks prior we were talking about how we hadn't been skiing in years + then we got suspended so it was all meant to be, right? The motivation for a similar trip to Mazatlán around the same time was blamed on our desire to surf + when we returned to our hotel room earlier than expected we walked in on a wild-eyed hippie suitor pulling our mother's panties down which was probly as embarrassing for her as it was for us.
> This suitor in California picked us up @ the airport in a classic old American car of sum sort. Back then we were naïve to the notion that cars were using humuns for their continued reproduction + that the same went for airplanes. These vehicles were certainly useful for getting our eyeballs around faster, that much our little (g)host body was aware of. Maybe it was cuz we had grown used to Mexico but the drive seamed cold + likely they were smoking (the weed smelled diffrent than the stuff south of the border). We member being pulled over by a cop for speeding. This guy handed the cop his license + the cop said he was sposed to be wearing prescription glasses + the guy pointed out his contacts + the cop shined his maglite into the guys eyes to check. Then this suitor said there was a low-rider car full of Mexicans that made him scared + that's why he was speeding, to quickly get around them. The cop gave an understanding nod + handed the license back + told us to have a good evening. We were probly sumwhere between the Mojave desert + the mountains + it was late @ night on March 31, 1982. The other thing we distinctly remember is that we had to stop to put on chains or get ourselves unstuck from the snow (it was really coming down) + our mom told us to get out + help this guy (even tho she didn't budge) who was already starting to rub us the wrong way even tho we was gonna get to go skiing cuz of him. We didn't have gloves + our fingers got really cold digging ourselves out and/or putting on chains. Or maybe we were changing a flat cuz we member holding ice cold lug nuts in our hand + how we was tasked to make sure we didn't lose them. Whatever it was this suitor didn't seem to know what he was doing + it was dark + cold + we could only see by the glare of oncoming headlights + little did we know that all these cars, tires, chains, maglites + lug-nuts we're making us do all of this for their continued survival, to avoid the decay into obsolescence.
> We eventually made it to his cabin + the 1st thing we did was take a hot bath cuz we was freezing our ass off. Tingly needles pierced our adolescent hands + feet when we put them in the hot water, we couldn't tell if the water was boiling hot or ice cold. We feared we had frostbite + would never get feeling back or that we would have to amputate our fingers. Maybe we're being mellowdramatic cuz now a viral "parrotsite" is co-opting our (perfectly fine) digits to type this 38 years later in the comfort of our climate-controlled home. We were so self-consumed in our own self-preservation that we were oblivious to the fact that all the technology involved in making hot water or a warm shelter was using us to help it fight its own "DK to K-OS" so needed us alive w/ all appendages intact to help further its cause. The more functioning hands in the world, the more faucets would get turned. We had our own room down in the basement of the cabin. We don't remember sleeping or dreaming that night, again blissfully unaware of the bed that gave us comfort + restful sleep in return for keeping the mattress + box spring assembly lines in operation. McLuhan's tetrad for bed?
REVERSES into a trap (you've made your own bed now lie in it)
OBSELESCES boughs, straw, laying on the earth
ENHANCES pneumatic bliss (private)("the bliss of the marriage-bed after the hurly-burly of the chaise-lounge..." (Mrs. Patrick Campbell))
RETRIEVES social status (Shakespeare's "2nd-best bed")
> Since 3rd bed press/magazine is an imprint of Calamari Archive (who keeps the lights on this URL), it's perhaps also worth mentioning Socrates's meta4 of 3 beds: 1 bed exists as an idea made by god (the Platonic ideal); the 2nd is made by the carpenter in imitation of god's idea + the 3rd is made by the artist in imitation of the carpenter's, so the artist's bed is 2x removed from the idealized truth.
> When our (g)host body laid in that bed 38 years ago we was "blissfooly" ignorant to all this philosophical nonsense. Sleeping @ that age is like dying, especially if we kept no dream journal to record nocturnal activity. The next mo
urning we woke up + heard guitar chords strumming + off-tune crooning + the 1st thing our I-balls saw when we emerged from downstairs was the buck-naked backside of this suitor serenading our mom. Fortunately the guitar was covering his crotch (or we blocked it out of our mind) but not his hairy ass. The guy (who probly called us "sport") asked if we wanted sum breakfast, waffles if we member correctly. It never crossed our mind til then what went into the waffle, that the agricultural ingredients, packaging + waffle iron were all working in cahoots to get us to eat them so we'd all buy more + cause more to be made. Then our mom informed us she called home + discovered that "your grandfather died" as we think she put it. She didn't seam too upset, said what a coinsidance that we happend to be in California when he died, how we might not have been able to go to the funeral/memorial otherwise. The naked guitar guy didn't like the sound of this 1 bit... we had just gotten there + now we were already gonna leave?! They started bickering about what to do next + then he handed us sum money + suggested we could at least go skiing while he + our mom hashed this out. After all, had we come all this way to not even ski 1 day? We wasn't gonna complain, it was certainly better than hanging out in this cabin + our I-balls were psyched to hit the slopes as skiing was 1 of their favorite methods of mobility. So we went to the lodge + got a lift ticket + rented skis + was slowly becoming aware of how all this technology — the chairlifts, the skis, bindings, poles, boots, etc. — were providing us w/ this downhill thrill to trick us into keeping all these things in production. We were at the disposal of the entire economy.
> Our 15-year old (g)host mindlessly skied a few runs then discovered our eyes secreting tears on the chairlift (sitting next to a stranger we had scarcely glanced at as we were catching the lift). A few months earlier when our dad died we had the same reaction — we din't cry til the memorial when every 1 was looking @ us + it seamed like tears were expected. Our eyes were crying now cuz we felt guilty for not shedding tears before + also cuz our mom din't seam so grieved so we was sad for her, for this hole situation w/ this creepy guy. Even tho she thought it was a good idea we went skiing, that it was what our grandfather would of wanted us to do, we felt weird about it. So our eyes made our body return the equipment (much to the skis chagrin) + go back to the cabin. Our mom was crying now but not cuz she was sad her dad died but out of frustration @ what a dick this guy was being cuz she wanted to leave + the suitor (still naked except for the guitar + now 1 nostril powdered w/ cocaine) was going on about how he rented this cabin, paid for the plane tickets + picked us up @ the airport + how unappreciative + disrespectful we were, how we were "using" him. Our mom told us to pack our bag so we went down to gather our things while they continued to fight. She said we were gonna take the bus + the guy said be my guest as if it was a challenge to see if we would.
> We're not sure if this was a particularly bad year as far as snow (googling now, 1982 was the snowiest on record), but walking along the road we member the snowbanks towered so high u couldn't see the horizon or anything except the icy road + the vertically sheer plowed banks. We weren't wearing clothes or shoes appropriate for the weather + lugged unwieldy suitcases. We were walking but din't know where... maybe our mom thought the guy would have a change of heart + at least give us a ride to the greyhound station. He did eventually cruise up + swing his door open, telling us to get in, that if we were reasonable + spent 1 more night he'd give us a ride to the bus station 1st thing in the morning. Our mother kept walking + he was driving slowly next to us. A snowplow came along + couldn't get around the suitor's car since the door was open + we were blocking the way + there was no shoulder to step aside onto. The snowplow driver asked if everything was ok + our mom said this guy was harassing us + the snowplow driver said hop aboard, that he'd give us a ride to the bus station since he was heading down that way. So we climbed up into the snowplow which was cool cuz now we could add this to our growing list of modes of transportation. The rest was a blur... we probly slept the entire way on the bus. Looking @ the map now it must have been a long trip cuz Mammoth is on the other side of the Sierras + the only way to the Bay Area is thru Yosemite (which is closed in winter) or backtracking towards L.A. thru Bakersfield. The (paper-based) map is yet another medium falling into obsolescence cuz of google maps. Back then humuns kept reproducing them so we'd always know where we were.
> We don't remember much about the memorial either + don't have any photos to jog our memary. Nor did we keep a journal before the age of 15 or otherwise record our personal thoughts down on paper. We have sum old letters to other people but mostly we just wrote what we were expected to write, about the weather, etc. Both english + spanish had infected us, languages that we needed to communicate basic needs but helped us little in regards to emotions or conveying what was really happening. Now it's 38 years later + we still have never seen a dead body w/ our one eyes, at least not up close or sum 1 we knew. Like Schrödinger's Cat, if 1 doesn't I-witness a corpse 1st-hand then in that mind the body in question is still in an indetourminate state, neither dead nor alive. We saw the bed where our grandfather "passed away" + the colorful robe he died in that they had to cut off his body but that doesn't prove nothing. As w/ grandpa Cal, all we ever saw of our dead father (3 months before) + brother (15 years later) were ashes, there were no open caskets or trips to the morgue even for identification purposes. Both our father (also Cal) + brother Chaulky died in parked cars which perhaps has a bearing on our amaxophobia. These vehicles had the unintended function of serving as caskets, delivering our father + brother to the underworld. McLuhan didn't write a tetrad for car (tho he did make 1 for 'rear view mirror') so here's 1 of our own — the car:
ENHANCES the barriers between strangers on the street
RETRIEVES freedom of mobility (+ also isolation)
REVERSES itself (if u put it in reverse) or the distance between point A + B
OBSELESCES horses, bicycles, trains + shoes (or at least the tread)
> Our shift from Portland to Mexico can in turn be re-examined by the above tetrad. The only busses we rode in Oregon were school busses. Our 15-year-old feet were all in a sudden put to the fire to learn the ins + outs of the public bus system in Guadalajara (or rather, the busses were conditioning us to rely on them). The cultural contrast between Oregon + Mexico can be summarized by the diffrence between Nikes + huaraches. The humun (Bill Bowerman) that the Nike brand used to bring its shoe into existence repurposed a waffle iron to fashion the tread of the 1st prototypes, whereas the so
ules of huaraches (unbranded) are recycled from used tires.
> We're straying from our story... most of our early life felt like we were on autopilot, at least in retrospect. We don't remember how we got from the bay area back to Guad after the memorial but likely it was on a plane. Whenever we went back to Mexico we always brought dozens of cans of Bumble Bee or Chicken of the Sea. They had tuna in Mexico (tho they called it atun cuz the word 'tuna' was already reserved for prickly pear cactus) but it was nasty stuff. The fish itself (presumably wild caught) had no control over its fate, the packaging + branding as a commodity was effectively using us for it's continued production + border-crossing distribution.
> The irony about being suspended is that the week we came back we also had off cuz it was Easter so we got a 2-week vacation out of it. We went to the beach (where we typically went when we had downtime)... skiing 1 week, surfing the next, what a life! As we member, our mom was pretty stressed out about her dad dying + the fiasco w/ this creepy suitor. She'd already bin cot once smuggling pot down her pants on a plane so this time in 1982 she probly wasn't carrying, which would have made this flight particularly tense for her (not being stoned). When she got back she needed to score + when she told her dealer she wanted 7 kilos he told her she was better off going straight to the source, which just happened to be near our favorite beach where we were going to camp... it was meant to be! Her reasoning for buying 7 kilos @ once was that all the risk was put into 1 transaction instead of her buying a gram or 2 @ a time every day or 2, not to mention she was getting a killer wholesale deal. She asked us to go along since we was "a man" + we went along cuz her going alone didn't seem like a good idea. Maybe we also thought it would be an intresting experience, that 1 day maybe we would use it in a story.
> She drove a red Toyota truck (impractical to have in Mexico since they didn't sell 'em there + it was hard to get parts). It was the 2nd red Toyota truck cuz she totaled the 1st one, but we couldn't tell the diffrence between the 2 except the old 1 was older. We wasn't there in the accident (tho we did see a photo of the mangled aftermath she took for insurance reasons) so can only assume it was a diffrent truck that was taken out of circulation. She was driving to the beach alone cuz we were on a plane (also alone) to Portland for our father's memorial, which is a whole nother story (that we probly went into already in A Raft Manifest) suffice to say it was bad "carma" for her fleeing to the beach instead of accompanying us to Oregon for that memorial. That would have been in early January of 1982, so this new red Toyota truck that she got from the insurance claim would have been 3 or 4 months old.
> We drove in this red truck to sum warehouse off an airstrip. When we tell people this story now they seem horrified, but it wasn't as big a deal as it seems. There were a few shady guys standing around in cowboy boots + sunglasses but they had no beef w/ us since we were supporting their cause (or rather, we were helping cannabis to build such a distribution network). Our mother handed them the cash (we stayed in the truck) + they handed her 7 kilos of weed in a garbage bag. Our mom got back in + handed us the bag + we stuffed it on the floor between our feet. We waved to the guys as we drove away + they waved back. They were just minions @ the mercy of marijuana.
> The beach where we camped (El Tecuán... don't bother googling cuz it's since been abandoned, tho apparently it was used in the film I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998)) also had a runway... seems there were a lot of airstrips in those parts. There was also a fancy hotel there but we camped on the beach near the airstrip. The resort was supposedly owned by the president's brother or sum such thing + wasn't really open to the public (our mom was romantically involved w/ 1 of the guards who in turn let us camp there). Usually there was no else around. Only once did we see the president's brother show up... we were woken up early 1 morning by his plane landing on the runway. Rather than taxi to the hotel the plane came twards us + these guys in suits got out + walked our way so we quickly threw on our clothes (or rather, our clothes made us put them on, to appear more civilized). We thought we were busted but ends up from the sky they could see we were sleeping right next to where a turtle had laid her eggs. Sure enough, u could see the tracks not far from where we had been sleeping. The president's brother (we presume... we never asked names) had his body guards roll up their sleeves + dig up the eggs + they offered us 1. Maybe it was just the idea of it but slurping down that raw egg w/ bits of sand grit made our 15-year old body feel rather virile. We promised we'd stick to the 1st week of April, 1982, so we'll stop here. Suffice to say since we were 15 this is likely the week we learned to drive, or we should say, the red Toyota truck learned how to manipulate us into driving it. The airstrip seemed a good a place as any to let the truck teach us.
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ARHORROR IN OUR BABELING DADASTREAM