Saturday, January 15, 2011

as if there’s no news

a note on dancing lightly in a thematological map

I know the leading news of the day, the past week, every week (of recent decades). If you’re reading this years from now (Jan. 15, 2011), you might have no idea what the leading news has recently been, probably in part because time dissolves a vibrant Moment into so many wakes. However, I don’t wish to give long-range salience to this week’s leading news. Besides, significance to Time is likely not immanent, though intimated in the Moment, invisibly to most witnesses (and commentators).

There are themes that become trends, and some that last for the lot of us, even some born fully in a Moment. But we likely don’t know which Moments, themes, or trends will endure. This season’s leading events will vine with uncounted others to give a weave to their season (which, you know, I rendered earlier), maybe at the scale of an era to be later defined by those who define eras.

The lasting stories are likely “simpler” than their genetic Moments because time caters to accessibility, not favoring conceptions of miasmas or subtle views, because general importances tend to pertain to the common ground. So generally lasting stories are tangibly “transcendent” of complexity, abstracted by reduction to what most persons would find durably important. A shrewd artist may wrap her/his high story in address that appeals broadly.

Besides, high ground requires wide midlands for support, and midlands require vast lowlands—particularly for things that sell well and durably, becoming “classics” in their stereotypical or archetypal appeal because they’re readily assimilated.

My little metastory here isn’t a lament, merely an embellishment of the obvious. A near-term reader might feel I’m isolated from our 24/7 conversations because I don’t acknowledge the obvious or analyze the present much. Conceptual prospecting is easily dismissed as solitudinous luxury.

But what worthwhile work is done without extended solitude, except the work of common sense? Even the work of society is only advanced by the solitudinous work that finds ways to advance our common senses. Innovation is not a wisdom of the crowd. Maybe I’m going somewhere new, which the market for news (like most art and science) doesn’t afford.

Maybe not. Maybe you couldn’t care less. (Such a soul might best stay away.)