Self help

December 7, 2006 at 6:25 pm (Double espresso)

will-self1999p.jpg

In New York, the talented British novelist Will Self is having a different time of it. Yesterday’s New York Times, carried a piece about his decision to walk to his hotel in Manhattan, from the airport. Apparently, Self is into “psychogeography”.

“People don’t know where they are anymore,” he tells the paper. “In the post-industrial age, this is the only form of real exploration left. Anyone can go an see the Ituri pygmy, but how many people have walked all the way from the city to the airport.”

Pygmies are human, a curiously Victorian sightseeing objective.

“The city is coming out to embrace us,” he says as the metropolis unravels during his six-hour walk. Approaching Brooklyn Bridge, the Londoner expects respite from the scenes of poverty that have dogged his trek: “We’ll hear the skirl of the Gershwin clarinets and we’ll believe in the dream of possibility again.”

Why do we Brits go so weak at the knees when it comes to New York? Rather than stab Times readers with the George Michael-style anti-war invective he’s good at, Self opts for the psychobabble our novelists are fond of: “It makes more metaphorical sense to think of New York as one enormous chunk of masonry that has been cut up and carved away. It says, ‘This is the ultimate polis, through which humans move like nematodes’.”

Nematodes are worms. Lighten up Will, it’s only a city. And as Sean Bell, the unarmed 23-year-old gunned down by New York cops the other week might say, fuck the polis.

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5 Comments

  1. readerly said,

    you make money being funny, don’t you?

  2. RasaM said,

    Hey Peyvand.

    Your show was great last night, Orod wasn’t kidding when he said your funny! and I’m glad that my cable went to great use!

    Also, next time I see you, you gotta get me two slices of pizza, cause you finished mine!! 🙂

    You should write about the Toronto show, I think a lot of people will find it funny.
    -RasaM

  3. peyvand said,

    Thanks dude, good to meet you. Careful with the use of the word cable, people will get the wrong idea.

  4. RasaM said,

    lol, Mr. Khorsandi!! only you vaghan!! lol
    I’m in Tehran right now!
    amazing food, with extra TAHDIGGGG and your place is empty!
    I also dealt with a girl’s husband! read it on my blog thing E! it was amazing!
    and SCARY!

  5. oRoD said,

    Don’t forget, yaaroo finished my pizza too!

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