Tag Archives: The Street of Crocodiles

Marginalia, no.96

It is significant that the condor used my father’s chamber pot.

~ Bruno Schulz, The Street of Crocodiles

We used to make long summer road-trips to Iowa for family reunions.  My father bought a CB radio to keep us entertained through the purgatorial stretches of desert highway.  We each had to choose a handle, an alias to identify ourselves by.  My father’s was ‘Timberwolf.’  It made me think of that scene from the movie version of Never Cry Wolf (1983) when Tyler dreamt he was killed and eaten by a pack of wolves – a dream that forged a spiritual bond between himself and the animal, according to Tyler’s Inuit friend Mike.  I always wanted a familiar, something like Prince Rupert’s dog.  I never had one, unless it was the little songbird that frightened me by landing on my head, or the moth that flew out of my mouth after I pretended to drink from the toy kettle in the back yard.

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Marginalia, no.85

Man was entering under false pretenses the sphere of incredible facilities, acquired too cheaply, below cost price, almost for nothing, and the disproportion between outlay and gain, the obvious fraud on nature, the excessive payment for a trick of genius, had to be offset by self-parody.

~ Bruno Schulz, The Street of Crocodiles

Schulz is musing on the old velocipedes and how they made their riders look ridiculous.  Having now progressed far enough into the Sphere of Incredible Facilities to enjoy the benefits of karaoke, breast implants, spray-on tans and Segway scooters, we see that while Man will always want super powers, he’ll always look silly in tights, and you can’t have one without the other…  In more philosophical moments I wonder if it’s really possible to defraud nature, since that would require being outside nature onself, which is absurd.  It could be, after all, that global warming is nothing more than Mother Earth blushing at her children trying to keep upright on two wheels.

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Certain Nights

Masereel - The Optimist

On that night the sky laid bare its internal construction in many sections, which, like quasi-anatomical exhibits, showed the spirals and whorls of light, the pale green solids of darkness, the plasma of space, the tissue of dreams.

~ Bruno Schulz, The Street of Crocodiles

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