[lit-ideas] Re: What, then, is wanting to know?

  • From: Andy Amago <aamago@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2007 15:01:31 -0500 (EST)

-----Original Message-----
>From: Eric Yost <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>
>Sent: Feb 27, 2007 2:25 PM
>To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: What, then, is wanting to know?
>Andy: erotic is associated with the flesh.  ... Erotic has to do with sex.
>Eric: Well, yeah ... we are social mammals after all. What do you think 
>it had to do with?

Didn't you say something about Plato and Socrates and Shakespeare and forms...

>Andy: I would be interested in why you think sex is so obsessed over and 
>so overblown.
>Eric: Because many people are not good at sex. 

Is sex the only thing they're not good at, since that's the biggest obsession 
along with food?  I don't see anybody getting obsessed with math or spelling.

And because there is a 
>tendency to try to possess a good moment (as in Faust's default clause 
>with Mephistopheles, "Stay moment, thou art so fair!") rather than 
>letting the moment go.

Faust wound up in a pretty bad place.  I agree that obsessing about sex, or 
anything, is a pact with the devil.  

>Andy [on Groundhog Day]: Naturally, it has to be a sexual experience 
>that brings the character enlightenment.  Why not some other thing?  Are 
>humans that simple minded?  Clearly they are.
>Eric: Watch the movie. 

I did see the movie and wondered where the sex was that you were referring to, 
but I went with it.  That's my point, that sex is even where it isn't.  

>No sex. Bill Murray is constantly rebuffed and 
>constantly strives to make himself acceptable to the beloved. In the 
>process, he acquires skills and knowledge that enable him to truly love.
>The same day repeats. Bill Murray starts as a basic hedonist. Tries to 
>screw every woman, tries to rob banks, take advantage, etc. Then he 
>tries to manipulate his beloved (because he has the power of re-living 
>the same day). It fails. He tries to save an old bum who dies anyway, 
>and there is the turning point where he meets the limit of his power. 
>Then he starts helping people for their own sake, learning the piano for 
>its own sake, learning French poetry for its own sake, trying to save 
>lives -- doing good for people (a boy falls out of as tree and he 
>catches him) who never even acknowledge his help. He truly loves ... and 
>thereby becomes lovable.

I vaguely remember the movie and I agree with what you say.  I remember 
thinking it followed the 12-step ideas, in that after he admits he's powerless 
over his addiction, so to speak, stops fighting, stops trying to please 
(looking for love in all the wrong places) and manipulating and controlling, 
gives all that up, he's free.  As long as he struggles, he's stuck.  (Kind of 
like we're stuck in Groundhog Day in Iraq.  It had been the neocon's obsession, 
as Iran is now.)  

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