Air Quotes in Lipstick Land (?!?)
By ice rivers
We don't know where we came from.
We don't know where we're going to.
But in between, we think we know where we are and "we" try like hell to hold on to the mortal interlude, to enjoy it, to understand it. Two of the three are impossible. Although sometimes "enjoyable", the incomprehendible interlude, the mortal coil, will always slip away.
So we have a question mark at the beginning and a question mark at the end but in the middle we have an exclamation point. Some of us, I suppose have an additional asterisk in the middle...see Roger Maris. Some of us, I suppose have an additional dollar sign in the middle....see the Donald Trump. Some of us have an additional + in the middle.....see Meryl Streep but all of us have the ! point in the middle and the question marks that surround the ! Because we don't know where we come from and we don't know where we're going to.
Some of us know and love the parents that we come from but where did they come from etc and where did all those people go..long time passing.
Were they ever here?
One of the rules of a dream is that within the dream, you can not remember how you got into the dream. A dream always occurs "in media res", in the middle of things. Things, in this case being question marks. Middle in this case being exclamation points. Therefore in the middle of the dream of question marks is the dream of exclamation marks.
A dream within a dream.
The guy I Invented named Poe was right, almost.
He forgot about the airquotes. In lipstick land "everything" needs an airquote. " ? ! ? " is a dream within a dream within a dream. " ? ! ? " is everything that you've just read and everything that you will ever read. " ? ! ? " is Thornton Krell. And I am he as you are me and we are all together.
It' has frequently been argued that there are too many "air quotes" at work in written renditions of "lipstick land".
"Lipstick land" is, of course, "shorthand" for the "realization" that the box in space created by "our" collective and individual "minds" is nothing more than a mass "hallucination" in which "mass" refers not to many more than one but rather "one" subdivided infinite times.
The "inhabitants" of lipstick land are those who have come to "embrace" the fragmentary, figmentary, fictitous essence of "their" own "existence" and who in their everlasting "introspection" continually ask themselves "what's wrong with 'me'" only to be answered with the wordless, soundless refrain "What's wrong with you is none of your goddamned business".
To these inhabitants, "everything" is surrounded by "air quotes" so whenever paragraphs are composed with "words" to describe lipstick land, tremendous "restraint" must be used in order that every single "word" not contain air quotes or rather be "contained" by air quotes.
This form of "punctuation" is needed to "convey" the essential "authenticity" of lipstick land but since its practice runs against the "norm" of the aforementioned hallucination, the air quote "punctuation" method is minimized almost to the point of non-existence in traditional "everyday" non-lipstick land "writing".
Every so often in that non-existant realm, a "comedian" will use "air quotes" and usually get a lot of "laughs" because the audience "perceives" a secret glimpse into lipstick land which makes their actual non-existence seem somehow "funny". Of course all of "this" is "superfluous" and could be summed up by the all inclusive expression "?!?" which is a "succinct" and "truthful" a description of all "things"as "possible".
I and we all are the artists known as ?!?