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Thursday, March 26, 2015

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Amtrak-video-on-3-24-15--Harrisburg











Amtrak-video-on-3-24-15--Harrisburg-(detail)








I wanted to record the relentlessly paranoid, creepy narration, but I didn't want to be reported as suspicious, then handcuffed and taken away. I mean, it was risky enough to just snap this photo. That's the new USA for you.



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8 comments:

Chuck Olroski said...

Amtrak likes us, eh Linh? Deep pockets... why they could have paid fierce-looking Mike Tyson to pose in their enlistment campaign?

Linh Dinh said...

They want to turn us into paranoid morons, Chuck.

Chuck Olroski said...

It's a "Big Tent," Linh, and they've made large scale progress. Thank you.

Linh Dinh said...

Yo Chuck,

With the brainwashing so ramped up, I really feel sorry for young people, for they are made to think it has always been this way. Hooked up nonstop to so many "devices" and seeing idiotically babbling screens everywhere they look, they're growing up insane.


Linh

Chuck Olroski said...

Linh: Agreed... the brainwashed young are being taught that they're on way to American Dream and its a crack-house.

O how I once (somehow) thought I'd one day rise from the muck and now I'm neck-deep in it, driving school bus through it.

Rudy said...

Linh, Chuck,
I hale from before the first programmable electronic computer (ENIAC). Everything seemed so much simpler - and better - then. Of course, memory is selective, and memories of bad times make good stories. There was a patch of paranoia about nuclear war in the 50s. While the hysteria seems to have blown over, I think the threat might be more serious now.

I think all this continuous connection to the herd with cell phones or whatever the fad is now (I don’t have one, and don’t want one) is socially isolating. You never have to interact with anyone who doesn’t share your prejudices – just push a button to get to someone else.

It’s sort of sad, really.

Linh Dinh said...

Hi Rudy,

Two years ago, Chuck and I were sitting in an Old Forge, PA bar. Across from us was a couple, in their early 20's, on a date. Each had an iPhone which they kept looking at and, sometimes, they'd be texting into their iPhones at the same time. It was apparently too difficult for them to concentrate on each other.

I've also seen couples eating in restaurants while staring at separate iPhones. They'd rather look at their gadgets than each other and, of course, there's no talking while they're sucked in by their tiny screens.


Linh

Rudy said...

Linh,

There are probably lots of ways to go deaf. My own has been a gradually accelerating loss of mid to high frequencies (crucial to understanding speech) buried in low frequency noise that sounds like thunder reverberating in a granite canyon. Not all higher frequencies have entirely decayed, so speech sounds like a comb scratching around in a muffled wire sieve with a handful of pebbles in the bottom. Hearing aids help a bit, but they sure aren’t magic. About a year and a half ago I read about a small research team at the University of Exeter (could have been some other UK place – hearing isn’t the only thing that deteriorates with age) who developed an app – we used to say program - that runs on an iPhone. According to the blurb the app simulates the way biological hearing works, so I bought an iPhone. I got someone to show me how to turn it on and access the app (actually learning to do that required the aid of what approximated a team as well), but it didn’t do anything for me, so I gave it to my daughter. I didn’t bother to learn how to use it to make telephone calls.

There’s another guy in Ann Arbor who doesn’t have a cell phone. He’s a professor of engineering at the U of M. After I found out about that, we had a couple of beers together.

Rudy

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About Me

Born in Vietnam in 1963, I came to the US in 1975, and have also lived in Italy, England and Germany. I'm the author of two books of stories, Fake House (2000) and Blood and Soap (2004), five of poems, All Around What Empties Out (2003), American Tatts (2005), Borderless Bodies (2006), Jam Alerts (2007) and Some Kind of Cheese Orgy (2009), and a novel, Love Like Hate (2010). I've been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, 2004, 2007, Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, Postmodern American Poetry: a Norton Anthology (vol. 2) and Flash Fiction International: Very Short Stories From Around the World, etc. I'm also editor of Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam (1996) and The Deluge: New Vietnamese Poetry (2013). Blood and Soap was chosen by Village Voice as one of the best books of 2004. My writing has been translated into Italian, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Icelandic and Finnish, and I've been invited to read in London, Cambridge, Brighton, Paris, Berlin, Leipzig, Halle, Reykjavik, Toronto, Singapore and all over the US. I've also published widely in Vietnamese.