josh (joshc) wrote,

  • Music:

old time religion

On Saturday I was suddenly motivated to read the inserted section in Sacrament [known previously as You Shall Know Our Velocity!]. I bought it two residences ago and never got around to reading the new part.

Aside from the weirdness of thinking about what it means to read a refutation of a fiction written from the perspective of a fictional character described in the original fiction, I liked it and am still thinking about what it means to the main story. Nevertheless, I thought that this excerpt, which described the reason for the re-titling, was nice:
The Bible, in some part, is a handbook for those who might forget our obligations to each other. And those obligations are obvious, and constant, even though they become more obvious, more pronounced and more urgent and immediate at a time such as this. What we are doing is much like the sacrament I will be handing you shortly. For what is the sacrament? It is not in itself nourishment; it is, rather, an outward symbol of inward grace. It is the external, social demonstration of how we feel within. It is not practical and without it we would feel the same way; it is a reminder only, and a relatively unnecessary one at that. But that does not mean it is dispensable, nor does it mean it is unbeautiful. [Sacrament]

I can't tell whether the text in the paperback edition includes the new edits; so I've linked to the hardcover which is for sale at the McSweeney's site.

Another set of interesting concepts discussed in the insertion: Conceptual Living and/or Performance Literature. It seems like this is in the air. Yesterday Chris was trying to convince me that a book and or reality show about brunch was a good idea, today I sort of auditioned for a movie trailer about addictions and hidden cameras, and tonight Rachel pitched a documentary (mockumentary?) about people who attend pub quizzes. O.K., so these concepts aren't exactly related, but I felt like mentioning them and this paragraph seemed like a good place to do it.

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