How u suppose to keep ur cool when you got Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton singing Time Of My Life like they were born for this moment, see this video. It’s so heart-breaking, yet addictive, of course it'll go viral overnight. I must have watched this video like ten times. Time to sober up and write a review about reality (specifically Trump).

First of all, this video inherently contradicts the actual situation. Trump and Clinton didn’t even shake hands in the beginning of the second debate. The more beautiful the imaginary scenario featured in the video, which is pure harmony. Makes you wish this magic was real. Although who knows, maybe all of this is a show and Hillary “hired” Trump, who doesn’t really want to become a president and is used as an antihero placeholder to eliminate the real competitors and distract from Hillary’s shady background. So much for bold theories.

The main achievement of this video is probably that it makes Trump seem so different than he is usually perceived. This is due to him not speaking, not using his voice, and instead singing a beautiful song. In fact, words are his greatest weakness and blessing at the same time.

For the larger part I’ve been really allergic to Trump’s rhetoric, because for a long time it has just sounded dumb to me. I couldn’t even bear to watch the debates completely and had to close the window a couple of minutes into him speaking because my brain started to hurt. But this obnoxious outer shell could be a very smart construction.

While he’s being perceived as not very bright by many people1, mainly due to his repetitive, simplified (basic cognition level2) language use, he does take advantage of extremely effective techniques, which is a bit scary and which has probably helped him get that far in the first place.

1. For one it’s this kind of direct imagery (crooked Hillary, poisoning the minds of American people) that has the potential to stick in people’s heads, even though it’s not backed by any facts, or is an empty statement. Metaphors have been used in politics for ages, Trump just takes it further by being more bold and speaking of building an actual wall, of putting Hillary in jail or the media rigging the election.

2. Another key aspect of Trump’s rhetoric is surely the overall emotionality that he’s radiating. Most of what he says sounds either like agitation, has an aggressive undertone, or outrages people. It is known since Aristotle that emotion is one of three means of persuasion.3 4

Emotional rhetoric draws attention and makes you stand out more. This stuff is everywhere, in his speeches, in his tweets, it seems like it’s in everything he says, and it makes him so polarizing.

3. He also uses a lot of repetition. This is the most stupid and at the same time the most effective method of getting your message across. If you repeat something often enough, people will eventually believe it.5 It’s like the brute force of rhetoric. The brain likes patterns and it likes repetitions. I for my part sometimes find myself annoyed by repetition in everyday conversations. But in this case I mean repetition in the widest sense: stuff like alliterations, chiasms, rhymes and so on.

4. His vocab is way reduced. This has several effects: His appeals are semantically very direct, simple and general, so they are accessed by rather primary levels of perception, maybe bypassing some critical mechanisms of the viewership. Also the interpretation spectrum for these statements is really wide, making people rather agree than disagree at times. Most importantly though: Using simplified English ensures exposure to all people.

It's somehow disquieting to watch irrationality, self-contradiction and almost barbarian loudness move political agenda out of the focus, turning Trump more and more into a brand and distracting the media. Becoming personal means stepping away from professional. There must be very competent people behind this, as I seriously doubt that Trump himself is that good. Regardless of who of both candidates is ethically more questionable, this is going to be, to put it in a euphemistic way, interesting.

"I started imagining a world in which we replaced the phrase “politically correct” wherever we could with “treating other people with respect”, and it made me smile." — Neil Gaiman*

As for the whole grabbing them by the p*ssy part: I think the media outcry might go a bit too far, or maybe I accidentally surrounded myself by certain media channels and am seeing the same phenomenon everywhere. Yesterday I watched the footage of Trump and Billy Bush, during which Trump said these things that got many people so outraged, and judging by the context and Trump’s body language (especially when he gets out of the interview bus to meet the woman who was the reason for the whole convo), he doesn’t seem like someone who would actually break social conventions and approach women like the animal that the media6 portrays him to be.

Of course this still doesn’t take back the effect his remarks might have on public perception of him and (trust into) politics in general, not to mention all the young impressionable minds who now might develop the ambition to grab p*ssies when they grow up. So the true disaster here is the impact on public opinion, collective state of mind, zeitgeist, whatever fits best. Because this topic has been going around in many, many headlines.

The more potentially destructive consequences are at stake here: Triggering a discourse based on these circumstances means regression towards othering of women, who make up about half of the population and are now again treated as a minority by the public. Most people (I’ve read about), including public figures7, now have to “stand up for our wives/daughters/mothers/sisters”. While this movement looks like a legit reaction, it’s rather reinforcing the problem and reinstalls stereotypes that we're supposed to overcome in order to get to some kind of equality. I don't think it's leading to a constructive discussion. This topic is to be continued.

[Edit:] Because I seem to be especially enthusiastic about Trump's rhetoric lately, I wrote a similar, but way more simple and spontaneous article in German to test a website for freelance writers. Make sure your AdBlock is turned on, should you click the link. A report is coming up.


(1) Also see the George W. Bush phenomenon. Obama, on the other hand, who doesn’t seem dumb, is following a different strategy. He puts more weight in intellectual rhetoric and doesn’t use a wide range of emotional devices. He certainly did make people cry though.
(2) There’s this article on this, although in German (Zeit)
(3) Aristotle on rhetoric (Stanford Encyclopedia)
(4) The three means of persuasion, according to Aristotle, are Ethos, Logos and Pathos. See this graphic (a reinterpretation for research publishers, via):

(5) Coined by Hitler and Goebbels, see Big lie
(6) Wikipedia: Mass Communication
(7) Michelle Obama's speech on Trump scandal
(*) Neil Gaiman inspired Add-On for Chrome that'll replace 'political correctness' with 'treating people with respect'
(**) I don't know what the heck this is, but I stumbled over this article as well



There’s a right time and a right place to do the right thing. What do we mean by that? We can put logic behind any decision and action, and sound really plausible to ourselves and other people. It was right to do what I did because XYZ. Examples:

___ It was right to shut the window in the evening because it got colder overnight.
___ It was right to vote for Donald Trump because I, too, want to build a wall.
___ It was right to drunk-rage-destroy my neighbor’s selfie stick because my neighbor is a jerk.

All of these kind of make sense. The perception of doing the right (or at least not the wrong) thing is almost always there.1 The thing in question here is not the logical path, it's the decision itself, or the state of mind that's producing a decision at a given time.

"Part of me wasn’t surprised."

Despite being a fuzzy, culture-dependent concept, intuition2 is interesting to deal with, as it's connected to many related topics, like the subconscious, gut feeling3, the inner voice, the true self, the inner knowing, that unstructured larger area of the brain that doesn’t perform analytical or rational processes and stores everything that makes you you.4

It’s an evolutionary mechanism that can start up an alarm reaction during a decision making process. It's probably the predominant feature in animals' brains. If it's flawed, damaged or malfunctioning, it can make things seem more blurry and decisions less clear. Whatever it is, it is probably a key to a lot of things, such as (successful) communication, its timing, form and content. This seems like one of the more insight-bringing areas as it's related to everything from our daily conversations up to a general sense of something or someone being contemporary or adequate.5

Shrigley's Switch extended by me. Please don't sue me.

Problems with intuition can occur when the signals coming from it are distorted by e.g. stored traumatic episodes or conflicts in the subconscious. Other people’s (metaphorical) voices also have influence on your inner voice. Constant exposure to same events can lead to forming of stereotypes in the subconscious, making intuition less reliable at times, for failing to adapt to individual scenarios.

Somewhere in Psychology Today6 they warn about potentially being misguided by intuition. The inner voice people would say that this misguidance is not listening to the inner voice, or too loud outside voices. The true self people would say that it’s a blocked true self. Therapists would say that your ego is interfering with your subconscious. Neuroscientists would probably say something fuzzy about correlations of neuronal network clusters activities.

Pathological scenarios related to intuition would surely include both neuroses and psychoses (Did I perceive this correctly or Can I make sense out of this could be some of the central questions)7, but in more harmless ways also general self-doubt, fear, and lack of (perceived) consistency, or, as some might put it, hazy decision paths. You’re not sure if you’re doing the right thing, and it makes you question yourself and your actions.

Admittedly, it's not easy to get a grip on this topic without sometimes sounding like a fortuneteller or a meditation teacher. Let's just leave it at that anyway.


(1)  Meaning that you could get anywhere with (on behalf of) logic, as in: You can always pave a way towards something.
(2)  in·tu·i·tion ˌin-tü-ˈi-shən, -tyü-:
___‣ a natural ability or power that makes it possible to know something without any proof or evidence
___‣ a feeling that guides a person to act a certain way without fully understanding why
___‣ something that is known or understood without proof or evidence
____[All definitions by Merriam-Webster, from now on]
(3)  An article on gut feeling (not sure about this source's general trustworthiness, but some parts are spot on)
(4)  Of course we needn't generalize too much about the whole brain area thing. I'm merely taking you on a journey towards an approximate understanding of complexity. 
(5)  For example, I don't consider Kanye West contemporary (anymore). Although it would take long to explain this and is not really worth the time.
(6)  This is where a URL for the article should be. I appreciate Psychology Today for their topic sensitivity. They're being really precious with first world problems.
(7)  The common practice of diagnosing and treating such disorders, as also proposed by Foucault, could use a readjustment, although I can't see that happening in the near future.

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Noticing that I only briefly outlined my understanding of art in one of the earlier posts, I now would like to shed more light on this topic, hoping to help someone writing a paper. Just kidding. Please don't quote me.

This text is inspired by a documentary I watched recently. The documentary is not about art, it's about intuition. None of what I'm writing here is taken directly from there. I really only felt like going over basic definitions again. I guess you could say it's one of my favorite activities. In fact, I'd recommend anyone to try it out.

What is art (about)?

I used to say that art is whatever you place within a certain presentational context (like museum, cinema screen, vinyl record). You can also maintain that whenever you have to ask yourself whether something is art, it’s art. In a broader sense, art is a statement that can refer to a more or less complex idea or part of the real world. While referring to something from the real world, the artwork's content itself doesn’t have to adhere to rules applicable within the real world. It’s possible to create a video with a cannonball levitating over a pool, for example. This image clearly breaks at least one rule, namely physics/gravitation.

This plain example only goes to show that nearly everything is possible when you’re not bound to apply the same rules as you do in real world. You can paint a fluid brick or a blue sun. In fact, rearranging things in such way that new ideas come to existence is the very nature of artistic creation. Therefore I don’t think it’s appropriate to view an artwork's unrealistic depiction as a flaw. Yet a lot of people do that.

Second Column

In my past, especially in the early school years, I was mainly surrounded by such bigoted scholastic views on art. I was practically forced to use a ruler and draw buildings according to perspective rules. When drawing people, first and foremost doctrine were correct proportions. The sky had to be blue, the clouds had to be white. I once let my aunt help me paint a picture (I think it was in first or second grade). She painted blue clouds on white sky. I got the worse mark ever. Since then I never let anyone do this job for me ever again.

While I’m not denying that making students understand the construction of what they are depicting is a good groundwork (that can be discontinued later), I’m strictly against pushing this realism-driven method further than necessary, because it creates a narrow-mindedness that will possibly stand in the way of thinking outside the box, which is necessary if you as an artist want to operate with known elements to create new statements that will be original -- in whatever way.


Iconicity (Wikipedia)
Degrees of iconicity (Examples)



If the color is in the paint on the wall, then in making a structure and allowing light to enter it, the color will tend to ride on the walls. But if the color of the wall is white, which in one way is noncolor, the light is allowed to enter the space riding on the light, and that color has the possibility of inhabiting the space and holding that volume rather than being on the wall.

James Turrell (archdaily, 06/2013)

A frame from the video

Soft red light. Could this be hell?

Lack of privacy, rumors, intrusive paparazzi, daily struggle with haters and problems fitting all the money in a pocket: Complaining about star world problems has been part of popular culture for what feels like forever. The newest act of bemoaning the disadvantages of being a successful artist is The Weeknd’s new track Starboy.

In the music video (directed by Grant Singer, released a couple of days ago) you can see the artist being strangled by a masked person, who turns out to be The Weeknd himself, or perhaps his new ego/identity (with a new hairstyle). Having killed his old self, the protagonist proceeds to destroy the house with a glowing neon pink crucifix, while dancing around the room.

The overall message is a destructive celebration of a paradigm change illuminated by flashing lights. It’s a big gesture that can be interpreted as futuristic, or future-facing. Using such pregnant themes as the Christianity symbol is surely very ambitious, but the redesigned look of the crucifix may aim at or result in a new interpretation of something very basic, re-installing a new order based on the old system, saying yes to now, even though it’s doomed. By saying yes: Smashing things with a crucifix to destroy old in order to create new. Just let this sink in.

Smashing Things

Combining dancing and destruction had me thinking of Shiva, the Hindu god of dance and destruction (and creation). The dancing itself is vaguely reminiscent of Michael Jackson, the king who’s probably being referred to in the lyrics (Coming for the king, that’s a far cry).

Objects being destroyed here are mostly made of fragile crystal and glass. Makes you wonder: Has this been done purely for aesthetic purposes? Then again, you wouldn’t use this lamp sword for anything else. Also these piano chords really arrange well with smashing those things. Thanks Daft Punk. Also thanks Puma, for being a sponsor.

Destroying in order to create is a necessary process. I’m noticing this especially today, my hard disc drive needs de-cluttering. I guess you could maintain that parts of the whole are in a constant struggle for space.


Light is a dominant feature in this video. I’m very pleased to see people really thinking that through. Judging by Puma product placement alone, the budget must have been big.

The video goes on to show the protagonist burn his bedroom down by throwing a lighter into the suit closet, then driving off with a black cat aboard. the cat grows into a large black puma. Again, hashtag product/brand placement there. I forgive them though.

Main point brings us back to identity change. Switch up my style, I take any lane, it says in the song. The Weeknd is known for style change statements. If you feel like the world wants to know about you switching styles, you probably made it.


Dan Flavin
James Turrell
Hotline Bling (video)
Picture source: (c) The Weeknd XO Inc.



So yeah, she’s over fifty and her arms are so flabby. 
I heard you’re supposed to start using anti wrinkles facial cream at 25. 
When I have children, I’ll do everything so they don’t become fat.

Random dialogue fragments


Recently I’ve been invited to an arts and crafts evening. My dear friend and former flatmate, now mother of two children, has been hosting such evenings on a regular basis for years now, and I’ve attended only a few of them. Last time I visited her dates back a couple of years, so I was a bit surprised to find a differentiated and methodologically sound overall concept: Feminist zines.

Six girls (white able-bodied straight cisgendered Western European middle class) were sitting at tables, drawing and knitting. I got handed over a pile of such zines. Despite a considerable amount of edgy, which makes the drawings a little entertaining, the overall style of such zines can be broken down to one recipe, which is Tumblr x “moleskine art” x Shrigley’s minimalism x Soko’s instagram. You’ll see a lot of mixed media usage, naïve drawing manner and content revolving around cats, lifestyle and political correctness, so basically lots of texts about equality of all sorts (gender/class/ethnicity/age/body shape…). The latter have a somewhat odd lecturing tone to them, which, ultimately, separates these artists from artists like Shrigley.

Don’t know if I ever mentioned that I’ve never been especially fond of straightforward political messages in arts. To me, art is its own universe. Working with pieces of real life information in this way (here: appeals to equality) reduces the artwork to a vehicle for political agenda, while political agenda is reduced to a vehicle for self representation.

Vehicles and art aside: Manufacturing a sense of a vegan feminist noble equality rights fighter is not only good for your consciousness, but will also give you a solid superiority complex. This phenomenon has been touched upon in Scott Pilgrim (2010), among others. Potentially, the perceived superiority can lead to sometimes open disdain towards certain groups, individuals or traits, resulting in a big pile of hypocrisy.

Maybe hypocrisy is not even the biggest problem here. Also I should calm down for once. Spreading the honorable word is honorable, after all.

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Stuck on a roller coaster
Can’t get off this ride
Katy Perry


Let’s take a minute to talk about OCD. I would like to simplify the basics of it in the grossest way possible: In addition to doing things repeatedly, OCD patients are sometimes generally unable to control their thoughts or actions.

When we talk about someone with OCD, we get a picture of someone who shows repeating patterns in thinking or behavior. Since I keep repeating how everything is a spectrum: Don’t we all ultimately show repeating patterns? Diagnoses are tricky when you try to quantify invisible things, or draw the line between normal and pathological. A squirrel learns how to open a nut in a certain way, and sticks to this first-learnt method forever. A baby learns to wash its hands in a certain way after certain things. We all wash hands with different intensity and frequency. How many times are normal? Let’s draw the norm at something from four to eleven times a day. You’re probably beginning to notice the absurdity here, dear readership.

A baby then learns to see a certain amount of flaws and advantages in everything it encounters. Then, being like 25 years of age, now much more knowledgeable, the baby has developed individual methods and preferences on how to deal with things. I really feel like I can name it things in a the widest sense possible, because literally everything is affected. Imagine everything as an infinite ocean. Although it’s difficult to understand infinity, unfortunately.

I started writing this text yesterday night, and now look at me, coming back to it today. To file under noticeable: I took a beautiful picture of sausages and am now planning to borrow a Hasselblad to one-up the last picture. How can something so trivial be so powerful all of a sudden? Life is so full of mysteries sometimes.




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Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 20.02.21

No matter what you bring to the table, somewhere, somehow there is always a demand for that. It’s just a matter of how you represent the service. Having been busy with SEO recently I, again, learned that content is dead. Words only mean as much as their occurrences in a text. This is what people do when Google hides their ranking algorithms. Reverse engineering, term mining and other maths. Then you take the terms and write anything arbitrary in between. It’s no wonder that our culture is declining. In a world where bolding terms and trying to please search engines with h1 headings is key to being discovered, there is no time or room for actually saying anything.

We’re all in a bubble that might burst any given moment. Natural language and its processing (that is done by machines) are colliding. But go on, humanity, hire robots to do the work. Let algorithms write texts that are supposed to be read by another algorithms, and by any means don’t question the meaning behind your efforts, because ultimately, there is none.



I have a lot of hobbies. The list of my hobbies stretches across all media and all possible ways to consume and create. My newest thing are videos. I can’t imagine the full scope of possibilities, because eternity is unimagineable.  Clearly, my first videos are a conglomeration of nonsense, with a tiny speck of wisdom shining here and there. I need to grow past pure entertainment. I need to enter the realm of the seriousness.



Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich

Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich discussing feelings, while Youtube does its best to decipher their mumbling.

You know shit’s been promoted to serious when you see Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich answering little girls’ questions á la I like him but I’m too shy, what should I do? Once you get past being surprised about these people talking about these things in this fashion, you can lean back and marvel at the beauty of simplicity.

I’ve been thinking about transcendence in music and everything, about reverb and how it interacts with surfaces, but now all my abstract thoughts have been displaced by pink jelly. Most notable question in this video is revolving around the very basics of subjectivity and the uncertainty arising from it. I needn’t say that there is a reason why people have such a hard time agreeing on or identifying the impalpable within themselves. It’s cause impalpable things cannot be palped grasped.

Nigel: Emily, 14, is asking: What exactly does it feel like when you like someone? There’s this boy that I know. I’ve known him since we were little, but not very well. He just started going to my high school. When he talks to me I get kind of a jolt, like electricity. I get the same thing when he talks to other people and ignores me. How do I figure out if I like him or not? I’ve never had a crush and I’m really confused.

Thom: Hmm, 14. That sounds to me like, well, when they say people have a connection. […] You obviously think something about him other than normal. […]

Nigel: It sounds like you have a crush to me. I think it comes as that thing where you have to define what feelings are. It’s like, oh, do I like this person, cause you’re constantly being told you’re gonna like someone, you’re not gonna like someone, you’re gonna feel something, you’re gonna meet someone that’s gonna mean something to you, and the trick is, when it’s actually happening, it’s pretty straightforward — you know it inside yourself. […] But then you have to talk to them and find out who they are, because you are projecting an image of what you think that person is. And, uh, you have to do a little bit more research and try to keep your cool a little [Thom looks at Nigel skeptically, but then nods half-approvingly]. And, uh, don’t get freaked out by it, because, you know, it’s just a person.