Anakana Schofield – Author of Bina, Martin John and Malarky

Parataxis thank you

Thank you to everyone who joined us last Sunday afternoon for the Parataxis event exploring Helen Potrebenko’s novel Taxi! in today’s city and interfacing the book with what was and what is. Thank you especially to the members of the public who “read shotgun” (open the book randomly and read passages) and to Helen who planned the route and talked to readers as we wandered.  We were also blessed to have the collaboration, performance and generous support of Lori W (Mme Beespeaker) who concurrently documented the event at her blog.

I had a strange crisis before embarking on the event, which has given way to new/re-imaginings and invited input (some helpful, some less so). I set out perhaps to ask a few questions, one certainly was who authors remembering? Another was: what am I prepared to do for this book?  I did not factor that one needs “permission” to revisit repeatedly.  I had not considered that a repeated revisit might invite an assumptive yawn. But then it’s always easier for people to yawn, dismiss than engage.

The actual experience of repeatedly visiting a text like Taxi! (through different interventions) is quite the contrary. Each time we engage with this book it delivers new delights, reflections and questions, not least because of its fragmentary form. Again, a reflection of the working day, the working shift, the working life and this particular city, where the tea does not sit inside the pot for long.

The 11 people who joined us last Sunday engaged with the text in such a committed, enthusiastic and detailed manner which resulted in whole new considerations, especially about the present day.

Parataxis: walking the ride

Yesterday I walked Helen’s fine Parataxis map (for our planned May 1st event) and enjoyed the adventure very much. Esp. standing alone in my good black coat, obtained at my sister’s prompting last summer in Dublin, and reading aloud from Taxi! to no one in particular, into the city.

I was able to experience the difference within the past two days of being a flaneur (esse?) vs being an orator. I’ll give you a clue, it is way easier to orate.

I could not be more glad of my current crop of artistic ventures and the experiences and interactions they have given me. All of which would be nothing without the goodwill and generous input of my various collaborators. Thank you to them all!

I have a read a couple of How to Make a Wooden Sign instructions, that were not divinely inspiring. I am curious as to how it will stand and stay upright and thinking of a brick’s assistance. Next I have to consider the proximity the sign will stand to the performance. I am looking forward to talking it all up with wunderbar Lori and am glad to be working with her again after this week’s praiseach.

We laughed so much during our collaboration Big Mamas Ridin’ High for  Chaos at Open Space.

Today is Nollaig na mBan. I filled the teapot many times and thought about the labour of women.

Taxi! makin a stand

“The city will set up 12 late-night taxi stands around Calgary’s core on the weekend to help solve one of the most nagging cab shortage periods.”

On January 14th, 2011, I too shall be setting up a late-night Taxi! stand, albeit in Vancouver, in an embodied exploration and ongoing dialogue with Helen Potrebenko’s 1975 novel Taxi!  Another collaborative moment with the wunderbar Lori Weidenhammer coming soon ….

November 2010, buy Taxi! month

November 2010 is an important month. It is the official month in which every right thinking person who has not read the great Vancouver novel Taxi! will recognize the loss in their life this gap provides and will click over to lazarapress.ca and invest $10 whole dollars (+shipping) to fill this hole.

Then you can all report your subsequent euphoria to haveyoureadtaxi.blogspot.com where I will happily upload any testament to it (decency laws apply)

If you haven’t read Taxi! you have not read. If you voted for Barack Obama you need to read Taxi! If you didn’t vote for him you also need to read Taxi! If you aren’t qualified to vote for him you need to read Taxi! If you support a hockey team you need to read Taxi! If you know how to spell Vancouver, you need to read Taxi! (Coming soon the You need to read Taxi! catechism)

In January I hope to bring some interventions to the world to express precisely how critical it is to read Taxi! Watch out for those reappearing Taxi! ranks….