The Liminalist 166.5: Levity & Gravity (with Gib Strange)

Part two of two-part return conversation with Gib Strange, on the last generation, the end of enlightenment opportunity, belief in Apocalypse, the rush to suicide, zombies & clowns, temporal anxiety, the age of the prequel, born into someone else’s story, the quest for causality, seeking the bad DNA, The Godfather & fathers & sons, a diminished future, when the future arrives, the pathology of the president, the serpent’s poison, the end of history, the Trump-Brexit blow, Generation X’s twin myths, Star Wars & Twin Peaks, paternal evil, Laura Palmer’s crucial fiction, identifying the bad guy, Lynch’s willful incoherence, the sins of the fathers, blaming Bob, the dark side of resurrection, Cartesian duality in the zombie mythos, the Morlocks maid service, living below the the underman, cats & dogs, living inside a paradox, libertarianism, the nightmare of the global village, technological dependency, a series of responses, prepping for the end times, the canaries in the coal mine, looking for solid ground, speaking from the heart, levity & gravity, “What a Wonderful World” and Kool Whip, the fear of sentimentality, sacrificing sincerity, back to the valley.

Gib’s site:

Songs: “Slouching Towards Bremen” & “My Heart Is a Piece of Garbage” by Geoff Berner; “Deep Space Island” by Krestovsky; “Beeps” by Gib Strange.

12 thoughts on “The Liminalist 166.5: Levity & Gravity (with Gib Strange)”

  1. I think a deeper level of reality might have been revealed if you had discussed whether or not Gib’s neighbour was actually being tortured, and what the implications would be in terms of the other issues you discussed.

    This relates to the issue of being ‘punked’, which fundamentally depends on the the ‘punkee’s’ fear of the ‘punker’. Triviality and ironic detachment are a compensatory unreality, and a vector for manipulation, borne on the back of sublimated fear of violence and suffering.

    • Great comment, Martin—I did explore the levels of reality more in the book. The piece begins around the 10:00 minute mark—

      “The real problem is that Sam’s problem is real. His screams of pain are real, making the ray gun as real as anything else. This is the real problem because it leads to the next problem, which is that the ray gun is not real for his neighbors. Or management. Or, I assume, the vast majority of what the Greeks called the koinos kosmos, or shared world . . .”

      And that gets more involved the more people get involved later on in the book.

      Jasun and I did have an interesting email exchange at the time sparked by the idea of one person’s belief creating the realities of others. For instance, I was talking to a friend about the Manson family and speculating about the ideas that might’ve floated around those campfires and I said something about the devil and my friend kept saying “yeah but I don’t believe in the devil” —I had to stop him and say well it doesn’t really matter what you believe, does it? What matters is what Manson believed (or CLAIMED to believe, as Jasun noted in our conversation re: Elon Musk’s claim to believe in simulation theory). Of course ultimately it mattered even more what those kids Manson had taken in believed. Jasun—“as if not believing in Satan means not believing in Satanists. Maybe it has to do with how much we identify with our own beliefs so that we dont feel like we exist without them, ergo, we can’t really believe anyone could believe anything different and f they do, they don’t really exist…. If so this principle may be being consciously exploited by the perpetrators of “satanic” ritual abuse” Also relates to the idea in Prisoner of Infinity that belief in UFOs is so laughable to most people that this inherent giggle factor provides a kind of cover for whatever weird things might be happening within those cults.

      “This relates to the issue of being ‘punked’, which fundamentally depends on the the ‘punkee’s’ fear of the ‘punker’.” This is a great point. I’ll have to think about this.

      • I was struck by your description of the accused perpetrator as being a hippie with a white beard half dyed black.

        As we know from the world of politics, men of violence often wear the disguise of men of peace. Psychedelic culture is also to a significant degree a creation of covert power.

        Morover one could speculate that a half white, half black beard was a method for this man to subliminally suggest to others he had a dual purpose or life.

        Of course he may be entirely innocent also.

        This is reminiscent of the testimony of Frederic Laroche, who gave a series of interviews about his experience of harassment that can be found on youtube.

        • Yeah, that’s a great observation—the double agent with the yin yang beard.

          There was always suspicion about whether the accused could actually be doing something. The night staff, and eventually even I, waited outside his apartment door in the middle of the night hoping to catch him in the act. The alleged harassment had a sonic element which was interesting because the accused was a street musician.

          The alleged victim didn’t seem to regard the nature of the harassment as unusual. He acted like people get zapped with “Star Trek phasers” all the time.

          • I’ve no idea how widespread such technology is, due to the paucity of reliable information, but it seems plausible to me that it would be one of the principle methods of last resort for enforcing the global flow of wealth, at least in countries that have an apparent defence of human rights.

            Other methods would appear to be psychiatric hospitalisation, and the more traditional options of assassination and concocted criminal charges, or a combination of any or all of them.

            In countries where human rights are not such a concern, enforcement is more overt for the most part.

            The question would be where did your players fit into this grim comedy, if anywhere?

  2. For some reason, listening to these made me wish there was a daytime talk show called Jasun & Gib, or maybe a morning radio show. I don’t know, there’s an interesting balance when you guys talk. Really dug it.

    I hope there will be more Notes from Uncanny Valley podcast episodes.

    And I had a thought about the prepper going into debt. Why is that some are willing to prep, but not to actually leave society? Like, unless there’s a full scale apocalypse type scenario, it’s not worth leaving. It doesn’t matter how destructive and insane society gets, we’ll only leave if it really fully collapses. Perhaps some FOMO.

    • Isaac, you just reminded me of a story I forgot to share—in 1999 I knew a guy who was so convinced about the Y2K bug that he actually gave away all his electronics. An amazing gesture when you think about it—that he was that eager to prove his belief in the apocalypse (and possibly even magically will it into existence?). Of course the next day he went around, cap in hand, to collect his stuff. Because what would life in the zoo be like without TV?

  3. I’ve been away from the podcast for quite awhile (my laptop broke), and just recently regained access to it through the Google Podcast app. I wish the episode archive went further back on there for the episodes I’ve missed, but
    I’m pleased to find The Liminalist still going strong—Gib is a great guest.

  4. I used to download the episodes on my laptop, then load them onto my mp3 player—but currently my phone is my only computer, and using browsers on it to access the podcast doesn’t work well. I do most of my podcast listening at work or while walking, and listening directly from the website doesn’t allow me to accurately/discretely rewind a few seconds when I miss something—plus the audio stops if my screen is turned off, and if the screen is left on in my pocket, then it gets accidentally tapped and jumps around.


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