Lambert Airport and Friedrich Nietzsche


I flew out to New York from St. Louis on a Thursday.

The Eleventh of February I think it was and you might remember that that's when all those heavy snowstorms were happening, delaying everyone's flights. I was set to leave at around 2PM that day and finally made it out around 5:30 or so, as I recall. Not too bad a wait, but I did have some time to kill in the terminal and rather than mess with the crossword, like I usually do, or make a 'single-serving friend,' I chose to stem the boredom with the digital camera I had just got off Todd Heilman in a trade a couple weeks earlier. I just walked it around the gate, looking for something interesting in that crisp, sterile environment and while I knew I'd be able to turn the images into something interesting at home, there really wasn't too much to work with. Nothing in an airport expresses much character, I don't think (besides the travelers, of course, which were not my focus) but I did what I could, with maybe a touch of anxiety.

And I was right to be anxious, it turned out, because after about thirty minutes of walking around with the didgie, two
Security Dudes came up and asked me what I was up to. I explained to them... well, I just told 'em the truth: that I was trying to get some art made, that's all. They said they'd been called over because some of the other passengers were getting nervous thinking, I guess, that I was casing the joint or something... planning some sort of terrorist activity, perhaps. I told them that I certainly understood, times being what they are n all, and would quit it with the pictures (which, in fact, I did not, I'm afraid). I showed them some of what I was shooting and they were actually a little surprised over what I was able to get there.

"Yeah, hey, it really does look like art!" I think one of them said.

Heh. Maybe so, but even after I'd settled into Elani's place in Brooklyn and had taken the time to process the raw files, I still wasn't seeing anything of much interest. Not to my eye, leastwise. So I let 'em sit a while.

A week or two later, I rejoined my very dear, old friend, Jerome Levin, and during a late night catch-up conversation over Absinthe at his place in Roslyn, we kinda got onto philosophy jag and he, sweetheart that he is, ended up giving me his English translation of
Friedrich Nietzsche's Ecce Homo (1888).

Upon my return to Brooklyn, I perused the book a little and started pulling and writing down some of the quotes I liked and it occurred to me then that it might be sorta funny to have all this enigmatic, fruity, old language juxtaposed to these somewhat soul-free air terminal images...

Forgive me, Jerome. I know these offend you and I think I know why, but I think I maybe kind of like them. Some of them, anyhow.


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