Futile Devices

the musings of a man looking for meaning


Roman Opałka was a French-born Polish painter who painted numbers. In 1965 he began painting a process of counting – from one to infinity. Starting in the top left-hand corner of the canvas and finishing in the bottom right-hand corner, the tiny numbers were painted in horizontal rows. As of July 2004, he had reached 5.5 million.

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Change Management

One of the greatest challenges of adulthood is deciding when to move forward and when to move on. I constantly find new challenges before me, and while they complicate, they also provide opportunity for growth. But I can’t help but wonder if at some point it isn’t better to instead turn away, to head in a different direction, rather than continue to push against the many obstacles that continue to rise before me.

This problem never manifested itself before I graduated from college. Sure, I faced challenges, but I always told myself to wait. In time, after high school or after college, things would change. The environment would change; the variables would change. And it proved true, for that time in my life. But now the determined path no longer guarantees change. I work a consistent job, in a city that I’ve lived in for almost six years. Change is a transition that I have to choose, that I have to make myself. And I’m finding that choice difficult to make.

There is so much risk in choosing change. You can calculate the outcome, but you can never really know until you make a move. And change is hard – it’s always hard. I know my current world, my struggles. I know nothing of what lies ahead. I don’t know where I will be, what I will be, who I will be. That last one is the hardest.

I once met a French woman named Catherine (she owns Parigot on Grand and Lafayette), and she recently said something profound. Nothing changes, she said. Your problems – with work, relationships, life – will always be the same. There will be different jobs and different relationships, but the problems themselves will always be the same. The only thing that changes is you.

The only thing that changes is me, she said. And there is certainly no choice in that.

Lana Del Rey

—Summertime Sadness

Lana Del Rey, Summertime Sadness


James Turrell, Skyspace, 2000

Lights are programmed to flood the underside and/or walls of the buildings in response to variations in the natural light visible through the aperture cut into the roof. As the sky transitions from light to dark the interior lights generate a range of hues in the skyspace.


(Source: likeafieldmouse)


Shaima Alawadi, a 32-year-old Iraqi woman living in Southern California, was taken off life support today, succumbing to injuries sustained in a brutal tire iron beating on Wednesday. Shaima was found in her living room, and according to her daughter Fatima and the police investigating, a note was found near her saying “Go back to your country, you terrorist.”

Shaima was a mother of five who has been in the US with her family since the mid-1990s. She was described by her friend Sura Alzaidy as “respectful modest muhajiba.” Her daughter tearfully addressed her mother’s attackers during a media interview, saying “You took my mother away from me. You took my best friend away from me. Why? Why did you do it?”

[Daily MailAFP]

[H/T: thatsassyarab]