my composition and rhetoric blog.
fall 2002.

september 8, 2002- 4:38pm

an essay we are learning to read- responding to [michael spooner]: ok-

sex in a light bulb.

"I've always liked composition as a field because it is, like editing, an occupation preoccupied with response, with the small things of purpose and balance and fit, and what I'll propose here is that editing scholarly writing can be theorized in terms like those of response to student writing."

Editing works best "..when it proceeds from a stance of sympathy or alignment with the writer- not from a stance of Correction or Remediation."

"They love the language - or its readability measures? - to a fault." Yup.

"I think the best editing actually privileges- it's the only way I can see not to erase- the writer."

"We would improve the academy faster if teaching were rewarded more seriously and if publishing ever more books for the audience of scholars were granted less weight." amen.

"Students often don't have experience with the kind of audience they need to imagine, so they default to an audience they knew very well- themselves." Exactly. Can blogging change that? How can I change that in the classroom?

"With alt.writing, the purposes of the text quite often involve getting the reader to lossen their pants, to accept degrees of variation in language and style that they normally might resist."

fractured narratives- explorations in style [ronald a. depeter]: this is a technique "to be appreciated as a productive way of getting at new, unexplored relationships between writers and their texts and between writers and their readers."

LOVE the ideas and examples in this essay of WHAT and HOW to put together, create a fractured narrative. Going to try out one of the exercises.. or two.. below. Will try to create my very own, too, however.

petals on a wet black bough- textuality, collaboration, and the new essay [myka vielstimmig]: this narrative is something close to how i like to write NOW on my blog. various quotes that connect but ask new questions of what i am thinking or writing. the different fonts (makes me think of Sirc) and alignments.

Channel flippers as a new type of attention? I can identify a specific commercial, sometimes, just by the song being associated with it.


"what is composition...?" after duchamp- (notes toward a general teleintertext) [geoffery sirc]: one person used songs to illustrate/connect, Sirc uses art. Even though have met and drooled over Sirc's ideas, this essay was a bit tough to understand. It could easily be that I have never read or heard of the people he talked of. I simply tried to take something away from it all the best I could.

We want students to change their pieces.. remediate them.. into beautifully perfect works, but really, maybe, we should turn them to changing them into works of art.. into more "daring works, a proto-Picasso".

"the space where the writer needs to come forward to write rather than recite the text that the text that wants to be written"

"we give awards to papers we do not believe in and.. turn away from papers we do, papers most often clumsy and awkward but, as we say to each other, ambitious, interesting"

"Composition .. is concerned with how and why one might work with the space on the page..."

".. bits and pieces put together to present a semblance of a whole."

-sex in a light bulb.

-purpose and balance and fit.

-Remediation. hmm... so what IS okay to remediate?



-Celebrity= Holden Caulfield. Maybe his narrative is the first fractured piece students would like. Is his fractured though?








-lots crammed into a small space. like having sex in a light bulb. hee hee.



-flipping doesn't mean you don't pay attention. you pay attention quickly. right?

-students are teachers and teachers are students.


-new tools, electronic salon (page 180)= blogging.




-"fundamental thesis: every human being is an artist"


-Naked Lunch

NTS: Notes to Self.

september 8, 2002- 5:59pm

-fractured songs: Enya's "Only Time" during 9/11. [blue book]

-lots of what these essays had to say pertain/connect to blogging. Page 168 of yellow book: "they create an environment that is both procedural and participatory."

-"What is permissible in this world? What is effective? What's the grammar of this world? GreatBigHuge questions.




september 9, 2002- 12:34am... fractured narrative: topic= jason.


I wish I could have shot him.

I wish I could have had the courage to leave him by the side of I-94 that day. In the end, shooting himself in the foot essentially brought me to my enlightenment of myself. I found who I really was. Which was maybe the nicest gift I ever received from him. Should I have said that at his father's funeral this last new year's? In front of Andi? In front of his family? Let them know that I benefited from being "dumped" by a Kovarik. Jason, at that?

I want you to know that I'm happy for you/ I wish nothing but the best for you both

As if I was a business. As if I was the Target I had worked at during the years I dated him. Like he could do that to me.. and come back and 'get paid' again. Like I wanted to deal with his materialism, his denial of a birthmark on his ass cheek, his overwhelming sense of being better than me because of my age.

That was such a low blow. For you to actually THINK I would take YOU back after all of THIS. You have quite an ego.

Does she know how you told me you'd hold me/ Until you died

Then why the FUCK did you leave me for HER? Why the FUCK are you FUCKING her instead of me? Although, you know, I was the one girl you never got to do THAT to. I didn't want to be your.. your eleventh. A number. A girl with a name like Sybil can NOT be a number. Never. And you.. you became so pussy-whipped over her so quickly. She was living in Texas, I in Battle Lake, and STILL you chose her. Was it because of your Neopolitan complex.. couldn't handle a girl like me that was YOUR height.. a girl with some girth to her? A girl that may gain weight? You know, we still ended up together one last time. By the chickenhawk or whatever the hell that is in Rothsay. Fogging up my old crappy car. You touching, smoothing my hair behind my ear for the first time in four years. I almost wanted you back that night. All I said to you that meant anything was: "You can tell her she's the best if she goes down on you." The most beautiful thing in our whole relationship, maybe, was the physical way it ended. You stopped on the on-ramp that I had headed on, got out of your car, and hugged me. One of your good hugs too. I felt okay that it was over. Like a test I had taken, done alright on, and was through with. You, like the test, will be on my record forever.

It was a slap in the face how quickly I was replaced/ Are you thinking of me when you fuck her

I should have realized it early. Your obsession with weight. Your parents even let you in on their secret: Looking good for each other helps the relationship. You dwelled on that. Watched me eat fried Chinese food with Hawk-Eyes. Made me anorexic at times. Didn't hear my stomach hollering in the night, like a child. And that day that I came out of your shower and was peering at myself in the mirror- pulling, pinching at skin.. and you made that comment.. about my cellulite. I should have walked out. Walked out of your life.

For so long, I have dreamed.. a small dream (when I rarely do think of you) of you sitting on the toliet, opening Andi's Victoria Secret and seeing ME lying there in some beautiful bra and thong. How I would love to see your face.

She will never be me.

An older version of me/ Is she perverted like me/ Would she go down on you in a theatre/ Does she speak eloquently/ And would she have your baby/ I'm sure she'd make a really excellent mother


"I know I may be shooting myself in the foot by doing this."

Yes, you are.





"I need to take a leave of absence from this relationship."

But not from jumping into another one right away, hm?



"You were a great girlfriend. You treated me so well."








"You have hail damage on your butt."

You have serious issues. Which is worse?

does just calling it a fractured narrative make it one?
every quote but the last is from our break-up day.
NTS: Notes to Self.

september 8, 2002- 6:00pm

-i like fractured narratives.

-bringing up quotes from way back then.. I am not surprised that I remember them. We alway seem to remember the bad more than the good.

-I want to add in lyrics. Probably Alanis Morisette since I listened to her over and over after we broke up. Either her or Sheryl Crow. Sheryl's lyrics aren't has harsh, though, and the tone of my commentary and the quotes themselves are harsh. Using her would allow readers to see the soft side of the relation ship. Maybe I should include that though? Because, really, it wasn't all bad.

september 8, 2002- 1:15pm

-maybe this can just be the mean version. I don't want to add sugar to something this deliciously tart and bitter.




september 9, 2002- 11:33am... fractured narrative: topic= tara, jason's sister.


Mmm my best friend has a little car/ She can take off anywhere, anytime she wants/ And if you ask me mostly/ Where would I rather be/ I'll tell you up and down the avenue/ In the passenger seat.

Tara had a red Golf for a long time. During the last chunk of our friendship, I bought a silver Beetle. We always took that when we traveled. She always gave me that job. If I asked for her to drive, sometimes she would give a reason why she couldn't drive. I don't know if it was the fact of heading around town in a Beetle that made her feel better about herself. About being supposedly unique and hippie. I guess she felt she couldn't give off that vibe in her Bravada she bought while Dave was in Kosovo. It was little things like that that disturbed me.

Mmm my best friend has a little house/ She gave me my own keys and I go anytime I want/ And if you ask me mostly/ Where I would rather be/ I'll tell you sitting on the window sill/ When she's close to me.

Her and Dave should have never lived together. They should have tried being apart when he bought the house. Money matters started to come into play, they physically fought more, and that's the place where he eventually proposed to her. I hugged her, grimiscing, and thinking that this marriage.. this wedding would never occur. It didn't. I, the maid of honor, would have bet for 6 months max.

My best friend/ Makes me feel as full as the moon/ I'm saving all my money and I'm gonna take her to Israel soon.

Going places. Living somewhere ELSE. Traveling. All these things were big to her. And they were big to her because she wasn't happy living inside her own body, much less the town of Fargo.

My best friend/ She smells like patchouli and cigarettes and the street.

Patchouli or pot. Depends on her friends at the time. She changed fragrance and fashion sense with every different group she hung out with. Or with every boyfriend she had. With Dave, it was more J.Crew-ish and with Joe, more grunge. Cigarettes. Oh, sure, that was fabulous when she quit. But the stress got to her, and she gave in again and again. She gave into a lot of things. Sex when Dave was away. That girl thinks/thought with her crotch.

My best friend/You'd think we were from the same womb/ We don't like talking in the morning/ And we dream all afternoon.

Maybe that was our biggest challenge. To integrate a girl that was stable in the ground.. and a girl that floated in the sky. Hoping for better days instead of trying to work towards them day by day. Maybe we were from the same womb. She got the body, I got the brains. I've said that to Dave.

One thing is for sure, while all this brings back some bitter memories (her yelling FUCK YOU) at me in her old apartment for no reason, it reminds me that in our own respects, our unique perspectives, we did try our best to be great friends. I experienced things with that girl that I never will again. Emotions especially. Very passionate thoughts from teenage girls with the world all around them.

She gave me confidence with boys. She taught me first hand non-conformity after I had read of it in junior English class. She taught me not to worry as much as I did.

And even though she maybe felt that I was her follower, I do realize that maybe what really happened was the student became the better teacher. I see it in my own classroom, other students learning better on their own. Maybe it wasn't me at all. I think I needed to be affected by Tara in order to know what I was and wasn't. If that means I followed her, fine. But it has lead me, like during the break up with her older brother, to an enlightenment about myself.

Who Sybil is is only something I know.

she said...

"You are my girl."











"I think she thinks she's better because she's lived in Italy."













"She follows me, Dave. She always has." (paraphrased)


one family- two destroyed friendships/relationships.
NTS: Notes to Self.
september 9, 2002- 11:45am

-the subject of tara is still a sticky one for me. she leaves for Saudi Arabia soon. that's another fragmented/fractured story in and of itself.

-this may help me resolve the anger I feel for her.

-is any of the crap from dealing with her leaking over from jason?

-I can remember jason's quotes easier. I remember tara's face more.

-again, I want to use song lyrics. I think the one song that comes to mind is the Sophie B. Hawkins one that talks about having a best friend. It's light hearted.. with a deeper meaning that can be taken away from it.

Wow, I am conceited. Or is it confidence? What's the difference?

Maybe I can't be best friends with anyone. I always run into something that is disturbing about them. I think it's me. I think I analyze too much.

Maybe I subconsciously am drawnn to people that are fucked up because then I always look better than them. But, no one is better than me NOR am I better than anyone else. I think I have just lived my life a little better.

I think, too, that I am too nice and when there have been opportune times for me to say my piece, to make my mark- make my personality heard- I have vowed to stand back. Let the train wreck in front of me. Let them deal with their own mishaps.

Then they get angry with me later. For allowing them to be made fools. For allowing me to know things they do not.

I know I am not perfect, nor have I led a perfect life, but when the time comes to make the 'right decision' in society's eyes, I have done it time and time again.

Are they mad, then, that I can remain unique and still conform? A conforming nonconformist.

Am I a hypocrit?

Why can't I have genuine friends? People like me that are not going to be moody. Who relatively are stable. Even if that means they conform to the norm.

Who is normal though?

I know this for certain: I am not right, but no one else seems to be more right either.

If I think of my good true friends= Fran, Ann, Nichole, Katey.. really, I can have great, genuine friends. I just don't see them enough to know that I am not going insane. I need their vibes more, maybe. Their influence.


2002 by Sybil Priebe My Homepage

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