txt Brian Feldman Projects
July 18, 2011
Urban Rethink, Orlando, FL
Urban Rethink. A concrete room. A shitty computer that can’t stay even stay on a complementary wireless network. This is a typical evening for me in the brave new digital age – everyone else makes communication effortless. People text from I-4 all the way to Florida Hospital, a guy whips out an Android on a Vespa as he tools down Mills, congressional genitalia sweep the nation. We drip communication, especially the Feldman clan. iPhone enabled, texting telepathically, they even have wireless credit card readers. For all I know, they live on a cell tower.
Tonight Ed Feldman mans the counter, selling buttons, taking admissions, and passing out super secret temporary Twitter passwords. Brian flusters around, centering a vintage chair on a platform, arranging cell phone chargers, and generally emitting an aura of industrious artiness. I struggle with network packets and conflicting Win 7 settings but eventully establish a semi-stable connection with the 21st century. I check on tropical storm Bret as it flies away like Casey Anthony after a winning verdict… and …and…I’m on Twitter! My heart palpates. I sense a minor earthquake in Guam, notice someone’s pet is feeling better, and my world is reduced to 140 symbols. We begin!
“txt” involves Feldman reading anonymous Tweets from an intimate audience. Tonight we had a comedian, and bartender jokes flowed like catsup on a bun. Some sexual innuendo popped up as well – was it coming from the Woman With The Mohawk, or the Mother And Daughter Sharing A Salad? I cut and pasted a few lines from random internet ads, and Feldman takes them in stride. We fling some emoticons his way, then Morse code, come-ons and turn offs, and he retorts with panache as someone suggests he scratch his nose. Time seems to fly but he points out we had a late start. So an hour feels like an hour.
Ok, I’m actually engaged, and I’m trying to type something entertaining or at least provocative. But it feels forced. It’s not the message length; it’s not a lack of individual feedback, it’s not the face to face encounter with a narcissistic yet world shattering technology. Despite Twitter driving revolutions and adding a new facet to free speech, there’s a feeling it might soon join a rusting pile of other earth shaking technologies like AOL or MySpace. Will Twitter someday date us like bad prom hair styles or leg warmers? Are we truly anonymous? Brian Feldman may not know who tweets what, but the Trilateral / CIA / Google complex can identity us. Better be careful – a crack about porn may turn into a job interview mine field. Then we are finished, but not like a fine wine. Feldman arises, thanks us, we mingle and then drift off.
Perhaps tonight is fixed in a data base, or perhaps our words will evaporate like the wisps of smoke they are. It's all just art, narcissistic and transitory, and fun while it lasted. But damn, it was a lot of work getting that computer set up correctly.
For more information on events at Urban Rethink, please visit http://urbanrethink.com/
For more information on Brian Feldman Projects, please visit =”http://www.brianfeldman.com