From 2006 – 2009 Dead Beat (Old D.B.), Gerard Beirne’s alter ego, let loose his quixotic and Hofstadterish vision of literary theory upon an unsuspecting world.
With friends in tow, such as Frankie Laine, John Berger, Leonard Cohen, Horace (yes that Horace) – squatting in D.B.’s garden shed, Hudson (his dog and book reviewer), Kesey, Kerouac, Iggy Pop, the Marx Brothers, David Mamet, Nicholas Roeg, Bergman, Richard Dawkins, Kepler, Anton Mesmer to mention but a few, he explored a range of subjects which impact upon the creative act of writing. Subjects such as: the geology of writing, the science of writing, the cinema of writing, the intelligence of writing, the mortality of writing, the morality of writing, the anthropology of writing, the nutrition of writing, the architecture of writing and on and on – oh yes, old D.B. does go on and on…
….but it all adds up to something in the end. As The Hof would have said,
The diversity of my columns is worth discussing for a moment. On the surface they seem to wander all over the intellectual map – from sexism to music to art to nonsense, from game theory to artificial intelligence to molecular biology to the Cube and more. But there is, I believe, a deep underlying unity to my columns. I felt that gradually as I wrote more and more of them, regular readers would start to see the links between disparate ones, so that after a while the coherence of the web would be quite clear. My image of this was always geometric. I envisioned my intellectual home territory as a rather large region in some conceptual space, a region that most people do not see as a connected unit. Each new column was in a way a new ‘random dot’ in that conceptual space, and as dots began peppering the space more fully over the months, the shape of my territory would begin to emerge more clearly.
Metamagical Themas – Douglas Hofstadter