from Friday, June20th of the year2008.
While I was in Vermont a few weeks ago (and, strangely, while I was at the Bronx Zoo not a week before that), somebody reminded me that grown people need only eat food the “size of a clenched fist” three times a day in order to stay alive and healthy…or something like that, some rule of thumb. I have been experimenting with what that might mean in my own life; I can’t eat anything resembling the size of my fist in the morning, so, I just attempted to purchase “two fists worth” of food from New Malaysia by my house. I devoured it in about sixteen seconds and now I feel peculiar: two orders of roti canai and some mee goreng (I didn’t finish it in order to maintain the right fisty density).
I am now: full. I’ve been thinking about that word for a while; it has popped up in a bunch of weird ways. Does everybody remember the Taco Bell campaign in which this guy ran around screaming, “I’m full!!!” It was horrifying. As an aside, here is a list of Taco Bell slogans excerpted from Wikipedia. Notice in particular the term “fourthmeal.” Also just to make sure that everybody saw this letter from Taco Bell to 50 Cent asking that he change his nameto “79 Cent.”
Make a run for the border.
Fetch that food! DONG! [imitates bell ringing]
You can munch it! So good!
Taste that food! (*bell sound*)
Change Is Good.
Yo quiero [I want] Taco Bell.
Fourthmeal (Term developed to help promote Late Night day part. Fourthmeal is the fourth meal of the day eaten late at night. In other words, any Taco Bell food eaten after dinner and before breakfast.)
Think outside the bun.
You Need Fourthmeal.
I’m Full! (For the Big Bell Value Menu)
Anyway, a few weeks ago, a friend described his outfit to me as “Full Bernhard Willhelm.” I like that idea that an outfit, a look, can be “full.” I also am very into the notion of fullness not having (unlike the case of the Taco Bell ads) a connotation of good versus bad; it’s simply full.
In fact, isn’t it bad, physically, to eat until fullness?
When I was in this experimental elementary school in Providence, RI, every morning we had to speak and sign the following pledge: This day has been given to me fresh and clear. I can either use it or throw it away. I promise that I shall use this day to the fullest, realizing that it can never come back again. I realize that this is my life to use or to throw away.
What does that mean, I wonder, a full day? To me, it’s about weird correspondences and vertical alignments in language ““ the fact that “one fistful of food” appeared on a plaque in the Bronx Zoo (where a friend who also went to the same elementary school was showing me around) and then a few days later, in my mother’s kitchen in Vermont, uttered by an Australian living in Iceland “” that, to me, is a Full Experience. Two nights ago, I had a sort of ecstatic run across the Manhattan Bridge where it had just started to rain and the concrete looked like the cover of a composition notebook. I ran into a friend riding his bike the opposite directions, and there were trains intersecting in the middle of the bridge, and I was listening to a (really sloppy) recording of Steve Reich’s Sextet and everything was very Full.