"Here the air is as grainy as sandpaper. The skin is raw and rarified and anointed and abraded. Thought is heated to the vanishing point until logic is weak and life is brief as an insect's or briefer, the amount of blood sucked by hookworms in a single night in the jungle of cities equals more than a million bottles. There are mites that survive only in the rectum of a giant tortoise, worms that fit snugly in the quills of a single species of bird. Some butterflies have evolved so far they drink only the sap of one tree. But an angel is a parasite on grace."

- Agoraphobia -- a collection of essays by Carl Watson.

Yeah, But Why Is This Place Called The Birdhouse?

Well, you can speculate on the metaphors arising from the fact that one of the collective managed to grow a Birdhouse Gourd plant in her basement apartment, but the question might best be answered by another question in the form of an email sent by one of our California correspondents:

Pleased as porridge to hear of your recent ornithological pursuits, and hope to nest in your new orifice. Birdhouse: is that a Hitchcock thang, a Charlie Parker thang, a Lester Bangs riffing on Charlie Parker thang, or just some embarrasing Dada mask that you pull out to amuse yourself at lame parties? On the other hand, which is actually my right foot, why work so hard to make it signify when all it needs is an elemental beat, a conversant rhythm, and Maceo to take it to the bridge? I'll be the prowling cat at your birdhouse as long as you stay on the one and refuse to turn Jackson Pollock's soiled dropcloths into the latest raging fashion accessories. Rhythm now, form and meaning will take their shape when they're damn well ready.

-- Roger Moore

Confused yet? Too bad. Plus, birds are freaky. Birds are Max Ernst and Marcel Duchamp, Egyptian symbols of the journey to the afterlife, lunacy and accuracy embodied in feather. Birds locomote in winged chariots, live and die by the worm, mystical composers willing to hang loose wherever they land. Birds are irreverent squatters, treading light and squawking heavy, making nests from found objects.

The Birdhouse Statement of Purpose

Indeed dialectical critical realism may be seen under the aspect of Foucauldian strategic reversal--of the unholy trinity of Parmenidean/Platonic/Aristotelean provenance; of the Cartesian-Lockean-Humean-Kantian paradigm, of foundationalisms (in practice, fideistic foundationalisms) and irrationalisms (in practice, capricious exercises of the will-to-power or some other ideologically and/or psycho-somatically buried source) new and old alike; of the primordial failing of western philosophy, ontological monovalence, and its close ally, the epistemic fallacy with its ontic dual; of the analytic problematic laid down by Plato, which Hegel served only to replicate in his actualist monovalent analytic reinstatement in transfigurative reconciling dialectical connection, while in his hubristic claims for absolute idealism he inaugurated the Comtean, Kierkegaardian and Nietzschean eclipses of reason, replicating the fundaments of positivism through its transmutation route to the superidealism of a Baudrillard."

-- Roy Bhaskar's "Plato etc: The Problems of Philosophy and Their Resolution" (Verso, 1994):

Special bonus! -- Birdhouses galore!

Other ornithologically savvy sites (albeit with somewhat different agendas than ours):