Sunday, June 10, 2007

air architecture and unmoorings, one of my favorite mp3 blogs, is back:
Shortwave radios, as we all know, are time machines.

Not in any sense that H.G. Wells or Mort Weisinger or Ib Melchior might recognize. Rather, think of the ionosphere as a sort of plasmic Advent calendar with infinite variations. In the architecture of the sky, windows open and close, shape-shift and change coordinates; cross-beams splinter into kindling or gather into thick, verdant, untamed rushes. Space lacks fixity; no scene occurs twice. If there's any parallel to be drawn to those hoary old science-fiction legends, it's the notion that the more one wants to control one's trajectory, the more one loses it.

But, unlike all but the most dystopian of time-travel stories, the correct course of action when travelling on the wavebands is to give oneself over entirely to chance. You're never without reference points - frequencies, bandwidths, the needless distractions of date lines and time zones - but the epiphanies are in the unmooring, the throw of the rudder, the casting of the compass into the sea.

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