Lipton’s Journal/February 7, 1955/462

From Project Mailer

Crooks are interested in the trip, and that is why their loyalty is to the moment, to the particular idea, cause, person or valuable they are attracted to at the instant. (Some time examine the difference between instant and moment,[1] it has to do with I and me.) Instant—I-and-not-society-take-and-not-take. Moment—Mother of me no take. Mother do not take. We take moments (we feel) we give instants by not taking them.

For example: In an instant he was off the floor and at me again. (I did not feel the instant in which he was down, I did not go through the eternity of Victory (and defeat) while he was down, I was waiting for him to get up.) But the other example is: (It was one of those moments in which one lives one’s whole life.) We would never dream of saying, It was one of those instants in which etc. So, the instant belongs to society, it is time, it is number. (Why o why do we call the unit of time a second?—Is it Sociostatic—that is to fuck up our primitive understanding of language?) But a moment is a part of being, it is Homeodynamic. The ‘ing’ is always passivity, the state of something, the implication of everlasting life in the transient instant society allows us. That is why the feeling of loving always seems as if it will last forever at the instant we have it.


  1. Mailer forgets that he has examined this difference in entry 204. Lipton’s, like the journals of Emerson and Thoreau, is studded with repetitions and reconsiderations.