THE TYRANNY OF NOW
I am and you are, we all are, living under the star of an age which pressures us to live in the
moment. Leave the past behind, nostalgia begone. Don’t worry too much about the future.
Live in the now. Now. What a loathsome word, which means so much and also nothing at all.
If I told you that I am writing now and you would read this, at any point in time, afterwards, of
course, the now forever refers to a present moment in the past or a moment of presence
from the past. My past, my presence, not yours. By adding ‘now’, I am stealing your now
from you, detaching you from your moment. Fake friend.
Music of the now, photography now, nowness. Here we see the concept of now expand. It
no longer is a moment in time, but it covers a timeframe, a period, a very vaguely defined
time/space of the zeitgeist. Of the now, as in not of yesterday and not of the future.
Hypercontemporary. So now!
Now has gravitas. The strongest instance of now I met in Hitler’s saying: “ And now you rue
the fact that you’ve been so kind.” Look at what the and did, placed before it. It created from
the now the mental/emotional space AFTER an event, after kindness. Now now is in the
future, placing a sort of regret on your present state. You, you’re in the past. No longer now.
Now is perverted. You can add it to almost everything. You can add it to almost everything
now. Similar sentences, but those three letters at the end suggest that your present is in a
state of decadence, that before was maybe better. Not now. Do you get it? Do you get it
now? Sounds like I am getting angry, perhaps I am. That we have to be constantly present
actually angers me. We should enjoy being late for things because it’s never a question of
now or never. It’s always now or not now. Later. You should allow yourself moments of
de-tension. Because really, however way you put it, you and the now, you never meet.
Here the lies of Facebook: X uploaded a photo. When? Just now. But you missed it, the now
is elusive. Now also stands here for non-time. Not a minute or an hour ago, but NOW.
Now, if I start a sentence like this, I’m drawing attention to what I am saying. It’s nothing to
do with time, I’m just being assertive. Now is assertive, but in the style of the honey badger.
It just takessss what it wantsssss. But I’m not trying to be mean now. By adding now at the
end, I softened the blow. I brought you back to the present; I might be mean, but right now,
in this very moment, I’m definitely not. Not now.
Not now is an interesting one. It means ‘leave me alone’, but contains a negation, it’s a
double negative expression through meaning and form. The now has cold dark depths to it.
Now now, let’s not jump to sinister conclusions. I’m being condescending, telling you off.
A simple doubling of the now and it gets itself an attitude. Haughty, bossy.
The now looks down on us.
Now more than ever.