A Mashetter from the Editors

By Carol Novack and Mark C. Marino

Mad Hatterly Carol: So here we are with Version I of the issue everyone’s been waiting for. And though the bulk of the issue’s out a bunch of months after we’d anticipated, it’s well worth the wait. Just to think, LA new media man, I never knew that mashing could be so much fun! Forget hyper-bolic texts and Olympian restraints, mashing’s IT, baby!

Mark Madly: And Mashing is I. T. in this issue as we've harnessed a new Ath-tell-olla 64 megaggig processor to serve you the most smashing mashup issue ever. We had to, just to keep up with those megawatt artists that Mad Hatters downloads when it puts out a call. They were frying our fibre optics.

Carol Bunkerly: Wow, I’m fit to be fried. I’m just so IMP pressed, MM! This issue is awesomely huge and the cast includes THE most stellar of playful and unconventional literary stars. Truly cosmic! But how can we possibly single out the best of the best for our rave? After all, there are writers who’ve published “acclaimed” novels, others known for their prowess with filmic forms, still others who offered quirky language-centric poems and poetic fictions ripe for the mashing. And all those would-be mashed writers who so innocently trusted us to find them gifted masheurs! Not to mention those gifted writers who gave us their pre-fabricated mashes, and the masheurs who turned up, in flagrant dialecto, to do our bidding!

Bunklishly Marker: But what is mashing anyway? Is it an querulous exquisite corpse? Is it a maddening montage or medley or mocha blend? Is it video and audio mixed in with some smellio-teleo-kino? Or is it two minds wrestling over an intractable text? (Sorry, not sure what came over me in that last one). ... We did have some guiding rules (didn't we?) I think I left them on your bathroom counter -- but you picked them up to blot your lipstick before going out to see "The Dark Side of Oz" over in So-Harlem or Brooklonx or some such place where you fictionate and poetize. I seem to remember there was some constraint about inappropriation.

Blushingly Carol: Now now, MM, I always blot my lipstick on the cats, and I arrived too late to experience Jeremy Hight’s collaborative definition of the Universe with (among others) Mary Mackey, John Bennett, Hugh Fox, Lynn Lifshinn, Tom Bradley, Peter Ciccarriello, Larissa Shmailo, Davis Schneiderman, Amir Parsa, Visored Burgeonette, Maya Diablo Mason, Suchoon Mo, Megan Milks, and Karen Garthe! Your thorough summary of the mash is preserved and pickled at its post! Perhaps you’d care to summarize your summary here? But I’ll tell you what I love about the mashing process, since you asked. It’s the sheer delight of creating a new work of art from two or more sources, textual or/and otherwise. Whether or not the original works are recognizable is inconsequential, don’t you think?

Smashed Hatterly: The mashup smashup is the joy of taking the peanut butter and cramming it into the chocolate. White + Black = Grey Album may be just too neat for our project. Exquisite corpses, cadaverous cousins of mash-ups, put no toe tags to mark source texts. Mosaic pieces don't identify the sea glass from which they were chipped. This is a mashing unbound, unbridled, unBrideshead and unrevisted, broadly misunderstood, abused and reimagined into all artistic practice. Put the Tale of Gilgamesh in with a floody folktale, bam, Genesis. Take Phil Collins out of Genesis, what do you get? Mike and the Mechanics. This isn't about montage but collage and collision and a healthy dose of chaos. It is the artistry of the twister, not the obsessive curio cabinet of the curator. It is the gumbo not the souffle. We have handed our participants hammers for their busts of Caesar and asked them to smash Lido and the Swan while they're at it to make a wide-hipped ruler with a beak. No, the source material has served its purpose once it adds its blues to the eye shadow of Neferti. IT gave its life in the service of the Mad Bunkers Review.