Rub a dub dub, four nuts (or eight, depending on how you’re counting) in a tub

This Thursday at the DECONism gallery, there’s be a strange gathering in a hot tub — Derrick de Kerckhove, director of the Marshall McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology at the University of Toronto, will host a “What is real?” panel discussion featuring “post-post cyborg, performance artist and visionary Steve Mann as well as virtual reality artist Maurice Benayoun and the French cyberspace philosopher Pierre Levy.” According to the DECONism site, these gentlement will discuss “The topic of discussion will be fictitious truth, virtual fiction, realiction, and conjured reality.”

In my humble opinion, Steve and Derrick are probably two of the non-institutionalized/non-fundamentalist people least qualified to discuss reality. Then again, maybe they’re doing it as dispassionate outside observers. Levy doesn’t seem too crazy, and I like Benayoun’s art.

(I must confess. I’m quite incapable of saying “Steve Mann” without immediately following it by saying “Mister Cyborg” in a Homer Simpson-esque sarcastic voice, which making “air quotes”, a.k.a. “sarcasm tongs” with my fingers.)

The DECONism gallery is only a couple of blocks from my house, and hey, I’m a kinesthetic sort of accordion-playing guy who carries a lot of technology with him, so I’ll probably attend. Boris (a.k.a. “Bopuc” on the #joiito IRC channel at might drive down from Montreal just to catch this.

Besides, I want to see if Steve’s cyber-implants short out or electrocute everyone in the tub.

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