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Benoit St-Pierre
An essay in artful conceptualism
An essay in artful conceptualism

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The PFFF! Project

My G+ stream mostly contains the English version of a project called PFFF!, a French interjection akin to "pfft". The name is also an acronym which stands either for Paquet de Faits, de Figures et de Formules, i.e. "a bunch of facts, figures, and formulas" or Pensées sous Forme de Fiches Futiles, i.e. "thoughts under the form of futile entries". You can sift through them by searching with the tag #PFFF .

The project started as a mailing list sent to close friends, est. 2006. My original intent was to dispense with the ideas I collected through the years on index cards and in notebooks: anecdotes, quotes, factoids, etc. I may have more now than I ever had.

* * *

The mailing list format means I post once a day, perhaps twice when I absolutely must reshare a post. I suggest you do the same: tweet like you would be tweeted, plus like you would be plussed, or else I might not follow you. 

This project also implies I do exactly the opposite of what Guy Kawasaki [1] says we should, which is to provide free, original content. If everyone but me followed Guy's suggestion, you'd be all posting my PFFFs.  If you prefer to receive a PFFF ! in your inbox from 3 to 6 times a week, please send me a private message.

My personal archives contain thousands of entries, most of which have not being published on my stream. I don't know how many  there are actually. The numbering system does not help me count them, as it follows an ISO dating scheme for the purported shipping date. I don't care much to count the PFFFs as the project seeks to become a kind of Book of sand:

> A fictionalized version of Borges himself meets an elderly Scottish Bible seller, who hands him a cloth-bound book that he bought in India called The Book of Sand, "because neither the book nor the sand has any beginning or end". Upon opening the book, Borges is shocked to discover that the book, which is written in an unknown language and occasionally punctuated by illustrations, is in fact infinite: if one turns the pages, more pages seem to grow out of the book.

* * *

Once upon a time, I built a Posterous for the project, but got tired of editing the Markdown carriage returns as Posterous was closing shop. Then I built a tumblog, but got tired of the strange Tumblr URLS. Then I built a Wordpress site, which was becoming kinda neat, but got tired of rebuilding the database after the site got hacked.

So here I am, on G+. 

Eventually, it will become a part of a linkbait website that will make me very rich, at least content-wise.


[1] To whom I wish all the happiness offshore paradises can provide:

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Military Involved - (PFFF ! no 20170217) Andorra, Bhutan and Liechtenstein are the only countries America with which are not or have not been military involved.

Magnanimity - (PFFF ! no 20170213) Anatole France:

> In its majestic equality, the law forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, beg in the streets and steal loaves of bread.

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Jolly Roger - (PFFF ! no 20170212) A telemarketer found a way to solve telemarketing annoyances - bots.

Da Big Book - (PFFF ! no 20170210) Teh Donald likes big books, that he can not lie:

> Nothing beats the Bible, not even The Art of the Deal. Not even close.

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Just the Start - (PFFF ! no 20170207) The Soldiers of Odin are secretely wooing the Quebec massacre on Facebook:

> What we’re seeing is just the start. The people are opening their eyes. That’s the part we should be celebrating … The people who are waking up are using violence instead of resisting intelligently. What the [Soldiers of Odin] want isn’t violence but intelligence,

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Let Us Eat Couscous - (PFFF ! no 20170205) Former Liberal minister Marguerite Blais showed her solidarity toward the Quebec shooting victims by buying couscous for three.

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Execorder - (PFFF ! no 20170203) Write up your own executive orders and let teh Donald hold them in his diminutive hands:

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How Not to Sweat It - (PFFF ! no 20171030) In a speech about his own awesomeness, the dictator of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, suggested

> Innovations, IT technologies, privatization -- it is all clear. We've conquered all of them. But all our life is in simple things, we should get undressed and work.

So Belarusians did.

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Göring's Gambit - (PFFF! no 20170129) Teh Donald may only be following through what Hermann prescribed a few decades ago:

> Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger.
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