Six months ago Sandy Olkowski threw the couch to the curb and jumped on a plane to Thailand. During the interim she has produced two remarkeable bodies of work that each represent this passage through time. Heraclitus once said "No man steps in the same river twice," which is at once a meditation on the linear nature of our perception of being, and an illustration that the "you" that exists now will not be the "you" that dies, nor was it the "you" that was born. The continuity is an illusion that somehow we cling to..or are rather conditioned to cling to. This is because people are always re-enforcing this false notion of being..one that we like to pin words to. My word is "Jacques de Beaufort". At least that's what my license and tax forms say. The long distance runner or desert island survivor will tell you that this word becomes less and less meaningful as it receeds from utterance. "Well, look in the mirror..that's who you are!", the pragmatist would say. But it is not the "you" that grows the hair on your head..or breathes during sleep that they refer to. It's something that remains invisible and hidden from sight. And I'm not sure if it really can be known with words.
"Escape from the Known" is the latest in a series of short stories that represent this journey through "self" and it's relationship to "other". The boundaries of our knowledge of self often lie at the precipice between existence and death, and this is a theme that seems to be a pre-occupation for Sandy. The violent collision of these opposing forces is manifest for her most vividly in the mutual immolation known as a "relationship", or here more poignantly, in the simple dissolution of the mechanism of cogency we take for granted: memory.