Conclusion: Sober Futurity
The conclusion proposes that even a project as capacious as this one in its imagining of work and value must delimit the field of obstructions whose embraces it advocates. Initially considered for such advocacy but finally excluded from the roster of obstructive use are two vivid phenomena, exhaustion and worry. Both adhere to the definitional model of obstruction (distinct from obstacle) elaborated in this book, yet within each phenomenon, not enough value inheres to compensate for their tolls. The caution taken in approaching these last two obstructions animates, as well, the conclusion’s reading of the Web series Drunk History, whose stunning yet unsettling arrangement of embarrassment, laziness, slowness, cynicism, and digressiveness suggests, finally, a tempering or modesty in the uptake of obstructive work or in the affirmation of obstruction’s value. Likewise, if the present and near future may be marked by acts, affects, and attitudes more hopeful than the obstructive ones constellated and interpreted here, then the hope ought to be a queerly humble one, not diminished but sustained by that very humility and its queer form.