“the state of things,’ and I do make reference to the Wim Wenders movie about making a film about making a film on March 2nd, 2010.
What passes for greatness these days is barely more than right above the threshold of mediocrity, either noticeable for: commanding loudness, a translucent reverb of shock-and-awe, a binding pledge to some version of ‘delusions of grandeur,’ a stand-out visual attribute acculturated Love American Style, as in large breasts, perfect cheekbones, a chiseled belly, ‘classic good looks,’ and, if all else fails, brazen stupidity/foolhardy reckless abandon/lack of concern for consequences – as manifest in random acts of chiseled, publicity ploys, overnight sensation, one-hit wonder, wannabe has-been (which may be worse than a has-been wannabe, I’m not sure yet).
…is not necessarily a modicum of ‘talent’ (the whole concept of which should be up for review given the dearth of inspiration, with the cloying groupie, a bad stain, who just persists long enough will eventually enter the consciousness – as someone you should know, but can’t recall and wonder if he/she is important and you’ve just forgotten they were so unmemorable,—as time goes on, as a life moves towards its ultimate sardonic irony, or the joke we all dread (not so much that our whole lives have been a joke, but that there are moments when the ‘hear the joke’ is applied entirely to us, there is no fair-weathered friend within 500 miles).
… all this struggle to live only to be assured of dying – it seems that the ‘how’ is what we spend most our time on, a pre-destined legacy we are sculpting, taking a photograph of a sunset, but not acutally experiencing (sans taking its soul, recording it for a catalog of OCD photo collection # 204. Cataloguing til the say he went into the hospital, the months living with out his beloved just stretched on with nothing to fill them. And when cataloging the human genome project, as it applies to me, since that’s the only authentic reference I have — anything else, fictional or theatrical, has a layer of obfuscation, the excuse of a certain performace approximating the real thing, so adapted by so many chefs of collaborative dick slayers, the tracking of one’s creative input at that point becomes nothing more is just a moot point. YOU can be the most talented bitch-hag on the set, in the conception of the show, in the execution, and still people will slide right past you in ignorance — I always got the sense, that like one of those parents who kinda could live or without you for the most part, that if I did well, it was ‘a phew, appreciation, I don’t have to put out fires sigh of relief’ from the Jewish mafia and whatever the Irish suck-up brought to the table other than levity and a certain vaguity, bordeing on stupidity that just made his being the ‘boss of me’ all that more unbearable. Not to mention he is about as truly creative as a pea, he simulates the standardizatons of creativity but only in joking with contestants and pretending like he is setting up the scene, which is the same basic blocking we do (we have about 5-6 standard set-ups, about 4-5 extras we employ if we care which I did, and 90% of the others did no) — only to have be lean over and say I got your back so he didn’t get reamed out for something that was not really one person’s fault at all, just the nature of the blame-paranoia atmosphere that he, in his finite wisdom, needing to put his crotch in your face as a gesture of dominance, would perpetuate, until I got hip the whole body language thing — and decided to ‘mirror’ (sans the crotch in the face and the nasty, hurtful, blame-oriented, basically insecure person in power, who thinks he is the be-all-to-end all. Not one, “I couldn’t have done this without you.”
Instead, an abusive wife who tried to get me removed on more than one occasion after I bent over backwards to help her be the best producer she could be. I covered her ass on more than one occasion. Usually in payment, I got my ass reamed out the next day by her husband, my boss about something deduced from my actions, through, brain patterns and values, which is mal-spaaen a=f. And then she pulls the things she did, she;s a callllll
The male presences on a shoot can’t help but refer to each other, cutting out the female director (admittedly one of those creative idiot savants who couldn’t reload the gun fast enough to shoot herself in the foot for the abusive years, set the stage from 1969 to 1977 or 78; then the deviant binge-party episodes of holidng together (I was afraid of Joey Brancolli’s LSD, thinking it was PCP and I would think I was on fire and jump out a window.) I didn’t need any of that — any more ‘bad choices’ which were really just blowing off steam over being used by bows returning to their girlfriends, but they didn’t want to trade in fro my model, they just wanted a little variety. I think for women, the variety works only when you’er young, the quest to find somoeone is so strong, so human, I fault my mom for holding on to hurt so long and not being able to heal. But I’m the one who needs my sciatica to heal, my show souls to be treaded, my mental accuity and preparedness to be
There was a thing called your ‘craft’ that you would devote your life to, for better or for worse, like Henry Miller advised, you had to be willing to starve for your art (this said from the bar before a visit to the brothel – ah, the best things in life are certainly not free…), but that has come to mean other things as our world becomes fragmented, a Yale-mandated deconstruction of where the personal meets the political, public and powerful imposed on the anthropolgyy of the death
The transmorgrificaton of all things poetic, an passing desire to be a power-broker in a suit because you know you could have been, all in some sort of goulosh of worldview meets the inherent narcissim (and therefore to be embraced) of creating human value and seeking, largely unrealized until the end of experience, the meaning you bring to the world, however small in perception, however ignored by the media, however unseen by the masses, noted by the critics who advanced Basquiat beyond his mental capacity to cope with the reactions to what he was trying to say, or a Baudelaire who felt more being drunk, brought him closer to the truth of The Fleurs du Evil, as if evil can be presented in beauty.
It’s all in the recognizing of the deeper undercurrents, the history, the way it derives the present (FOR THE MOST PART DISSATISFACTION IN 9 TO 5 SURVIVAL, WHEN YOU HAVE NOTHING LEFT OF THE SOCIAL STRATA OF WHAT IT TAKES TO BE WHAT YOU THOUGHT YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BE. When you are forced to let that go by circumstance, since there are no coincidences.
IT’S taping into Jung, when he’s not obscure, Einstein when he brings it down to earth, Aristotle in terms of how to wrangle the chaos and tell the story down through time to shape our evolution, the artists and writers and media makers/projectors, photographers, musicians, actors, and dancers who perform the dance, they are the dancer to the dance.
The Dame of Sunset Boulevard with a dangerous pool. The age of Cleopatra sets and run-away budgets, for an extravagance now replicated in 3-D, green screen, GCI artists who can create a simulated world we relate to in our future speak, but, if we were wise, would follow up with a retreat in to desert for 40 days and nights for some reconnection to the ancient interconnectedness, where our evolution can be contracted by a pinhole camera kit…
where home movies play on the back of a truck with a big screen and we sit out under the stars feeling familiar and loss but still the common tapping into the vein of creative source, the dark vein thru light rock in a cave, Plato’s cave and Kierkegaard’s reversal of so many assumed positions that were stagnant and didn’t utilize 1/10th of the human brain.
Mostly, you can tell when you look at someone — who has starved for their art v. those sisters-in-arms on the left side of the brain, gone to the commodity; each embraces whatever it is they do, whether stand-up or a poetry reading or singing a song, the desire to say something that adroitly eludes the deconstruction of its parts.
Once textured with the emotions that plague our actions and definitions of who we are in the eyes of others; when you get road weary and honestly perplexed by others’ lack of goodwill towards you, that grinding down of the bright-eyed little girl, the incessantly limitless petty remarks from people in power lording it over you, the patterns that made you the one they would seek out to destroy for being a threat to their hypocrisy.
WHICH leads me to where I am now: I must find the right word, sort of story, sort of philosophy, sort of essay written in the language of the best of Harper’s or The New Yorker stories, when they get the melding of character, place, plot and story arc, or anti-arc, but are committed to a certain POV that someone in the universe must share, it’s just a matter of finding them.
Most revered in fiction / the written word: characters going through life with a developing point of view, since experience cannot be separated from creation.. (whether we are in a stage of grow or stagnate — some stories about ruts are the best in the business) and where that leads you as the person you want to become. It’s the stories that play the game of leaving off in the middle, on some gimmick of clever words that mean nothing, not knowing how it ends themselves so just stopping. I always hated that.
Sure, the idea of ambiguity where characters are going on in some parallel universe, taps into the collective unconscious, and that is what, I think, makes art – that simple intent, however defined, the more it comes close to glimpsing whatever Plato was talking about in his cave of truisms, yet leaving open the details of execution, how the protagonist acts and reacts (which mandates a setting up of situations, character development and overall plot architecture, that sways with the words that come into the mind of the writer, writing the story of his or her life, in an alternate reality).
Sometimes the author just gives up— done with the formality of the short story, a haphazard way of cataloging a series of movements and internal dialogues, the way you’d sort it in Borges’ Library of Babel wile writing for for Harper’s, New Yorker,The Paris Review, The Atlantic Monthly, Ploughshares, Poetry, The Virginia Review, not much Madame Bovary, Mother Courage, Waiting for Godot in there.
I remember the word Squandering coming to me on the bus as the book I would write, and it was as if I could see, feel, hear and taste it coming alive to me right there. I looked at the next star and I took each step methodically, as I left the library on Ivar and dragged myself up towards Hollywood—I was that worn out, that tired, that hungry, skinny and barely alive – I was sleeping on some sidewalk at that point, trying not to freak out, trying to figure it out, repeating the mantra of grace, inviting the love of God, Jesus and Mom, the Holy Spirit, into my ability to cope when I could get that calm arrival trying to survive with as much grace and humility as I could. One day at a time became one hour at a time, became the absolute immersing in the present.
AN incentive to utilize one’s expertise, to unearth a hidden means of achieving that, finding the patron spirit that has been a key in so many artist’s live.
…and that seems okay as long as it gets balanced with time back in the physical world where interaction with crazy people on 5th, either direction, gives more fodder for the creative side of the brain than any podcast on NPR-santioned poets who have arrived because they can reduce and subdue and make it lyrical and unmessy.