Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Saturday, May 21, 2016
ah, what would it be like to walk through 'The Museum Of Myself?' very embarrassing, i'd think. true, i always wanted to be a cultural hero, yet when i get right down to it, the attention would have locked me up in where i've been instead of where i'm going.
i'm a browser, so this information age is meant for me. for example, i've always enjoyed the art and energies of Friedensreich Hundertwasser, and austrian painter and ecological evangelist. he put his work where his mouth is. here's a delightful, if rather too much, video on youtube (you can find many more):
looking at everything he did, i feel like a schlemiel. how do i justify myself? at the moment, sitting on top of a mountain, the snow flailing around the lookout, i keep doing the dangerous thing of asking, 'what does it all add up to?' Goethe and everyone of consequence, says, 'you can only complete your work and self in solitude.' unfortunately, that fit all too well with my hermetic nature.
SO IT'S ALL OVER? the portugese poet Fernando Pessoa, said, 'Don't lose touch with your own mythology.' and i do have such a package of illusions, and Mark Twain said, 'Don't give up your illusions. You'll still be alive, but you won't have a life.' just having had my 76th birthday by accident, an event very unreal to me, i'm trying to find excuses for myself, a way to go on.
this morning i viewed the different trails i've taken. i did learn to write poetry and plays and to direct plays. i did enough travelling to feel like an expert, though i'm not. and about the last fifteen years of photography, i can look through the photos and not blush. once i even wrote songs, took singing lessons, and got to a coffee house status. then i gave it up. performing music for me too social.
forty years writing, a few months singing, giving a few stand up comedy speeches, fifteen years taking a million pics a year. hmm, i'm starting to think quite well of myself, especially since i find pleasure in my own creations. would too much applause have stopped me in my tracks? being very thin-skinned, i've always thought so. and i wanted to go on poking around in my own inner world.
alas, i seemed finished with the tasks i've set myself, very aware my words will not grace a Parthenon or be spoken in a cathedral. right now i know i'm a speck of sand on the beach. that given, i think i may have discovered a new task: living each day as though it were a small lifetime, like a butterfly. separating today from all others days makes it significant, special somehow. every time i leave my body for a memory, i pull myself back to feel the tingle of my toes, the light sinking into my eyes.
and as a footnote, i've watched the documentary "Finding Vivian Meier" on netflex six times. a woman who worked as a nanny and took thousands of street photos, which she put in storage and died. luckily, an acolyte found the negatives and she's world famous. as those who knew her said, 'she would have liked the work having recognition, but the accolades would have made her shrivel up like a raisin.'
Sunday, May 1, 2016
i very much appreciate your weekly column. with all your ideas of how the human form can adapt to a toxic situation on earth and chemical ones on other planets, you provide hope for the future of the species. it may not be a pretty picture, however when a dinosaur morphed into a bird, did it care or even notice? all it wanted to do was survive.
alas, or unfortunately, the people writing you wannabe scientists. they ask about flips and buttons, managing joints and trajectories. in other words, nerds. i too am in that category, having invented and patented a machine to feed unruly children. that has been perfected to my satisfaction and the company's. i would like to ask a more personal question.
you see, i'm old enough to die respectably, many of my acquaintances and friends have already departed to zone 2. and having made my contribution to the human family, i can consider my life a success, in the ordinary way. on the other hand, i've been working to put together the creature of my life into an even more shining order, if only for myself and the press. i'd like to leave an image of what the ideal life (human being) can be.
my first attempt, thanks to thomas edison, turned out to be a light-bulb. built of bright, clear glass with adequate illumination, it could be used as a lighthouse, perhaps in outer space. our depleted atmosphere so thin and shallow, it could shine like a star. but, even though i've picked the brightest shining moments of my own history to construct it, the shell very fragile. i don't think it would even survive one take-off.
setting it aside, i worked with the leftover, rather nasty stuff. i thought, why not, dr. frankenstein did? i had hoped to convert lead into gold. it, instead, looked like a cross between an alligator and a sponge. if i were setting up an alternate universe, i might be able to use it somewhere. as an object meant to inspire mankind under present evolution, it might undo the great work you've done to provide hope.
well, what do i do with a light bulb and an alligator sponge? could i put the monster the bulb, letting the light transform the ugly creature into a magnificent, tough brilliance? i tried it. again, failure. i could only send the deformed to other planets, a image of horror. okay, the light bulb into the monster. that held promise. maybe the scaly skin and porous sponge could protect my divine light and the light transcend all other examples.
this got me in trouble with the local authorities. the lucid, stunningly lit house with teeth scared the cats in the street and the neighbors. i had to shut down the operation until i could get the permits to resume, and this city is tough. now i'm sitting on the couch, aging and with conjecture trying to at least come up with a metaphysical concept. after all, everything begins with an idea.
only i haven't got one, the reason i'm writing you. how does one create a image of their own life they can happily die with? a tremendous puzzle, don't you think, and worthy of your attention? hopefully you will get to this message before i'm gone. i'm trying like hell to hold on until i can be elevated with a smile on my face.