The abandoned buildings were the most interesting. What type of business was it? What happened? How long ago? As I scan the surroundings, playing a game where I estimate the likelihood of a reopening. The answer isn’t encouraging. These rotting husks aren’t really supposed to be acknowledged. But I know that’s the most accurate story. Right there. A scab I can’t stop picking.
Everyone carries the weight of hope. Hope for that moment when all is revealed.
I am going to eradicate small talk. To continue to traffic in the most irrelevant bullshit is supreme disrespect. To myself, and to those around me. It’s selling the whole species short.
"How was your weekend?" I don’t fucking care how your weekend was. That’s not what I’m after. I value you as a person. I care about you. But these cliched questions aren’t going to tell me much about you. Stock questions produce stock answers. If some really heavy shit went down this past weekend, you will tell me. If it was the same old shit, not mentioning it is no loss. The goal in any conversation with someone is more insight into who that person is. Small talk doesn’t achieve this. It goes nowhere.
I’ll start with those I’m closest to. Or people who I think can ‘hang’ with that sort of thing. It will be more difficult the less I know someone. This is a skill I’ll have to build over the years. If I can get enough of it out there, others will catch on. We’ll steadily chip away the non-versation that constantly takes place. It will be a movement!
This little experiment of writing is brutal. Humbling at first because you discover what a shite writer you are. You confront your own lack of ability. Creative atrophy. Something you devoted years of your life to, left out in the sun to rot. Then it’s further demoralizing as you have to push yourself to simply engage in the act. There are no requirements, other than you must write SOMETHING. It somehow manages to feels like a chore. Like you don’t have ‘time’.
I hope your new albums flops
I hope critics ridicule it
I hope you barely chart
I hope you play smaller venues
I hope people ask for the ‘old stuff’
I hope people stop returning calls
I hope you have to open for a band that wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for you
I hope your label drops you
I hope you post a message on your website to make it seem like you quit the label
I hope it’s an “exciting chance to connect more directly with the fans”
I hope your self-released shit flops worse
I hope you drunkenly tweet embarrassing jabs at other artists
I hope you announce the next day your twitter was “hacked”
I hope you announce the next week you are checking into rehab
I hope you do a Vh1 reality show
I hope the ex wife gets it all
I hope you lose everything
I hope you lose everyone
I hope there’s nothing in the way
Then it will just be us
You better pass the flask
"Welp, only a few minutes left, someone is going to die. He’s gonna get shot or she’s gonna get shot or they’re both gonna get shot."
We’ve all thought something like this in the closing moments of a movie. Or expected a sudden revelation in the final chapter of a novel. All art struggles against the limitations of the given medium. Length, in particular, is a fucking huge one.
As audiences we consciously or unconsciously anticipate the movement of film and literature. Their ebb and flow. This robs them of some of their mystery. Their ability to enchant us.
I want a pure experience. I would love to watch a movie unsure if it lasts 10 minutes or four hours. The advent of new media makes this prospect more realistic than ever. I don’t want a running time, a synopsis, or even a title. I just want hit ‘play’ and let the work wash over me. I want to bestow on the artist an ever-increasing ability to take us on a journey.