Before the weekend long cocktail hour leading to the Sunday night broadcast of the Tony Awards begins (at which point it will have been ONE YEAR SINCE I HAVE HAD A CIGARETTE! — isn’t it nice of the Broadway Community to be acknowledging that — I wish they’d send me gifts or cards — oh wait, they didn’t send those for my birthday — why would they send them for me not smoking — oh wait, that wasn’t the Broadway community — that was my family — oh wait, my family is my friends and they did — oh wait — OH NEVER MIND)… I’ve a few notes … I’ve lost four pounds this week by eating properly and doing ridiculous amounts of gym and bike time for my 150 mile Ride to Conquer Cancer (and I haven’t gotten any donations in two days — come on now, CLICK HERE to give me one) and I have a HUGE pile of books for “summer reading” (I’m out of control) and these shootings … really people? Can’t we do better than this? AND, I was trolled on Twitter by someone who told me I had “no business promoting the sins of men who have anal sex with boys” — oh, okay, well, after I’m done reporting your IDIOT ANAL ASS, I will FORTHWITH start promoting the sins of men who have anal sex with girls. Happy now? I continue to MARVEL at the surprising ways in which surprising people behave — I mean, I understand that I am NO PRIZE MYSELF — I truly, TRULY do get that — but must I continue to be a magnet for every kind of crazy — every kind of dysfunction — ever variety of NUT JOB who wanders and wonders the earth being drawn to me as if I am somehow the vortex of ALL THAT IS INSANE? Can’t I — just once — have a nice, sane sort of someone like — say, young Marlon Brando? Oh, right,he was crazy too. Well, whatever, I will NEVER understand human beings. I am not even sure I want to anymore.
We’ve all got our junk … and my junk is … I’m in love with more than one, always have been, and remain conflicted about what constitutes “loyalty” and “truth” and “fidelity” and “relationship” and, most of all, “love”.
I love books. The physical, actual, glorious, sensual pleasure of holding, smelling, communing with a book. I’m not alone. The Paris Review turned me on to an article from Compound Interest [click here] a site dedicated to the “every day exploration of chemical compounds” about the smell of books. Fascinating. CLICK HERE FOR THE LINK.
Speaking of books, I spent Tuesday with my Mom — who I also love very much — the first time I’d seen her since a few weeks of beaching and house sitting, and I wanted to make sure she had enough large print books to keep her going. She told me she had two and a half. I suggested we use the gift cards she has accumulated to get some more. She demurred, “I don’t want to get too far ahead.” I asked why that might be. In a tone of voice that made it clear we had once again boarded the train for Smith-Baltzell-GenePool-Crazy-Town, she replied, “I don’t want to talk about it.”
“Momma,” I sneered, “Are you saying you don’t want any books left over when you die?”
“Well it could happen any time, and I don’t want to waste money in case it does.”
Now, I suppose there are some of you who would have found such a sentiment touching or noble or something, but I am not one of you. First of all, my mother has a closet full of clothes and shoes that would shame Imelda Marcos and Anna Wintour, such a clothes horse and fashion plate that she is nicknamed for it at Country Meadows, where she lives. It doesn’t seem to bother her to buy a few new clothing items every week, nor does it worry her that when she goes she’ll be leaving behind outfits she has never worn. Uhm, I could maybe READ a book left behind, but I doubt I’ll be wearing a sweater set from Boscovs. And second, she is saying this to one of her multiple children (I won’t mention the others) who has enough books to last not only my lifetime, but the lifetime of the population of a small third-world nation, and still, I continue to accumulate more at EVERY OPPORTUNITY.
Arghh. LOVE. Books. My Mom. And the Tony Awards. I’m a bit irritated this year, as I have repeatedly mentioned, about the snubbing of BIG FISH and why in the world BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY did not get a Best Musical nod, but, still, I will watch the broadcast — but the question is, where and with whom? I found this HILARIOUS video. WATCH:
Love that. Love. So many kinds … so many definitions … all of which are suspect. I was having a brief Twitter convo yesterday about “criticism” and my belief that everything you need to know about this culture is encapsulated in the fact that we have elevated “Criticism” and “Critical Thinking” into careers and educational/philosophical disciplines — rather than having evolved as a people who consider “Appreciation” and “Appreciative Thinking” to be things to which to aspire.
This is one of my current obsessions, the way I seem programmed to be critical rather than appreciative — and I do not spare myself in this; it is my foundational belief that I am all loser, all fail, all the time. (Dare I attribute it to Smith-Baltzell-GenePool-Crazy-Town?) I cannot describe what it feels like to have lived all these decades and believed that I was/am less-than. I am so exhausted, it is, well, and a new phase seems to have begun where I have managed to reach a certain level of what appears as “happiness” by having accepted that I am completely fucked up, just when I think things are getting better-picking up, there will be aknock on the door with bad news reminding me I am a loser and my life is very likely (as in — FOR SURE) going to end with me a babbling, homeless crazy man like some combination of a Bette Midler/Lily Tomlin comical egg-on-the-head bag-lady and tragic Paul Bowles existentially tortured nut-job, going through trash cans looking — not for cans to turn in for cash — but, for books and magazines to read. I’ll have a shopping cart full of words.
But, see now, it’s the weekend. Forget this. It’s time for cocktails and Tony Awards and … judging myself by the narcissistic self-flagellating standards of the body-conscious, youth-obsessed culture and finding myself a loser? (As in — finding MYSELF to BE a loser, as well as, finding myself a LOSER to convince myself is NOT a loser only to be proven — again and again — that if there is ONE THING at which I can win — it is FINDING LOSERS) And having a toast!