Sunday, June 1, 2008

First post, Welcome!


That's me on the playa in Willcox.
I thought it would be nice to open with a photo.
I admire those skilled in photo journalism and aspire to express myself as fluently as they do. Bear with me as I hone my skill (I had to look up the correct spelling of 'hone' so this could take some time). I'll try to keep it light and interesting for any of those out there with as little patience as I have myself. Is anyone out there? (crickets)
Creativity is important to me, in practice and philosophy. I believe it is the purpose of our existence. We cannot create something out of nothing but we are invited to participate in the continuation of the human legacy on earth. Whether by consequence or design we leave our footprints behind us. While we are a mere flash in the universal pan we are obliged to regard ourselves as significant if for no other reason than our own individual survival. I pledge to make more of my life today than I did yesterday. Though, I may feel differently about that tomorow.
By the way, I am currently searching the cobwebbed corners of my mind to decide who is the finest comedic personality I have ever witnessed. I think right now I really like Martin Short (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001737/). He's so versitile and a bit crazy. I think he does too much but I wonder if he held back if he would be so good. I love his stuff from the SNL days but Jiminy Glick is in the top three characters he's developed. Ed Grimley, of course, is my all-time favorite and Jackie Rogers Jr. was a fantastic display of his inner-wierdness. One of my favorite skits was Jackie Rogers Junior's $100,000 Jackpot Wad (http://snltranscripts.jt.org/84/84pjackpotwad.phtml). Christopher Guest played the effeminate Rajeev with Billy Crystal as Sammy Davis Jr., whom I love babe, and Mary Gross as the nervous Mindy to Jim Belushi's Captain Kangaroo, whose show I watched every day as a child. It was great to see the Captain blow his stack at Mindy versus the duo of Guest and Crystal's characters. But Short tied it all together with his creepy laughing through his teeth and albino costume make-up.
The Great Shelly Berman (http://www.shelleyberman.com/) compared laughing to crying when asked about comedy. He said both were involuntary and expressed more than words can describe or can be comprehended. I like that. I think it's important to look at that comparison and find a way to accept that part of our nature, the unexplainable part, the mysterious and ellusive part. Comedy is creative, and destructive, and important. When things get so bad sometimes we laugh because there's nowhere to turn at that moment but to laughter.
I love laughing and I love the bond it forms between us. We grow beyond the things that made us laugh in the past and I think that's how some friendships end but if we can hold on to what is created in a moment of laughter and continue to grow I think we can be better friends to others and to ourselves. Just as those who suffer together have a bond from that experience those who experience real joy together are bound to that experience as a new creation in their being, a part of them has grown to envelope that experience.
I grew up in front of the television, and to a great degree it has formed my conscience. At 37 I am just beginning to see the difference between reality and television. In general, I am thankful for a lot of what I've learned and experienced, albeit vicariously, through the TV. But I wonder how much better I'd understand joy without having seen it portrayed on TV. I know I'd understand sex better had I not seen it on television. And I know the Dukes of Hazzard didn't help my driving skills any. It's not like I can't tell the difference between people and Muppets, at least by sight. But I think I act like one sometimes, a Muppet that is. And while it is fun and gets a laugh, I wonder how that part of me would be expressed without a televised definition.
The late U. Utah Phillips (http://www.utahphillips.org/) once said something to this effect, that television tells you what to imagine and that you can't have that imagination without the accessories they offer for sale. I agree that I've wasted my imagination on television and much of my time was spent validating my conscience in comparison to what I saw there. But I am thankful for those moments that have added to my understanding and creativity. I remember being a depressed teenager and believing that I had no worth and Bob Ross brought me the Joy of Painting which at least gave me hope in becoming an artist. Even though my self expression is very different from his, I can remember pointing to the fact that this was something that someone other than myself liked and did and supported himself on and I might too succeed in it someday. I'm by no means a self supported artist but, someday.
That word 'someday' is precisely why I gave up on TV this year. I got sick of putting off my life a half an hour at a time to see what some fantastic character did with his imaginary time. I think I may be starting to live my life a little more closely to my abilities. It's more painful now that I can't hide from it in the alter universe of television. Though, I play more guitar now. I talk to my wife more. I play with my kids a bit more. I eat less than I did before...
I blog.

2 comments:

Michele said...

Testing...123...testing.

Michele said...

I was going to take issue with your choice of Martin Short as best comedian; however, I have magnanimously decided to concede the point by stating that Bill Murray is the best comedic actor. We cannot have our home divided by such controversy. Politics, religion, the environment...mere child's play compared with the primordial stirrings that arise within a person forced to defend his views on comedy. Whew. Crisis averted.

I would agree, at least on a subconscious level, that you are rather Muppet-like. You wear the hair well anyway. So, uh, you got that going for you.

I liked your choice of first photograph. It added an aura of profundity to your writing. I could really imagine how hard you were thinking about Capt. Kangaroo strangling Mary Gross. It was all very moving.

I am thrilled to be witness to the maiden voyage of your new life as a pot-throwing guitar playing comedic photojournalist. I already have my first comments ready for the inevitable questions that will arise regarding your humble beginnings followed by your meteoric rise to infamy, uh I mean, fame...Cinderella story out of nowhere...