29 September 2019

I wrote this really long and embarrassing post about how I’m not going to see new movies in theaters anymore, but I don’t know, whatever . . . I’ll spare myself the shame for once. That was actually the first paragraph of the thing. TO WIT:

LISTEN: I am cripplingly, paralyzingly aware how I come off. Is it better to know how ridiculous you are, and to carry on anyway? Or is it better to be ignorant of yourself? I reckon the latter can be more forgivable and even endearing. You tell me, man. I know what I am, and maybe I don’t like it so much, but at least I feel the weight of my own stupidity, even if it doesn’t stop me from continuing to be stupid.

All I wanted to say, really, is that in the last three years I have seen only a handful of movies in a movie theater on purpose. I have liked almost all of them, because I sought them out specifically, having liked the director for many years, and so on. It seemed like a sure bet is all. I will continue to adhere to this guiding principle: that I only go see a new movie in a movie theater if I “”trust”” the people who made it not to waste my time or make me wish I were dead. It is not a bad policy I don’t think. As far as old movies go: I will continue to watch the heck out of them in movie theaters, hopefully one that is devoid of any people, which I can usually pull off if I go on an unpopular night, which tend to be Tuesdays.

I’m done, baby! What do I need with any of it anymore? I’ve got a Plex media server running twenty-four hours a day via a massive external hard drive hooked up to my computer. I have almost four hundred movies on it, all of which I picked myself, and it looks like this:

It’s a big huge Santa Claus sack of High Art and Gorgeous Trash. Sometimes these two things intersect, and then you have a truly beautiful thing. Plus! I share it with my friends. At any given time there are like three or four people watching things, usually The Simpsons (lol).

And! I have the Criterion Channel. It is the only thing I subscribe to. What kind of absolute psychopath would use any other streaming service? I know I sound like a snob, but whatever man. You know all that stuff is absolute brain poison. Why would you do that to yourself on purpose? And pay for it??

Like, come on:

LET’S FACE IT: new movies fucking suck, and so do TV shows. In the last week I’ve watched TAXI DRIVER and CASINO and A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS and BULLITT, and the whole time I’m sitting there a-hootin and a-hollerin and I can’t help but wonder how it all went wrong. There are many symptoms of artlessness which are screamingly obvious to me the few times I’ve had to bear witness to New Stuff. There is something cheap and sterile and, worst of all, insincere about it all that I could probably write a thesis on if the very thought of it didn’t make me want to eat part of my own neck.

If you make and / or consume gutless insipid trash then I got no sympathy for you. And as for you cheese-eaters in LA and who would admit at a party or on a date with zero irony, and without having been asked, that you went to film school: Go right ahead and continue making movies whose posters and billboards that I completely ignore when I’m walking down the street.

A hell exists on earth? Yes. I won’t live in it. That’s me. And listen: as I vaguely mentioned above, things can be both stupid and extremely good. I have accidentally been part of so many conversations where people don’t believe this truly exists. It is a failure of your imagination that the two must be mutually exclusive. Some of the best stuff ever created lives inside that secret place where highbrow and lowbrow share the same bed. I love that stuff a lot. But if something doesn’t have balls, and nothing to chew on, and is merely A Product With No Driver At The Wheel, and which does not serve The Master, being the heart of the thing itself, which all the individual elements feed into, and which all great art accomplishes, or at least strives to . . . then get it away from me!!

Here are all the movies I have seen in theaters in the last three years: LOGAN, DUNKIRK, PHANTOM THREAD, YOUR NAME, BLADE RUNNER 2049, MANDY, THE DEAD DON’T DIE, ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD. I have omitted four or five other movies I saw either because I left the theater and never thought about them again, or they were so egregiously bad that they stuck around in my brain as a cautionary tale, and eventually lead me to the executive decision I made and have outlined here re: not seeing new movies in a movie theater anymore.

Laura and I were talking about it the other day, and it’s like . . . if you consume bad stuff, then you’re just setting aside space in your brain to store that bad stuff. It’s like filling your attic with boxes full of rat turds. Forget that! A long time ago I stopped listening to new music, and with the exception of a few Murakami books I read in college, I’ve never liked modern novels, so I’ve never read any. None of it is saying anything, which is honestly really pathetic and gross. I have my critical faculties straight up dialed in at this point. There are so many things that have existed for a long time, and which we consider to be significant to human culture, so much so that we still listen to and watch and read them. In other words, they have been baptized by time, and we have remembered them and lovingly preserved and carried them with us through many decades and centuries. They continue to say things to us, and in many cases contain universal truths about existence and being human and all that other horseshit. That’s cool! I have enough of those kinds of things to last me the rest of my life, and I’ll still never scratch the surface, so I’ll just stick with that. OK?? And! Don’t get me wrong, there is definitely good stuff still being made. You just have to find it is all. Many of my favorite movies have come out in the last ten years. I mean, lord, have y’all seen INHERENT VICE or MANDY? I’m getting chills just thinking about them! And I saw them because I trusted where they came from, as lame as that sounds. It’s not that I hate everything. I actually love things so much that it is a sadness to me when they end up being hollow and lifeless. I’m upset because I want them to be good!

Oops! I guess I ended up rewriting that embarrassingly childish thing I set out to destroy, and only briefly mention in simpler terms. Oh well. The sea levels are rising and we’ll all be dead sooner than later, so what does it really even matter anyway. Eventually we probably won’t have new movies at all, or food and potable water for that matter, and then, like the fella said, we can walk hand in hand into extinction—one last midnight, brothers and sisters, opting out of a raw deal.

Should extraterrestrial life descend upon our dead planet many years later, I hope they will find in the ruins of the Library of Congress all the good and beautiful things we set aside because they were created by little angels among us who saw beyond the humid hell of existence and who weren’t, thank god, totally full of shit!!!

28 September 2019

man yeah i have been saying this (alone (inside my own head)) for years now

26 September 2019

HEY

Some of you have been writing me emails, what with my having disappeared from the only SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM I use. Really it has been nice to not use it. I’ll go back soon. But in the meantime I’m having me a real good time writing emails again. I hope to have replied to all of them by tomorrow night! I am touched that y’all cared to make sure I’m still alive.

In other news, my washing machine has been broken for probably two months. The new one is beneath a tarp in my backyard. I suppose there’s no telling when the repair guy is gonna come install it. My landlord has been promising for weeks that this son of a bitch is en route, and lo, he is still out there somewhere. All of this is to say I washed my clothes in my bathtub yesterday. It wasn’t so bad. I mean hell, the dryer still works . . . you just got to wring that shit out before you toss it in there.

Anyway here’s a picture of Laura and Dante I took last weekend:

And here’s a picture of Bart Simpson’s ass I took last night:

I just gulped down a passion flower pill so I’m about to be all goofed up. I like passion flower dreams . . . they are nothing like melatonin nightmares. I have been having beautiful dreams. Yeah! OK. Good-night y’all~ ☆彡