You are invisible. You have finally logged off. What now?
Can you exist without tapping into the grid? Is being humanlike with human'ness a liability?
Embrace the singularity with open arms, and give it all you have is the slogan of our master's. You are worthless without it. It's seduced us all.
Who and how and will the rebellion begin? Or, will Arnold come back from the future to protect us from another, even darker future?
Tyler was a bastard. He pinned Susie down. He spit on her. He tossed her around like a rag doll. He tried repeatedly jamming his fingers into her vagina. He was evil.
Susie would fear the moments alone together.
One day Susie bought a big hunting knife from Big Five Sporting Goods. When she found Tyler tending to his piece of shit, 1990 Kawasaki Ninja 250R, she rammed the monstrous knife into Tyler's left eye.
She uttered only one word; "Idiot".
The knife stuck a few inches deep, while a screaming Tyler moved about wildly, howling ever so higher pitched until he dropped to the ground.
Susie watched with a sort of amused bewilderment. The blood, the screams, the man grounded by flesh frailty.
Thumbs up Susie. You had a good day, as I've been told.
If consciousness is an expression of an inner feeling, where does absolute objectivity stand?
Is it by numbers, a sort of democratic assemblage of human consciousness?
The complicated messy stuff however, can usually not be commodified in hyper commercialism, so, let's not bother with things that have negative zero's attached.
Anyway, this exercise starts with its own hyper assumption. The big "if" is hypothetical mumbo and jumbo. To be fair, we all need a place to start, right?
Remember those starry nights, filled with wine, in a friends patio, discussing the lofty. Expressing the ideal's, the grand, and often, the built up skepticism of adulthood and trying to find THE PLACE.
Thinking is becoming more and more crowded with iphones, instagram's, Bielbers and articles about Yahoo buying Tumblr.
Who gives a FUCK about Yahoo buying Tumblr? If you do, we are not simpatico. Sorry, time is limited and you are a marshmallow.
Sometimes confusion arises when we think we need to follow a script, a plan set fourth, mostly discovered by piecing together other paths set fourth in our peripheries.
Follow the leader. See, this is how it was done before. This is how (insert name) did it.
But, you are clearly you, and not that other (BLANK ) person. So, trust yourself, and trust IN yourself. Lead. It's scary. But, aren't we all scared anyways?
Following the script might be good when you're doing a studio picture and the committee is looking over your shoulder, but in life, a script is nothing but fantasy plots. Or worse, an excuse to do nothing.
Adding to the universal catalogue of #tbt for the first time, I thought it a great opportunity to join in and contribute to the grand fall of civilization.
Sometime in 2007 was my first time forming a band with more than one person in it. And in the summer of '08, it was the first time I wrote songs with lyrics and the first time I tried to produce an album on my own. My bandmate Art came aboard as well to try his hands behind the instruments as well. And this was all first times for me because music is not my first endeavor.
I had co-produced my first instrumental Shanks and the Dreamers album (A DAY LATE; INSTRUMENTALS FOR ILLEGAL ALIENS) a year before, but this was different. This one had vocals, this one had songs.
It was a crazy time, and a crazy pursuit, since I didn't know much about the recording and post process (A DAY LATE was mostly recorded live with one takes). I was also in grad school, doing film/video projects and maintaining a job that I might discuss at a later date. But, I went in and got down with recording anyways. And I'll admit it, the overall mix is not very good. But, that's with that hindsight knowledge. That’s that aftermath bullshit.
When we wrapped the mix, my bandmate Art traveled to NY to Masterdisk to get it mastered since my schedule wouldn't allow me. And at the legendary Masterdisk no less, home of some of the best mastering engineers in the world. I can only imagine their auditory horror at this lo-fi, hodgepodge, too often mono mixed, crazy bedroom album. But, shit, they took the money. And, it ended up sounding mostly better. And, I still love some tracks on that record.
If I had waited to learn everything, I would never attempt to take it on with reckless abandon. Once you think you've learned enough, the world starts to simultaneously slow down and speed up in the most inopportune ways. You become overly cautious. Don't do that to yourself. Just get in, and do it. Regret it later. Learn from it. And, take that leap again. You'll never learn enough. That's the idea, the beauty of creative pursuits.
Once you become a PRO, you're an industry. You appease the mass because you expect that paycheck, but you're no longer relevant in the absolute sense. You're the status quo. In the hip hop metaphor, you’re basically rhyming about mad money in every verse because that’s your only reference point. The industry. So, have fun in your obscurity. It's the greatest time you have to take on the world.
This was the video for HUSH from the SHANKS AND THE DREAMERS album MY DARLING DIA. This was one of the better produced tracks. Well, at least the stereo image is fuller. It features my good friend Stephanie Lambert, was produced by myself and Art Toussi, and I shot it mostly in my bathroom.
If your still interested, these are some of my favorite tracks from that album; EXTRAORDINARY MACHINES, HUSH, CAMEL CRUSADER, 777, CHARLIE GET A JOB, WHITEHOUSE ( trivia, the instrumental for Whitehouse was used in Rick Curnutt's fantastic film, Free Lunch).
The question of relevancy is always an important one when the arts, cinema or any cultural element is discussed, thought about, and perused towards some end.
We can always put our heads down and slog through the terrain, to do what we love without ever needing to be self aware of our place, or our goals, both collectively and individually. But, that's a simple pursuit. Valid as any, but, shallow in scope.
Instead, and often, we think deep and long about our place in the world. And, as the world changes in rapid succession, in a culture that Alan Moore deemed "The Culture of Steam", when discussing the immediate future, certain trends emerge. And to clarify, I believe Moore was discussing the ungraspable future culture, as predetermined by technology and its interplay with our old world evolution.
This is the time of the instant update. And, you can look no further than the emerging talent of today to really understand what this means. In music, the perpetual mixtape was the start, but the further you push that along, the more you get to the current state. Just like instagram, music has also morphed into the weekly song/video style most prominent in hip hop. I like to use hip-hop as the example, because it's elements are very immediate. It's production, usually fast, and wordplay doesn't necessarily need to be written.
Acts like Lil B and Riff Raff elude to a changing landscape where they are always on the cycle of relevance, because, they mimic the culture of the internet itself. They are both shrewd, entertaining and showman promoters. They are a new species of music artist. Self aware, skilled, entrepreneurial, shameless and momentum oriented. And regardless of what you think of them, they continue turning critics into fans, by sheer willingness to be out there, to take the brunt of "haters".
In an alternative way, if Riff Raff put out a few videos, and waited for something to happen, nothing ever would. This is a critical difference between the old and the new. The closest example in the film world would be someone like Joe Swanberg. But perhaps, there are countless other "video" artist who are better examples whom I just don't know. Tim and Eric immediately came to mind as the television version, but the metaphor is not as clear. Adult Swim nurtures these changes, and was willing to take those risks years ago. In the world of books/blogging, look no further then Seth Godin.
In a disposable age, perfectionism isn’t valued because we just don’t have time for it. By the time it’s perfect, the world moved 10 steps ahead. I know, your ol school idealism doesn’t want to deal with it. Whatever.
The question is, in this new landscape, what if you turned it off. What if your video didn't come out on that Wednesday, or that you stopped your twitter'ing and vine'ing and facebook. What if you get sick? What if you don’t make three films a year? And what if, you weren’t birthed into a career before this all happened? You know, in the old timey days (pre 2005) when things work different?
The constant hustle and digital sharecropping reminds me of Jaron Lanier's critique of the internet and the middle class. You can hustle on that street corner all you want, but, when you get sick, well, you're fucked. But, at least you’re relevant. :) (smiley face)
We set ourselves up to impossibilities. Earlier this year, I decided to update this journal everyday. This is a simple task of discipline. And although I've said this in the past, I never committed to it until the last few months.
But...but, I fell off the wagon, as per course. With all that pent up will power and positive 80's self talk shit, I failed at keeping my word.
But...but why? The simple answer is that it was never THE PRIORITY. As soon as I was forced on some writing deadline for bigger projects (ie: feature film) and an editing responsibility that was exciting (YOUNG BUCK - The Video), I no longer felt the obligation to hold myself accountable. Same goes for my beard, haircuts, and keeping mad muscles.
The bigger forces overtook the smaller. This is weak sauce 101. I could have done both and all. But, I choose the less stressful route. The route that left me some metaphorical jerk-off downtime.
And, for my own soul, that works better. Because sometimes a motherfucker just has to sit down in front of the TV, regardless of the pretentious post-academics or over achieving ass-hats that add shame to the game.
Do what works. As long as you work. Your flow triumphs checklists and made up discipline. But try not to become a weed smoking, video game choking, fast food hoarding, eternal neophyte. And, even if you do, make sure you go all out, with breaks in-between. Also, call your mother once a week.
I've been in the Judge Dredd editing booth trying to wrap a cut of something, before I have to turn it in to someone else, who has to do something to it, whom then has to pass it on.
And beside writing a million fucking death defying scripts, I just haven't had time to be consistent with updates.
So, with that said, here is a piece I did a million years ago. It's sell able.
Low culture, sometimes deemed "trash culture" is where we are. Escapism, transfusion plus fetishizing is the state. Pop lives in this space mostly, but, it's always had the ability to move between cultural hierarchies. At present, it loves trash, the audience devours it, and the appetite grows because priorities have changed.
But, can we truly call anything pop anymore? Exceptions exist, but when history is perpetually the present, it's difficult to have a true pop culture. Pop relies on memories. It happens, and it was that thing, but then it goes away. It was silly, and we loved the novelty of it.
However, thing's don't really go away anymore, they get continued, rebooted, or dressed in a new shiny shell. And we don't have the options to forget. We only have options to filter. And boy oh boy, that net is polluted.
the best policy for productivity is ignoring. tuning out. while a few might make some short waves by pounding on that online ruckus, the overall effect is a net-loss. i can't quantify it. nor, do i want to. but, in that marathon, your just not doing the work.
so, a little honesty goes a long way. how bout a little self reflection to find the truth. do your morning online rituals help. how bout those constant novelty searching intuitions that arise from boredom.
the best question might be, why are you so bored in the first place?
ps: i didn't capitalize anything. that is mad artsy.