In this article, Louis Theroux, the documentarian of The Most Hated Family in America, describes what the process of going back and making another documentary about the Phelps family was like.
I find the part about the family being victims to their own depravity quite amusing, but I like what Theroux writes at the end:
What emerged to me was I was seeing a family that through its own tortured logic was involved in a long process of tearing itself apart, while denying at every stage what it was plainly doing. Many of their activities are deeply repellent and yet it is also possible to see the Westboro Baptist Church as human beings who, in a weird way, are victimising themselves along with all those they picket.
Too bad, so sad. But honestly, they’ve had it coming.
Okay, so, the metaphysical poets weren’t catastrophically wrong in any sense. In fact, I quite like those guys. George Herbert’s “Death” is probably one of my favorites because of its (excuse the pun) bone dry directness and its (probably) inadvertent hilarity. I mean, thousands of skeletons at the apocalypse dancing in jewelry and nice clothes equals fun and laughs for the whole family. And John Donne, rascal that he was, is a master of form. “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning” is a great poem - all those references to gold and compasses just makes me jittery with glee.
But to the point now. There are some presentations here (NCUR 2011) about the metaphysical poets, and all I want to do is watch the presenters fail horribly. I don’t know why I want this, but I think it would be hilarious. Why? Well, because most of the people that present wonderful research on metaphysical poetry take themselves too seriously or want to come off as incredible scholars of the 16th and 17th century poets of Europe. Get over yourselves! Anyone can do that if required or interested.
Anyway, that’s my beef for this morning, the first morning of presentations at Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY. The sun is shining (behind those clouds somewhere) and the ground is dry (if, by that, I mean wet) and there’s a nice view out of my hotel window (no, it’s not a power converter, it’s a piece of modern art!). Good day, friends.
Three months gone,
she started up
in the employee discount store,
at the seconds table,
a kind of singing, keen
like tin ripping in a big wind.
She made for No. 2, screaming,
“No more lies,
I don’t want to hear no more lies.”
She threw her earplugs in the sand bucket,
went down the 300 alley
and squatted by a sample run.
How they knew,
so quickly and from all over,
they would not be able to say,
but the cloth room emptied,
the canteen, drawing-in.
Women came putting hands to ears,
pushing in the plus,
volunteering to be deaf.
They came to her
and because they knew
there was nothing
she could hear
they squatted with her,
among those strands
the noise was making
Today’s word of the day from the Oxford English Dictionary is thick. One of its apparently many definitions is “to make dense in consistence”; however, this is an archaic form of our current word thicken.
I’m really shocked and awed at how much I’ve been enlightened this morning.
I just saw Somewhere directed by Sofia Coppola, and even though a lot of people gave it bad ratings, I’m going to give it a great one. Sparse dialogue, but dialogue in the right places, and the music was fantastic. Also, I don’t watch a lot of movies, so this is the first thing since Blade that I’ve seen Stephen Dorff in, and I was pleasantly impressed.
So, I’d recommend seeing it when you can.
A friend just let me know about this fun, fun magazine named BOMB, and I have to say, it’s pretty fraggin’ awesome. Get it?
Okay, anyway, awesome interviews with artists/writers/movie folks/etc by other artists/writers/movie folks so that the interviews aren’t completely one-sided. Happy? Yes, happy and so pleasantly surprised.
Now, go support BOMB
(this photo is from BOMB’s website, and I’m pretty sure they have the rights to it, so don’t steal it.)