Friday, December 8, 2017

go to a bar and erase the memory of today

No Private Eyes today. Instead a long day culminated in seeing The Disaster Artist again. Took my daughter and her friends.

To be fair, despite my choice of title for today's blog entry, today was not a bad day. It was far from a great day, but it had its moments. I slept in because I've been feeling a little sick the past couple days, then had to deal with some car issues for a few hours, watched a little tv, fell asleep on the couch. Then, The Disaster Artist which, among other things, about embracing the things you do as they are, accepting yourself as you are. There are limits, obviously, to such a thing, but those limits come from actions that hurt other people and making a melodramatic little movie that has become beloved for entirely different reasons than your making it--well, that just isn't that hurtful.

And, I'm there in the theater, sitting there thinkin', you know. About all the stories I've written, the poems, the screenplays, some of them quite badly written really, but some of them, at least in my head, pretty good. And, I'm thinkin' about bad things I've done, good things I've done, and everything in between... Not that I was thinking about every single things I've ever done, of course. I'm too old for that. There are just too many things. But, certain things, things worth remembering time and time again, things worth forgetting (except maybe inasmuch as they got me to this moment right now and Back to the Future taught me long ago that altering the past can be dangerous)...

And, that turned a little flippant in that parenthetical, but that's how it goes. Life in terms of movies. Movies in terms of life. Something like The Private Eyes for example--which I will return to tomorrow (probably)--is like this little slice of joy from my childhood. Like I don't even want to pick it apart and look closely at its dark underbelly and tell all the world (or the tiny corner thereof that reads this blog) what's wrong with it and what sort of shallow or misguided message it sent to my young mind all those years ago.


I imagine a long, indirect line of events from that one movie to the present day, like because I watched The Private Eyes all those years ago, and I was entertained by it, and I saw such simple performances (some quite broad) from the ensemble turn a horrific plot into something hysterical and I was fascinated, and put together with so many other movies from my childhood--all those I've included these past few months in this blog plus so many others that I maybe only saw once or twice when I was young--it fixed in me a need for the big screen, for any story, every story, writ larger than life on the big screen...

Except, not writ larger, because life on its best days can be so large. Those days I was talking about before, the ones worth remembering, the ones worth forgetting. They rip into the fabric of a person, leaving indelible ink stains that shape and reshape who you were, who you are, who you will be.

But also, yeah, writ larger, because movies take so much of life and squish it into an hour and a half (give or take) and then throw it up on that big screen so that a handful of people, or a few hundred people, can experience it all at once, and be both exploded outward into that story up there on the screen, and imploded into their own things inside their heads, their own lives, and the effect is at once universal and individual and seriously, more people need to watch movies, need to go out there into public spaces that at intimate and dark and spread immeasurable joy and immeasurable grief, introspection and escape, and show us who we are and who we can be.

And that makes the movie theater the bar I want to go to. Whether my day has been good or bad. Whether my life is going well or going poorly. A little vacation to put the everyday into perspective.

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