So this is how the week went. I started off after the national school walk out with one of my silly little observations about things talk show hosts say, like “you can’t make this stuff up.” I’m a writer. Yeah, I can. It’s called imagination. HP Lovecraft, Giovanni Boccaccio, Homer, HG Wells all wrote some pretty crazy sh… …or this one: “went missing” No one goes missing, like no one goes disappeared. A person is missing. A person has disappeared.
And then I would spin that off into something about the limits of language and how the wording of the 2nd amendment is reinterpreted and mythologized by all sides, and how everyone assumes they know from written words alone what someone meant 230 years ago—the same people by the way who will fly off the handle on Facebook because they don’t understand the writer’s context without an emoticom or LOL afterwards .
Every week before the show Kerri walks into the station and asks if I want an extra copy of the show schedule she printed out, and I always tell her that I’m usually still working on it right up to show time.
This morning cooking breakfast I recalled a caller sometime back named Peggy, a conservative listener. We were talking with singer songwiter val leventhal, and I asked what we have we lost. Peggy called and was angry because I had kicked over these monolithic assumptions in her mind and I just kept kicking them over. Why could my dad on a steelworkers union and part-time volunteer firefighter’s salary afford a house, a car and a family, or my first job in 1978 bagging groceries in a small town, how could the produce department manager at Jewel, now a $15 dollar an hour job, afford the same thing on a union salary? What happened in that 40 some-odd years that it now takes both parents working sometimes several jobs to barely accomplish. That should be the fundamental question for everything.
As far as Art is concerned…
There was a time in this country when the media sought out writers and artists. And people placed more value in their views that it did in lawyers. They found value in people who observed and dissected humanity over those who profited from and cannibalized it.
I was laying in bed this morning when I recalled walking along an empty stretch of road in Serbian-held Bosnia, close enough to the front that the earth trembled under my feet and the artillery reports thudded in my chest. the Serbs were suspicious of journalists and lawyers, especially Americans. In old Yugoslavia journalists and lawyers were functionaries of the state, while Artists were dissidents, quietly exalted by the people as standing and striving for something more human than the state.
Emblazed upon my pack were the words Umjetnick, Kunsler, Artist, and once people realized I was an artists and not a journalist I was embraced, invited into homes, protected…and even got two marriage proposals.
What have the lawyers and their media patrons given us that is different from any administration in the last 50 years? They sell us the flags for opposing teams, but the rules of the game never really change. If you believe there is no fundamental difference between the Bush, Clinton, Obama and Trump administrations, you are too much in that game.
But Art is something altogether different. It is a way of seeing, of truly critiquing not just the body politic but in uplifting humanity and illuminating the perils of hubris and the possibility of dreams.
Recently, Kerri and I have been posting quite a lot about the origins of Art. We have posted stories of pigeons capable of disseminating good art from bad, evidence that aesthetics is endemic not to humans alone but may be secured within our evolutionary DNA. Evidence for that in mankind reaches back, for what still remains of the archaeological past at least 350,000 years, far beyond the emergence of Modern man and Neanderthals. Certainly farther back than organized economics, and certainly capitalism…and perhaps even lawyers.
New research reveals that the same parts of the brain responsible for creativity also engage language and community. These are the fundamentals…and reminding us all of these fundamentals and what we’ve lost and what there is to regain… that is the purpose of this show…