So this is Christmas. And what have you done? Yeah, we’re all thinking it so let’s just come out and say it: John Lennon was a dick.
I’ve done a lot of bad things in my life, but I never visited people way poorer than myself to hector them about how they’ve lived their lives.
As I recall, at the time of his death, he was worth roughly a hundred million dollars — enough money that he could have used $20 bills to wipe his ass for the rest of his life, even if he had lived to be old. But this is not what I want to talk about.
I want to apologize for being a dick myself. A lot of people have supported this website for a long time. And I’ve really let it go. I don’t post much and I take forever to answer comments. But I’m trying to change that.
An Excuse or Explanation Depending on Whether You Like Me
This neglect is not due to any animus against the site or its readers. The truth is that for the last year and a half, I haven’t been doing well. I’ve never been suicidal, but if I had had the ability to simply not exist, I would have taken it.
Brain chemistry is a strange thing. It’s weird how the whole universe changes based on your brain chemistry.
“Suddenly Everything Seems So Easy”
I keep thinking about the film As Good as it Gets. In it, Greg Kinnear’s character was a successful artist who has been violently robbed. His whole life has fallen apart. And he is going to see his estranged parents to ask for money to get back on his feet. But he has a magical evening during which he begins to draw again. So he decides not to ask for money from his parents.
Jack Nicholson thinks this is crazy, “What are you talking about? You got real problems.”
And Kinnear replies, “I know. I’m a little bit nervous. Suddenly everything seems so easy.”
Universes of the Mind
This goes along with Ken Baldwin’s experience jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge, “I saw my hands leave the bridge. I knew at that moment, that I really, really messed up. Everything could have been better, I could change things. And I was falling. I couldn’t change that.”
There are lots of cheap responses to this. “Wisdom comes to some suddenly.” Or: “Suicide is a long-term solution to a short-term problem.” But for Baldwin and Kevin Hines and countless others, it isn’t necessarily an irrational choice to take their lives.
It’s just that there are two universes that they are living in. One is filled with pain. The other hope. In general, I believe the universe of hope is the more objective one — at least for the vast majority of people.
By “hope” I’m not talking about the hope that your material situation will improve. I’m talking about the hope that continuing on is worth doing at all.
For the month of September, I billed less than a thousand dollars. That’s not sustainable. But I just couldn’t face work — not even my own work. That was a very bad month, but it’s been this way for roughly a year and a half.
November and December have been better financially. I’ve been working more here and on Psychotronic Review. And I’ve even had a major breakthrough on a play that has been stalled for the last year and a half.
I’m hoping to do a better job around here. The days of having things to say but just not being able to sit down and write them seem to have passed — at least for now.
Merry Evil Christmas
So after this depressing and self-indulgent post, let me wish you a happy whatever. Now go and watch Christmas Evil (AKA: You Better Watch Out). Christmas, art, slasher film. By today’s standards, it’s hardly violent at all. But it’s fascinating. John Waters says he always played it at his Christmas parties. You’ll see why: it’s also kind of a fetish film.
Ho ho ho! And now a song that would offend most people: