Carousel: Week Ending 19th March 2010
Attention: MEN! I know there isn’t a lot of good fashion writing around for you. I’m sorry about that. The good news is I have a new friend, his name is Jacob Kamara, & he knows what he’s talking about.
Oh, wow, amazing. Joobili!!! I’m all over it!
Kris has the travel bug, a girl after my own heart. I’ve been to Neuschwanstein Castle, it is absolutely amazing.
Sunday Life: In which I quit the Sunday afternoon email catch-up habit & Sunday Life: In which I try out the new way to travel are both by Sarah Wilson, & as you know, I am a huge (ffffffffhuge!) fan of hers!
Zoetica rocks Sugarpill (again!), this time yellow eyes worn with black lipstick. Sounds kinda hideous? IT AIN’T!
I have never actually read A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius (I KNOW! Gasp-o-rama! I actually tried but couldn’t get into it… ?! Feel free to beat me with enormous branches) but based on this email exchange alone I love Dave Eggers. I wish I had read this before my panel on Sunday, it is totally on point.
I address some of this question in the addendum, but I want to address the “sell a lot of magazines by being pretty and ‘authentic'” part here. Honestly, Saadi, what the fuck are you talking about? You’re applying principles of mass-marketing to a money-hemorrhaging literary magazine produced out of my apartment. Please. No one here is trying to sell a lot of magazines. Why would we making a literary magazine in the first place, if sales numbers were our goal? And why would we be printing this thing in Iceland, and printing only 12,000 copies? Jesus, son, you have got to stop tearing apart and doubting the people who are obviously, clearly, doing good work. I mean, who the fuck do you believe in? The Baffler is nice-looking, too, and they print *20,000* copies. Does that put Tom Frank in league with Tony Robbins? I’m exasperated. Saadi, you have to trust me, and you have to trust Tom Frank, because Tom Frank, for example, matters. If Tom Frank, tomorrow, agreed to be in a commercial for the Discover Card – as Kurt Vonnegut did a few years ago, for whatever reason – you would still have to trust Tom Frank and respect him, because he has for a decade been doing work that matters, and you have no idea about his motivations or needs or state of mind when he say okay to the Discover gig. I am giving you really good advice, here, Saadi, and and offer it to other readers of the Advocate, because I wish I had the same advice pounded into my head at your age, when I was a bigger, more smug and suspicious asshole than you – I was the biggest asshole of all. To me, everyone was a sellout. Any band that sold over 30,000 albums was a sellout. Any writer who appeared in any mainstream magazine was a sellout. I was a complete, weaselly little prick, and I had no idea what I was talking about, and goddamn if I don’t wish I could take all that back, because I knew nothing then, just as you know nothing now. You simply cannot judge someone, especially someone whose work you have respected, when they disappoint you, superficially, once or twice. Think of the fuckheads who turned their back on Dylan when he started using electric guitars, for Christ’s sake. What kind of niggardly imbecile would call Dylan Judas when he plugged into an amp? What kind of small-hearted person wants an artist to adhere to a set of rules, to stay forever within a narrow envelope which we’ve created for them?
What matters is that you do good work. What matters is that you produce things that are true and will stand. What matters is that the Flaming Lips’s new album is ravishing and I’ve listened to it a thousand times already, sometimes for days on end, and it enriches me and makes me want to save people. What matters is that it will stand forever, long after any narrow-hearted curmudgeons have forgotten their appearance on goddamn 90210. What matters is not the perception, nor the fashion, not who’s up and who’s down, but what someone has done and if they meant it. What matters is that you want to see and make and do, on as grand a scale as you want, regardless of what the tiny voices of tiny people say. Do not be critics, you people, I beg you. I was a critic and I wish I could take it all back because it came from a smelly and ignorant place in me, and spoke with a voice that was all rage and envy. Do not dismiss a book until you have written one, and do not dismiss a movie until you have made one, and do not dismiss a person until you have met them. It is a fuckload of work to be open-minded and generous and understanding and forgiving and accepting, but Christ, that is what matters. What matters is saying yes.
Vanessa Bauer is a fantastic illustrator.
Nonpareil Jo has The Forgotten Negatives Project. She says…
I’ve set up The Forgotten Negatives Project whereby I take film that has been shot but, for whatever reason, not developed (you’d be surprised how many people have film lying around that they never got around to having developed!). The resulting images are then examined in order to find some kind of narrative or common thread amongst these photographs that were ‘forgotten’ by their original owners. It started as a uni project but I will be continuing it long after I leave uni in the summer. So far I have had some amazing images from the films I have been given and I’m beyond excited about the potential of this project!
What is Nowhere magazine? “Offbeat travel articles written by novelists and poets who view travel through their idiosyncratic artistic lens.” Oh, hello!
The right to bare arms, a radical self love story.
Stuck for something to do? Why not dress up your child as an assortment of dictators?
Asked what motivated her to undertake such a project, Kleivan replied, “We all have evil within us. Even small children are evil toward each other.”
Make a wish tree! I love you Yoko!
The comments on the Bikini Kill archive blog are rad.
Yesterday I sat on the ground with my sweet friends & their puppies & watched Dark Dark Dark perform. Click. That. Link. The song-writing is amazing. Listen!!! & like, maybe you should go & see them live. They were magnificent. Okay, look, I’m just going to embed this video & you can thank me later. It is goosebump music.
Okay… happy Friday everyone! xox