Cork In The Bottle

TBB thinks that my rage — what she calls my anger — is unbecoming to me.  Then again, she thinks that Sondheim’s work went quickly downhill after West Side Story, and if he cared about connecting with his audience, he should have written more nice shows like that.

Miz Ruby thinks I should get out to places where I can build a support network, instead of just feeling threatened, abused and battered.  Then again, she understands that would require me going though hard and difficult outsuff before I have a chance of being there.

Kiki DuRane, though, speaking though the amazing Justin Bond, knows the power of being outraged and outrageous and the difficulty of being normal.  In fact, the only thig that has gotten Kiki though her many deaths and many rebirths is her rage, her outrageousness that feeds her art, facing critics and proprietors to face another crucifixion. 

The issue, at least to me, isn’t the fact that I need to bottle my rage up more completely, rather the issue is how to feed on that rage, how to use that rage to enervate and empower a quest for truth and transformation.

TBB notes that a mutual friend has pulled back from living full time as a woman, and her anger is showing anger.  It’s interesting to me to note that our friend is also a writer like me, while TBB is an anti-writer, not reading, not writing, not even notes to herself to remember positive events like exciting journeys with her beloved children.

This is, of course, a key in human questions: Which is not worth living, the examined or the unexamined life?  Artists can have only one answer to that question, which is not the same answer most non-artists give.

Frank Gehry was profiled by his friend Sydney Pollack, shown last night on PBS American Masters.  There were two quotes from his therapist that fascinated me.  One was along the lines that a number of architects came to him after his relationship with Gehry was revealed, but that he discouraged them, knowing he couldn’t help them be more like Gehry. 

“I might be able to help open the flood gates like I did with Frank,” he said, “but there was no guarantee that there would be the same flood of creativity locked behind their gates.”

And in another comment which ended the film, he noted that “When most people come to me they want to change something in their life — their job, their relationship, something.  When artists come to me, though, they want to change the world.”

Bond is clear that Kiki’s art is inherently political, enacted diffused rage aimed at changing views, at changing the world.

Where is the energy I need to transform supposed to come from, if not from me?

But I don’t really know how to keep the bottle mostly corked, letting only the stuff that helps me be normal come out.  Tapping the wellspring is what opens the flow,and without flow, the dryness makes everything a scrape.

Rage, raging, outrageous, outraged.

But they liked my early funny movies.