Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Sarah Elizabeth Jones

Really gave up being a tragedy addict.

But this event, hits so close and so hard. I can't shake the shamefulness of it, the tragic nature of it, the culpability we all share for it, and the need for change it arouses.

I did not know Sarah.  But the 2nd AC and I spend A LOT of time together on set, and I can tell from the pictures and posts about her that she would've quickly gone up to the top of my favorites list.  I worked on a movie in North Carolina and know how close the crews are in NC, SC, and GA - they are tight like family; I know people I have worked with are grieving mightily right now.

Most importantly this should never have happened.

More importantly, perhaps, is that as crews, we are constantly compromising our safety during production. It is surprising that these types of events don't happen more often. (It's impossible to call  this an accident.)

Haskell Wexler's documentary Who Needs Sleep begs to be watched or re-watched in this moment.

We all need to get clear about our priorities and stop pretending we are indispensable superheroes.  We are so not. Safety first - not last.


I'm weighing in as a production person here, but I've also weighed in as a poet.


(Pix are from Slates for Sarah on FB. The one just above is a mosaic of all the slates pictures people have posted!)

POST OSCAR UPDATE:  Wow - was amazing to see so many wearing ribbons on the broadcast!  The campaign has now moved over to A Pledge to Sarah - please visit the website or FB page to take the pledge for safety!

Monday, 24 February 2014

Quote of the Week - Hozier

"She's the giggle at a funeral
Knows everybody's disapproval
I should've worshipped her sooner
If the Heavens ever did speak
She is the last true mouthpiece"
~ Hozier/Take Me to Church
I wish I wrote this song.  Here listen -  take yourself to church.
I don't know anything about Hozier; I heard this on KCRW, but I suspect there's at least a bit more where this came from. This track gives me that same feeling I had the first time I saw Ed Sheeran do a song on the IKToms Tour 2008 in our teeny little Edinburgh venue, and the first time I watched Michael Kiwanuka play Lyrix Organix in 2010. It's a kind of wow click that my promoter brain gets - a kind absolute yes.

A lot of artists have a lot to offer.  Many artists can tick all the boxes. But some artists can actually sweeten and slow down time for you. That's what I look for:  someone who calls me to their presence so that my moment is more truthful and meaningful than it would have been without them.

Complete alignment makes their art and their success feel pre-ordained. I think this is what people are referring to when they say genius --  total alignment of craft, message, vessel, and delivery. Clarity of purpose and open passage for art to be conveyed with no obstructions; ego diabled so the artist serves only the vision.

Take Me to Church gives me that click every time I play it. The lyrics are courageous with bold images and the song is hella sexy and catchy. It makes me roll down the windows at the red light while I sing loud and raise the sunroof.

My lover's got humour She's the giggle at a funeral Knows everybody's disapproval I should've worshiped her sooner If the Heavens ever did speak She is the last true mouthpiece 
Every Sunday's getting more bleak A fresh poison each week 'We were born sick,' you heard them say it My church offers no absolutes She tells me 'worship in the bedroom' The only heaven I'll be sent to Is when I'm alone with you 
I was born sick, but I love it Command me to be well Amen. Amen. Amen 
Take me to church
I'll worship like a dog at the shrine of your lies
I'll tell you my sins and you can sharpen your knife
Offer me that deathless death
Good God, let me give you my life 
If I'm a pagan of the good times
My lover's the sunlight
To keep the Goddess on my side
She demands a sacrifice
To drain the whole sea 
Get something shiny
Something meaty for the main course
That's a fine looking high horse
What you got in the stable?
We've a lot of starving faithful 
That looks tasty
That looks plenty
This is hungry work 
No masters or kings when the ritual begins
There is no sweeter innocence than our gentle sin
In the madness and soil of that sad earthly scene
Only then I am human
Only then I am clean
Amen. Amen. Amen 

My writing prompt for the week: write love as fresh and fearless as this from the girl side. 

I think I'm gonna need new shoes.  I'm not sure I can do this without new shoes.

Have an extra-sexy week!

UPDATE:  Absolutely check out this live session on KCRW'S MBE.

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Quote of the Week - Morrison

"There is really nothing more to say — except why. But since why is difficult to handle, one must take refuge in how." 
~Toni Morrison
Lately I think how is more important than why.  Why is mercurial and capricious.  How is the stuff of living.

Happy birthday and thank you truth-telling Toni Morrison. Our greatest living writer.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

The Last Top Ten Books (This one goes to eleven)

Wow - 90 to 100 (well, 101…):

1. The Girl Who Played Go – Shan Sa
2. The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler - Alfred Adler; Ansbacher/Anscbacher eds.
3. Complete Poems : 1904 – 1962 - e.e. cummings
Selected Poems: 1947 – 1995 - Allen Ginsberg
5. The Ballad of the Sad CafĂ© - Carson McCullers
6. Slouching Toward Nirvana - Charles Bukowski
7. The Raymond Chandler Papers - Raymond Chandler; Tom Hiney, Frank MacShane eds.
8. Empire of the Senseless – Kathy Acker
9. The Soul of Rumi – Coleman Barks
10. The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke – Rainer Maria Rilke, Stephen Mitchell translation
11. Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu, Stephen Mitchell translation

I've tried pretty hard to only include 1 book/author even when I love all of their books. 

It was pretty damn near impossible to choose a Bukowski or Chandler (that's why they appear so late in the lists!) -  hopefully these are one you might not know so well.

Civilization and Its Discontents would have been 102.  (Is that cheating, telling you that?)

Now to compile them and have a permanent list of 101 amazing reads!

Monday, 10 February 2014

Quote of the Week - Tsu

"I answer only to my heart and my head. The rest of them can answer to karma."

Real quotes from real people - the best kind! I saw this on Dan's FB and I knew it needed to be shared.

Sometimes the choice between right and wrong, good and evil seems clear cut.  But I've recently realized that keeping your hands clean, and not following your heart - even when it seems karmically correct and a choice endorsed by conventional wisdom, can create more harm than postivity.

Answering to what you know to be true is brave and necessary if we are to wade through the too many options world we live in and create real intimacy and progression. Sometimes you may be the only one with the perspective, and the freedom, to make the wrong choice - the one head and heart demand - and the one which in hindsight would saved many people much pain.

Apparently, the above Banksy is being removed and sold by the building owners.  As if it belonged to them.

Happy Monday.  Question convention.

Thursday, 6 February 2014

It's the Home Stretch - Ten More Books to Read!

2. Edie – Jean Stein, George Plimpton
4. Alias Grace – Margaret Atwood
5. Possession – A.S. Byatt
6. In Cold Blood – Truman Capote
7. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
8. Things Fall Apart - Chinua Achebe
9.  House of Mirth - Edith Wharton
10.Maru - Bessie Head

Next week's takes us to 100!!!!!