Sunday, March 27, 2011

Me and Work

I have two main worries in, that if I were to find myself hanging from a cliff or window ledge, dependent on my arm strength, I would be a goner. The other is that come the post-Apocalyptic world, I would be as useful as, well, tits on a bull.

I've had the second concern for awhile...since my 20s actually. Listening to the Indigo Girls...

...where the chorus "I've got to get out of bed and get a hammer and nail, learn how to use my hands" would make me feel so...uselessly intellectual.

To this day, I have that feeling. Oh, I can use a hammer...I just never do. If the world fell into chaos tomorrow, I would be useful in helping to organize people, or preparing curriculum for others to teach survival skills...but of no practical use myself. I'd probably be the first one eaten.

All of these thoughts are coming up now because I picked up a copy of the Spring 2011 Lampham's Quarterly, the topic of this month is Lines of Work.

Here's a quote from Robert Burton (Britain, late 1500s):
"A young man is like a fair new house: the carpenter leaves it well-built, in good repair, of solid stuff, but a bad tenant lets it rain in, and for want of reparation, fall into decay, etc. Our parents, tutors, friends, spare no cost to bring us up in our youth in all manner of virtuous education, but when we are left to ourselves, idleness as a tempest drives all virtuous motions out of our minds, on a sudden, by sloth and such bad ways, we come to nought."
[I blogged the last LQ, on Celebrity, which was a very timely edition., if you're interested.]

So, do you have any thoughts on work? And the apocalypse, if you want to go there....


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Fame and Celebrity

Ah, the absurdity that is Charlie Sheen's amusing public breakdown...

My good friend Raincoaster linked to me on this video, I will link back to her...'cause while I might have had it cross my sphere first, she posted it first:

I don't know about you, but I've often thought about how little I ever wanted to be famous. Sure, you'd probably be rich, but you'd have to work to preserve your privacy...or let it all hang out, damn the torpedoes! Your public drunkenness, arrests, serial marriages, serial adoptions, drug problems, lust issues, cellulite or just plain bad taste -- all exposed for the world to pick over.

Or worse, you start believing your own hype, what your publicist wants the public to believe, what your sycophants want you to believe...and the last person who has the balls to tell you you're an ass drifts away, lost in the cacophony of adulation -- and you turn your ranting, couch-jumping lunatic self loose on the world.

I just finished reading the Winter 2011 Lapham's Quarterly on the theme of Celebrity...just days before Sheen's spectacular nuttiness. It was a disturbing delight to be inundated with heartfelt opinions, many of them first hand, on all the various permutations of what celebrity can mean, through time.

I still wouldn't choose it.