I’m sorry I haven’t written. I’m usually good for a What It Is post every Monday morning, and I was trying to go with a movie review every Tuesday. But I didn’t watch any movies last week, and I found myself flat-out uninterested in writing anything about What I’m Happy About or What I’m Sad About.
I don’t feel depressed, just uninterested in writing. Maybe the act of composing this post will work that out a little. There are other things I’m interested in writing, some of which I can’t share just yet, some that would just take a ton of time and work to write. But I feel like I’m running short on time just now. I’m a bit ahead of the game on the September and October issues at work, but then my big conference is looming, and that always fills me with anxiety.
I don’t know what to share with you, my non-existent public. I’m quite immersed in that Andy Warhol book by Bob Colacello, for reasons I can’t quite put into words. I’m fascinated by the intersection of art, fashion, business and celebrity that Warhol in that era (1971 until his death) represents, but I’m also compelled by the workaday-ness of Colacello’s experiences. Everything â€” the Concordes to Paris, the nights at Studio 54, the conversations with Liza â€” is part of the work. And yet the surface of the work was playfulness.
Only those closest to him knew how determined and thorough this project was, because Andy deliberately made everything he did seem effortless â€” and meaningless. He liked to turn everything, including himself, into a party joke, partially to hide his true intentions, partially because it was the only way he could deal with life. He expected us to get the joke and simultaneously to take it seriously. It was noting more or less than he expected of himself. We were all walking a tightrope, and Andy’s rope was thinnest and highest of all. “If I think about things too much,” he told me many times, “I’ll have a nervous breakdown.”
I watched Greenberg, the new flick by Noah Baumbach, last night. During my drive down to Flemington today to meet a potential advertiser, I realized that four of the pieces of narrative art I’ve enjoyed most this year are Greenberg, Wilson, Louie and The Ask. It’s like I’ve assembled a Mount Rushmore of Mid-Life Misanthropy.
And I still have 5 months till I turn 40, a birthday that I steadfastly refuse to believe is a significant marker in my life.