there's no success like failure.

let's spend all the money we can, and never have anything to show for it. let's learn all the things we can, and never act. let's come up with all the greatest ideas, and never implement them. let's write stories that go nowhere. let's write songs we'll never perform. let's go to the movies when the sun is shining. let's work, and work, and work, and never feel liberated. let's squander the days we have off. let's keep our eyes glued to the screen. let's never let anyone into our lane.

today, i cut more wood, and watched the sunset. the sky was all broken clouds, like a red and purple quilt, and i learned to distract myself from thinking about cutting the wood. it made the cutting go much faster. like how things are so much more doable when you know it's coming to an end. you know what i mean. like in may, before school ends; everything's easier. i think one of the scariest things is not having a date to look forward to. just dates you never want to arrive. like birthdays and interviews.

shortly after graduation, meagan's dad and grandma asked me how i felt now that school was over. "i'm okay with it," i said, "but now i'm just going to have to go to work." in unison they told me, "well, you'd better get used to it." a nail in my foot.

if i could go back in time, i'd go to my last eighth grade party, and act a complete fool. i'd pay the dj to leave and play the loudest shit, and i'd tell everyone that was is it. that we're never gonna see each other again; that we're never gonna have to come here again; and how we'll soon find out that the lives we lead are safe, sheltered, and meaningless, and that this is our last chance to feel young and alive and reckless. and then we'd trash the place. i'd like to write a movie where a scene like this plays out. imagine some little chubby asian boy who realizes that he's going to play it safe everyday for the rest of his life, so he just tears it up that one night. in my film's version, everyone would go along with it; in reality, people would probably just leave.

watching the craziness on tv, hearing the insanity in the music, confronted with the utter stupidity of the workplace, one can easily understand why people rob banks, do drugs, and get into all kinds of trouble. when i read the stranger, i realized that i was capable of anything - good or evil - and that idea is pretty fucked up and downright scary, or liberating, whichever way one chooses to see it. but someone once told me that people for the death penalty are afraid to admit that it's inside them, too. as dazed and confused slater once put, "we're the aliens, man. we're the savages." a philosopher once wrote that everything we find disgusting merely reminds us of our mortality.

i don't know what i'm talking about. sidenote: this is a cop-out.

in my audio recording class, my teacher once listened to one of my songs. "if i were you," he said, "i'd add a chorus, a bridge - something." i've never taken criticism regarding the songs i'd written before, so i turned to the line i had been holding onto ever since i started writing songs: "well, you know. it's just a joke song." he seemed pretty annoyed with this, and responded, "well, i can write joke songs, too, you know. and i'll be laughing all the way to the bank." he was a great guitarist, and really talented, but i've always tried to avoid taking advice from helpful people.


Anonymous said...

James, have you seen the movie Better Luck Tomorrow? I think you would like it.


Talking about Hard Times said...

alright. i've just requested it from the library.