I think the Bhagavad Gita is about both the forces of light and the forces of darkness that exist within our own self, within our own soul; that our deepest nature is one of ambiguity. We have evolutionary forces there – forces of creativity, and love, and compassion, and understanding. But we also have darkness inside us – the diabolical forces of separation, fear and delusion. And in most of our lives, there is a battle going on within ourselves between the sacred and the profane; between the evolutionary impulses and the destructive tendencies that we have; between creativity on the one hand and addictive behavior on the other hand; between the divine and the diabolical; between the light and the shadow; between the sacred and the profane
"I gave the script [of Rushmore] to my mom and I said, ‘Mom, I’ve never auditioned. Can you give me any pointers? Can you help me memorize lines?’ and she read the script and she said, ‘I’ll be right back,’ and she went out and rented three films — The Graduate, Dog Day Afternoon, and Harold and Maude. And I watched them all for the first time. And it was in that moment where I felt, watching the films, this warm, insane feeling inside of my body, which was a feeling that up until then music had given me. And it was in that moment where I said, ‘I don’t know if I’ll ever get this part. I don’t know if my band will ever make it. But I’ve got to try to live my life somehow staying as close to this weird feeling as possible.’
Schwartzman—On how his mother, actress Talia Shire, introduced him to great films after he asked her for acting advice
The false choice between intellectualism and sexuality in women has persisted through the ages. There was no more poignant victim of it than Marilyn Monroe.
“Fragments,” a new book of her poems, letters and musings, some written in her childlike hand with misspellings in leather books and others on stationery from the Waldorf-Astoria and the Beverly Hills Hotel, is affecting. The world’s most coveted woman, a picture of luminescence, was lonely and dark. Thinking herself happily married, she was crushed to discover an open journal in which Miller had written that she disappointed him and embarrassed him in front of his intellectual peers.
—Maureen Dowd in todays NYT opinion pages. This piece was fascinating. Click the link to read more.
“That’s what I hate about life. That even when I’m not busy, I’m busy. The busy ghost presses his hands into my back and pushes me one way or the other to do this or that. I want to stop to see, to think, to breathe. I want to put my ear to the soil and listen for the ants. I want to daydream, fly a kite, run my hands through thick, green grass. But there’s so much noise. So much pushing. I enjoy hearing nothing but the tick-tock of the clock. That and the sound of my heart, which tells me that, yes, I am still alive.”—Ophelia Blooming (via suzywire)
Just saw The Social Network, and it occurred to me: the universe gives us *exactly* what we ask for …
Zuck wanted to change the world. I wanted to date a lot of fascinating men and afford basic health insurance. We both got what we wanted; I just didn’t find my aspirations, once realized, to be quite as fulfilling. Oops?
Let that be a lesson in setting one’s desires with care. ;)
In the 1970s and 80s, back when crime peaked in Manhattan and downtowns across the United States and talent and money were draining out to the suburbs, a young sociologist named Saskia Sassen had a hunch the emerging conventional wisdom about the death of the city was wrong. Then a researcher in New York City, conversant in five languages, she spent her time trolling the small shops and businesses around Wall Street. Even as the city’s local economy was struggling, she recognized the emergence of new ties to the world beyond New York — small, specialized financial and marketing firms with global links, immigrant communities with ties back home, museum curators drawing upon international networks. Sassen predicted that the Big Apple was not dead, but about to spring back to life, with more international clout than ever. In 1991, when Sassen published her first book, The Global City, which popularized the term, many onlookers were skeptical. After all, the United States was then mired in recession, and urban planners weren’t yet talking about how to reinvent downtown or attract a “creative class.” Many thought that opportunities would flourish outside cities, and telecommuting might soon make the morning commute obsolete. But in the two decades since, history has proven Sassen right. Today, cities are increasingly important, both as places people desire to live and as global nodes of commerce, culture, and ideas. On the occasion of the publication of Foreign Policy's 2010 Global Cities Index, we caught up with Sassen to ask her to pick the next round of urban winners and losers for the 21st century. The most extraordinary success? The rise of Miami.
“Many of today’s global cities are old-world cities that reinvented themselves. Like London or Istanbul, they already had enormous complexity and diversity. On the other hand, there are old-world cities, like Venice, that are definitely not global cities today.
And then there’s Miami. Never an old-world city, today Miami is certainly a global city — why? It’s quite surprising. Where did its diversity and complexity come from? Let’s go back to the history. Before the 1990s, Miami was sort of a dreadful little spot, frankly. There was lots of domestic tourism; it was cheap; it was rundown; it was seen as dominated by the Cubans. But several important things happened. One was the infrastructure of international trade that the Cubans in Miami developed. There was also real estate development, often spurred by wealthy individuals from South America.
All this coincided with the opening of Latin America. In the 1990s and early 2000s, firms from all over the world — the Taiwanese, Italians, Korean, French, all over — set up regional headquarters in Miami. In the 1990s, there was also deregulation, so Miami becomes the banking center for Central America. Then the art circuit, the designers’ circuit, and other things began to come into the city. Large international corporations began to locate branches there, forging a strong bridge with Europe that doesn’t run through New York. That mix of cultures — in such a concentrated space, and covering so many different sectors — created remarkable diversity and complexity. Of course, the Miami case is rather exceptional.”—Saskia sassen (foreignpolicy.com interview)
“You must always be high. Everything depends on it: it is the only question. So as not to feel the horrible burden of Time wrecking your back and bending you to the ground, you must get high without respite.
But on what? On wine, on poetry, or on virtue, whatever you like. But get high.
And if sometimes you wake up, on palace steps, on the green grass of the ditch, in your room’s gloomy solitutde, your intoxication already waning or gone, ask everything that flees, everything that moans, everything that moves, everything that sings, everything that speaks, ask what time it is. And the wind, the waves, the stars, the birds, clocks, will answer, “It is time to get high! So as not to be the martyred slaves of Time, get high; get high constantly! On wine, on poetry, or on virtue as you wish.”—Baudelaire
You know, when anyone approaches me and says “I want to be a director,” I always tell them, then you should be a director and don’t say, “I’m going to be…” because you can direct good or bad but you can direct from your iPhone, from your cell phone with your sister’s cousin’s video camera with a web cam. Right now, except in the most abject circumstances, most people can get a hold of an image audio/visual generating machine and they can be directing and then realize that they are already directing.
Directing doesn’t mean any more and shouldn’t mean any more directing feature films. I think… as I said, with series like “Breaking Bad” I was not only amazed at the way it was written, but the way it was staged on camera. It was a really well-directed series. And video games also can do that. And I think that as long as you have minimal access to any media you should be a director if you feel like you want to.
And the advice I feel is that, it’s always better to answer through your work the things you don’t like in a media, in a piece of media. If you dislike the movies that are being made, make your own. Show the world what you want to do, what you think this medium should be. And I find that much more creative than simply putting it down and complaining about it. It is a more active, fascinating role to take.
So the advice is that if you want to direct, direct. And even easier: if you want to write, write. You now, I think that writing is the only… one of the only things that can be done with very little resources and even if you die and you were unpublished, you still have a chance. You know, it’s truly… you cannot do that with directing. You need other people, you need a little bit of help, you need at least an actor in front of the camera, you know. But I think these are what I say is go and do it. And you know, when they say, “I would like you to do this for me”—and I produce a lot of first-time filmmakers, but I don’t produce all the first-time filmmakers that approach me—and I say, “Look, if I say, no, and you give up, I’m sorry to tell you, but it’s the wrong job for you.” Because you live with rejection for decades sometimes as a director and you end up making the movie you want to make. So, if I say no, that doesn’t mean that I’m right or I’m wrong, you just say, “Fuck him, I’ll show him later. I’m gonna make it and that fat bastard is gonna have to say I was so wrong and hit himself in the head because he didn’t do it.” And I think that’s the thing to do is like, show us. Don’t tell us. You know? Do the things. And if you do them wrong, what you do on your own terms, that’s how I define success; failing on your own terms.