Reconnoiter your claim fully, I say.

My musical friend,

You correctly give Ms. Shafrir’s post a more generous reading than I did. You see her as calling out people who are obnoxious and patronizing about her career, which entails Work, like Careers do. I saw it as  her calling out people for becoming lawyers, which, heyyyyyyyyy, I’m right here, on the same internet. I can hear you.

I guess what I’m interested in which professions skirt “selling out” and which don’t.  There are not a lot of movies about dancers who secretly want to be welders, for example. Why am I susceptible to that particular criticism but somehow wouldn’t be if I were working on My Novel (oh, it exists) while writing about Chelsea Clinton’s wedding? And of course, any criticism for selling out may be a justifiable defense set up by those in the professions lawyers are liable to fantasize about, otherwise we will just condescend them to death.

This ties into the bigger art/craft discussion. I stand pretty firmly in Team Herozg in re. no more art. (I assume you’ve seen the interview where he gets shot with an air rifle?) There’s a sort of transcendental twinge I get when reading, say, The Prelude, but no art != no transcendence and besides, I get a similar feeling listening to Whitetown, so I don’t totally trust it. We have created problematic divisions between creative/intellectual satisfaction and  financial stability, and they’re supposed to be traded off – or we are supposed to be willing to trade them off, at least. (P.S. I talk big game about financial stability but I have none.) I think a strong sense of Art is Special fuels that distinction and is capitalist in the bad way, treating barely-fungible things as highly-fungible and reinvesting the resulting tension and ill-feeling. You’re capitalist in the good way.  For next time, perhaps, a note on how the crafting movement is not about Craft (although I am generally pro, for other reasons).

Speaking of Art/Craft, first episode of Mad Men, kind of a clunker. We’ll see how it looks when the arc of the season is complete. Don’s looking a little meatier, no? And I do have to say I appreciate the show stepping back and showing us that it knows he’s a dickwad. Not that I expect that to stop the date-like-don-draper articles or whatever.  I still miss Deadwood so hard. Do you know that I believe it–all three seasons considered together–to be the finest moving picture of any sort I have ever seen? And I will defend that position to any living cocksucker. Also, in re. things that made me cry, Red Dead Redemption. I’ve never cried at a video game before! Except when I was little and kept getting eaten by a wolverine on Cave Girl Claire.



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