Monday, February 20, 2017

i woke this morning, the third day of a three-day weekend, where the rain has pounded california, north and south, with biblical intensity, this after a five year harsh drought and my beloved state is now reeling with epic mudslides, flooding, and dam spillway failures, that it is difficult now to deny, try as you might, that climate change is here, right now, and these are the milder effects we will experience from a destabilized climate, and i know that the worse is still to come, but time is short, the shit hasn't really hit the fan

i woke this morning thinking about this, and art, and how art sometimes feels like an inadequate response -- action -- when faced with the enormous destructive powers facing us in our new century what can art do with the fact of our likely extinction

then i remembered a movie matinee [1993] directed by joe dante this flick is a love letter to grade z monster movies of the 1950s and early '60s and the schlockmeister william castle who perfected the viewing experience of monster movies by, for example, installing electric buzzers in theater seats so when castle needed an extra bit of wham! he'd hit the buzzers to scare the bejeezus outta his audiences

and i remembered that those grade z monster movies were made in an era of the cold war when fears of global nuclear holocaust were at their zenith

i remembered dante placed his flick his love letter to horror moving going during the cuban missile crisis on key west which is a mere 90 miles or so east of cuba and if the world was going to end key west was going to be the first to go

and yet the movie is about art its utilities and necessities in a chaotic world because the world has not ceased its madness, we need to sing thru that madness, our madness, it really matters not a whit whether we survive our madness, i think extinction, if not for our species at least for our civilization, is certain

and yet art in all its forms painting language musics movies etc etc is absolutely critical for us to remain sane and so the movie matinee is a reminder that even in the scariest times we need to remember how necessary how vital is art

we will not survive this, our art will not survive the end of civilization, but for the while we are here alive our hearts pumping and our synapses firing, the making of art is a lot like love it won't save the world but we will die if we lose its creation, oh hell we will die anyway, but for art, for the while, creates us as we create it and thru our making art is, at the least, cause for us to stay alive


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