Word of the day is Discernment: Acuteness of judgement and understanding. The line of perception based on first impression visual and intellectual prowess is different for everyone, like snowflakes (not millennials) every reactionary thought has its own special little place in the abyss of the self-importantly absurd realm of life on planet YouTube. See, gotcha! Thought I was going for a highbrow moment there, didn’t ya. Psyche! But there’s a theme, don’t worry, I never leave a job unfinished unless the check doesn’t clear.
As a writer or any creative person will likely admit to at least once, our “work” is our baby, labored over and cared for fastidiously and without many inklings of practicality or grey-area objectivity. This is why I would hate to be an editor or worse… a collaborator on a piece of “work.” I put air quotes around the word work because it’s one of those words one needs a lot of discernment to contemplate. Like, when I take out the garbage is it work? Going down on a speedo model named, let’s say… Alejandro… is it really a job? Do we understand each other? Subjective areas.
In any case of work and discernment, the inevitable criticism is the special sauce that gets served as the dolce (that’s dessert in Italian) to the main course, whether it’s wanted or not. In the case of professional work, the kind that one actually gets paid for, that criticism is pretty much expected. Just grab your ankles, close your eyes and prepare your asshole, because it’s coming and it’s coming hard.
The Ab Fab movie got me to thinking about discernment. When someone puts their guts into a spectacle that they convey to the universe of paying customers, the tradeoff is opinion. Opinion is just another word for criticism, whether thoughtful or thoughtless (see Twitter or a 3 Series BMW driver). The conveyor can stand by the work, believe in its originality and outcome, and still be knocked down by the vast differences of opinion that lurk on the surface of not only social media but media in general. I wonder what Walter Cronkite would say to average John Q. Citizen with an opinion on Trump or Orlando or Brexit. He’d have politely kept mum while silently thinking: Financial Incentives for Sterilization!!! Maybe they should just shut the fuck up and let the pros be pros. But, that ship has sailed. Thanks Twitter/Facebook/Millenials. The Zombie Apocalypse and it’s opinions. The end of the world as we knew it and I feel nothing. Millenials killed me and my 80’s Idealism of wealth and power for all. Wah-Wah-Wah. You’re a racist for saying that, right?
This morning I woke to a story about the HBO show Looking, based in San Francisco, gay-themed, hyped as edgy like “Girls.” But really just boring, poorly written and acted and directed. The cinematography and use of locations in one of the most beautiful Amrican cities was great though. Oops my opinion slipped out! Damn. Looking was cancelled after two seasons. I find some solace in knowing that I wasn’t the only one who didn’t like it. The most interesting character was not one of the obligatory four main characters (each with their own special thang), all variations of the pigeonholed gay stereotype, but the one fag-hag whose wisecracking facade was cracked in the one good episode on two seasons which forced her to deal with the death of her father and what that really meant in the moment and immediate thereafter. Anyway, post-Sopranos everyone at HBO and its surrounding subsidiaries needs their CLOSURE so Looking has a 90 minute wrap-up movie airing next week. Couldn’t spare 2 hours? I guess not. I suppose there might be some residual effects of my own back story reflecting on my criticism of Looking, and here they are in a nutsack: Two years ago when Looking first came out I was living in San Francisco and thought that having a gay-themed HBO show set in the city was kind of cool. Almost exciting. So I was dating a younger Brazilian guy who I thought I’d fallen for but turned out to be yet another mistake when the premier of Looking happened on the eve of our breakup. We’d been planning to watch it together. Even though I was pretty instrumental in calling it quits with Mister Brazil I still felt a little broken hearted and begrudgingly watched Looking without that all important objectivity geniuses such as I must possess to be able to sleep with a clean conscience. So at first I thought it sucked (Looking) and said so as a reactionary “why the fuck does everything suck” kind of culturally obsequious stand for all things (so few) original. Like a bird on a wire… As I saw more episodes of Looking I found one or two good things about it but even time didn’t soften the blow of its basic-ness. Sorry bitches. The show runner was defending Looking on the eve of the eve of the ninety minute wrap up, giving the artists’ last ditch plea of survivalist “I poured my heart and soul into this” atonement for wrongful discernment by the masses (the gay masses/10%). Still ain’t buying it dude. You tried, you failed. Then again I’ve never sold anything to HBO so who’s the bozo on this bangbus? I guess that would be me. But I’m in the back of a Bentley. The bus left a long time ago.
Saving #abfabmovie critique for another time as I’m still nursing my asshole.