David Shields is always looking to push the form forward, whether it’s by way of his writing, his filmmaking or his thinking. Using collage-style prose and film techniques to help draw connections, David intrigued Marc with what his art says about the world and our place in it. So the two of them had a talk about some of David’s recent work exploring war, journalism, race, masculinity, Donald Trump, and football player Marshawn Lynch. Both David and Marc try to find the connections, in the work and in their separate lives. This episode is sponsored by Squarespace, NHTSA, and Ben & Jerry's.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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The data, sober driver or use a right service to get home safely. Ok drives over or give pulled over right? Ok, let's do show sorry, but you know sometimes I gotta put my foot down. Let's do the shop all right. Let's do this, how are you what the fuckers, what the fuck bodies, what the fuck in years, what the fuck sticks what's putting a marked mare- and this is my part- gas- w tap- welcome to it how's it going. Are you ok, I'm ok think I don't know man some day. As you know, I just know. Why The other day. I was Conan o Brien show. I don't know if you caught that before I go.
Off on that or talk about it in any real way. Why don't we do this? I met the majestic theatre in Dallas, Texas. Tonight then I'll be there Paramount Theatre in Austin, Texas tomorrow, that's Friday, night and Saturday, I met the word them. Theatre centre go to W Tia Pod, dotcom, Swash tour for ticket info, and you can also get tickets to my upcoming. Eight and Vancouver Seattle Toronto Chicago Detroit Minneapolis Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Boston, national. At and San Francisco also go to sort of trust dot com. If you I see the movie I'm in find out where swaying near you or how you can watch it on demand, oh by the way David shields is on the shoulder. I don't know if you know him by dad, I'm sort of I was sort of fascinated with the guy and with his writing and I kind of wanna. Do you ok, wanted him to explain himself a little bit. Somehow I want.
To engage in a conversation with him about it, but I can feel very confident about it because he's a professor isa, intellectual guy, but I dug the way rope I wanted to make sure I was understanding, Could I read my head around? could I read my head around a conversation with this guy in and I was like fuck it. Let's do it goes. Size. A recent documentary. The Martian Lynch a history that's available on Itunes and Amazon and video these written a lot of books most recent is the trouble with men, reflections on sex love, Marriage and power. He wrote a book about Trump before that kind of its it. He writes in a very Pacific way called nobody hates tromp more than Trump an intervention I have his coffee table book war is beautiful. But there's. If there's a way, he structure things look I'll get into this with him. I done Saint Ives, though intimidated and going into it and I've got a kind
Put this off talking, but it turned out to be great. I enjoy talking to him so I say you know the variety magazine in Show Business magazine ran a big of her story on Podcasting Conan was on the cover and kind of framed it as the pod. Casting Revolution Do you know him fine of seeing these articles. Before I mean I've been doing this almost ten years, they ve, articles like that on me. Non variety but they ve certainly written pieces of member. I do not think this is a competition or anything else, but it just felt like all right. So there's a reason right. I'm no big believer in the big unknown sinking up, I'm not things happen for a reason: Geier, hey. This must be Kismet. Her synchronicity earth meant to happen, but the Arctic they'd come out the morning. I'm supposed to do Conan show so I Maybe I could at least like. I was a little upset
and it's always a daisy thing. You know like I got that I had them I'd. I signed the Prince segment producer signed off on it. Out there with the magazine and make sure you're the guy you're the podcast revolution, and we do will have a faker Canada, what he can't pissing contest and abbot. It just gets like you know it's it's weird. I guess The same is this Yo Conan and I have been doing our stick for what, since nineteen and before they he posted. The first parents I had on their right nineteen ninety for twenty five years Yeah, I've evolved he's involved, but there is a very fine thing is happening. Me personally in and in show business. I guess in a way, Is that I'm really not that same guy anymore? I mean obviously my success has ain't me personally. In this sense, it yeah I'm not freaking out all the time
That day, I'm gonna run out of money and not have I am beer anything to do, but I'll citing personally, I am a little different. Oh, what a more common then a little funny or will more in control my talent, a little less neurons I believe, but no. When you get into a dynamic what somebody you ve had with them for years. You know you. I which is funny to me that you I get out there. We do our little thing, but I was just interesting to me that within a few minutes even uncomfortable- and I'm I'm happier my life- that human fall into this dynamic that we have run my god. I'm just worked up a mailing in the audience among comfortable I'm aggravated an idea. In that way you guys am I still that way. Maybe I dont see mice, a properly, but I do know even in stand up- and maybe you guys can relate to this in your life, where look. Obviously Wert were
we're all the same people on some degree I mean you can stop doing certain things and you can you'll make different decisions for yourself, but you have the same drive shaft, and the same. You know mental machine, but but you know, as you get older yet certain things tend to to to matter less certain things matter, moorish thing, shifty, no hope we get a little more relaxing. You know crumble into a sin you're of bitterness of some kind, but but weird that when you get used to a certain way of being or you get yet, I imagine the same when you get used to a certain job and you just keep doing it that they, even if it doesn't quite joy, I've with who you are at this particular time, you know you can do because that's what you know right in awkward feeling it's a widow like Yahoo. Am I comedic Lee if I'm not worked up
Yo. Is there a way for me to do what I do and I think I am doing it to a degree of obviously lot more palatable. Then I was decade or two ago, in terms of my four level, and we really what it comes down to is that am I honour myself right? Isn't that sort of what we want to do? Isn't that the trick is. On ourselves, the best we can be true to our the best we can, but when you a gig that Europe is based on an old version. You. What do you do I'm just saying that I'm at a crossroads. Folks, They have a crossroads. Not I'm not I'm not waiting for the devil. I'm now waiting for the devil, I'm just trying to and the courage and figure out exactly what it is. I want to do with my heart and mind your onstage and performance Do you think I want to just play music and I'd that's
Rather, I am excited to do comedy, and you know you, people they're, coming out to see me the store I gotta get hour and a half a ship percolating in some. It's pretty pretty heavy, pretty good, pretty deep, we funny pretty jarring, but I'm what about a crossroads? Once is tourists done in. Depending on what happens. We're glad might be time for some reflection, maybe Your service work maybe get Up there and help some people, or maybe just out into the woods are ended a desert. I'm at a crossroads, and it might be the desert, I'm workin I'm looking for courage. You know it may be. I am looking for the devil, so so if your listening, I my be ready to negotiate again folks summer is winding down and pretty soon the fall will be here. You'll be busting out
your sweater, so while it still hot and human out their coup yourself over the pine abandoned Jerry's ice cream. Look ice cream is great right I'm not telling you anything. You don't already know, but banning Jerry's gives you so many choices and varieties you'll have a different experience every time or you can get obsessed with one flavour like me and have the same exact, delicious experience every time your cup with actual run flavour plus another flavour to favours out would be, I mean, look folks. They got dozens of favours now for whatever you're in the mood for New York, Superfund, Jog, Jerry, Garcia, half baked milk and cookies. Been bourbon. What shall be heavy chunky monkey? Look, I'm just saying names now because they think they're, fine, there's even waivers like ice cream, Sammy and Red white and blue bury. I don't even know what then I gotta go in the case, haven't seen knows and you can
always do what I do and I kind of like teases, albeit no matter what favour you get. You put a scoop of vanilla with eager cut it man in whatever you even just yeah cut it with some vanilla, that's away. Gotta have the cut, that's the good stuff trees. Self to your favorite flavour anywhere. Ice cream is sold or find a new favorite at benzene red dot com gatsby in June e r? Why dot com David shields? Ok, here's a little bit about me, not know whether you you know, I mean your work. You ve known me while right, we're, not strangers here, right, we're not strangers. So there was a time in my life where, when I was in high school and I've talked about this guy. Before when I was in high school may Junior seen your high school, I became I worked out by the university. I hung out with college kids. I hung out by
university in at the frontier restaurant and at the living batch bookstore, and there was a guy who owned the wedding batch bookstore? Who was a professor and the general you sort of. Wizard, he caught Filmy taught Archie taught culture, criticism. He was. He was that it was just an intellectual or I know. Of Germany was hilarious, any any change. My life iii, I saw Miss a mentor, even though I annoyed him, but I ways aspired. I thought there was nothing more impressive than do be well reference and well read and be able to integrate the brow, I had an intellectual ideas, the conversation. I I thought that was impressive. If you could be funny integrating those things which, like he was that Really, the best you could be it he intellectually sound and well versed in fuckin hilarious. I was like that's. That's it now, Sir, Finally, I wasn't able to really compartmentalize very well everything I took everything very personally in college.
In the way that I can only really apply a text. To my exact experience, I could not separate mice. I could not read philosophy without yet going to run it through me. I never understood that there was a a language would have math to the language of philosophy. I never. I was just looking for help. I was working too complete my brain, but I can never really assess and contextualize systems of thought or even math or chemistry. No good, so evident connect to my feelings. I couldn't really grasp it I studied film, I studied the poetry I wrote poetry Studied literature, I took some philosophy, but I never quite grasp if, but I was present for it. So my dream of being an intellectual wants to go to college. I realized, I can't even manage a second language here. Folks so the whole sort of I gonna be an intellectual, spend my time and idumea talking about lofty stuff that started to dissipate and I could have faked it. I dont think I
you fake it. There was a point in time or I I kind of fake did, but it was not taking in the way where I was presenting. Myself is knowing things as much as it was presented myself, as I knew what you are talking about at some point, my life, I realize ok, you're smart, you do read all day the heavy stuff you get, what you can out of it, and sometimes you blow your own mind and that influences or informs what you're doing, which is fine. Because I'm a comedian, I'm not an intellectual, you know, if I can read the lofty books, go well, something Adam yeah that can tweak my industry. Things which I do often great. That's that, this causes, I'm gonna be to an intellectual. I seek to stand, I seek them of my mind blown, I seek to put things in a different context: is the scene I seek to to grow as a person mentally and end and intellectually fight great and not nice poem, two's good, but at some point
engaged very important thing that you to engage is the ability to hearsay with me. I don't know you got to say like? If you don't know you can either sit there and left and project whatever it is anti EU. They do you know- or they know you don't know or vascular view, someone as your question or, if you're vision into somebody really know what you're talking about just say. What you're talking about or if your fresh, did you say I don't want to fuck your talking about or if, your hearing, it doesn't make sense to you and don't really want to know what it is. It document you got outside bullshit, but now I am joking. Basically Once I learned how to say, I don't know, I don't know you I can now. I dont understand that have no idea. What that is, can you can you tell me, or can you tell me what I should it changed my life, the big load off. Not knowing is
in accepting that big load off so David shields was very intimidating to me because I tried to read his books but they're not unreadable. They are very readable, they're. Just I've only read a few he's written many, but TAT year he kind of works in a he worked in bits and pieces. He their fragmented. If they're, not narrative, they're, usually the. I would say that there are three like a longer essay, but he uses bits and pieces of relations, he's heard bits and pieces of thinkers at he enjoys bits and pieces of his own thoughts. And he kind of structures the book like that, and it's a its if you like like aphorisms or sayings, yet he finds us more effective the collage montage kind of way of putting text together. And I found a compelling and I just I didn't know. I was fully you standing at a wrapping, my brain around her. Oh, if I was getting everything I need to get out of it, I found it a little intimidated. So I didn't know really out approach shields cause he's a professor
these like a smart guy and he's a writers written a lot. So when I finally decided to have him on. It was because I saw this new documentary. Martian Lynch, a history, and this again is all bits in peace there's no real narration every while they'll be ahead. Of sorts or a saying yes to sort of frame. Segments, but it's all I dont have you call it found but it, but it really is most. We found footage of martian talking of people responding historical footage. Some film, fully tv footage news footage, reacts It's just it is a collage of that form of a Montague because its film and I found it very poetic and very effective and very provocative and then I was like any I've been emailing with the David. Unlike let's do it, man, I'm ready, but what you will hear is,
You are wrestling with my own, intellectual insecurity, but I think I I think I get through it and and I think we connected in a deeper way than I thought I think we're kindred spirits in away. I'm glad I talked to him. As I mentioned earlier response, today by square space and whether you are a restaurant owner, an artist, a designer, a lawyer, even a pod, castor, whenever you're doing you can show it off with square space. Maybe it's a new business or maybe you're, just looking for he's your way to sell the stuff you make. Maybe you want your podcast to play right on the homepage of a beautiful new site. That's He did when we made the beauty of five back. I'm using swears Base square space is there, tool to use to make a website using templates, created, world class designers yeah you can.
Customize just about anything with just a few clicks square space has all the e commerce options. You need to sell stuff and real time analytics to help you grow your site and everything is optimized for mobile right out of the box in there's nothing to patch up great, ever buying remains is simple and you'll get the help. You need what squares basis. Twenty four seven award, winning customer support head to square space, dot com W p M for a free trial and when you are ready to launch used the offer code, w e f to save ten percent off your first purchase of a website or domain. Ok, that's squares he's not gobs rush, w E, F Africa, W e F so- a documentary I mention is called martian wench history. Its available on ice It means Amazon vimium the most reason book that about with men. Reflections on sexual marriage born in power, which I, think went deep enough, but that's my opinion still readable the Trump book there is theirs. I twenty bucks but they're all available and this is me
easing in to a conversation with David Shields, how. How are you I'm good? You mean in in what sense I general I'm good and I'm willing bins, enjoying re listening to shows and I'm willing, as you can, We suspect, I'm only talk about anything. That's it! That's! My major is confession. An intimacy, and although I don't know what it sometimes okay, I dont know exactly what to do with you. You know because in my mind, theirs intimidation factor because I know you're sort of the high level intellectual on some points. Real. I mean you're an academic. Your professor letter writer Theo rather during cultural, criticise your critics. You read this books. I haven't read enough for them and I don't think I've read them is seriously well no intimidation. You know you I'm intimidated by you really. You know, I think to me. Take it. You know I'm
I am delighted to be here and we'll talk about any damn thing I well. I think we could start with. You know we are serious son- of bipolar father are you but would you grow up allay in San Francisco, sir? but within so why why those places? What was the family racket? What was your dead? What with the business? Why were you in those two places, other sort of culturally progressive, injured, Rancho, busy kind of you kind of think he places yeah that It's my family, urea, politically active journalists, they were journalists yeah, my mom road for the nation, and oh really early Republic Gallia. My dad was a publicist, and journalists and sportswriter so is worth writer, It was very much a left wing.
Family. You know my mother was part of the first effort to desegregate a California school district, and my brother was arrested in a drug ring at Berkeley and only six years on the front page of the San Francisco cry. Really did your mom right, the peace that would have been the perfect circle. So you know the family. Religion was that Classic West Coast, secular, jewish political engagement, which is both part of me and part of something I sort of resistance here on sense. That did my work not agitprop, but it explores really. I know, and I feel that in there and I was sort of like when the questions after I watch the the documentary Lynch a history about more John whence you. I don't know what about I'm, not a sports fan but like
other things. I experience when I want the I've I've a limited experience with your work, but I wanna get it. I read it yet. I read the Trump book I read the the outcome, the trouble with men and I've had. I think you must have sent me wars beautiful you Does it and I got another copy, I've had a high and I don't know how I got them, but there are publisher whatever somebody and here I have this moment where you, where I watch the dock Henry, which is not tradition. In the sense that it is basically an hour and a half montage of of found footage right. Basically right But there is a poetic you know, through line by line. There is sort of an effective that- and I do the message is delivered in a way were your processing things as a lot of things coming in by the idea of of the black and who does not do what is expected to do?
and the cultural reaction to that with Definitely in there and powerful, but given You tell me about your past in about the agile proper. What have you you're my question? Is when you do something like this at his powerful and does have a statement and you you sort of relegate your expression to the world of ART Yanina, whose, if war. Who is that film for now is my work in general for right. Well, one could ask about. Hamlet. Anyone can ask that about anything I mean, I think it's an excellent question, but I was actually thinking about that the other day here. So much of of my work is obsessed with. The relationship between, on the one hand, political engagement and, on the other hand, artistic pash like TAT. So much of my dialectic here, is putting those in active warfare right like I saw that within you. It totally
because so you're you're resistance to surrender to art or the context of art, as is its is established, is how you what kind self loathing manifest itself? Let me play that for me a little bit and MILAN ride me. How did I held a low? That's why? I sense like here here's my first impulse when, when I maybe not- upload million secured. No, I'm definitely em of loving I'd like while totally own now, but I wasn't very gloomy when we try to explain it because, like when I read the things you night, you know I'm a guide likes. I like pieces of poetry. I like your bits. Sentences alike paragraphs I like what's that name that you must like iron.
A pronounced? His last natura yeah sure drama, huge, sir? I would assume that you are too yet they own the sense it like. I don't know if I remember a lot of it. I like it when it goes in. You know I have the feeling it makes my brain. Do something right, there's a there's. A it's like a joke is good Joe, exactly as it will be a piece of of poetry or a little observation that kind of resonate tonight, and I have faith that it's probably changing. My brain somehow Ryan me look at the world differently, but I just you're, even in reading the tree, with men, reflections on sex love, marriage porn in power. Where you do have the through line of your own sort of wrestling with European, your own, potentially submissive compulsion, but you don't say, do you could have written just that book? So so, when I, When I see the way you put these, I guess there collages, I guessed or bits and pieces of things opera, created the maintenance of conversation throughout of the narrative about you, and it is about you, your eye,
I ask myself what what what is he compensating for? Why can He just stay with himself. Interesting thing gets a fair quest and more than one one person has asked, why that book goes away from myself here, much as it does, the books are very short, but maybe a hundred and thirty five pay just maybe thirty thousand words of those pages- maybe only thirty pages- are actually ah my thoughts. Sex, love, marriage, porno power. There space. You know seventy five, eighty pages of meat, quoting from other people, ok- and you know I've written a bunch of other books in which I'm- a present male right. I think it's a really interesting point. Why is that book as out sourced or almost crowd source, as it is
and I would just say I mean it's a tough question. You know this was as far as I could go. I I still wig yourself in arms of Saxony. Our I mean the upper graph of the book. Is everything in the world is about sack except sex. Sexes is about power near which is having a pretty powerful idea of you agree or disagree with your audience at. Obviously, it's an absolute statement, which is neither true or false, but it's a thought near and a book explores the ways in which sex is a theatre of power is right is, and so I feel that the book is hope. You know a powerful investigation of those thieves, so even if I'm not saying, and I own that as a statement here to me, that's as confessional as if I had written I get there. You know,
I get that way. I just saw was feeling like INA I saw like do tell us more about yourselves, what kind of, but I can also. I think there was something about your exploration of your particular situation or predicament or dynamic with your wife, you know awry and your own sort of white care. You know I would say that Europe categorically a submissive. Now it's a very subtle, sly, our theoretical, then ideas like Oji, I wanna be whipped and end up. Yeah yeah sure not, but you have this thing in your head right here. There is a sort of like you know what what. Why hasn't gotten the full? Well, I know what is the confession here: really is a sort of milk toasty, you know in terms of the euro and sort of sexuality, and then You add all these other staff, which it it's all pretty interesting, but I was wondering if you know more about about you, but that, but that that is not the device. The literary device, a? U engaging, I'm sort of like saying I'm,
This might be a little too metal for you, but it sort of like why you know What I know of your career, you nosey, you were still are. You know a stand up at the other end in a way there's this wonderful line of Ralph, Waldo Emerson, who says that A two right is to throw your body at the target when all your arrows have been spent each sort uniform em. All bout that though they you known away, you know you're or narrative, as you know, the whatever they taught you the that is quite successful? Podcast? come out of the burning to the ground. I gather of your stand up career, not to say that you're not still now quite in us, this will stand guy, it added did built it yeah.
It can exactly active desperation. You know, did you through your body at the wall, when all your arrows had been spent in exactly the same way? I had written three novels relatively conventionally in the eighties yeah. Eighty four eighty, nine and ninety two, a conventional first of all, a second novel. There was a growing up. Novel about me, grow not with a fairly severe stouter and then a third novel called handbook for drowning a book about my family's politics, and then I was trying to write my fourth novel about celebrity and mass culture, trying to write a novel, con alike on two levels: white noise, good book or a mile and condemn- is unbearable, lightness of being math or not other speedboat, and I just found myself colossal, really bored by all those conventional narrative, architectural movements. You know, let's establish, ply, let's establish character, setting long stretches
of dialogue. I was just born out of my mind by, but were you born reading? It did you feel, like you had mastered those things or an you just eat. You didn't think you can utilise the accepted structure and take it to another level, I mean those are all fair questions. I don't I wasn't, a guy, had mastered them by any means, I'd written three pretty good. This novel here trying to write my fourth book and returning to the West Coast, I felt a huge desire. For work to have a compression concision and a velocity that a lot of novels and conventional memoirs don't have You know, get a sag, there's so much dead spaces. Becoming a sort of again. I think that we, as here we are are twenty nineteen America. This hyper digital lies culture. We are on the brink of authoritarianism, Europe not either
The break. When I hear that were here that I'm interested in bringing the new Now you know, like, I think, you're doing in interesting way a sort of pushing back like ok. How come trouble with man is not. You know, can and show more about your? You know: ass, a man, urge or something or the Trump book as you know, a conventional both by Jane Mire about beginner of the presidential. Why get half an hour? But it's like I'm trying to tell both charge the culture and the forms to push the form. Forward and make them. You know either the charge of an artist is to push the form forward. The form yeah, like other actions, that you admire, allotted, stand up comedian, say prior or whoever we love about them. They wore just doing shaggy green. There are pushing the form forward and not say that I'm necessarily as revolutionaries out, but I'm trying to push the form of prose narrative forward.
Like you, I don't know if I was craving conventionality, but like do you feel at the entities in Geigy. This is like an eel nit picking. It is not necessary, but like sometimes I do you feel at the end of those two specifically the ones that I've read about trumpet about men that you know there was a knock out punch it in, like I felt like documentary you how did not write. You know what I mean. I think that you once you get through the arc of of of what you put together, poetically and semantic we and even narrative. We write that through this amass through this collection of of found, footage and documentary footage from from new chose right is that you know like you. I could stay with me. Thank you. I think I think the other again, I can't argue with your experience of either of Lynch trouble with man or Trump in
Indeed, I wouldn't have published those books if I didn't think they have what you call the knock out punch to me that the lock out punch of the Trump book is that we have met the enemy and he is us too the old Hobo cartoon right I mean I feel like that book. Israel contribution to try studies of you want to call that that, in that I hope it's not everybody else's anti trump book it locates tromp as totally symptom of american psychosis. I guess you and says we are all hugely flocked up trump there's no way trump, of course, would succeed, he wore are worse self realise and even on some ways in which You know whether his megalomania has narcissism. His performance of bad boy I think, he's even is related to he's a rarely touted insult comic. He just
he's a g in some ways, a genius insult comrade going back to you know some people, like you know even SAM Kennison, or what's that guy, that really, many comedian from the eighties on what was nice, yeah, It is very dice clay about Hauser, yet he empowers the legacy of dice clay totally envy. You know he. He appeals to a reptilian part of our brain agenda and that he has serious trumped. Does performative chops so too in the book trouble with man again. If the book to have a knockout punch for you, I will Give you your money back times too, but I got it free, Oh, I thought not you know, I'm just he, but anyway the knock out bunch of without book, which is probably not news to you. Could you thought about others a lot, but then the knock out punch of trouble with man, in my view, is
and this is you know the theme of your show of all your shows. As you know, we are all seriously, wounded and they all a thing that connects us is the scar tissue that we all have thrown the bonding trot guess or me, you know what I call the wound in the bow. I think I d get them from that, like you know like I did, that did well with me pretty well, though, that the womb the talking to see you The books did have a knock out punch. You were just high. Being from the knock out punch. Those books delivered an. They they they form in my brain, exactly you know, like you, you know. I guess I get used to the idea of a punch line, and you know when you did when you do what you do and you kind of gotta move through it and you can't you gonna get us. They in it right everything kind of comes together but yeah like idea like getting refresh myself. If I talk to you, but yet the wound, I think, wrote something out my notebook that that I thought of probably in relation to that
right about the talking wound. What do you think I like to say or of my little mantra is collage, is not a refuge for the compositional disabled by I mean I myself a little bit fancy but the point being collages. All right. I got the literary collage is not this thing in which you just throw a lotta spaghetti at the wall and something sticks right. You know spaghetti polonaise, but that you know I are you you know again. I have some skin of the game, collages a lot harder to pull off and do well than conventional narrative, because if you do a conventional narrative, you have a solid base Fine ape was be. You know the Andrea. Someone was talking with you about that as someone who is doing whatever, but anyway there I want the reader to feel like. Oh my god,
by these pieces, do come together all these shards of contemporary life that we think of as not form a year. A unity you know in this experience of shields is book which you know is, is my best readily experience. It's not you the many people. Were some people have that experience of the? U experience, we can ok some interesting pieces, I'm not sure yet they ve come together. For me, I would just say please read it again and more careful you, I think I you know, I mean I don't hate you. I wanted to sort of no pushed back a little, but I rather than do neither I I may I would have you hear me more there. There are certain books in like idea I was intimidated by, but there are certain.
To come through. I don't know what they are. When I look at your books and, like you know what the fuck is, this we right there's this guy come from knowing I d go talk to my Buddy SAM website and I go ideologists guy shields. What's he yes, salmon, ire pow someday, you guys are paths and worry. I will get friends jams the best years, a wonderful rider, and he you know. I think SAM is an interesting instructive. You know he and I are interested lotta that the same thing he's comedy as avail free add nurse. You know sort of idiot, you say that, like it's, an intentional thing gets its. It's it's a reality with its an instinctive right and that you know he, I think, has a stronger narrative Jean. I just think when they had definitely narrative when they handed out plot. I just said what you know. I don't know. If it is, I mean I just you know I'll go to a movie my wife, and I can tell her immediately another thirty seconds what the movies themes are right. I have no fucking idea. What happened? I can't follow plot
that, like some sort of pathology, no, I mean I am exaggerating before you always you wanna go to pet of olive trees. It is that is specific type of autism worthy gives. Our story like I really am amazingly bad at following plot like I can follow upon her with it. When I bought a script but often arise in this the user, like ok in the fly major learn as rather dry by giving, I can't know it's like I read it by camp picture it when it just a script, form I needed three or more rural and I can't hold on the things. I think that, when the reasons you appealed to me now, I don't want to put you on the defensive. No, that's fine but nobody Eads Odd, because SAM, I think, went the other direction because I think SAM's first novel, the subjects Steve is difficult in the plot is difficult an end it is supportive fragment, derive and then he sort became more conventional chasing down. These things in the humour became richer. As he being more plaid heavy right. You know right only one
one rights, the books that one can write. And then that later, that one goes back and justifies thou with some sort of artistic credo as I say, I wrote these three could snow novels in my early or or my mid too late thirty's. I was trying to write my fourth novel and I just now those gestures fat. I found doll. Anything of if the if the writers bore. The reader will be lacking. That's true in that, and I think the hardest thing when you read conventional novels is that you know a lot of times. I used to have a hard time finishing the last ten pages, because I knew I was gonna, be disappointing, sure, no matter what it was. I know you mean that, like that, there's something about the landing of a novel. Usually in I don't read a lot a novelist cause. I'd rather read a book like yours. In a sense we have this weird. You know me you're of things that are just kind of being thrown Let your brain then stay
in the game with the novel, because, like ass to be really well referred to me, like somebody has to say you gotta, unify I'd, love right as guy say you gotta read this right, I mean But I'm endings are always sort of like you know, I mean, it's a real sign of how truly on following an awful lot of conventional narrative tsar. If the ending is this weird, let down yeah, that's a sign that you have not. Then, on a really serious journey to make that ending audit feel you know, existential regulatory. I find Eleanor Cocalus Film hearts of darkness. A better film is had Apocalypse now I think. That's arguable, then so that sort of my that's My model, this weird subterrane and work they cut to the chase mortar. Equally and more powerfully than all that architecture of you know of pyrotechnic.
Yeah. I get that you see what I mean noise. It works for me, you know, and I and I think I just I mean this weird sort of air space I had now we're in a poem brain with NEO garbage out of my phone every morning in the form of whatever news following an eye the reason why your style speaks to me. As I have a fundamental sort inability the compartmentalize or or kind of emotion We prioritize, what's coming into my rain everything sort. It comes in a hot, yeah, no matter what it is. You know whether it's me making capacity or or the news is all connected near its connected by a kind of happens at the same variety and and then what having to me lately is like I'm. I think some of my short term memory is being annihilated by the amount, information of german and my head every day, so like the way you know. You're, you select, notes clear.
That there is an editorial processes in spontaneous. I should hope so anything worse. They pretend to be these casual. Your word royal dynamically army. I curate the hell out of me. I can t I spend years, but getting the mixed right in our like saying you know you look it say buddy I mean. How is that process will be? What I guess my point is. Is it works for me, because there is a context. It is gone our main allies, you ve taken the time to make these decisions, but it kind of goes in the modern way right: the autonomy. It's like boom packet run. You have Hackett boom, like in them brain kind of puts him altogether because you can do two eyes and worth Niven flipping your news stories, there's not right, there's no contact other than my phone and my fear. That's a nice Actually I don't know if you're a David Foster Wallace- I was, if I try and of walls, yet essays novels do relatively little for me, but but walls. Thus I really like having some of em. You would love, but the walls had this wonderful answer, some,
they asked them Laura Miller at salon, asked them what's so great about, literature of why does literature manner any said that were exe eventually alone on the planet. You can't know what I'm thinking and fairly, and I can't know of what your thing and feeling and nature at its best. Is a bridge builder across the abyss of human loneliness. Strikes me as a really beautiful answer, and I would you again somewhat self justifiably of my own work that my work at its best is. Really, I hope, lovely bridge between myself and the reader, because if the work works and it doesn't work for everyone, the reader starts to feel how it actually sort of feels to be inside of my weird little brain right. So it's like, oh, my god that text you got in the morning is related to that. Instagram posting here you go to continue with your analogy about how it's it's very modern and, oh, my god,
you know all these different layers, the political level, the cultural of all the other political level, the deep confessional. Well, I think that brings us back to your first question. Is why not sort of do that? conventional. Let's just say I don't know whatever you want to call like Mary Car, Tobias, Wolf, you no good solid. Modern memoir right and that I find it more exciting, to show how everything is connected. My problem is like I'm always working like if I dont like when I will be your books, you talked about this with me and with other things. If I live confounding yo I understand your structure, and how it all pieces together- and I understand that oh tree of nine. I understand the form of it by, like I, initially come away. Thinking like my getting this right, or is he fucking with me that
publisher, asked of of my first collage book, sunny Meda can is any he he published in my first work, Collage called the remote reflections on life in the shadow of celebrity air sounds like the subtitle of half of the stuff. The you do your answer- that the sub that's a photo on my part cat right exactly when she's waiting around the holy suing. Yes go about on a sunny made us, and you know, I think, there's something there is David really doing this war is each a sort of fucking around right, and you know I couldn't be more serious. When I read about it, sort of like you know it's all about the Un tell you know like I just I I don't. Something in me. The reserves handing the meaning to a reader on a silver platter. You know to me it's more exciting. When Peter. Has that oh m f g
moment of like Christ. This stuff is connected with the rather than me, spelling out Allah likely know who's a journalist. I like, let's say Michael Louis, or something like that, like it's all pretty, spell out and the meaning is there, but it feels to me sort of more art stick on poetic and free. Clay more moving? It's the way I work and you, as some people have connected it to my childhood stutter I had a really bad stutter as a kid and my second novel dead languages is a sort of autobiographical awful about stuttering and theirs sense in which my colleague, you might call it Hershey Jerky, stop and start this. Lower narrative is serve a nicely metaphorical representation of stuttering, casino, you write a conventional novel and has a sort of a fluent fluidity to it, and my work has a kind of I hope, a kind of stuff
bring poetry. If that's what I'm saying I M made in Haiti and again the more I think about it, the young, I'm glad I'm talking you because even like today, I don't do many answer grandpas and I just do them spontaneously, but am I I buy literally said. While you know, authoritarianism is authoritarianism is happening and I'm gonna be an Raleigh tomorrow through sat ray? I'm gonna go look at some pottery because I, like Part Britain, But so You decide the contacts with those things are connected, the third terrorism and my desire to look at pottery do Oda rights, or do I have to have an answer as to why then my desire or is it you know is? Is it is the pottery some sort of kind of remedy the idea to to? I fear, and to the political realities in the answer. I think that's the space your leave That's really lovely example, because I would argue the pottery
is connected to the Trump authoritarian regime, I'm not sure what it is that I feel like the challenge of being alive and censure. Now, let's call it around August. First of twenty nineteen is to say, like how are these different parts of our lives connected? We can go from or to our fathers and Sir I am assuming aligning that's a great connection. Trump. You know his father was famously dictatorial, authoritarian demolished from adopting trumpets felt a thing. For sixty years, MIA he's utterly nom utterly without any any pleasure at all, hates his father, an unbelievably profound ways and the little Glove and armchairs ideology on my part, but he clearly is visiting that punishment on the rest of us. He never articulated for the father, but is not funny, though they serve glib armchair psychology think Cosette. You know. I remembered the beginning of the administration that that was a full press on behalf of the
intellectuals in the world, the finer and trompe languages, the armchair psychology rising about the nature of this guy's. You mythology, just like the work needed taken dahlia zone is good. It is geeky combinations. It's a wall of shamelessness. Surely do I give its impenetrable, you probably know Louis rose worry I another. I talked to him. He has wonderful line and the Trump book in which he says in a culture of shame. I ate America being shameless, gives you I e tromp enormous leverage and power. They it's really too eat a trumps. I think so I tried it. It is a brilliant law abroad. Is it's it's the nature of you. It all just coincides with sort of the end game of capitalism. Where you know you mind, people desires to the point where they no longer really know what they are with their attached to, so they don't have any real anchor to their personalities in general. You know that the fact that that
found me and I'm trying to deal with. The committee agrees that you have that the brain turns out to be a very primitive recording devices YO outside of survival mode, you're, just very willing to attach a real belief to garbage big based on feelings and in its end, Petition, repetition is, is a tool for branding and professions. So it's all sort of happening the end times prophecies of Christianity are dove tailing with this sort of late stage, capitalism and the one to someone's hedging their bets g of any as a stand up for yourself. Do you have any particular insight into how tromp manages to be a performance of black magician that he is like I'm not a stand up, comedian, I'm a writer and,
Eliza has mad performance chops, and I wonder if you have a specific observation as a practitioner at I when I talk to comics it is, I think, the one we got several gives most of them horrible, ripe and again, but he's also, as this incredible capacity to make people feel great like you know all the comics I've talked to have had experience of uncas. He was around right is just one of the this weird for freaky guy, Jackie Mason was the guys I think ass geyser fuck a monster. Let there be no, but like Trump, is sort of like a tremendous like huckster salesman. Early can make you liking. Oh yeah, you talk. Germany may ride. Like a million bucks jury, hang it arouses classic salesmanship on all. Do ass, you, like the oldest written, a lonely and in I can he can either the fact that he's become this portal for the worst most corrupt hacking? Shame was garbage added the religious sector as the business sector at the graft sector issues.
It when people compared to hit where I was like that we satan that's good. He doesn't like he if you're gonna believe in prophecy. This guy is the guy having Satan you had to be charming. He had them scaler, he always has that's line lines are always Satan's yater. Just think of how much more interesting trump is then say. You know Hilary Emmy just was a more gal Galvin. As in figure amenities, also a chaos at right. You know like yeah, he you know he can remain powerful as well is everything around him is just in complete chaos. He just e loves it. He thrives Whereas Hilary are you gonna? Yes, a management position of swore, you know honey. My latest thought about it is that you know: where are the people who are willing to blow up their career in order to save the republic, whereas the IRS agent, who just simply throws trumps
would it ought at your tears tax reports on line. Where is the person at everyone may at at joint your bank? We just presses sand, but wait, but there were round, but the problem is that you know if you really have like. I think that the big The problem is, if you really have a large portion of the population that no longer has any sort of barometer for facts arrive and therefore we are counting on you. You doesn't. I now encounter any facts right and you put it into it. You can watch it into a conspiracy. You can try to set Ryan and in a frightfully, large part of the population will be like net is bullshit right because the bullshit guy said it was bullshit exact I think the me what's Indra cause it's easy for us, a supposedly awoke. Why guys, say it all, but it sort of like it's not clear to me how you push back as everyone says. Oh, you know that's the biggest trick if I went nowhere as if I were there in Nazi Germany in nineteen thirty, three I'd have been terribly pressure.
Would have been very brave. No, you wouldn't I mean you might of, but you know here we all. This is real. This is ninety already three but yeah right jack we in in and if you think about it at odd. It's not you know, he's not. No luck, arguing that way. Yeah he's going to rely on a weird sporadic events by militia rations and and and win loners with guns, and just the fact that your most People in places at aren't big cities are afraid to talk at work. It's gonna be a its internal censorship that, Tal terrorism of authoritarianism is can be regulated by us as individuals because of the nature of the north personality that every culture that we live in right, so I dont think those people exist because they're they're they're concerned about themselves and by Wait, wait, wait! The smart move turns out to be in nineteen thirty. Three Germany was there to get the fuck out right.
You know who ever said they were going to stand up to it or whoever did in fact matter this art months. Fuckin left right, but I think from way I guess at me what's interesting for me is that I mean it's more than interesting. It's rather traumatized you no rational, scores Allah, let's say Rachel Matter on MSNBC Real, I'm a fan about it's not doing anything it just preaching to the proverbial On the other hand, who is that person who can fight demagoguery with demagoguery that play well on the left. You know who would be that person who would have as much stage presents camera present. Possibly a comma Harris or somebody you know like, and so for me how to dismay. Ami basically Trump is an assault upon discourse itself, that's his magic closer to mark.
See culture, but anyway, all round when she was all rational discourse is over with him. It's all all circus, all circus antics, and so basically it's not clear to me- is that clear to you? How do you fight, as you say, chaos addiction, he sort of nose. America, obviously love circuses because he loves circuses. Huh video vesture. You know he's at the outset that we're cleaning up after so much of it is is bully psychology. I m fascinated by but ways, an authority one been bullied as a kid I was well. You know I was like the one jewish kid among my Jacques friends, I had this speech and pen a man. I was this lefty kid. Amidst my suburban San Francisco conserve, friends- and I was you- Know- seriously bullied- I think you know, as I have bully in me, I'm certainly capable of being of being
being a boy in in minor way rights at work, but I'm not wildly bully rife, but to me, a lot of it is is bully. One, a wand, the boys always a baby in disguise. We all know that. Had he go after a boy, Will you go after him every step? but the way the moment he sees group on the bullet. We'll take it amend beyond that. I play it out, like he had as you know, literally as they say the bully pulpit, he has the presidency. So how do you go after the bullet when the bully has this enormous megaphone? Like I just know, and you know I'm trying to find some- bidding answer here. You know how far he has a brain event. He's clause loves you. If it becomes indisputable that he's YO, YO mumbling and any note everything's completely idea. How far can you defend somebody, I know, but going back
something else. You I get the other thing that I've been obsessed with. Wait we just in the last week or so- is this? What we're talking about in in, and I think, even in the form of a fiction in what you do and how we live our wages. There seems to be some intentional that we have to live in a sword. The imposed personally imposed cognitive dissonance right in, and I think that that day in what exact sense, in the sense that like in order for us to have a quality of life that we think we ve learned deserved or want to have or if, if happiness is something you're pursuing or your at a point, your life, where you'd like to enjoy it, because you think it's time you know against the backdrop of of this seemingly hopeless situation and this authoritarian Rhine of momentum right, you know you struggle sort of like that. Comes in it. Fuck you up in! you like why I want to have a nice breakfasts right but why and I in that's, really sort of weighing on me, and I think that there is some element of that too too, to the the collage. So did, I think, that's
ice connection, that I would want to say that in my work, saying sorry, you can have that that nice breakfast I'm going to insist as your having that bagel and latte I'm going to say no, you cannot compete, our main allies, your your breakfast Why I'm impose there? You know guardian headline on that: Bagel Ryan, that that logwood. That's what happened, which, I think is really, I think, that's real contribution, I'm person on the in whose bringing bad news to breath as I'm Bad news bear little little bits and pieces, but then I'm gonna say again. You know to make this case. I mean not just this person who's going to say, guess why your purchase of the poor pottery in Raleigh and see, is not unrelated to the Trump authoritarianism and Why? I can't quite articulate, but that much Don't you know? Basically, I care articulated it's it's it's a sort of
a kind of like desire to get something sort of organic to something. Hand, may that is not something online, IKEA, authentic and in a craft and eighty craftsmanship and and sort of a life be The only thing we have is the humanity of the pot, exactly where you been heart level, exactly that is the we have as the humanity of the pot, exactly where you probably know due note the foolish offer fact in film the basically, if you juxtapose two things together, you have a boy who's. Who is a russian yeah there where you are looking at? You know language of montage, you have I boy and then you have a rushing train. You have the boy and the bullets rope. Yet I bore a mother that we see that the boy very differently based on What are you gonna Eisenstein took me on that yeah. That's all fell away. My work in which you know watch me juxtapose
in the Martian Lynch Film a year, Let's say nineteen twenties lynching near with some media press conference and watch the shrine now play out or you know, in the Trump book the you know, a guy and to use our analogy, gonna watch what happens when we pushed the pottery up against authoritarianism and that, basically, it's not just that sort of simple juxtaposition that if we do let's say sort of five hundred of just the Asians watch, how their building a larger argument. You know I mean so yeah I like it. I like the year flashing out for me. I thought there was lacking Sweden, the name wench YO, has its implications and that those or intentional bite, but a out there Some memorable think me one of the more memorable me, a fucking twelve seconds of yeah. What is it
again? A five hundred fifteen to thirty seconds to many pieces was well aware, came from, but that southern guy same were afraid of reprisal. That's an amazing passes. I mean that made by that was, like you know, that's like the portal in it really is too to the whole, why it's the end? you're too. Why? It really is that's an a staggering passage in the film me for those few. People in the world who have yet to see the film it's this fellow with us, a southern axa in just a few seconds he's he be explained The last sort of four hundred years of american history and a really army says the wireless, why people are afraid of retribution me out a couple of new other words and they know it basically owns american guilt and that you know there's black rage and why
fear- and that is you know it's the under girding. I'm in the fear that you, because I can't be owned, a zombie rage, exactly precise, play which, as you know, that explains the forty million people of the trumpet major absolutely in IRAN plays to it. But you know almost hour by hour, because you give the options with fear. Are you no movement through it and understanding of it, the grief captains reality or worse you know, I think, the shame that that is the shape himself right if you're gonna be one of those sort of like a fact that, like the one thing like deflect reflect well yeah and then I was out of your empowered to go. I know no fuck them right I made it that's the end of discourse that actually Amy this clause, I mean like the way you know as you you, you mean Oh, is you know, tromp for years. Had Hitler speeches on his work
I tabled just a fact. You know it's reported by many people and he's gone, school on all that, and I don't know I don't like the idea that he's just like shoot from the hip. I think he did have appointed totally, when he knows that he can harvest the AIR Sea Squad or Emmy, keen that he has relatively reptilian instincts. For those moment, whether going out there Elijah coming I'm going after Baltimore did he did he uses, of course, the classic language of stimulation scapegoating, demagoguery so here you know every it's just classic, calling me animals calling them vermin. I mean it's all just so standard and that I don't know it says so it so easy to be sought. Having shared misery, but but what's the rush hour you you just want to say to people mean that you travel the country, probably more than I do. You know what do you ever try and talk to Trump in a vote
to say, don't you see what he is doing and you get zero response now. No, I mean, I know a couple of people like one guy particular who I liken, who I think it's funny, and yet he is of that. Ok, he's christian he's a southerner young you know he doesn't know a lot necessarily buddy. You know he goes with the flow, but I think that the general consensus around that is like date. They don't care. If he's full of shit. You know they. Is servicing and emotional satisfaction for them and he's also facilitating. You know ever thing. The Republicans have been working on for thirty years, so once you're willing to to be an apology way like a crazy, then it's all its was it's over now agree. I think the key is that you know he's giving financial satisfaction to a relatively soon
a day for ages, but we allow journals emotional satisfaction to a wide swath Emmy, just trying a billiard shot, you're trying to connect up Lynch film trouble with man near and the Trump book May I just somehow what you are saying sort of I was seeing some connection. I am not sure I can quite bring to consciousness, but something to do with my go to move. I guess which is the great, liberating movement to me whether it's the trompe and base where sort of sexuality and dominate and submission to me, great, liberating gesture, which I find sort of freeing is, to be honest, on your own wounded. No, yes, which I know is go do move too, but you know and then to me that's what so powerful about say. Martian ledge is that he
cheerfully owns his own wilderness, but he manifest resistance to the dominant cultural discourse in his very powerful way, and so, if I see you know three things of mine we ve been talking about. You know, like I see what I had. That speaks to a historical one that's a great connection ran at what I really love the people, the artist I love from ancient riders to very contemporary writers are people, and maybe this is why I'm such a collage, rider and filmmaker is that that collage work tends to bring together. People who tend to be wounded, he I'm sure odd, was sooner famously dark, pessimistic. Sad, my I definitely no with that cause. I speak from the wound. In Ireland I write my audience is rightly them any. And even say nature? Pascal all the great collage riders were famously
broke. It wears an away if Europe, if your more you know and that's why it makes sense if they write like the precisely yes ass you, I guess that's all. I could write on exactly because I'm so depressed the had died down yet or retorted right next thing. Legs. Add that that that solve you no help me through that moment. That's nice rivals. If these little packet right, like of of grief bomb right, you know like boom boom. Blank jokes yeah why I was so inflows by Stanhope Up United Europe and servants is going in San on I think can be are they would have from eight a m till twelve noon, all the great standards of that time. They could go on on waiting like I have said before, is that like for me, the reason Stanhope was was. What I was destined to do was that these guys had a handle on things and they they could present large ideas you very quickly and and give you some closure like. If you can, if you
we raised by you, know self involve parents or by power. Father, like you said, you know, much closer on your sense of self, so either this is sort of like these tens Was it like? You had a why? What is my identity there? You know intellectually, if you, if you watch a stand up like that, guy's gonna handle on that right I just happened in fifty seconds and now I can get the vat thou cap that for now like a friend of mine once it is it what I like about your work as it it's weirdly utilitarian, that is to say, I'm trying to create tool kit that are actually sort of useful. For people's Loggia reference point where you know like here's? How do you think about tromp hears it had a thing about sex. Here's. How to think about say, race and sports and, like I think, of the work, as sort of you know as interventions I like that, and I agree with you and I think that's why they probably resonates with me, because I am a big fan of of great lines right
that, though I think it is poetry and by avoiding the sword the context oh trap of being a poet right like a capital p poet. Roma. Are you know where, where it's already sort of once removed from from cultural language in a way right by young, freeing yourself to do squashing now bits and pieces that work together. In a poetic fashion. You know there's a low some for everybody, worried off the labour exiled rang like what the fuck this is me lie. I like the way it feels when I say that I know that, but by, I give like there's a guy that their vitality and do this line about you know like being fucked up. Any though I was like you know, when you hit bottom folks, you'd be surprised at just how much If therefore, has seen its beautiful and it's the word, you yeah that's beautiful and I got a beautiful Lumley ever good whenever you're here. So when,
we're coming up. I you know in this environment without was Ethiopia seem like your parents had walked their agendas and then parenting what how did that in retrospect in yourself converge in inspection? What kind of trajectory did your father's by polarity and you on the alike out in that effect fact, you know your creativity. Are your choices in life it's a big one. Obviously I mean I've written about it and power and drank of how to answer that in a way that is, your wife know my dad ninety nine my mom died a while ago as well. So I mean it's huge. I think my father's what we called manic depressive yet so for me,
There's video to amazing, though, if you like it need united. Ninety nine year was the sort so even kill himself no tried many times the unveiled many times here. He would drive to the Golden Gate Bridge virtually monthly threatening to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge. It is a drive around a gun in his car, but we worser who we want to use it exactly and his was this an Albuquerque here and that in a basically the mine I flash on is I quoted and but with men, this rather devastating lie in which an Ex girlfriend says your father never taught you had to be a man which was other, a nasty line, but that it stayed with me that basically, when people, I think those ones, the exactly veto the. Basically, when I think of paternity and I'm a you know, I'm terribly devoted far
it's my twenty six year old daughter and I very much a father to hurry up. You know basically the point being light. Masculinity was problem, a ties to me from the very beginning. Saying that my mother was this. Rather, pony an authoritarian, dominant figure, quite harsh white chile- quite distant, perhaps as she needed to be given my father's either evacuation of that station. You know he was showing back and forth to electroshock treatments at the mental hospital, and so for me it was the evacuation of masculinity. Like I mused, the whole idea of man be authoritative and mother being nurturing, have no idea what that that even means dear me, like to me my mom was not in any way classically nurturing and my dad was just like the empty patriarch Henry was and so for me that would be the beginning of it and then
sort of late onto you know. I've been in a hugely influenced by my parents I mean I am their son and the sense I'm a writer the way they were via I'm politically engaged. Not. The wortley as they were, but I am politically engage, but I know you said earlier that you have an aversion to that. What is it? Will the aversion is, you know, I'm not a political pamphleteer. You know I try to China of my work like say, war is beautiful, the New York Times my darling, you because I have that. That's the coffee table. Fettes David, Chios, coffee body, anti coffee table right, but it is too soon to do. You know that but what we really I deal is a critique of New York Times WAR, photography, in which I was arguing that at its New York, aims. For years during the Iraq and Afghanistan WAR War, they were running appallingly beautiful
pictures on a weekly level of of those wars, seemingly oblivious, that you can't just run color pacts on page one every few days and not have that be sending unbelievably powerful cheerleading, subliminal message. Well, how many photographers, where they drawing from you, know, dozens around the world. You know they were tended. You know that was an interesting but, as I have said, do, the evolutionary evolution of photography, I mean that's what people would push back as like? Hey people can make amazingly beautiful picture, but I studied every front page of the times from ninety ninety one to two thousand and twelve, and I could not find a single example of it picture that appeared to me anything like the hell of war, they seem to be a relatively conscious decision to have the design
harm running the war department. To basically, I argue, you know that famous line war is hell. Yeah to me in the times like war is heck viewed from a very far distant, because you know the times. Frankly, its audience is not going to war those wars or far away, whereas say during Viet long it I'd be a New York Times reader who having to serve in Vietnam. Sooner forget it. The book argues that anyway, that's the first book among and that in a way fulfils my parents mission of trying to create over political work of art, but in general in previous books, a mind whether a book like black planet facing racetrack NBA season or earlier books are more sceptical of by the book look RO agenda, I you know, I don't think we have solutions to life's problems, I'm a total, the tragedy and, like I just think that we're fucked you know
both on an individual level and on a cultural level that you know, I think, the planet's doomed, etc etc. Whereas my parents, whole agenda, was working to solve lifespan problem is- and I just think you know I became devoted to are you know that wonderful line of Chopin hours says: may the world parish let truth prevail to the rather awful thing that said kite fascistic, but I'm sort of bed with. I want trying to tell the truth matters more than me. If anything else it does, sort of mean, I'm right by though again exactly like you know when you, when you taken into consideration in terms of philosophy and in terms of you Know- a true Julian. Is that you know it just seems that the EU might might partnered with bull shit.
Told you, I don't say, I'm right real, but that yeah that become my partner with bullshit write me that that becomes a prevailing truth in which we face is amiss seeking to solve the same problem core will that's where it gets scary. As that you know that's what the Trump book tries to get into you know, I say at one point: the book tromp is the world's worst best personal essayist cause it's hee hee. Wires. Everything threw himself right away that away that your stand up. Acta is the way that my writing does the way a lot of the actors in comedians area. An analogous do. Let me you probably I assumed that use share my admiration, people like say, Spalding, greater and Joe Frank. You know it's like you know everything got acquired through them. Spalding gray could be involved in a movie about Cambodia. Without Then you get back to him right away. Trump is
weirdly like them, unlike us for four deeply various reason, he mythologies himself of rye media. Exactly I tried to make a line work on saved from like you know that you're Trump is the it was this case. He is he's he's the best narcissist because he succeeded in actually making everything about him literally every exactly like ended. I guess to me the big question for him. Among many I'm curious. What you're take is, does he know he's fulla shit or is he has he actually convinced himself or an hour his politics as awful as he pretends or their part of like, for instance, I'm sure is
aid for numerous abortions, but he pretends to be again. Oh yeah, I'd like your incidents. How aware is the of the stick of why I think he ate yo? I think he's like. I think it's. I think it's instinctive whereby think he you know in his quiet moment, to a people. He trusts he just a straight up, asshole, but I think he knows the conjure varying. I daresay. I definitely think that's right. I think that I mean, I don't think he says he play What he's going to say now, but he says just watches MRI illegal. I think that's right here I will watch what I can do exact. I think he has that I agree so Ultimately you you think that this new film it seems to be there. No wherever medium, your working with this seems to be you, the evolution of everything you do like this is. You would say that yeah
It doesn't matter whether it's a book or or the other. The pictures in that war is beautiful or or this film. This seems to be a a perfectly realized, a piece of art based on your approach, Thank you I mean a b, I mean you may assent the Martian Lynch Filmy Attic lane. I think I mean it is a funny evolution where you the first novel I wrote, publish my got thirty five years ago. Does just that that one review actually meet outlay on weekly. So it's all most a parody of the conventional novel. The first book I wrote was just unbelievably straight ahead now here you know all the standard things and then over the last sort of thirty five years. You know I've written over twenty books and just almost step by step by step by step, they ve gotten less linear, bless narrative, less plotted more pixelate it the montage moron collage like in you know,
there would be a way to argue the Lynch film bringing together politics raise sports collage. Is you know I hope I have more gestures to make, but it does seem like a nice gathering of my impulses B. I don't think it's like the end when I say that it seems to be exactly what you're working towards seemingly yeah. You know in that, like I imagine that drawing from your images is, is probably I would, I would imagine your kind of labour intensive work, What more exciting then drawing from words I mean to me it's the whole thing of exactly parties feel like I'm running out of words and learn ways I mean, maybe like say going back to trouble with men like I didn't have more to say about it like this was as much as I could say any part of it with the martian was that the we approached him, and so you know which would like to participate in the film his l.
Whence is his silence. Silence is always so thankful. And said no here that I won't block it, but I won't participate either the necessity being the the mother of invention of that's right. For you know there was it okay. We have now Marcia Lynch, let scour the web. Let's find every clip that we can ever fine, let's inner cut them with quotes, and american history in this place to my raise your party was hugely relieved when lives no cause. It forced me back on. As you say, my my go to move there, which is I'm calling corporation theme, attire, saying. Georgiana bringing together pottery and tromp boy watch what happens right in and in the way you let yourself off the hook it away, but didn't is that you know your place in it was the assemblage precisely in and not like your voice,
you're right. I write well that people's a few people, like the the book that it is very loosely adapted from his book called black planet, face you embassies. In a book I wrote twenty years ago I kept affair. His Journal of the Seattle saw an Ex ninety four ninety five and the authorities of sportsmen. I am a huge guilty pleasure and but it's all, when amazing cultural theatre life. In its you could I mean I could everything I wouldn't I have it. I mean you ve saved yourself, tens of our ear for your father son. I guess totally- and you know I've written now, three or four books about sports- and I you know, as they say, there's nothing you need to know about american culture. You cannot see through the Superbowl, it's all freaking mare around her, and so basically that was a template. Somehow the boy, a black plan of a book is about
raise media and in that book I'm very present. As a guilty white liberal who sometimes has racist attitudes, I sometimes identify with the owner, sometimes with the coaches, sometimes with media, sometimes with the players. The book tries to another. Ass an mba season as an inverted mere of NBA race relations at the time of Rodney, King Clarence, Thomas and the OJ trial, and you think it's a good book, but you could write that book now, Ghana, and so I was trying to adapt that film with the actor director James Franco and we then we tried to do it. It just came to an end and that pivoted nicely and into the Marshal Lynch Film in which, as you said, I vanished, but again as with the quotes. I think I'm hugely there when I juxtapose a quote from Richard Wright, say
only, but only jailers believe in jails with a passage from little boozy. Here I could be or present. No, you know. Definitely I think, that's right you, but it's not you reflecting on you prevail as you right. I think that if martian head agreed. To be part of it. You would be forced into a conversation that would have been different than what you guys. I totally agree. Allow I'm present a little bit like em. They you you'll, hear me, ask questions in the movie here, but I know, I think, does the culture at this point. I want to hear about the ambivalence from a middle class white jewish filmmaker, I would argue- probably not so every bit ass. You want to sell more dying to see. I don't think it's also way, I guess, but you know, but if you frame it like that, I mean you know it's sort of a disservice that You know, I remember, being very angry when entertainment tonight, you have first started airing because, unlike yelled, the that that's private
You know, like you'd I've news about what's going on behind the scenes on that day, and I now it's the whole culture as a whole culture right, so so that the thing is is like you know the work unit. We I know that he becomes part of the criticism the more the commentary around it. You know that everybody, it's like what that guy? Who, who is check, I whatever, but you know when I watch a thing like I've, our time keeping all of my head. I didn't know you from anybody, and I in I saw what the film was gonna be first five merye any known, and I chose to lock in Indiana what I come out with you. You know, I think I got we mentioned earlier. The of what was the through line in what I was supposed to get from it, but what I also got when it was. You know these if it becomes, a clear that you know when one of cower, doesn't need cultural expectations that they will be. They will face a punishment sure no matter what it is and it there's there's a grapes. The power of silences of form,
of protest for sure is very beautiful and in fact somebody asked me last night I did a little of that that we show the film Mina crimes from ESPN. Was the talk back guess after the screen, and she was great and has a lot of good questions, and she said you know how did you know how to read Lynch is silence as inherently political and sort of what you have implied like? I was born to understand that between growing up the Bay area, having very poor, local parents, having a law of black men. And women living in our house throughout my childhood. As my parents, you know they were just sort of free You know they would have free, ran in our house here and again, going back to my little won't, you know, stuttering as a kid. I could hardly talk and the base, equally, I know how much anger
There is an in silence whether imposed or self imposed, and I feel, like I locked in on martian lunches silence like super early on, like there was eloquence in that silence. You know that the through line in the film is its this love song to Mersham lunches Paul takes by any means necessary. There is not an institutional like you know. I agree with you that very Oakland credibly. Alright, he was like you know. You fuck you if you think I'm gonna. Do you want me to do I'm here boy football go fuck yourself. This is in part of the agreement you know and when it was imposed on him he was still fuck you. I play football and oh I'll, triple down honor, which you know what I mean
same way is his assault on discourse. If there's a trumpet an assault on discourse overhear where Trump furnish never ere, I sort of love people who break the fourth wall, like that, I just you know, and I dont love tromp, but I got interested in trying to understand- I mean I think a key thing of tromp here is that he does break the fourth wall. You know me, the time and it s very, very different register Lynch always always breaks the fourth law. What they The interesting thing that year, in light of your book in me, not knowing anything about sports, is it there's a basketball star, Blake Griffin, who is start doing comedy all right you and he did a bit- speaks to the another part of what you're dealing with But it's not as loaded by you know he was the. He did a bit bow and I was on found a couple weeks ago. He was the other Gaspe did did unfound about. You know about the problem with being interviewed
this game wow I wish I had hurt you you should go watch Was- is doing panel or actually doing stand and always panel a hunk us he eats it. He would he pointed out. He turn he'd he's here. Jimmy stand up and he stood a hard and gray. I bear any said Jimmy like artist. You, like fifteen seconds, are jumping Jack are running in place, so we a dry drew. This goes in. Ngos, ok, stop! I feel right now exactly that's a great big area and that's the beginning of a you know and gryffons interest and cause he's by Re Shaw. Nannies, he's very good, look may I bet he's you know, he's he's is done a lot of successful commercials and that's fan he's actually is due stand up? Yes, he's actual lounged, that's amazing, and you know that you know like it the absurdity it be like you know the moment, you came off sad. You know you did an hour and a half sat, so it gets its very on primitive, visceral, gonna, totally empty
rule you're gonna, totally empty it out and turn it into a platitude, Nicosia corporate. As you know like and Lynch is holding on to joy, it's no oddity right now. It's like the best part of that of the new deal, a movie throwing Thunderbird, which I haven't seen you watch it because there's one moment that makes the whole fuckin moving on, I always genuine is. I think he had just come off stage you after performing the first. Concert and you would walking off stage in the guy with the camera says. How do you feel one turns around and goes about what that's grants a great deal, What is a progenitor of all this is a nation. Are you go back to arm am. Obviously authenticity is a bit of a fiction, but I think what I interested in what you are interested in. What Marcia launches isn't is trying to be authentic, you're gonna probably fail. There will be a sort of fictional apparatus that intercede but
The authentic, when you say authenticity, is fishing at least been playing with that and sexual. When you say authenticity fixing. Does I've been playing with that and sexual bit go with this word these, words now yeah, like authenticity, mindfulness, doubling down right right by four summaries: Those are outside normalizing right, but but this authenticity Triphaena, which gets hung on the narrow minded riding through, but by the bite you know there is your desk. Three more hours in my day after I d you rise, are you? What does it mean? What do you mean when he say authenticity is a fiction? Well, that's obviously enormous too a big I mean I think that are more title, I've been too little packet, you're good at that very got. What what's little go to aphorism here, yet, let's the army, I just think I guess I would just sort of make the point you and I are to have a real discussion. This this feels more real. Then, of course you be
on Conan or whatever you know it's more real or do I you know will swear, will be real, will cough wake up and its more real, but you know obviously on some level I'm they'll performing that you're still performing. We are mask upon mass. We don't always know each other. You know the we don't know ourselves so I'm sort of making that pretty standard postmodern point that it feels to me different the kind of work, I try and do and say, a novel by J R art talking which, like its trying to be as fantastic as grass or I'm trying to be as real as I possibly can, but let's not totally our meters. Finally, my blood and bones, which will ultimately be dead like out that's real, that I will die right and also. I think that the work the work is try to be real, but you know I might lie
the edges, all of course, my non fiction. Work takes a normal poetic, liver label. I think also there like there there's something about, despite whatever we do, no matter how authentic or whatever word talking about in this moment, however, press to really are yet were still not. As a thoroughly really answering to what's going on in our heads rise. How do we do that? We can you know I'm a guy, the idle, I think we'd be in trouble if you can do, but we try like problem is- and I think I, like fashion, you do do I do I feel like I do it. I think the collage value I assure you is it- is causing you're gonna get to training to manufacturing that there, a good wherewith apply, that hard pressure on manufacturing. Emmy, like that, you know my wife sometime says we want one nice thing that my wife says she says you like. If we have to write a card to someone say a condolence card or a thank you hard. You know,
it. Just sort of I just pull out a patent, we have a card and I just write something very direct shows. How do you do that? and I just feel like I have you know, as they say no filled, like, I have a relatively tight wire between What's in my head and what's in my hand like, I just go there and Yes, there are probably layers of bullshit there and in layers of self protection, but I just think you know forty. Years of writing practice, I built up a relatively tight connection between The stuff in my head, which I'm relatively not be afraid of and like that's what I'm going to say on the page reaction, you anything of people like the work there they're saying like all meet you half like this is a bridge across the abyss of human loneliness, whereas sometimes with my work, especially
a while ago. They would say that deeds fucked up its shields problem, whereas I want to say it's all of our problem and I just have the temerity and stupidity to actually say it. Well, I m glad you do and thank you for talking. I think we did our I did to mark. I thank you. So much. So that was both with that went. Well, I felt good after that again, the documentary we were talking about Marshall, Linda History, is available on Itunes, Amazon. In is most recent book the trouble with men, reflections on sex love, marriage, point in power, that's available and don't forget everything is better with a pine abandoned Jerry. I like way said that The thing is that our without Pine abandoned Jerry's, whether I'm one can t sitting outside on a hot summer evening or quietly simmering with rage the best time
You're, ok, when I've got a bowler, peanut butter CUP, which is to build the, never got it. What about you, folks, Watson, chocolate but rowdy all that chocolate ice cream with acts of brownie in it. Do you come cosy up with you? every flavour available and were ice cream soul were finding new favoured, had been jerry. Dotcom, that's beaten, J e r R, why dot com. Now that's kind of place and dirty.
Transcript generated on 2020-03-25.