While people may say, “oh, it’s nothing, anybody could do it,” that doesn’t mean it’s easy to do or understand. Like flying a plane, knowing how to write well takes more than knowing the function of the buttons at your disposal. Yes, it’s helpful and possibly important to know the descriptive elements of visual art or the narrative flow of classical music when it comes to writing, but it is not enough to make one’s writing great.
Climate disasters, endless Middle Eastern conflicts, nationalist uprisings, xenophobia, and government surveillance. Most societies today are combatting at least one of these predicaments. The increased speed at which information travels has made people aware of problems that should not be persisting in a progressive social order. Aside from being a unifier of sorts and an aid to the consolidation of voices, mass communication may have contributed to widespread cynicism, making us distrustful of the principles and norms around us.
Age of You, MOCA’s current exhibit, intends to explore what it means to be an individual in the face of accelerating technology and what it means to exist in a society in which our personal data has become the most important commodity under late capitalism.
Last summer I visited the Amalfi Coast in Italy, the last leg of my first real vacation to Europe. Time didn’t seem to move in Amalfi. I did nothing but gorge myself on pizza and pasta, and roast in the sun on a different beach each afternoon. I turned five shades darker in the span of five days. I ate pistachio gelato until I was sick.
An interview with Zadie Smith recently appeared in The Guardian, and, in the title, was a quote from Smith herself: “I’ve never finished Proust or even the Brothers Karamazov.” Only in the subtitle is there any information about Smith’s responses to the multitude of dependent-clause prompts that read a little like a feedback form: The book I’m currently reading. The book I wish I’d written. The last book that made me cry. Despite the format of the interview, it still manages to provide plenty of lovely insight into the interests and reading habits of one of the world’s most famous authors.
The immersiveness of Honey Boy goes like this: You imagine playing your own father in an autobiopic. You imagine doing it so well that the audience believes you are not you, that you are your father, and a little boy with a different childhood is you. Maybe this pleases you in some way, because maybe you feel connected to your father only by exploring the pain he might have caused you.