Sometimes love comes at a price too great for ones emotional bank account.
— BLR, 11/22/2018
Warren Ellis was recently interviewed by THE COMICS JOURNAL via Q & A. It’s a great interview of the writer whose weekly newsletter ORBITAL OPERATIONS I read regularly. This particular excerpt I relate to rather well.
TCJ: What is one thing, in spite of all the energy you have in the face of everything being terrible, that you’re afraid of?
WE: Cancer. Climate change. Economic collapse. The rise of the nationalist right. And so on. You know, the same list as most other people. My daughter turns 23 this week, and I would like her to have a long life that doesn’t involve selling her organs for grain. Have a kid! You’ll be afraid of everything for the rest of your life.
We have art so as not to perish from the truth.
— Friedrich Nietzsche
Back in the early days of social media, and I mean way back to like 2002-03 when I was on Live Journal (and not yet on Friendster, then MySpace and later Blogger, Twitter, Facebook, WordPress and Tumbler — sheesh), I went by the handle of “Artjunkie”. It was fitting because that’s exactly what I was and still am today: a junkie for the arts.
My primary art jams are the literary arts (books and prose) and graphic literature (comic books and graphic novels) and, of course, music. Naturally, movies and television factor in as well, but Read! Write! Rock! is my mantra, they’re the activities I do most often in my spare time (wait, spare time exists?). I consume and create a lot art (although I hoard a lot of my own artistic creations). I’ve been writing fiction and nonfiction seriously for about 25 years and have been a musician/songwriter for 30 years as of this past Summer — the Summer of ’88 was when I started playing guitar to get the musical ball rolling. Now I’m a multi-instrumentalist and vocalist with a dozen local bands and solo projects behind me. [See About for publishing credits and My Music for selected streaming tunes.]
These days it seems all I want to do is consume and create art, my social life (and work life if I could) be damned! Sure, art is a great source of entertainment (and we’ve been in a golden age renaissance of television the last decade-and-a-half at least), but the arts are a great coping tool for the many things that ail us. Art can be good for daily stress, mental health, exorcising personal demons, enlightening oneself on life and helping us better understand the world and understanding our place within it.
The late great German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche is notable for saying that “Without music, life would be a mistake.” I wholeheartedly agree with that one.
In addition to the quote at the top about art, he said said:
I’ll leave it at that.
My words today on Facebook | Instagram | Tumblr | Twitter
Now, if only I could ignore my own occasional bouts of doubt . . .
“Dark Social” is the notion that people share “content” via private/secure messaging apps, one-to-one or one-to-select-group. That social sharing activity can’t be measured in any useful way. There is no freely-available prosumer tool to quantify the sharing of a link. Hence, they call it “dark social.” When you hear someone say “dark social,” they’re bemoaning the inability to get click reports off of actual conversation. Because when you see someone on the street head-down in their phone and dabbing away at the screen, they’re not cut off from the outside world. They’re talking to people. Fuck your Black Mirror narrative – they’re just more interested in a window to their friends and family than they are in you peering at them in judgement. And all that action of being engaged in a life of having your loved ones in your hand all the time and being able to show them things and talk about it? That’s Dark Social now.
No writer worthy of being read, and expecting to be read, writes in a vacuum, however. We write with the anticipation of a reading audience, no matter what that number of unsuspecting souls may be.
— Quoting myself from October 9, 2016.