My Last Good Friend

Five years ago, my last “good friend” expelled me from his circle, perhaps, because I didn’t deliver an edited product after I recorded his wedding in Coberg, Germany as he wished (albeit at my own expense). Reviewing my experience in Coberg over the long weekend of the wedding and after viewing the footage, there was an inconsistency, I couldn’t find what the story was about, so how could I cut it?

Yes, the subject was the marriage ceremony. And, yes, there it is, there are the guests, there is the bride, the priest, the groom, the little children, parents, in-laws and friends but important material suggesting the relevance of the event wasn’t there and though I understood the nature of the missing material, I felt uncomfortable with telling my friend and his wife why that material wasn’t there, which was this: since I had no relationship with anyone but him, a circumstance that was worsened because the room they gave me was at a hotel some distance from the Slot where other guests stayed with them, there were reasons for feeling left out, not to mention that they all spoke either Romanian or German or I don’t know what. It could have been worse, I suppose, if they’d given me a yellow Mogen David to wear around my arm. The subject I couldn’t find was love.

Moreover, upon my return home, I was distracted by a hornet’s nest of events. My fiancé had gotten pregnant and married her lover, who I suspect wasn’t the child’s biological father; my mother, who I’d been looking after for several years, was poisoned by a doctor, who believed this was appropriate, since she was 99 years old; my business partner corrupted an escrow to steal the proceeds from the sale of our property; my political enemies pursuaded the local newspapers to cancel my weekly editorials; my landlord of many years evicted me. The upsets didn’t stop with these macro events but continued, rivaling those of Don Quixote.

In time, I realized I would need to interview my friend and his wife and then go to Romania and Germany to obtain material I needed but in the midst of dealing with my mother’s things, losing my home and all my money, I was at wit’s end and my friend’s wedding seemed the least of my concerns. Now I feel I was mistaken but had I seen it as I do now, I would have known what I know now. No doubt, this is also true for my friend, who I still hold in high esteem though he disavows his relationship with me.

But the value of this lesson has not escaped me just as Quixote’s experience with the Duke and Duchess changed his life by bringing the hard reality of life without ideals into his heart. Thinking about this led me to an insight into how Cervantes may have fallen into the path that led to his writing the first, best and best-selling novel ever written and who can say?

Occupy Wall Street, the Musical

I went to the city to get a job

Find some work,

What a jerk.


Can’t get no good help no more

What a bore

I’m sure.


Just can’t get good help today

There’s no way

Doesn’t pay.


Employment is my game

Just the same

It’s insane.


I went to the city to get a job

Find some work,

What a jerk.


It’s insane ‘cause

There’s no work.

Notes from People on Sunday

How quickly we forget what once was

Nothing remains

It was all “once upon a time”

Love is capricious, it comes and goes

Appears like a dream then fades away

How quickly we forget what once was

Nothing remains

It was all “once upon a time”.

Everything in life dies away like a song

Fades and flees

With good-bye.

From the 1930 film, Abschied (Farewell) dir. By Robert Siodmak




Fifty Ways, The Loop

Grabbing thick folds of her faux fur coat, he shakes her viciously. Fear flashes briefly in her eyes, she looks through the open door of the airplane at neat rows of vineyards below.

As she is propelled out the door, a look of horror fills his eyes and he throws his body out into the void, attempting to put the genie back in the bottle and the moving image freezes.

Samuel Jackson’s cursing resonates in the dome of the relatively quiet San Luis Obispo public library, drawing the attention of several people seated at tables and carrels.

Like the one where he sits, his eyes focused on the LCD of a Macbook, his brobdignian fingers shaking with impatience over the delicate-looking backlit querty keyboard.

His little finger taps a key and the scene in the monitor jumps back to the close up of her mocking smile. He stares at it, compresses his lips and shakes his head.

A voice behind him says, you have to warp the timeline, Pops. He turns his head, a look of incredulity rising in his eyes as he sees the diminutive Alex standing behind him.

Removing the noise-canceling headset from his head, he smiles and in a tone of mildly patronizing condescension, he says, how the fuck would you know?

Really, Alex says, want me to show you?

Lifting his heavy frame from the hard seat of the small wooden chair, Samuel stands. Sure. Go ahead. Show me.

Grabbing thick folds of her faux fur coat, he shakes her viciously. Fear flashes briefly in her eyes, she looks through the open door of the airplane at neat rows of vineyards below.





Flying Blind in Love

The impulse to fly blind is exciting and there’s a feeling of freedom when you pretend you don’t know what you suspect you know: “Life is so weird…If you let it, it flows all by itself…like a river. But you can harness it, and make life your horse. (from Jose Henrique Fonseca’s film, ‘Man of the Year’).

Here are two links to brief explanations (on TED) from recent science that provides clarity when they’re put together in the context of anyone’s relationship history:​​alks/paul_zak_trust​_​moralit​​alks/helen_fisher_t​e​lls_us_

Isn’t it ironic that mind altering “pharmaceuticals”, which started out to be fun, became a political tool? (Malcolm X said that). I once asked a still famous musician friend, albeit now deceased (r.i.p.), how his wife related to his being on tour so much. He said,  “a woman will put up with anything if you give her enough cocaine”.

Seeing The Light: Madness vs. Expertise

At first I thought it was me—my befuddled thinking, my issues, not about getting older but about thinking more wisely now, wisdom after all is the only useful result of surviving experience because it shapes the vessel in which knowledge may be held.

Now that I see the cons in life, I’m much more amazed at human tolerance than about what we tolerate: how long we tolerate lies that abuse, demean, debase and destroy us. It is the stupidity of stupidities. This rant is not inspired by madness nor expertise. Madness is a euphemism. Delusion is the domain of fools, illusion the hallmark of experts.

In the tradition of the fool: Steve Martin, Robin Williams, Jerry Lewis and the erstwhile, illiterate comic, Herman Cain. Names, labels, words that cue illusions on masse that define popular perception so that we so rarely view our world and our lives directly and when we catch a glimpse, it seems unfamiliar, fascinating and frightening.

What will it be today?

The blond at the San Luis Obispo Public Library yesterday who told me I could find her at Cuesta Grade, while I, trying to make sense of a video editing program made by idiots at the behest of con men to sell to wannabe idiots to perpetrate kitsch, was distracted from my efforts by a spike in oxytocsin I felt in my eyes and chest, compromising the narrow margin of separation from reality I maintain to protect myself from involvement, an affect seen by others as pomposity tinged with condescension and sarcasm.

Relevant Facts vs. Inconvenient Truths, Hubris and What There Is To Do About It

Yesterday, on Skype, Dave told me that he knows tons of guys in San Francisco who make games and they all want to make real narrative movies, not games. “It’s just the way it is here,” he said, “tons of them making games and they all want to make movies.”

Dave works at Pacific Film Archives in Berkeley and moonlights teaching a class on Avid at Art Academy University in San Francisco (AAU) where I’m working on an MFA in music for visual media. Dave and I were skyping about unpredictable behavior of the Avid program. I’ve decided that Avid is a hoax that targets nerds who want to make movies, it’s like one of those parasites that promotes its life cycle by programming the behavior of the hosts they infect with the result that they commit suicide. It makes zombies.

Gretchen Winkler, another AAU student also working on an MFA but in illustration, posted a lament on Facebook about the stereotyping of Germans, “as if we’re all Nazis”. I commented that it isn’t Germans but bureaucrats that organize mob behavior to carry out pogroms and German culture is quintessentially bureaucratic.

Last night, I watched John Huston’s screen adaptation of Carson McCuller’s “Reflections in a Golden Eye” after first disappointing myself watching the tragic acting performances of Clint Eastwood and two of his girl friends in a soft porn piece called, “Play Misty for Me”. Huston’s adaptation of McCuller’s book with Brando, Taylor, Harris, etc., disturbed my dreams and in the morning I beheld the context that cements Avid’s effect and Gretchen’s observations into an idea about the relevance of narratives, at least for a small fraction of the human population that reads books and likes Woody Allen’s films.

Everything about “Play Misty…” typifies pornography, a melodrama made for the box office: shallow story heavy on spectacle and everything about “Reflections…” evokes feelings that reveal the kind of confusion we suffer that leads us to become thoughtless bureaucrats. Eastwood’s shallow film tried for box office success playing on a stereotype of mental illness. Huston’s movie tells a story about the ubiquitously unbalanced mental state that suffuses all bureaucracies. McCuller’s story is a description in detail of the phenonmenon that psychologist Eric Fromm called, escape from freedom. Call it voluntary zombi-ism, Nazism, neo-conservatism, call it what you will.

Dave’s game-makers don’t aspire to make pornography in narrative form, they long to tell a relevant story. Like Eastwood when he made “Misty”, they may not know the distinction that divides kitsch from art. Though they can render a script and film a story, there is nothing in their experience nor education that might compel them to produce art while they live in a whirlpool of kitsch. Historically, good stories are uncommon. McCullers was in her teens when she wrote “The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter”, one of the most poignant, beautiful and powerful stories reflecting racism in America and anywhere.







Love for Art’s Sake and V.V.

The last thing anyone wants to hear is that which they fear is true about them. It’s also the thing about which they’re most curious to know and will torture anyone to hear.

Ah, intimacy! The intimate act! The intimate thought!

We’re not intentional liars, always, but the lie we most fear is the lie we tell ourselves to forget how as children, we made our world up, this lie hides what we are afraid is true.

In love there is no relationship for there is no separation.

What more is a relationship but a conspiracy of silence about separation?

Of what use is it to tell your lover how attached you are to your wife, or to tell your husband how deeply you love your lover?

What fears drive the sad buffoons we see in the mirror to waste hours and energy on exercise machines, taking nature for granted, as if, like youth, it will always be there.

What man in his arrogance wants to know how women who use him talk about him?

What woman wants to hear that inspiration is not in her thighs but rather, it is in the stars that the excitement of love sparks desire in her mate?

Love conquers, for a while, romantic love, that is, which is neither lust nor attachment and what is romantic?

This is where we come to Art, the invention of a solution to an imaginary problem.

Put aside analysis, for we lust, we love, we grow attached, each as separate experiences and often with different objects and each according to it’s own logic.

Romantic love, ephemeral and irrational, conquers—it is emotional trumps…when this card falls, fail to play it and you regret it forever, play it and play the fool.

Is it not better to have loved and lost than not to have loved at all?

Love is the quality that distinguishes pet from prey

Art lives in the domain of love and we are each of us by turns and our stars, part nymph or satyr, part loyal and part lover. Art appeals to us in the spaces between.

Pornography is not defined by the explicitness of sexual performance but by purpose, which is to inspire lust, not to reflect upon or evoke love.

Lust graces art but the art lies not in lust.

Islamic fundamentalists are stars of pornography for they demonize lust, followed by priests, tribal leaders, cultists and other types of false prophets and power mongers.

The art of cinema, the novel, poetry, painting, sculpture in any form or media might suggest explicit sexuality that love may be revealed.

What is this thing called, love?

Love, revealed in the poetry of a garden, house paint, design of automobiles, the long arch of a bridge, wheels of a tractor, wavering lines of an orchard, apples fall as if in love.

Love is gravity, it is art that gives us wings.

Art is the antidote to despair, precisely the biological purpose of the capacity for love.

We call love frivolous, we can live without it, don’t need it or want it, think it secondary to happiness and success while our urban landscapes become grotesque halls of mirrors.

We call art frivolous, we can live without it, don’t need it or want it, think it secondary to happiness and success while our urban landscapes become grotesque halls of mirrors.

We think artists, like lovers, are self-indulgent, that the important business of life lies in moving stones and pounding iron into our generation’s legacy—a convenient lie…

…the lie that exalts the privileged, who move no stones, bear no arms, neither work the mines nor plow the fields, who are patrons we aspire to be as we view art in museums.

Yet, art is love though love may not be art.

Our species depends on our capacity for love, not for loyalty nor fidelity, nor agility nor lustful copulation per se…though such traits serve useful purpose, they don’t define us.

Love makes possible the careful development of children, without which, the species couldn’t achieve linguistic programming, enabled by certain genetic traits.

These most important traits dispose us to develop arcane languages, like algebra, music and intuition over generations to enable synthesis at higher levels of cognition.

Without love, the tiger eats her cub instead of passing on the knowledge of her ancestors and her own experience and we are more to be feared than tigers.

Deceived by their own rhetoric, religious fundamentalists hide from qualities we share with tigers and end up eating their own children with sauces of dogma.

Reverence reveals kinship with tiger, orangutan, egret, rabbit, bee, whale and dolphin—each social species having adapted over time, a formula consistent with environment.

We have survived by refinement of the social prime, the psycho-chemical phenomena we know as love, for which purpose arose the symbolic communication, known as, art.

Humanity shows up in art or does not show up.

Art invests symbols with emotion to evoke love associated with ideas and this may be exploited to misdirect child-like people, like most adults and all innocent children.

Art is a liar and lie we must to be loyal, to be true lovers and good parents.

Neither moral nor legal code can prevent abuse yet, when art thrives, love is revealed.

If art for love’s sake disappears, what remains is banal pornography of fundamentalism.

English Spanish Counter Intrusion

Children in Santa Maria, October 30, 2011In this nation of poor, blind fools led by rich, ruthless fools, we are under the illusion that “we” are white, Christian, western Europeans. Regardless of our own ethnic ancestry, we have always done our best to make the children of poorer immigrants regret their ethnic origin and exalted the foreign chíc of well-to-do newcomers to romantic excess.

At this moment, across the land and in media, we institutionally suppress expression of Spanish and Latin American native heritage and language. Descendants of these native Americans receive benefits for signing documents in which they describe themselves as “Latino” or “Hispanic” and then there are others we pay to call themselves, “Native American”, setting up another distinction in institutionalized discrimination.

Descendants of native Americans we call, "Latinos".
Descendants of native Americans we call, "Latinos".

Public school policies in California demean Hispanic tradition and teachers of Spanish-speaking ESL students are generally ignorant of the wealth of world literature that has been written in Spanish. Children learn to be ashamed of their appearance and heritage.

Long before Miguel Cervantes invented the modern novel and well before Gutenberg invented miniature metal type, the syntax that underlies the Spanish language was born in Mesopotamia, Persia,  Egypt, Greece, Carthage, Babylonia, all of which together contained more wisdom of life and nature than has been since scientifically discovered.

Sub-Americans, who make up 40% of our population (80% where I live), don’t know that our numeric and musical notation, mathematics and sciences of astronomy, physics, biology and chemistry incubated in their language as they were incorporated, for the benefit of commerce, into the Iberian peninsula’s spoken tradition that we call, Spanish, the written form of which was devised by Jews at the behest of the Iberian caliphates that governed Spain until they were driven away by tribes from the north, organized for the first time under the banner of Christianity by henchmen of Charlemagne’s dominion.

English is a wonderful language and my own. It amalgamated voices of Norsk sprog with Latin derivatives. Spanish, derived from Arabic, Latin, Persian, Greek and other sources is a more sonorous, sensual and emotionally expressive tongue. Castillian friars made the native Americans they enslaved learn Spanish for pragmatic reasons. They were not invited to explore Spanish literature–what good is a slave who thinks he is a human being? Here, in this town in California, where I live, 100,000 our of 130,000 citizens speak Spanish and wonderful works of Spanish literature gather dust on the shelves of  libraries, ignored by those who still have the most to gain from them.

The R Word

It’s easy to see why Martin Heidegger loved Adolph Hitler when you understand that racial genetic differences do include stereotypical traits when you take the Bell curve into account, which is just what an astute man like Martin would do. You can see genetic differences between people of the same culture, tribe, clan and family. Black people, generally, do have bigger dicks and yes, their skin has dark hue. Jews have small dicks and are good thinkers, Greeks are Jews who, like Arabs, use dicks as chairs. And so on. Naturally, a bunch of fanatic Jesuit Castillaños could enslave an entire continent of aboriginals, who lack the gene for common sense and the descendents of their combined progeny demonstrate that on the average, this genetic trait is both predominant and regressive.

Moral and ethical issues arise as much from ignoring these differences as they do from exploiting them. Ignoring them, you miss the implicit survival strategy these traits entail. The differences would not exist if each group had not employed them as a way to survive and it is revelatory to see how even traits like blind, stupid ignorance were genetically inscribed, which is, essentially what became, on average, of males of the human species.

What to do? What to do! You’d have to be blind, deaf and witless not to know what to do once you see this. The issue is not the differences but how you use the principle involved.

Re-Surecting Melody (Not the End of the World as We Know It)

It’s been 3 years, I know, since I took down the radio theater website.

I’ve been working in many new areas.

Prometheus awakens and Phoenix arises… I promise.

I am continuing to compose and arrange music–some of which is currently posted on SoundCloud. There will be links here when I find out how to embed them, for now:


Will post screenplay for the Beginning & End

An autobiographic novella also known as, Show Me A Rose

P is for patience.

Michael Winn

(Not the End of the World as We Know It, nor The Beginning of Time.)