Mark Vonnegut, Kurt Vonnegut's son, wrote a book in the '70s called The Eden Express. The Eden Express is a vivid, viscerally convincing account of Mark's descent into psychosis and his subsequent diagnosis of schizophrenia. Someone described to me the effect of Mark Vonnegut's descriptive powers of his illness as similar to Hunter S. Thompson's ability to describe his massive drug use in Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas. Whatever devices I use in my comics to convey the experience of psychosis pale in comparison to Mark Vonnegut's ability to describe it with the written word.
One of the things he talks about experiencing when he was sick was when he'd heard the news of a series of earthquakes in California and the destruction they caused. He believed that he had somehow caused these earthquakes with his mind. Mark relates how he was very relieved when he finally received treatment and he realized that he did not cause these earthquakes.
In my last blog post, I compare myself to Kenbei Shimada from The Seven Samurai. In The Seven Samurai a group of beleaguered peasant farmers recruit Shimada to lead samurai and villagers against marauding bandits. Shimada initially refuses, but farmer Yohei's tears and the entreaties of a lowlife gambler that the farmers are doing their best by offering to feed the Samurai their rice convinces Shimada to take the job.
In earlier posts I allude to some unnamed virtuous cause that, with my foot in that other world, I believe that I am being asked to join in on. The problem is, I believe that I am more like Mark Vonnegut, who was not responsible for the earthquakes in California, than I am like Kenbei Shimada, who had the power to forsake the farmers and leave them to their fate. I do not believe that I even have the power to forsake this cause, even if I wanted to.
This has everything to do with whether I will show up on some date in the near future at a specific place at a specific time. I have not discussed these things openly with anyone, nor do I care to. With my foot in this other world, I had the conviction that at this place, at this time, on this date, the Invisible Woman would materialize.
In earlier posts I talked about how my criticism of the "turn my back on love" experiment consisted of the belief that I did not take it far enough. I will take it far enough this time, and not show up at this place, at this time, on this date.
When I want to reach out to an artist whose work I admire, I will find out how to contact them via mail, and send them a package. I always include a cover letter that contains contact information so the artist can write back if they want to. I always try to bring up in the letter what it was specifically about their work that resonated with me and whether it relates to anything I do in the comics or CDs that I've sent them. I try not to come off as if I just want them to discover me and help me make it to the big time.
I've had some people write back; Harvey Pekar and Chester Brown wrote me back. A guy named Justin St. Germaine wrote a book called Son of a Gun, a memoir about how his mother came to be murdered by her fifth husband. I told Justin how I thought his mother and I both shared rather abject, morbid, pathological afflictions of love addiction. I included other letters I'd written to other people, Richy vegas Comics issue # 4; Anita, You're the Reason I'm Not In Prison, and a copy of my CD, Man's Inhumanity to Me. The CD contains the tracks, "Richy Vegas, the Blind Assassin, parts 1 and 2," which have everything to do with obsession and love addiction. I got a message on my answering machine a couple of weeks after I sent Justin St. Germaine this package. I typically include my phone number if these artists want to call me. I don't know if it was him, but it could have been. He never called back, whoever it was, so I don't know.
Now, this Invisible Woman: I got a package from Amazon last Spring that contained a bag of coffee and a CD from a prominent female pop star. That summer, a cousin of mine posted a picture of her daughter with this woman at a popular tourist destination. The pop star wore a really thick layer of make up. I had difficulties last fall at a business that I patronize that I connected to this pop star- not sure about that. I ordered a Badfinger CD from Amazon last December, but the day I received it, it somehow got lost. I went to Waterloo Records and bought another copy that night. There's this line from Badfinger's "Day After Day:" "I remember finding out about you..." This pop star's CD was lying around, so I played it again. I liked it better than the first couple of times that I played it last Spring, and later that night I started making connections. Whether those connections are erroneous and irrational, I don't know. But, for a moment, let's just honor this foot in this other world and say there's something to this.
I guess the motive would be to fuck with my head. Being that I'm a mentally ill person, isn't that nice? Perhaps she wanted to goose me into thinking up some way to save the world. Well, that would at least redeem her for doing something so shitty to me. As far as saving the world, I've got nothing. Thus, I'm breaking our date.
Let's see, when I send people my art, I include a way to get back to me- several ways, in fact. I clearly state my purpose, and do all the things I describe above, and go on at length about how I connect with the artist's work. I guess that I'm not good enough for that same kind of consideration from this person. Seeing as how I'm a mentally ill piece of trash, fucking with my head is good enough for me. I think I recognize when I'm dealing with a woman who just wants to do whatever the fuck she wants, instead of trying to make a good impression on me.
Well, that's it for my foot in that other world. I suspect that myself and this woman will not MFR in either case.