I made it through the first seventeen minutes of the Grammy Awards before I went upstairs to where the kids hang out and watched a couple episodes of The Wire, Season Five on DVD. My wife was doing work in front of the downstairs television so she kept the show on, and I caught or heard a few snippets like the Beach Boy's reunion, Glen Campbell's thing and Jennifer Hudson's tribute. From what I saw, it pretty much lived up to my expectations. And while you might take that as being smug or critical, this time it's not meant that way. It was what it is and we move forward.
Back in the early nineties I was offered the opportunity to attend the Grammy show on a few occasions, but I always declined. I did go to one of those swank post-Grammy parties and got there a little too early along with Jason Alexander, and we both looked uncomfortable in our rented tuxedos. It was probably the second or third season of Seinfeld and was still quite not the hit show yet, and I'm sure he was there because an agent or publicist wrangled him an invite and said it would be "good for his career". Yet here we stood together in the corner of a downtown LA restaurant, waiting for the crowd to show up and holding plates of shrimp, making small talk. A few hours later as I was leaving I spotted him sitting at a table with Billy Idol and Tina Turner, talking and laughing and posing for candid photos. Jason seemed to be having a better time then I did.
Be it the Grammys or Oscars, an opening at an art gallery or SXSW, a concert or a birthday party, a funeral or wedding, the first date or birth of the second child, an election or your middle school history class...our lives are full of events marked by mile posts. In fact, if you think about it, the current Facebook and Twitter fascination takes it just one step further. We can make our mark every minute if we so choose, commenting seriously or being witty, sharing a song or a photo. Some days it seems that we swing from event to event and status update to status update like Tarzan would swing on a tree from one side of the jungle to the other. And maybe that's it. Be it a drunk or a decaffeinated Mormon, we each take it one day at a time to get through this life. Measured by mile posts.
Whats prompting this morning's ramble is a list of 25 Extremely Upsetting Tweets that women sent out last night as Chris Brown was doing one of his performances. Somebody took the time to cut and paste them for a post on another website. Brown is the singer who slugged his girlfriend Rihanna a few years ago and it made a few headlines, he went to trial, did community service and I guess its okay now, because he remains famous and successful despite it all. So floating out on the interwebs this morning is this list of 25 messages from women that pretty much say the same thing: "Chris Brown is so hot he can beat me down anytime he wants" or "You can punch me all you want as long as you kiss me after". (I paraphrase...the actual quotes are worse.) The fanaticism to this culture of celebrity that we live with and endure sometimes is so incredible and foreign to me, that I just wonder how we've all made it so far. And we consider ourselves as an advanced species, but I've never seen a Tweet from a lion or rat or bird or ant.
By the way, did you hear that Whitney Houston died in the bathtub of the Beverly Hilton? Or Levon Helm won the award for Best Americana Album? Or Adele took home six awards and said "snot" in one of her acceptance speeches? Or that Dave Grohl used to be in a band named Nirvana?
"I'll be careful not to put anyone on a pedestal and then complain about his or her clay feet."
Fror the book Walk in Dry Places
This one is for Whitney and all the drunks and addicts who are still out there.