Saturday, January 19, 2013

Why Eat McD's When You Can Have Filet?

My husband is a musician. While he's played (and continues to play) some very accessible music of all kinds (pop, rock) he prefers avante-garde stuff. John Hassell is his current favorite musician; Bill Frisell was another inspiration. So we have lots of discussions about art, and in particular trying to find your audience.

I am constantly amazed by how much really cool, interesting stuff is being made. Filmmakers, musicians, artists and yes, even writers. Cool, out-of-the-box stuff that will knock your socks off, make you see the world in a different way, maybe even change your life--but nobody pays attention to this stuff. Why? It blows my mind. Why don't more people seek this stuff out?

He just showed me the trailers for a couple movies he's heard about that look absolutely fascinating. We haven't watched them yet, but we plan to. One is Samsara, a visual documentary. Scenes of amazing things from all around the world. Even a two-minute clip was overwhelming. The other is Catfish, a pseudo-documentary about a guy who falls in love with a woman through Facebook and--wait for it, it's not what you expect--goes to meet her in person and stumbles across a horrible secret. (If you've seen it and hated it, feel free to let me know).

There are probably a couple people sniffing at the fact that I am writing on this topic. I'm sure lots of people consider my writing to be completely commercial. Well, there's always someone willing to one-up you on the I'm-hipper-than-thou scale. Fine, if that's your thing, knock yourself out. If anything, I've suffered from trying to walk the line between being commercially accessible and telling the story that I want to tell which--if you've actually read one of my books--tend to be bleak and dark rather than the shiny, HEA, don't-make-it-too-unpleasant thing that's so popular now. I'm more Thomas Hardy than Charles Dickens--and even Dickens had his dark moments.

But I digress. I wanted this to be a post about discovery. Those are the next two movies hubbie and I are going to see. What about you? Can you recommend a really good artistic experience, something you'd done lately, be in movie, music, book, visual artistry. What has blown your mind recently?


  1. I'm having issues with your RSS. I want to follow, but follow too many blogs already. Unless you have a GFC widget or fix your RSS I cannot follow easily. :-(

  2. Interesting post, Alma. My husband and I also have some quirky tastes in music, art and film. We are often at a loss in conversations among people about the most current popular films and shows because we're off watching something obscure--okay, and baseball! ;) We both read THE TAKER, and were "taken" with it because of its unique out-of-the-boxness. THE RECKONING, too.

    As to why more people don't seek out the more obscure--I think there's an overwhelming amount of group-think out there, and it's easier and more socially acceptable (from a relatability perspective) to consume what is put in your face (a la McD's). Just my $.02. Interesting to think about, though, particularly for me since I am a sociologist at heart.

    Thanks for a cool post! :)

    1. Hey Tracy, thanks for the comment. There's probably some psychological reason, too, why people resist trying something new. I saw an interesting TED talk on the subject--will have to look it up!