Monday, March 9, 2009
There’s a flash demo in front of the Chinese Theater memorial, I guess having something to do with SAG threatening a strike over avatar rights. Oops, no. I guess it’s already over. But watching it made me a little nostalgic for when people made movies, and if their personalities were faked for mass consumption, at least there was a flesh and blood person in front of the camera. I’m old! I’m old! Los Angeles, city of hatred for wrinkles and long memories. City of the buff and the buffed, the polished and the peeled, city whose love of glamour is now an industry of virtual necrophilia. And it’s the fault of Carl Marks as much as anyone else. I mean, those of us who have a certain number of notches on our belts remember John Wayne in some damn wine-cooler commercial in 1990 or something, but…nostalgia. Am I nostalgic for that? Am I nostalgic only for my own long-gone nostalgias? Have my years on this earth prepared me only for recursive nostalgia? I wonder if those are avatars actually striking in front of Mann’s. I remember Mann’s. I remember thinking, a long time ago, that if terrorists really wanted to fuck us up, they should blow up Yankee Stadium and Radio City Music Hall and—yes, I goddamn well did think this—the Chinese Theater. I mean, you blow up a bank or a government building, and people wave flags and drop bombs. That works, if that’s what you want. But you blow up a dream factory, man, and the dreams go up in smoke with it. And then wouldn’t you know it, Mann’s burns down after the ’29 earthquake and what do I think? It’s not the way that place should have gone out. Nature shouldn’t destroy dream factories. Only people should do that.