November 8, 2014
“In times of rapid change, experience could be your worst enemy.” I have always lived with instinct, because everything else has failed me, including close friend’s advices. In rare desperate times, I have asked advice from close allies, but always do the total opposite what they think I should do. I have lost friendships, but on the other hand I’m still here and existing. Everything has a value. Once one appreciates something, then it can be readily changed into a product or something to sell. When John Paul Getty III was kidnapped, his grandfather John Paul Getty refused to pay any ransom. Because once he does, he knew it would make all of his grandchildren into sellable pieces of product. Eventually after a period of months, and receiving a cut-off ear, Getty Sr arranged with his son, John Paul Getty II, to pay ransom for his grandchild. Once freed, John Paul Getty III had to repay that amount plus interest to the grandfather. And why not, it was nothing but a business transaction.
Alain Delon is a businessman. He makes a variety of products sold under his name “Alain Delon, ” including perfume, wristwatches, clothing, eyewear, stationery and cigarettes. Like many others, I have admired him for his male beauty, as well as for his choices in acting in specific films, such as works by Jean-Pierre Melville - a filmmaker by the way who knows how a certain type of culture works. It’s a shadow world of gangsters, very much like how they are connected to the world of film making, Politics (Democrats and Republicans working for the same forces: Wall Street), and even family life, for instance the Gettys'.
Also anyone who has a sense of aesthetic or beauty, is usually drawn to the right - perhaps due to the right wing world’s love for the surface. Not so much the inner-beauty, but the beauty we can all see on the surface, and therefore more easy to admire. John Paul Getty loved art. But what did art tell or teach him? John Paul Getty has commented: “The beauty one can find in art is one of the pitifully few real and lasting products of human endeavor.” He started a foundation to preserve art treasures and antiquities around the world, yet he was indifferent to his grandchild’s ear. There is a beauty or a sense of lost when you look at a Greek statue, and there is a part missing. Usually a nose, or at times, an ear. Perhaps the grandchild reminded him of one of his statues?
Delon, has a great admiration for the Right, even though charmingly enough, he can work with well-known film figures of the Left. The beauty of Delon is his sense of perfection. Often, I find him perfectly cast in these roles that magnify his beauty. “Purple Noon, ” “Le Samourai, ” and so forth. I surround myself with such beauty, that I have a tendency to ignore the ‘other’ world out there. My friends represent that world, and I just have to keep in mind that they give me advise not to bury me, but to save me.
Marie Prevost, a great actress from the Hollywood silent era, was a hopeless alcoholic. She came from a troubled environment, but her condition became worse when her life depended on numerous Hollywood studio chiefs, who basically wanted to control her. In other words, she wasn’t even human, she was a product for Hollywood. In many ways, she represented the “Jazz Age,” when everything seemed possible, but alas, it is all an illusion. Ironically enough she was cast as the female lead in a film version of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Beautiful and the Damned.” Jack Warner arranged to have Marie marry the lead actor in the film, Kenneth Harlan, on the set of the film. Not known to Warner, Marie was already (secretly) married at the time to her first husband Sonny Gerke. Warner quickly arranged an annulment and when the scandal died down, Marie quietly re-married Harlan, after her divorce from Gerke. She died alone in her apartment. They found her body two days after her death. She was surrounded by empty bottles and her pair of barking dogs.
“Despair has its own calms.” When I reflect on my life, I realized that I’m part of the world, and whatever it is right or wrong, I’m still attached to it. Every decision I make, can cause certain ripples through someone else’s life. Even if I move into a room, paddle and lock the entrance and exit, cover the windows with metal shades, and turn the electricity off - I’ll still be part of this world. “Loneliness will sit over our roofs with brooding wings.” I can accept all of that. I often think that I don’t have any children, due to the fear of being attached to them for the rest of my life. If it was a sellable product, like a record collection, I can easily remove it, of course there would be regret and perhaps even depression, yet, the removal of that “product” would be just that. The end of the story. “Though sympathy alone can’t alter facts, it can help to make them more bearable.” One thing I promise you, my dear readers, “I will not let you go into the unknown alone.”