Yesterday, I wrote 1,235 words on "Tupelo (1998)." It was likely the hardest single day I've had with this story, though I expect today to be more difficult. I often find endings to be the most difficult part, because it is so easy to break a thing with a poorly executed ending.
I've not left the house since January 20th. Today will be my tenth day not leaving the house. My record is either fourteen or sixteen days. I'm coming alarmingly near it, either way. It's no way for anyone to live. But I have precious little reason to leave the house. I loathe the cold, and the sight of Providence only reminds me how homesick I am for Birmingham or Leeds or Athens, or, fuck it, even Atlanta. It'll be spring there soon, a few more weeks. Last night, it all came down on top me of, coalescing into a black rage behind my eyes.
I've put myself in a news blackout again, but I did catch David Harbour's marvelous speech at the SAG awards, accepting on behalf of the cast of Stranger Things. You should find it and watch. But here's the text:
I would just like to say, in light of all that's going on in the world today, it's difficult to celebrate the already celebrated Stranger Things, but this award from you who take your craft seriously and earnestly believe, like me, that great acting can change the world is a call to arms from our fellow craftsmen and women to go deeper. And through our art to battle against fear, self-centeredness and exclusivity of our predominately narcissistic culture and through our craft to cultivate a more empathetic and understanding society by revealing intimate truths that serve as a forceful reminder to folks that when they feel broken and afraid and tired they are not alone. We are united in that we are all human beings and we are all together on this horrible, painful, joyous, exciting and mysterious ride that is being alive. Now, as we act in the continuing narrative of Stranger Things, we 1983 Midwesterners will repel bullies. We will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no home. We will get past the lies. We will hunt monsters and when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and the casual violence of certain individuals and institutions, we will, as per Chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak and the disenfranchised and the marginalized. And we will do it all with soul, with heart, and with joy. We thank you for this responsibility. Thank you.
"We will hunt monsters" may be the perfect call to arms for the next four years. I keep waiting to see someone who isn't a loser stand up in defence of the Horror Clown and his Nightmare Court, someone who isn't a washed-up, piece shit joke like Scott Baio or Caitlin Jenner, someone besides ignorant rednecks, far-right evangelical dominionists, and "alt-right" Neo-Nazis, someone who matters. And it keeps not happening. That's a little piece of hope.
But, like I said, I'm on a news blackout.
Now, I gotta go help Dancy hunt some monsters.
Resistance, Peace, and Compassion,