I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Friday, August 24, 2012

That wasn't life, that was pop music

Bruce Springsteen gave the keynote address at SXSW, thoughtful and funny and wise about the history of rock and the masters he learned from. He shows how the influences of doo wop and the Animals and punk show up in his own music. "Listen up, youngsters: this is how successful theft is accomplished."

On Roy Orbison:
And for those few moments, he told you that the wreckage, and the ruin and the heartbreak was all worth it...Life is tragedy, broken by moments of unworldly bliss that make that tragedy bearable. I was half right. That wasn't life, that was pop music. But at 24, who knew the difference?

Sometimes I think I still don't know the difference, but I am less and less interested in the ever more rare "moments of unworldly bliss." I prefer to be totally worldly, and recognize the bits of bliss that are all around me whenever I can.

Photography has been a great gift here. I have never been very good at paying attention, at mindfulness, at being present. Instead I daydream, I imagine, I think. I have spent much of my life with my head in the clouds, and while I always appreciated the beautiful, the quirky and the unusual, I didn't always notice them. I have offended more than one friend who stopped to say hello on the street only to be completely ignored.

Walking around with a camera, I'm always looking. Even when I don't have a camera with me, I see everything with a different eye. I notice. I observe.

I'm here.

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