Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Letter From Laredo

Just spent the big parts of many of the last five evenings inhaling the first season of “Deadwood”, including a couple of the commentaries and one riveting interview by David “Hickock” Carradine of creator David Milch about the writing process.

How Java is like “Deadwood” is like life.

1. The folks who came to Deadwood were apparently a bunch of misfits from all over come for the gold, love the lawlessness, and release the tensions of the day on a nightly basis.
2. The smartest of the misfits learn they don’t need to dig for gold during the day… they can get it off the golddiggers at night.
3. Despite the official lawlessness, the smart ones (in Deadwood known as little vipers) know they need a sense of order in which to operate on the golddiggers…so they pay the big viper for permission to create their own brand of order.
4. 95% (the poor ones) are women with no other option but to take gold off the diggers, mostly at night.
5. The other 5% are encouraged by their community to seek treatment for their “boredom” and “hysteria” and to render themselves unseen by so doing.
6. A lot of alcoholism and disease because the water is bad, and alcohol actually kills some of the disease in the water. Also because there ain’t much else to do when you’re done diggin’, ‘specially if you don’t know how to read.
7. There are a few dudes and dames in Deadwood with a conscience and a backbone, and they earn the respect of most of the golddiggers, women, and vipers, who see them as compasses there to keep them from running completely off course.
8. Sooner or later almost everyone, in some cases sadly, comes to accept their place in the body politic. Paraphrasing Preacher Smith, who is quoting some old Book, the head cannot truly tell the foot it is not needed.
a. Or paraphrasing George Burns at 100 when asked by Larry King for the secret of his happy longevity: you learn to fall in love with what you have to do to survive.

BATS! Interlude. Good grief. A bat just flew in my front door, right past me, and did not go straight out the patio door. A bullet would have therefore been preferable.

Don’t bats have to be invited in? I hate this. They always take so long to figure out how to get out, and until then they zoom zoom all over the place. I know they don’t hit people, because they have a fairly persuasive survival instinct, but it’s just… unnerving.

I should tell David Milch there must have been bats in Deadwood.

Now it’s disappeared. Maybe it was smart, but I think it just discovered the upstairs, where I never go. I’ll make an appointment to wander up there next week. Thank goodness my bedroom door is closed. Except to roaches. Which there shouldn’t be any of anymore.

END of Interlude

In other words, except for #4, not much has changed, nor will it probably ever. Just depends how close to the bone one wants one’s life to be lived, and to what extent one can persuade the roads and rivers to run at that proximity to it.


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