“It’s just an accident that we happen to be on earth, enjoying our silly little moments, distracting ourselves as often as possible so we don’t have to really face up to the fact that, you know, we’re just temporary people with a very short time in a universe that will eventually be completely gone. And everything that you value, whether it’s Shakespeare, Beethoven, da Vinci or whatever, will be gone. The earth will be gone. The sun will be gone. There’ll be nothing. The best you can do to get through life is distraction. Love works as a distraction. And work works as a distraction. You can distract yourself a billion different ways. But the key is to distract yourself.” — Woody Allen in a 2013 “What I’ve Learned” Esquire piece.
I don’t know if I have much of a regular-type life these days (i.e., “barbecues and ball games“) but writing Hollywood Elsewhere sure as hell provides nine or ten hours’ of distraction each and every day, including Sundays. “Don’t let your work get in the way of your life,” they all say. The motto around here is “don’t let your life get in the way of banging out five or six posts day plus your exercise hour plus hitting the evening screenings.” And I’ll tell you this much. It’s never easy. Sometimes it pours out without too much difficulty and sometimes you’re pushing a rock up a hill, but it’s never like skimming stones across the pond. It always takes it out of you.
I know that I spend very little time fretting about how every last film, play, cable TV series, concept album, non-concept album, novel, painting, sculpture, Frank Gehry creation, screenplay and performance ever presented to the public will one day be completely erased from the physical realm…cinders in the cosmos. (Every last episode of Breaking Bad…!) It would obviously be a worthy endeavor if somehow the finest 5000 films could be saved and digitally encoded and sent out into space on hundreds of sentinel-like, torpedo-shaped cruisers. Hundreds of them, travelling every which way. It might take decades or centuries but eventually some intelligent civilization would find one of them, and then all that beauty would at least be somewhere.