Tuesday, March 1, 2011

In Art History we studied an artist by the name of Pontorno. He was the Van Gough of his time (late Renaissance), since no one really liked him and he hardly sold any paintings. He is famous for his rejection of the laws of perspective, his preoccupation with capturing a sense of movement, and what really stands out is that all of his characters have these dark, haunted eyes set in sad, melancholy faces.

Since Venice Carnevale weekend I had been haunted by his dark sad eyes too. Carnevale basically was a tourist trap in Venice, and I had forgotten how much I had hated it last time I had been there 3 years ago. It hadn't changed much: it felt like the Disneyland of Italy. Jacquie and Nicole had hated it as well; it had rained, we had gotten into a major fight, and had had the worst pizza of our lives there.
Well it basically happened again, except it didn't rain, and there were more people. And this time the fight didn't get reconciled by an angel of mercy as it did last time. It lasted much longer, and it was a painful splintering of our triangle of "family" because M and I never fight. I could see him out of the corner of my eye all the time, as much as I tried to avoid it, his eyes dark and sad and angry and I was pale with kept in anger as well, not willing to outright yell. It cast an opressive cloud over everything we did, our movements twitchy and graceless.

But eventually the static built up like a nylon skirt rubbing against wool tights in the driest time of winter, so I sought him out and he yelled and I cried and then the poison was draining away and the serpent whispering in my ear had been banished to hell. It was stupid, we both agreed. We are both sorry. Then he said something that makes everything make more sense, and makes me sure that we will stay family no matter what. Dani came into the room, and we had a group hug, and sat in warm comfortable silence while watching a movie.

This is what he said:
You hate all souless Riverbenders, and I hate all dirty hipsters. Except we are the exceptions to one anothers rule. There will always be things that bother us, but we are family so we love each other even still.


  1. You are better at taking an object or event or work of art and relating it to a real-life experience in a poetic and lyrical and nigh-magical manner than...

    ...just about any other writer I know. Examples fail me. I sit once again in awe.

    Feeling melancholy, are we?

  2. Maybe just a tad, postman. Also, why are you always so nice to me? I can count on you to always make me feel good about myself. Thank you so much.
    You aren't so terrible at writing yourself :)

  3. Yes, criminy, will you knock it off already? I'm running out of nice things to say! I feel like I'm just repeating the same old hackneyed compliments over and over, when the REAL nitty-gritty of what I want to compliment you on totally escapes me: the incalculable, intangible, ineffable feel of your writing, the rawness of emotion, the commonality of perception, which transcends merely allowing the reader to sympathize with you and instead literally manifests in their gut the very same things you, the writer, felt as you wrote...and experienced.

    Simply put, you make us all feel like we've been whacked over the head with the frying-pan of Common Sentimentality.

    I just read your most recent post. I think you've made a good decision (and written about it in your signature satirically-humorous-and-yet-bittersweet way).

    Funny how good decisions can be so heartrending and divisive, isn't it?

    Like Hellboy said, "Sometimes doing the right thing is a pain in the ass."