Question of the Week: Why Are You Here?


September 5, 2007 by A.C. Rhodes

To coincide with the first news item, the first question of the week will consider the current disposition of writers. Have any, or many, of your contemporaries fallen? How, if so, has it made you reflect on yourself?

3 thoughts on “Question of the Week: Why Are You Here?

  1. theresa k. says:

    so – that article said: “It was ever thus. If you look back to Victorian times — Byron, Shelley those kind of people — being creative requires living on the edge in a way that being in insurance doesn’t.”before i address the creatives having the preternatural urge to burn the candle at both ends… let me share an observation about working in insurance – or whatever other straight job….when i worked at vh1 (and i was in my late 30s at the time), i’d go out to some business dinner and see other business diners at the same midtown restaurants and watering holes. while waiting for a table, managed to learn that the group of guys next to us were YOUNGER than me, worked in banking, made TONS of money — but they looked older than my parents, were UPTIGHT and i observed them later in the evening TOTALLY BINGING OUT on the expense account booze… whereas we creative types knew how to pace ourselves with the boozing and recreational enjoyments… i think the responsibility of control over that much money probably makes those weekend warriors just as vulnerable to early burn out and death as a rock – i have seen a great many of my friends and colleagues die early deaths. . . its even fueling the theme of one night of my upcoming tour — on the actual observance of the Day of the Dead, i am showing “punk rock day of the dead” – now, of those in my exhibit, half of them – johnny thunders, dee dee ramone, jeffrey lee pierce and darby crash – died because of drugs…the others – stiv bators – hit by a bus; joey and johnny ramone – cancer; paula pierce – heart attack; bruce gary – cancer…. i think if you DO MORE in less time than most people, you are also vulnerable to the death throes. i fly more than most people – so i believe that increases my chances of a travel mishap – simply because i travel MORE. does that mean because i am in the rock n roll biz – even though i’m not a drunk drug user, i too might die young?at my age, one thinks about mortality all the time… i think the study was definitely one of those things where they took advantage of some research money being handed out…but for me – at any age — i ALWAYS have lived each day as if it were my lastwhether its joie de vivre or devil may care… i just don’t like to be bored….

  2. A.C. says:

    You raise valid and fascinating points. The feeling I’m left with is that some people don’t have the composition for longevity, whether it be physical or emotional. Often enough each impact the other. The rest is just a simple twist of fate, as B. Dylan would sing. But in many ways that’s hardest to deal with; the randomness. Perhaps because our feeling, or misguided impression, of control is crumbled. Still, if made to choose, I can’t imagine trading my experiences – the travel, interactions, extended plays – for the more secure auspices of some others.

  3. People live, people die. There is no grey area when it comes to the skin of the teeth situation we all find ourselves in daily through living. Our egos just con us in to thinking we won’t be snuffed out by some random, small form of chaos. But we are our own worst enemies, either by allowing ourselves to be part of some dread event that gets us snuffed, or because our own bodies decide to have a heyday and start shutting a down a little here, a little more there. Good times.

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