Well . . . that's that.
If Charlie Parker Was a Gunslinger's first Guest Contributor Week enters the yellowed ledger of Blogospheric histoire and, not to put too fine a point on it, I can honestly say I am eternally chuffed both by the generosity of our contributors and their respective eyes for good, very very good material. Mere thanks is not sufficient, but it is all I can offer.
Yesterday, shahn of the amazing blog six martinis and the seventh art suggested we do this again, and we shall. I intend it. In fact, had it not been for my own schedule-from-hell and an unwillingness to exile my co-conspirators for the length of time required, I would have extended Guest Contributor Week at least a few more days, if not another week (at one point I'd resolved to do that very thing). That's how many contributions we still have left over. I'm not sure when we'll be throwing open the doors again, but it won't be too long. Rest assured, I'll send out another shout of 'Come one, come all' when it happens.
I want to thank Stephen Cooke and Richard Gibson for clearing out, as it were, these last seven days while our guests moved in. As for me, I'm taking (deliberately this time . . . usually it happens of its own volition) a day or two off from the cane field of images that is this blog. What with the Bergman and Antonioni tributes and Guest Contributor-a-Go-Go, I've probably posted more on this blog in the last nine days than I do in a month (maybe). Now, some of you might be saying "Is he kidding? All he does is post pictures; and he thinks that's work? Has this chump ever hammered out 5,000 words on Out 1, noli me tangere . . . all 800 minutes! . . . hours after seeing it!! . . . all while making sure it reads exactly like everybody else's 5,000 words?? That's what I call hard blog-work, you apostate jackass!"
Well, it's a decent-enough point on its face. I've never claimed to have a talent for automatic writing, and certainly my gifts for cinephilic verisimiltude and CriticSpeak are not what they were when I was a lad; but those who take this view do so, I think, with a bit of short sighted-ness, however fashionable in some circles it may be. Think what you will, but we do expend a measure of critical judgement here when it comes to selecting and sequencing and (a word I'm using advisedly) editing the images. They are, for better or worse, our content; and even if we moved to a more text-intensive format . . . in the event such a strategy would not turn our fellow film bloggers against us even more than they've already turned . . . I don't think this blog would be as good, at least not in the same manner of good-ness.
All of which is to say that I been working overtime the last nine days on this here railroad, and I need to re-charge my batteries. Messrs. Cooke and Gibson will, I have no doubt, pick up the standard and brandish it far more effectively than I, blog wearied as I am.
Again, I want to give my immense thanks to those of you who contributed images and text and all things Charlie Parker last week. Most of you I thanked individually, and the rest I will get to (I promise that much), but this is the collective thanks. May your tribes increase.
(for those who require one)
And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather