Monday, June 29, 2009

“I’m not sure what I meant”

Back in 1967 change in the air. Though he claims in his memoir that his studies, philosophy & ee cummings, both fascinated, excited, and baffled him, Steve Martin tried to alchemize from them a fresh new comedy. In a letter to his girlfriend he wrote, “I have decided my act is going to go avant-garde. It is the only way to do what I want.”

Commenting on that 40 year old assertion, Martin notes, “I’m not sure what I meant, but I wanted to use the lingo, and it was seductive to make these pronouncements.”

I suspect we pretend we know what we’re talking about at least as often as we really do. Sometimes that’s a problem. But mostly?

“I have learned,” Martin continues, “there is no harm in charging oneself up with delusions between moments of valid inspiration.”

source: Born Standing Up: a comic’s life by Steve Martin

5 comments:

David Lee said...

That's right. I wanted to read this book! Thanks for the reminder.

Glenn Ingersoll said...

A good read. Short.

Kevin Cutrer said...

I too am inspired to pick up this one when I have a chance. Steve Martin is one of the best. I think to devote one's life to creative endeavors requires the heroic, foolhardy, foolish spirit of Quixote.

Glenn, you selected one of my poems for what turned out to be, if I'm not mistaken, the last issue of a little magazine called Hogtown Creek Review. I've been wanting to thank you for that.

Glenn Ingersoll said...

It's nice to have the opportunity to provide a good poem access to eyes. HCR probably outlasted the average little magazine - isn't ONE the usual number of issues?

Kevin Cutrer said...

Yes, the loneliest number. They had a good quality run, too.