Greetings from my cave

17 September 2012

How is it possible that this blog still gets so many hits every day? I’ve seriously fallen off the blogging wagon, what with writing all these new (or mostly new, or creatively plagiarized) lectures every week. It’s shameful. I have so many thoughts that haven’t gotten cooked yet.

Here’s the thing: lecturing is hard. It takes an enormous amount of energy, creativity (even when plagiarizing), and ball-juggling. It takes a lot of preparation. You do this and you think, someone out there seriously thinks I “only” teach two classes?

Which led me to this image from the film Wanda (1970), written and directed by — and starring — Barbara Loden, she of the beer and curlers. Shot on grainy film stock. I remember seeing women wearing their curlers and a kerchief like this out to the market when I was a kid; the curlers were necessary to poof up your hair into those bouffants. Is it the curlers that makes this scene so bittersweet? the palpable sense of trying so hard, and feeling unable to sustain it? and perhaps, too, the way her posture indicates that she has not utterly given up?

The film was shown in a single U.S. theater in 1970 — a small theater in New York — and by the time Loden had died tragically young in 1980 the film had been nearly forgotten.

Don’t mistake this for a post implying that my situation is like Wanda’s, displayed above. Don’t mistake this for a real post, with careful insights or carefully-worded snarkiness about politics. This is just a shout-out from my cave, reminding you that I exist and that I intend to return to regular blogging.

I will admit, however, that there are a few empty beer bottles in my cave. (No curlers. Thank heavens for the small blessings of different hair expectations.)