As some of you know, I am afraid of the moving pictures. Well, they move too fast for one thing, and they all FLASH FLASH FLASH, and I’m afraid I’ll have a seizure, and they have destroyed our attention span, and the next thing you know there’s a FLASH and you’re seeing something you never meant to see and you can’t just erase it; it’s there permanently and you’re doomed to a life of regret. I can’t honestly remember the last time I entered a movie theater. Also there are other people there, and I don’t want any part of that.
Additionally, I don’t watch television because by-and-large it is venal and not to be endured. If I even touch the on/off button on my television it’s so my toddler can watch The Aristocats, which is fine because it involves lovely cats in Paris in 1910. A very fine time in Paris, if you ask me. Plus there are jazz-playing strays living in a house that looks oh-so-suspiciously like Storyville in New Orleans, a favorite lost artifact of mine.
At this point you must be thinking, “How tragical is this woman, with nothing but books about Whitehead, and little nubs of carpenters’ pencils.” True enough, until my friend who-shall-remain-nameless (Scott), convinced me to watch The Sopranos.
WHAT?!? The Quaker girl? Oh-ho, indeed. In fact, between the beginning of January and the end of February (or March – I have no sense of time) I watched all 86 hours, and when I reached the finale I sobbed for three days. My friend Christopher took me by the hand and said, “Honey? Millions of people saw that finale. Some thought it was genius, some were disappointed. But NO ONE sobbed for three days. I think we need a little bit of professional help here.” Which only goes to show he has no heart.
And perhaps things were slightly askew in my psyche, because in an e-mail exchange between three friends I was asked to name off the top of my head (seriously! think fast!) how I would choose to die if I only had twenty-four hours. What would I do, spend my last day hysterical over my motherless children? Try to see the Seven or Ten or Eight Wonders of the World? God, no. I answered as honestly as humanly possible. I said, “I would want to spend 24 hours with Tony Soprano and then I would want him to shoot me in the heart.” In cyber-space there was much of being appalled. In fact, all over the physical word, appalled-ness did preside. But NOT WITH MY FRIEND SUZANNE FINNAMORE COOPER. She said, “The only way to get your heart blown to smithereens is to choose the psychopath.”
I shall keep this short, because I have dissertations on the cultural phenomenon which was Tony Soprano, but I would just like to end with this photograph. If I were 13, 16, 21, 16, 32, 38, or even 40, I would have this tattooed on my regions. After spending hours studying the sublime image, please feel free to talk amongst yourselves about your last twenty-four hours. And remember: I am the last person to judge.