Friday, September 25, 2015

Say 'how' and die.

“I hate reality but it's still the best place to get a good steak.” 

Woody Allen

Not being John Wayne.

Nobody ever asked me to play John Wayne.

I got to be Indians quite a lot.

Indians said 'How' and died.

Not a Western.

The missionaries were those ones clothed in black and white photos looking a lighter shade of grey.

The Indians were those ones clothed in black and white photos and a loin cloth looking a darker shade of grey.

The missionaries were vaguely heroic, this much I had learnt from stories of David Livingstone in Africa.

I was never quite sure what to make of the Amazonian Indians.

They were aphone and alien.

They looked sort of scared.

I was never quite sure how I would play being an Amazonian Indian.

Did they say 'how'?

I suppose they probably died.

I never really thought about it.

I had never seen Amazonian Westerns.

Being John Wayne.

I was between jobs, an actor.

That always made doing crap jobs a liveable fantasy.

I suppose it would not have been liveable if they had not been short enough to be the between.

It was always a miracle to me that the person on the end of the line would actually sign a contract as a result of me burbling away at him for three minutes about how advertising could work for him.

The contract, signed, was a proof of existence, a sort of message from the other side.

Perhaps, I hadn't been in contact with the spirit world after all.

Telesales is real...really.

Not being John Wayne.

I sort of knew that my parents had not actually ceased to exist when I was at boarding school.

Their weekly letters, I suppose, were supposed to be proof of a deep attachment.

I was deeply attached.

I was not actually sure whether to be happy or to cry.

I became aphone.

They became aphone.

I have proof that they have ceased to exist now...of sorts.

They still talk to me.

Maybe I am in touch with the spirit world.

I am still deeply attached.

Maybe Amazonian Indians are in touch with my parents too?

Not being John Wayne.

I used to change my name.

Nobody used to challenge my alias.

I was another.


I am another now.

I am insaisissasable. (oh dear I can't spell that b. word)

I can't think of another word for NOW.

French will have to do.

I am not what you imagine.

I am not what I imagine.

I am not John Wayne.

I am not a missionary.

I am not an Indian.

I have no proof of my continuing existence.

I live in a spirit world.

I will be your Indian.



Indians say 'How' and then they die.


This piece was inspired by many close distant friends and two  great blog posts linked here:

Autumm Caines.

A Sort of “In Love”: What is it About Play?

Maha Bali

I wanted to copy a quote via Catherine Cronin here for future reference. (can't remember why).

“The internet does not produce a new kind of identity, but has instead been instrumental in raising awareness that identities were more multiple, culturally contingent and contextual than had previously been fully appreciated.”

Ah yes, now I do...


  1. As the Duke said... "Nobody should come to the movies unless he believes in heroes."

    "Courage is being scared to death... and saddling up anyway."

    "Get off your horse and drink your milk."

  2. When I was 11, my grandfather passed away and we were given a box of his books, which came straight to me. Amongst instructional guides for sports physio and badmington books, was a book about the native american spirituality with a black and white photo of Chief Seattle on the front, full of hard to understand discussions about symbolism and alchemical things. I read it and it had a profound impact on my world view, particularly ecology and the cosmos. I was fascinated for years after his death, wondering.... 'how?'. How had this book come to be in the small collection of books of this strict but funny down-to-earth Scotsman who worked in shipyards and did sports physio? How had I missed this side to him that would lead to him even possessing such a book in a small town on the edge of the vast bush in South Australia? I somehow lost the book, which feels like a tragedy to me, because I never lose books. I search online now and again. As I got older, and understood more about how he had come to own that book, I discovered that he had a significant alias that he only shared with a certain group of people. A group in which I could never qualify as a member of. Even if my grandfather was alive, had I asked him even now, 'how?' and what that book meant to him, he would not have been able to share his reasons for owning that book or what those teachings meant to him. That depth, that man of pondering-about-sacred-things would have still been cloistered from me. Except of course, he did share it, there is proof of his continuing existence for me, because it has stayed with me my whole life, surfacing when I least expect it, like ready a blog post. Identity is just kaleidoscopic. We struggle with that sometimes, as though it’s subterfuge.

  3. That's why only ever play Indians that say Namaste.

    Here's to the divine in you ya ol' cowboy.

    Thanks for the magic.