So. All done with the papers, and with classes for the year, no matter how loosely "classes" is (are?) construed--our final seminar meeting was today, with guest Albert Maysles, the guy who filmed Gimme Shelter. He had lots to say about the art of the documentary. But I suppose the central point he made was: document. Don't wait for the light to be right, just get it onto tape (or disc), and edit later (though he's not the person who edited his best-known films--that was his late brother). With the focus of Coco's class this semester on our society basically being Surveillance Planet, it was curious to contrast that with the world of I Am Videotaping You Right Now. I suppose the difference is that with a documentarian, one can always ask for the camera to be turned off.

I'd had a discussion with Bob Christgau (loosely about the aesthetics of protest & activism) that started with consideration of his big black-on-yellow "NO WAR IN IRAQ" button. In my smartass way, I'd suggested that it could be made much more effective by making it more stylish--say, a series of four small buttons, "NO"/"WAR"/"IN"/"IRAQ." Then I mentioned my idea to my pal Fumiko, who considerately made a whole bunch of them and sent them to me (along with five small buttons with my mom's high-school yearbook photo). I gave them out to some of the Fellows today. Actually, they do look really good.

No more pencils, no more books, etc.--for another month, anyway. But to while away the hours, I got a package today from the fine folks at We're Twins Records, and another one from Liz Mitchell of Ida that contained her wonderful new children's record You Are My Sunshine. There is much to do, and much to hear, and I think I'd better sleep some before I approach any of it.



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