Anori Outtake: In Love With Shirley Partridge

“You know The Partridge Family? Or you’re too young?”

“David Cassidy.”

“I wanted Shirley Partridge to be my mother.” Screenshot (111)He moved his arms like a broken fan, spinning without effect. “I wanted that woman to come into my bedroom at night and tell me what was right in life.”

“You wanted to have suckle with her.”

“I wanted her listen to my regret. She knew what was right. She understood the secret of innocence.”Screenshot (130)“Suckle.”

“That beautiful Hammond organ, the harmonies. Do you remember? It was a real world, real, an alternate space that had real possibility, following interior childlike rhythms, saying those things out loud.” Screenshot (115)He breathed in and took Dee’s hands like they were precious things, like she had brought them from somewhere distant. “I would sit and stare at the TV after it was over, just sit there through whatever was next. I hoped it would come back. It was real to me. Can you believe that? It was as real as anything I will ever know.” He scraped his sandal back and forth. “I met the guy who wrote the music. I met him in California.”

 

Sister, Sister, Wherever You Have Gone

I remember when we bounced in the big chair to The Partridge Family and K-Tel’s Fantastic 22. tumblr_mjarkw5lm31r5yoejo1_r1_1280And I remember when we threw the little metal Santa Claus too high and it smashed through the window and we all ran. IMAG2188There were the trips to the cottage, the puzzles, the rain, the boat trips across the lake.

20140729_161648I remember your pained expressions too, you not wanting to be there, anywhere but with your dumb siblings, away with the crowd, all the excitement and things like that. weenAnd I remember not liking you so much for any of that. But it’s just kid’s stuff now, right? We move on, yes? 20140524_151436I mean, if you hold things too tight, they drive right into you and there’s nothing left, just petty agendas, seeing everything in the world, except where you came from. Dorothy's Red ShoesAnd that just goes on until you get to the end and then you wonder what happened.

The Partridge Family magic

The Partridge Family is a dated show (1970-74) – the setup, characters, story arc, yes, even the songs, all pure camp. Screenshot (256)And yet the magic of the show persists, some kind of secret of innocence left…

Shirley Partridge singing pure

Shirley Partridge singing pure

The elixir found in the transitions, the brief seconds of music that open the show, take it in and out of commercials, right the way through… Screenshot (258)Pure, oddly so, opening an alternate world of interior childlike rhythms, proclaimed out loud, walking in the door, down the stairs…P stairsnot to mention a loving mom looking over all.

The All-Knowing Shirley Partridge

The All-Knowing Shirley Partridge

 

Writing Process: My Awkweird Self

I pull the album from the shelf. I open it to a random page. An odd figure is there. The elbows are crooked, the posture awkward, everything unsure. It’s me.IMAG2185I’m a teenager. I think I know better than I do. I know I do. I say and do things because nobody stops me. I just want to grow up. I want out of this childish world. IMAG2186I call myself Dr. Shades as I play basketball in the backyard; I bounce in a chair when I listen to The Partridge Family. partridge-familyI remember running out the door and yelling something stupid. I was referring to a crazy idea in my head; my mother thought it was aimed at her. These memories aren’t treasured. As much as I might decry the lack of a sanctuary in Manhattan’s public spaces, the danger of the cranes overhead, this is the most unsettling aspect of writing, the reflecting, what I find inside, remembering what I wanted to forget so long ago. To quote Jodie Foster from her 2013 Golden Globes speech: “It’s like a home-movie nightmare that just won’t end.” jodiefosterIt might appear cute to others, but it is utterly stupid, half-baked and wretched, so much so that I’m even willing to consider the notion presented in the film Looper, that of killing off this version of myself…just to get rid of it, the cringing, the inadvertent shivers, the denial. It’s almost a thought and then it isn’t. The truth is that I hate guns, and that, in the end, like Alvy Singer, “I have to keep going through it because I need the eggs.”IMAG2188

December 21, 2012…and all is well.

Okay, it’s been a pretty windy day, rainy too…but I don’t think that qualifies as the world coming to end. And so…now what? We went through the seven stages of accepting this world’s end, and the planet’s still here. Newfoundlabrador2010 094What are we going to do now? There are so many battles remaining to fight: getting rid of guns, taxing fairly, bringing peace to Syria, Congo, Palestine, Afghanistan, dealing with our collapsing planet, being honest and decent to one another. I mean, really, are we up for this? Or is to be same old same old? I would like to suggest some things to get us on the right track. Not only is Sufjan Stevens’ voice delicate; so are his words. Listen to Seven Swans.sufjanAnd will I be a part of what you’ve made?/ And I am throwing all my thoughts away./ And I’m destroying every bet I’ve made/ And I am joining all my thoughts to you/ And I’m preparing every part for you

The Partridge Family: Season One is worth watching too. Yes,The Partridge Family. No one gives better moral advice than Shirley Jones. partridgePeople aren’t as different as we think. We may have different beliefs, but we’re all pretty much alike.

Fyodor Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov is a fascinating examination of free will and morals, and it’s only 796 pages.You’ve got the time. brothersLove children especially, for they too are sinless like the angels; they live to soften and purify our hearts and, as it were, to guide us.

And finally, if you’re in New York this week, think about attending Yoko Ono’s Imagine Peace event in Times Square. It is on every night 11:47-12:00 midnight until December 30.imagineWhat better way to spend the apocalypse?