Saturday, October 6, 2018

Book cover and excerpt


SHORT INTERVIEW
A Student Journalist Engages The Author

Q: To you, what makes a great clown performance - if you were in the audience. what are 3 or 4 things that must be present for you to rate a clown performance "great"?

A: These are all personal answers, I'm just speaking for myself obviously.
I look beyond the physical skill-set and watch for 'risk and redemption' because that to me illustrates the commitment the performer has to exploring the dynamic of clown or any performance.

Risk and redemption is the conscious puncturing of the audiences faith in you, it raises the dramatic tension not so much in the performance but the room or venue itself. Then the performer takes that and with mastery relieves that tension and redeems him/herself and in so doing further cements the trust the audience has. Each time you do this you push the perimeter of what the audience will accept further out. It becomes harder to do consecutively because of this and it is my personal litmus applied to clown.

Dirty Fred is a master at this, Leo Bassi is a master at this, Tony Livingspace, Bobarino Gravitini, Peter Post, also employ this gambit woven into their shows.

I'd be looking at character also, empathy. Do I have any. Is the clown solid or brittle, is it skills-based, in which case it's just cabaret using the clown form and I'm not so interested because while I admire physical skills and use some myself, clown to me is about empathy more than admiration.

Having been street-based for a large portion of my profession I look too at the interaction between performer and audience. If it is a stage piece without interaction I look for the clown’s pacing to see if it's rote or flexible, I look for variations.

That's three things.

Mostly I'm looking at the quality of the relationship the clown has.

Q: When you walk off stage after a show and it was the most incredible show you've ever done, what four things did YOU accomplish?

A: I made people cry with laughter, (passive aggression at its finest),
I felt a lot of love. I explored a structure of my own making to create laughter and celebration out of passing foot-traffic, I accomplish pride. I conveyed my worth to strangers who reinforce it by donating towards my work. I accomplish the means to carry on.

Q: Does it make a more impactful show if you can take the audience through a range of emotions ?

A: Which is tastier, a peanut or a 12-course meal?

Q: What led you to clowning? When did you first know you wanted to be a clown?

A: Philosophically I was drawn to both mime and clown in my teens as I tried to work out as you do at that age, what contained within my culture was real and what was simply fluff reinforced by society’s collective hallucination of itself. I didn't trust language itself, too slippery, I can wrangle words purty good but I was more interested in the quality of silent communication. I thought it had the potential to be both pan-cultural and perhaps if I were lucky, profound. I saw that clowns are allowed to take liberties, they are allowed that role as long as they can handle and master the situations they create. I found that very seductive as I'm playful and wanted to be so on my own terms.

Q: Do you wake up as a clown?

A: Do I exist without an audience? yes.

Q: How has clowning changed you, personally?

A: As a male I'm much better at makeup than most.

I have a lexicon that includes status awareness, body language, tone, pacing and subtext. I perceive tension because it's my job to create it in small part and as such I am sensitive to it, it's a factor in comic timing. These things all bleed across.

Q: Describe how you interact with the audience.

A: I pretend I can barely tolerate them, they see through it but it's funny.
I submit passing pedestrians to indignities and my audience watches and laughs. Or I do a stage piece which is usually more skills-focused with some emotional attachment. Or I do some conceptual piece of whimsy and the audience interact with their own curiosity more than anything.

Q: Is it necessary to create anarchy? Can you do a show that is safe and nice?

A: That's a very polar question. One thing to bear in mind is that to a real degree you are a technician, another thing to bear in mind is that the collective reality of a show is firmly rooted in the minds of your audience. You can make them hear words articulated by a squeaky doll simply by mouthing those words as you make the sound. Sounds incredible, but I watched Hoopal do this night after night and it was eye-opening. I too heard the words in my head that did not exist.

Anyway, anarchy, maybe, more likely moments between studied impulses that seem like anarchy to an audience. Anarchy's a tricky concept; socially it's always been vague and in absolute terms the Heisenberg uncertainty principle suggests that Anarchy is a subatomic constant.

I have nothing against safe nice shows.

Q: What is the funniest thing that ever happened on stage?

A: I've had a few things that could go here but the best ones are all me suffering, dancing into an overhead fan in Edinburgh, vomiting on a Japanese audience.

The funniest things in the show to me are those moments where someone shucks off their anxiety and plays in some way with me and the audience roars its approval.

I could list moment after moment. I won't, though, because I can't afford the time right now.

Q: How do you filter your impulses when you're performing or interacting with the audience?

A: You kind of evolve behavioural templates, the borders of which have been defined by past experience.

I filter my impulses determined by my perception of where the audience are in their relationship with me, am I still flirting with their approval? Or am I at the next stage once I've seduced them, of perhaps taking them somewhere new.

Q: Who are some of your idols? And why?

A: Bassi, Grock, Butterflyman, Dirty Fred, there's lots of others I draw from but I tend not to idolise ( it can be really painful when you divorce).

Q: What reaction do you get when you tell someone you're a clown?

A: I tend to say I'm an adhesive chemist, it's just easier.

Q: What do you do, on stage, that makes you a great clown?

A: I own the fact that I inhabit this role naturally.

Q: What rules do you have about interacting with the audience, touching the audience?

A: I don't have an overt sexual aspect, I can be excessively romantic but I never express any libido of my own. I will mimic a dog and hump a lampost like someone's leg but that's the dog’s libido, not mine.

Q: Have you encountered clown fear? How do you deal with it?

A: I try and amplify it for the amusement of others; these people cannot be cured, they can still, however, be useful in the production of comedy.

Q: Is connecting with the audience the most important thing you are trying to do?

A: I have to connect with them so that they can connect with each other and become one temporary collective celebratory animal.

You know that scene where the dad’s laughing his head off but still remembers to glance across at the family and mum and the usually surly teen and the two younger kids are laughing, as are everyone around you.

That moment of freedom for the dad and everyone as they find themselves unexpectedly celebrating in a crowd or audience.

That's the most important thing I am trying to do.

Q: Is there a delicate balance between brave and daring and not offending the audience to the point of alienation?

A: See answer one, "Risk and redemption"

Q: Touching moments - what have people said to you after a show?

A: "I haven't been going out because I've been very depressed but I dragged myself out today to join the world and I saw you and watched you and you made me laugh. Thank you very very much for showing me I still can."

Thursday, October 4, 2018

The rest of my life...


As many of you know I've had a spot of cancer. Overall it’s been quite invigorating.

I have a 50/50 year by year chance of living for the next 5 years and as I’ve just had major surgery and been pronounced cancer free I’m working on the assumption that the coin for the next 12 months has been flipped and landed in my favour. I’m figuring pretty long odds of anything incapacitating me from scratch within a 12 month period, which I won’t be able to replicate at any other point in this 5 year period.

Living year to year is not new, the mortality horizon gives it an interesting frisson though.

Initially I thought a "Lurks Last Legs" tour. Canada, Glastonbury, visit some old friends in Europe.

I think I'll have that in reserve and revise the weirdness that is flyfishing. It's less strenuous, involves another performer, [I can use guest performers perhaps]..and it's fittingly unapologetically surreal.

http://www.martinewen.com/public_html/antigravitytheatre.com/www/flyfishing.htm

Sent letters out to Canada, Glastonbury next.

Be based in NZ til next late may firming that up as well as 2020 projects, an international clown symposium in Wellington and the ever simmering Clown Tomb project.

So each year at a time with a small investment to carry on to the next if I don't explode into a bodysuit of melanomas and expire in a puddle of morphine as is the first world norm. Or get brain cancer or the larger of my testicles becomes a man eater. I'm told the odds are non specific. Dramatic tension!

Deadline for new book is nov 1st at the Latest. Just cover to go.

Looking for accom in NZ and internationally and additionally pondering putting burningman at the end of the season in Sept.

update complete.....

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Funafuti

an exercise
Funafuti is an atoll on which the capital of the island nation of Tuvalu is located,
It's a narrow sweep of land with several inlets surrounding a central lagoon. Its 28 degrees most days and rainforest humid . It's the main island in a small chain and has a population of around 6000 people. The total population spread out over a couple of Islands is close to 11 000.
The Funafuti international Airport serves as the airstrips for the weekly flights from Fiji and also provides a space for sporting and other cultural activities. It's an evening social hub.
Two yachts had slipped into the atoll, it got a bit of attention because they weren't your pacific vagabonding usuals. These were charters from Ritzycharters, the Orion 90, $55 000 a week all inclusive, crew of 4. 8 Guests. Well kinda guests, plans were afoot. They were corporate and minimum impact audio visual techs, and the 'Rose of Jericho' $60 000 a week plus expenses.
The whole project was initially underwritten by Japanese dept store giant Marui, the retail chain turns over between 2 and 3 billion a year and caters to woman 25-35.
It was decided these women would identify with a feel good story emotionally invest, increase their brand loyalty. Increase revenue.
The fact was retail was dying, it would take years but the public commons internationally was morphing into a cross between an amusement park and a cultural musuem in order to engender brand loyalty. The Japanese led the way, they marketed feelings with the retail disguised as bi-product.
What was about to happen in this tiny Pacific community amounted to a selection of the worlds best street performers crashing a runway of a sleepy pacific nation and doing a group show for the locals. Because they wanted to and getting what they wanted was a game and because the authenticity involved was a valuable asset.
Sara Salsa Anthony Livingspace and Hilby the Skinny German Juggleboy were there at the request of Lurk, Martin Ewen, the 11ft disgruntled pantomime., because he had made it happen.
Martin had had a run in with cancer that focused his pondering to the degree he scared people who didn't know him and amused those who did. He had been a clowns clown for 30 years.
He'd worked out that authenticity was the rarest asset and in a culture of plastic try hards who stole templates those who went blind into the public eye prepared to fail until they learned something genuine were the most valuable of people with the most valuable of ideas. Theatrically Blueman had stolen this and Cirque du Soleil had literally stolen and fabricated it to the tune of billions.
No matter, it took years to form but it was a self perpetuating rare quality and an extremely limited resource and Martin had worked out how to broker it from within it's community or tribe..
It wasn't all socially pretentious marketing theory akin to William Gibson shamelessly spending two pages on a Tshirt however.
The retail giant was underwriting but there were a raft of other schemes in play. A team of admins dedicated to grants and cultural exchange programs, pacific rim infrastructural improvements, united nations Millennium Development Goals had all been dotting I's and crossing T's in the background so that when this week was over the local populations would all be potentially giddy and galvanised. As it was only the bare minimum of need to know local authorities had advance notice and they had been ludicriously bribed and thus blackmailed into silence in advance.
The stage was set.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Saga



I don't suppose all sagas start off as sagas. I expect some of them begin

“This morning I woke up and proceeded to struggle with my trousers.”
and end up 200,000 words later with the protagonist in a large pot being danced around by cannibals and you put the book down and sigh because you're only two thirds of the way through and you mutter, “Saga”

So it it with me, cept it's doctors not cannibals.
I went home for a night as an experiment over a week ago and returned to the hospital the next day confident I'd probably be discharged the following morning.
A doctor visited and breezily informed me that the latest blood test had showed an uptick in my white cells and they were just going to keep an eye on that over the next 24 hours.
I was casual. After all was I not just an exceptional healing unit overall?
Then the fever hit and the exhaustion rolled in and I spent the next week in bed as doctors tried to find the source of infection and I went back to nil by mouth in case food had leaked into my chest cavity via inadequate stitching in the children's' purse I now call a stomach.

So a week and a bit later I'm sitting up in bed writing this and my surgeon walks in and asks me to give him a smile. He has no way of knowing. I stare at him blankly and state. 'That's not my bag man.”

He proceeds to tell me of teams of radiologists and himself pouring over the CT scan I'd had done this morning looking for a leak in the minutest forensic detail and where there was once one half of them say there now isn't and half of them say there's the faintest whisper of one left.

I mumble something about schroeder's esophagus and he doesn't double over with laughter so it's obvious I'm still very unwell.

But feel better that I have for the previous week, which was sick and tired and a little depressed with the whole isolated, uncomfortable, mammoth physical restructuring exercise.

However certain clouds have parted and that's as far as I'll go with that.
The world still owes me a living.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

third week recovery from misdiagnosed terminal cancer

I'm doing unnaturally well. Today is 3 weeks of recovery. First two weeks were a shellshocked pain pocked post operational ketamine fueled multiverse of painful solitude punctuated by nurses and tasks and family visits. An omniplex which can be defined as a realm of simultaneous chaos and understanding.

Ketamine is useful in that it dismantles not only the highways between your pain source and your brain but dismantles your perception of your bedrock reality such that you have to improvisation-ally rebuild it. It's like having to construct a street show in real time on the fly after being hit by a truck or some mythical thing with a powerful tail.

There were times where I had a stoic belief that I was not entirely housed in a hospital but a hybrid of a hospital and a south east asian village built on a mat of quartered macadamia nuts nurtured by elders and I was aware of the byzantine social and cultural intricacies by which the community was both stable and evolving and in some part actually fueling the hospital. I'd overhear the villagers talking and make my conclusions. Sometimes they talked about me. They mentioned at one point I'd make a good prospect for the south African market. I felt special.

At night when I pushed the buzzer because of pain or some other need it would appear that the nurses dutifully but with the barest sense of reluctance would appear from a spiral staircase under a trapdoor in the floor at the base of my bed and that I wasn't in a room but more a hallway between these two integrated worlds. It all made a lot of sense at the time.
That was then this is now.

After day 12 things picked up, my core reasserted itself, I could sit up by myself and a few days later could lie down unaided and within a couple of days I gained a lot of physical strength and mobility. The doc had always been dour, in intensive care the day after he was all, "Five major things can go wrong in the first five days. " after 5 days it was "Not out of the woods yet." but by day 15ish he came in and told me the histology [cellular analysis of whatever they've removed from you] was that he'd taken 35 lymph nodes from around the site and none of them had shown any indications of cancer and also the tumour had not gone through the wall of my esophagus and was just sitting on it so the likelihood of it having travelled anywhere were essentially nil. Additionally my recovery and lack of major complications, [I'd had a short lung infection in the lung they collapsed for the op but that healed with antibiotics within days] has so far had me the fastest healing and most positive prognosis out of any patient he's done this operation on. So there's that. Still nil by mouth though. Eating starts in 3 days and I'm being fed 16 hours a day by tube.

But fuck it I had 2 pieces of hard caramel candy, 3 sips of sugared latte and a cig yesterday when they unhooked me and gave me the afternoon off, cos Iyam what Iyam
I have a huge learning curve ahead

Resets and relearns and vit b injections every couple of months. Will go home next week if tomorrows scan is progressive as all before have been, and be fed 8 hours overnight and experiment with what my body will deal with during the days. So it will be reduced but essentially what I've been experimenting with my whole life.
I'm fed for 16 hours via tube about 2300 cals overnight from 6pm til 10am.
Today they let me have sugared black coffee, they said no milk but I bumped into a cow and one thing led to another and I spent 3 hours drinking a small strong latte so there.
I get a final scan through the big donut downstairs tomorrow I had one this last monday and they are trying new methods out on me. They get me to drink the indicator minutes before the scan which is a new procedure and on monday they asked if I could spin round one revolution on the hydraulic feeding stretcher that glides you through the CT Scanner so the fluid could coat what they wanted to look at and perhaps walk around a little also.

Given that a week earlier I had to be helped on and off my bed and onto the thing and this week they were asking for gymnastics I gave them a wry glance and mentioned I'd worked in circus but even so were they aware of what they were asking? Negotiated that yes if they lowered the narrow thing I'd give it a shot then I did rotate from back to side to hands and knees then back to back again. I then got to my feet walked the length of the scanning room did a full 360 pirouette on the ball of one foot, returned, lay down and said 'Lets do this thing.'
Bottom line I'm as good as cancer free before even the next poss stage of clean-up chemo and healing well but life will not be the same.
Hoping to write more and make a name for reviewing street fests from the bottom up so to speak being one of the tribe but that's future days.
Grateful for all the wellwishing and support you've all lent. It means everything.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

I need slippers, I am walking again and the hospital requires it.

Please world, I have begun walking again. I need these slippers for the hospital........

Two Weeks Pass

Two weeks pass.
Nine hour operation, imagine nine hours spent slyly penetrating a Christmas cracker from both ends to remove the paper hat leaving little evidence but extensive bruising an innumerable stitches and stables.
Imagine a tree of functioning feeders each designed to keep a part of you functioning under the duress your bodies been placed, all working except for the pain management one which says it's working but isn't.
Imagine on the scale of 1 to 10 you being at 10 for 45 minutes wishing nothing more than to be able to be turned off and the other machines all designed to keep it steady and the staff trusting of their equipment til they find their flaw that 45 mins later.
Imagine shallow labored breathing and the lonliness .
TA DA!
Feeling much better today,just had 35 metal staples removed from holes and slashes front and back by a nurse who rightly guessed it would be made easier for me if I talked about myself.
Constants.

and in again.



 

All things to all people...Letters to a Clown

Two interpretations of my show from the same Perth audience.



"Letter to a Clown

Seldom do I go into the city, but this week I came in on Monday and was back on Tuesday—I met a bright Clown in a dark laneway that needed the sort of light you were able to shed. I wondered who you were behind your mask. You drew a crowd around you like a magnet.
Do you know what you did for us?
I shall count some of the ways.
You awaken the Discerner in us. You show us aspects of ourselves so that we can dare to look; then dare we to act upon. You show us the roles we have imposed like cloaks covering ourselves and shake them off, for life is just a game. Uncovering us you show us “to be”. You gather us and draw us together through this laughter creating Unity of the Family of Man….. and as I look through the crowd, silently gathering my gift of words for you, I see compassion, joy, shining merriment, some silently suppressed, but expressed in the eyes of those who have perhaps too serious a life and hear the innocent open laughter of enjoyment in the sound of young children voices and in the youthful, I wonder if you realise how powerful your play is in changing us quietly from within. Quiet audiences, often seemingly unresponsive, can be the best.
Did you know that everyone was laughing at something different at the same time but something that was in them too? Complex, powerful, intricate this act. What impact to connect us up in still concentration as you, clever psychologist, become a mirror for each.
Deep Clown, even when you wash the windows with small, round movements it humours and relaxes and lulls us. Not for long! Like the suddenness of your own swift mind, the long movements of effort follow, giving instead into the mercurial and quicksilver changes of your ingenious and humorous acting.
I saw a Clown of Hearts and heard the quietness coming out of the audience the next day, all gathered around you, and the soft, deepening laughter rippling out of the sun of its eyes as you drew, in one swift act of affectionate comedy, the Police on their city beat in the paddy van, to the people.
Before your audience walks away, lighter or brighter or deeper in thoughts, reflecting, probing towards the Light of Life perhaps.
You took off your hat, green haired man, old, old Soul and bowed to your audience. I noticed two shadows on your face. They came down from your eyes across your cheeks. Later, when I passed the darkening laneway with all it’s dreams still whispering from the undying souls of the never-ending hopes, faiths and loves of your audience, I looked up and there, suspended in the darkness was a branch of light filled, golden flowers that you had forgotten to take; or had you? In that bright , simple spray I saw, as I did in the shadows under your eyes, Your Essence, and I am still weeping for what you evoke in us.
Your Essence, like the flowers and Your Efforts are Love,
Dear Gentle Clown."

Journey


Doors open, doors close, dogs avoid escalators.

Well I had my last pre-op meeting with both the surgeon and the head anesthetist yesterday. They have opted for the 'all you can cut' menu where they go in via the stomach area and also take a chunk out of a rib so they don't have to break it and go in that way too after deflating a lung to give them extra wiggle room.
My list of demands were fentynal as I've heard good things about it. The catheter put in after the general anesthetic cos I'm detail orientated that way and I'd like to wake up on a bear skin rug in front of an open fire in the intensive care ward please.
I then slyly inferred there would be chocolate in it for them if they made an effort.
Personally I am astonished by my bravery and sophistication in overcoming my fight or flight impulses to the degree that I will voluntarily be entering a building in a few days knowing I'll be led into a room where people will attack me with knives.

poss book cover, option one,


Saturday, July 14, 2018

Afterword

Afterword

Well I’m about to be operated on medically in a big way and what’s often asked of or required for general and health purposes at this stage is something to live for.
Damn good question!
What have I been living for up to now I ask myself.
Damn good question!
Essentially I’ve been trying to externalise my existential angst for drinking money.
Like my parents said, I could achieve anything I ever set my heart on.
I traveled the world and performed for unsuspected publics in towns and cities of every letter of the alphabet. Ta-Da!
But I don’t drink anymore, I’ve worn out that fuzzy veneer of wellbeing.
I lack lacquer. I’ve burnished myself down to a self conscious nub.
Still, questions remain.
I’d like to be part of a team which is difficult when you’re a street level self styled iconoclast...with no stomach.
I would like to capture before it perhaps disappears from the ever shrinking public commons the works of various rare alchemists, mechanics of moments, aberrant pure creatives.
Because I think the world at large is ignorant of their existence and it may be hubris on my part but I think they are the most important individuals simply because in an inauthentic world they are purely authentic.
So that could be a reason to live, to produce some street theatre safari content generating program.
Alternatively or in conjunction I could create a clown school that invited masters of the trade to teach as guests. New Zealand is a nice place to visit and probably very tax deductible. I’m not sure how successful I’d be as an administrator. I do know my international clowns though and them me.
Sigh, all I know is I’m going to wake up in intensive care with lots of tubes sticking out of me and where those tubes come out will determine my recovery time. Ribcage is 9 months, stomach is 6.
And it would be best if I had something to aim for.
Clown fest jan/feb 2020?
Still fishing, 10 days to go as old Martin.


Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Obituary Robb Torres.



There's a nondescript carry-case in transit being transported ownerless back to it's point of departure.
There to be picked up and deposited at whatever home it's given.
It's a sad case as it's owners heart exploded on a plane carrying it and him and he died.

However deep in that case, jostling amongst makeup pads, a tawny wig, a red tie, rope and other bits and bobs there is a small plain wooden box with a hinged lid.

Not many people know this and I'm sharing it with you because more people should but that box is among the rarest, most powerful, venerable and profound objects in this world.
Because one man made it so.
He was a master Clown and they themselves are very rare. I know this because I'm 55 and have spent my adult life searching the world for them.
His name was Rob Torres.

This box contains hundreds of thousands of individual ingots invisible to the human eye of love and glee and relief from the everyday and childish delight and rekindled playfulness and wonder and celebration of what it is to be in the presence of a master Clown who takes that collective weight of all that it is to be human and makes pure light from it and radiates it back so it bounces about the gathered gaining power as it's collectively confirmed.

Rob Torres would collect his audiences applause in this small wooden box. He would sweep his arm and his scooped hand through the air and into the box as his audience thunderously applauded, then he would slowly close the box and his audience would in delight, play along, their applause would lessen and stop as he closed the box.
All he had to do after that was open the box and his audience would gleefully erupt again.

It was a small conceit that once shared became an immensely powerful thing.
It dissolved the barrier between audience and performer because the playfulness and delight of both the audience and performer became one and the same.
It took people to a place of incandescence.

As I say it now lies with other props in a case somewhere and will never be opened or closed in the same way again, which is sad.

But I hope it's recognised and I'm writing this in that hope.
That that box is one of mankinds greatest achievements and was bought into being by a humble, striving, extraordinarily talented singular individual who traveled to over 60 countries and performed at the largest Circuses and the smallest street corners and everywhere in between to illustrate, because that was his vocation, in profoundly simple shared moments honed by his craft to perfection, that shared laughter is one of the higher forms of Love...
and all we need.

Farewell Friend. RIP Rob Torres.

Honest moneylines not designed to maximize income #1

Thank you Ladies and Gentlemen, Glad you enjoyed the show.

As you've noted I don't speak in my show, I work as a character.

This is me talking.


I do this for a living and because I love doing it.


I kinda aim for 60% of you thinking it's clever and funny and 40% on the fence thinking it's a bit much, a little aggressive, just abusive basically.


That's fine by me. I'm not some 80's corporate throwback dedicated to “maximizing my revenue sources” I'm a street performer, I'll take what I'm given to do what I want.

I do have standards. If you liked my show feel free to come forward and drop some amount that equates to the fun you had watching the show.

If you filmed my show on your phone I'd prefer you didn't come forward because I pity you not being able to celebrate in the moment. The Clown pities you, you'll get over it.

Also I'm not going to explain to you how using your phone you can effortlessly make your bank friendly with my bank and donate electronically. I don't care about your technology. Not interested.

I'm interested in that small number of you who recognise whats just happened was worth something to come forward and leave something in my hat.

This job is centuries old and it's always been the same. People come forward and leave the performer a reward for the fun they've had...or just say thanks if they have no money. Maybe take out your phones and google egalitarian.

Enjoy the rest of your day.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

riffs on performance collectives, guilds.

The personal sovereignty represented by a good street show is inarguably self evident.
Man/woman/team construct attention and focus to produce some self fueling whimsical collective celebration. Then pack up and do it again, and again.
Thats powerful, so powerful it's survived for centuries.
It predates capitalism and will probably exist in whatever system evolves from our present systematic convulsion.

I'd argue it's the primary power that fuels the festivals dedicated to celebrating and commercially exploiting it in variant ratios.
Indoor shows with tickets, sponsorship arrangements with signage, affiliated commercial gigs tacked onto the contracts, unpaid parades, a host of bright ideas abound that feed off the primary recognition that what a street performer produces is valuable and unique and powerful and cannot be easily reproduced.

Cirque du soleil admits that their initial ambition was an attempt to reproduce a street theatre energy and spontaneity onto the stage. At least that's what they told me and 57 others at my New York audition before over two days they had whittled us down to a final eight.
Blue man group was a cheaper and similar business plan.

The street will continue to incubate quirky and original and talented acts that survive and even prosper by the response and generosity of the public they impress.

Culture used to incubate in the town square in front of the church and circled by market stalls. That's where Ballet was born, that's where every basic theatrical convention crawled from the sea of our collective psyche and started gasping for air. Those that breathed best were often nabbed by noblemen and refined in halls for select entertainment just as now
that talent will often be noticed and offered entry into a new world of festivals where airfares and hotel rooms and fees are provided. All good.

However it's a competitive market and festival casting is now increasingly swamped by thousands of emails scrambling for the forty available slots.
Here's my solution, which is a sidestep of sorts and incorporates the fraternal element that has always been at the base of those of us who wander the globe and share pitches.
I picture a self selective herd of cats who trust each other enough to be self herding.
Forming a Guild, a group of between five or ten or twenty. Recognising what you have as street performers and moreover what your guild has that others don't.

The 90's originals
The Quirky Family Friendlies
Edge-lords

It might also be noted that at the advent of capitalism Guilds were seen to be unproductive, a burden, existing only for their own benefit and a drain on society as a whole. Parasitical. However guilds were the inventors of the concept of formal apprenticeship. That's an interesting wrinkle. Each guild could teach it's own authentic style and further define and market itself. Any guild with senior members having survived 10 000 street shows who taught would negate the parasitical argument by any definition.

I'm not doing your marketing for you but we each know a handful of fellow performers that make our hearts soar when we know they are on the same bill as we are. Just good company and there's history and harmony of purpose.
I think this is natural and the power of it has never been fully recognised or utilized.
You could perhaps belong to more than one guild, the tighter ones would be more powerful is all.
So you and say seven others are your own ideal block, you get together and write some sidesplitting promo, select a spokesperson, agree on your collective and individual worth and then what? Well you'd likely have to poach some admin wiz and sponsorship wrangler from your fest travels and chip in with a %

You could market in our present status quo paddling pool of festivals or you could take it one step further and actually be a festival unto yourselves.
You could put yourselves out to tender and get bids from municipalities and various commercial interests and simply be the festival or more interestingly if your guild was together enough to seek and receive sponsorship you could create what appeared to be one or two day spontaneous festivals at whim.

Given the nature of street theatre, the more original, less templated variety, the visual and audiovisual content production and the authenticity of that is as yet a completely untapped resource. [Although shoutout to Shep Huntly and his digital team for his pioneering work in this regard]
In terms of impact, both in the creation of spontaneous audiences and the authentic and novel entertainment provided by those performers capable of it at any public venue. In it's live form and also it's digital content potential is presently sorely underestimated.Simply put the production of 'moments' which lies at the base of all marketing and all art and is the power that drives festivals as they presently exist and in my mind could be recognised more by the performers concerned to the degree that they start bending and twisting the formats by which they are presently commercially exploited.

However the argument against this is quite simply that this 'moment' created by Hilby only has 360 odd views.
https://youtu.be/NjBAMixt3qs
So maybe it's not so important. Never mind.
Or maybe no-ones gone all out to curate those 'moments' and package them in a way that discards the rash of middlemen yet.
Who knows, just putting long held ideas out there cos I'm capable. Also the writing's a bit loose, wrote it in two sessions.



Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Pith 3, repository for meta-tags and pith book chaptering exercise


Time is a form of lateral gravity, you're born, you fly sideways, you hit the ground and are buried. #science

Blue man group is just the Wiggles for grownups. “Performance shade



Alkalines of our DNA follow regular grammar and have set rules just like our languages-Human languages are a reflection of our inherent DNAThis could explain why affirmations, autogenous training, hypnosis and the like can have such strong effects on humans and their bodies. #science


Tourists just need structure, otherwise they are merely displaced persons with defensive disposable incomes. #Audience


South african accents sound like they were mad at you but have forgiven you but are still just a bit angry. #accents

I like the dramatically monstrous people, they are my tribe. The placid tidy folk, they are probably OK too, but how would you know? OMG I think dressing-gown woman is stalking me, she has walked twice past my table pretending to be on the phone, not talking, the tracksuit is yellow and black stripes. The hair is 'ignored barbie left in rain' This woman is absively casual , that shows depth of character, I don't care if it's eyeball searingly passive aggressive, This woman knows life is a circus #airport

.Knee high boots are not for the meek, and yet here she is, h hold on, she's filing her nails. Is that code? How did she get through customs? She has a baby too, in a shrouded pram. Is it a baby under there? or is it a decade's worth of nail clippings. I must keep observing this one.#airport

If you have to wear jeans with the belt just short of your armpits in an attempt to suggest you do in fact possess buttocks then might I suggest perhaps you go that one bit extra and cut holes in the pockets for your arms, thus morphing from scary to interesting. #airport


OK there's a guy with his wife she is very thin and the kindest thing I can say about him is that he is not. He is wearing suspenders which may be a cunning ruse not to have a belt to take off in security but his strangled gonads are the terrorists in this situation. They are really really visible and being an empathetic guy his violently cleft testicles produce the same sympathy as an orphaned tragic kitten . Must.. not.. stroke.. strangers..#airport



I am in transit, I'm the sort of person who leaves Hawaii for holidays. There's a man with a cowboy hat and goatee and a studded belt just passing but I suspect his world weary expression is plastic. I should just describe people as they pass...I'll do that #airport

Fun fact: If you put your ear next to a woman's leg you can actually hear her say what the fuck are you doing? #strange

I would just like to take this opportunity to proclaim that the pretentiousness inherent in being both a clown and a philosopher is very real and perhaps my best work. #clown


if it doesn't have a price tag on it how can it be art? If it isn't commoditized how can it be American? You are not citizens, you are consumers. Anything that distracts from consumption is basically communist and dangerously radical. You laugh, you pay, in fact no, if you want to laugh you have to pay first. And if you want to express yourself then it is mandatory that you find someone to pay you to do it. Please don't attempt to embellish the human condition willy nilly. It disrupts the sandblasted chutes that transport you soaking up advertising as you're processed from one retail outlet to the next. Any idea that you are anything other than a distracted drone ricocheting from one hollow conditioned minor anxiety relief at a point of purchase to another is subversive, antisocial and a 19th century or even worse 'European' anachronism. These pitiful attempts at self expression will be punished in the usual educational way, they will be turned into revenue streams to further condition… #publiccommons


The universe is straining to contain the amount of gazooks I feel! #strange

Eagles may soar, but chickens don't get sucked into jet engines. #strange

“Enlightenment is not imagining figures of light, but making the darkness conscious.”
— Carl Gustav Jung #deep #science

Gelotophiles are persons that actively seek and establish situations in which others may laugh at them. ... They do not feel embarrassed when sharing embarrassing things that happened to them for making others laugh at them. #deep #definitions #words #science

 

my fortune cookie said " Your leg will fall off, you will notice a strange growth appear in your armpit and gums, your libido will send ransom notes from a rancid backpackers in ashburton, your ambitions will don smeared lipstick and mug hideously in your direction and one eyeball will rotate into your skull and never look at the outside world again.... But never give up, life is beautiful"
......or that might have been a Steve Jobs quote, I can't remember. #strange


Five tenets of injustice are-: elitism is efficient, exclusion is necessary, prejudice is natural, greed is good and despair is inevitable. #deep

What the future portends is more and more information. There won’t be anything we won’t know. But there will be no one thinking about it.#deep

So this kid, the omega of three, always the case, leers,
"What would happen If I pushed you over?
I kept walking and over my shoulder said, "You'd need dental work.”#observation

A NZ Clown Export, Martin Ewen has spent a bewildering 30 year program of pancultural clown research in social aggression as it purtains to pantomimes and public places #pr


Bad days are bad, good days are simply not bad, but really good days are simply good days. #observation

Sometimes when people tell me that when one door closes another door opens, I want to slam the original closing door on their foot. #Observation

A clown is a subversive individual who either salves your wounds or further opens them to show that they are not life threatening but part of you.A clown manages reality with almost total freedom and exists to impart those freedoms.A clown uses what is probable to show us what's possible. #clown


Every valuable lesson I ever learnt involved SERIOUS HEAD INJURY. #strange

Sometimes I feel like the worlds’ outpatient. #strange

 

Pith 2, repository for meta-tags and pith book chaptering exercise


America stands for that kid in the corner of the playground with the magnifying glass burning the insects cos his parents divorced. #America

Facebook is what the embalmer did to Joan Rivers twenty years before she died. #facebook

Facebook is a NSA tool masquerading as a bulletin board for people who don't look out of their windows often. #facebook

The only merciless social killers I've ever heard of have been an adjunct to Americas' training. Name one other after Mao Tse-tung? that wasn't an ex cia employee. #america

America eventually will be seen as an oldschool colonist folly built on calvanist faith and leveraged to french revolution proportions. #america

Fraser has synthesized pan cultural clown as well or better than anybody. He, like Rob Torres have a variety of engagements but they retain essentially that they are entertainment that is happenchance. Their mastery is such they can create self sustaining public gifts. One definition of street theatre. #street theatre #clown


as of 2013, 61% of the worlds pop has no contact with the internet. Well over half our species, not mortgaged in any way, yet to have their societies prostituted to supply chains. People more inclined towards each other and less inclined to a metaphysical castle on a hill. Meta #philosophy

So God dissolved for me before I saw through Santa,because I believed in technology. I figured one dude with a delivery plan and an airborne system was more feasible than the other dude who created the universe. Santa gave me annual evidence of his existence. I could only wonder at his kindness and efficiency.Now a grown-up I bear no grudges at cultural falsehoods timed to explode in lue of more literal scarification rituals.Having said that, as adults, can we simply accept that there's no such thing as baby carrots? #faith

Just had a thought.
First my personal context, 51, born in 63, grew up and teenage years met the first generation of aging hippys.
[I think we're into gen 3 aging hippies now and I swear they're all much older than me]
anyway, age of aquarius bollocks, as if the specific gravities of a combination of planets and stars per individual influences their temperaments?
Hi my names martin I'm an Aries which means I'm arrogant and insecure now if you could stop bogarting while being an amplifier of half digested pseudo science I could medicate my social anxiety.
Hold on, I started out with just a thought and I've written one of probably two or three background paragraphs. DAMN YOU WRITING PROCESS! DAMN YOU TO HELL.
Astrology's just background scatter, a test of faith before you go the whole nostradamus hog. Then there's the Mayans with their chronological aspergers. I always thought it suspicious that the Mayans and computer programmers in the 70's both thought the world was finite within a decade of each other.
Here we all are on the other side of that but what I think resonates is that it seemed we were always promised, like brethren immemorial, that our generation was to participate in some 'consciousness reset' some 'higher collective harmonic' or some such. I like many others, simply waited for the world to catch up and agree with all my crack-pot opinions
But here's my thought, the most profound, consciousness raising, explosively ramificating thing that could be done in our lifetimes is the encryption of the internet.
Govts can't wage a war against math. #socialobservation, #personal


We gibber, making moral judgements with no actual evidence while presuming our humanity is innate rather than simply a media reflex. #online


"The big noise drowns out the little music that makes the world better.” #online

I believe Aliens imprinted comedy into early humans and are hanging back waiting for us to laugh at a specific thing. #strange

Apparently Prime Minister Tony Abbott believes Aboriginies are just shadows white people make. #aussie

Alternative dimension Custer telegraph.
Surrounded by Indians stop They seem casual stop Much to learn stop. #strange

Fundamental attribution error may end our species however it's the bedrock of comedy so worth it. #science



 

We take direction and call it individuality. We succumb to rituals and conventions that define us and occasionally if we’re lucky some canny technician will temporarily remove our bedrock and yet we will be too entranced to be frightened. #clown


 


Isn't an economist just a witchdoctor with a sad sense of costume?A high priest of the status quo mumbling about demons in the next village. #strange

There's this guy, late 20s, who for the last few months has been walking up and down the road outside my place, couple of miles one way then back. He wears a hoodie and a small backpack. I recognise the perambulating symptoms of a lost soul locked within itself because I've been there. Today I passed him resting, he closed his eyes as I passed, there is only so much input that can be borne. He used to walk with energy, months have past, he now shuffles. I can do nothing but give him a packet of Granola next time I see him. For him it’s I sadly suspect the end of days. In Hawaii til his parents rescue him. #sad


What some might call sloth I call contemporary anthropology in the first person.

We proceeded to speak as normal people do about this and that.
That is to say, being performers our monologues intertwined. #observation


I worry that I'm needlessly cheerful. #observation

Question; Is  Nominative determinism fourth dimensional onomatopoeia? Cos it seems like it. #Observation




Clowns inhabit a rare stratum,anti-establishment yet attractive.Allowing them to overstep socially, gutting societies boundaries like a fish #clownI care, because clowns traditionally inhabit a rare stratum in which they are anti-establishment yet attractive. They create live capsules in which their own laughable failures allow them to overstep and gut societies boundaries like a fish. Temporary relief is better than no relief at all and if it's done via a chorus of laughter then the tradition is preserved. #clown

People accuse me of overthinking things but Ebola still might be the planets natural defensive response to the TSA. #strange #tsa

I want my TSA people [third gen] in full Hazmat suits sweating and still being paid macdonalds wages. Thanks random genetic mutation. I get your humor. #tsa

"911, please state your emergency"
"Someone hurt my feelings.” #theme

The internet has grown enormously, the washing line now extends beyond the curvature of the earth. Beware the internet aunties! #internet

Livingspace wasn't interested in middlemen, he didn't fall for the seduction of being a performance commodity, he'd do festivals and they'd have to employ someone who gave a fuck to shadow him, it was the only way. He wanted to disrupt peoples lives in a positive and unusual way. But if you dragged him from where-ever he fell and placed him behind a curtain with his suitcase of props and in the morning raised the curtain to reveal the matinee audience, he'd be your monkey. #performer #clown

#assholes Alex jonesAlex Jones, socio-political entity.
his 'job' is to keep an organized public resistance to fascism fractured and impotent.
He's remarkably like what a fascist would look like if that fascist decided to disguise themselves as a political protester.
Anti-gay.. Tick
Anti mexican…Tick
Anti-semetic [in as much as the Rothschilds and the Rockefeller's inbreed and seed govts and longterm control the planet] ..tick
Anti-environmentalist..tick
As tribal mammals all but the sociopathic have an innate empathy when presented with inflicted pain.
Alex Jones's simplistic bombastic hysterics seem designed to produce 'empathy fields' if you will, that Jones skillfully, in his almost patently hamfisted way, uses to attempt to reduce the world to a fractal cartoon. A cartoon of smug rage.
Be that as it may, if those who graze on him, [and it's a big if] can look sub texturally at what outrages them, It's my opinion that you'll find at it's core a foundation of impotency.
Evidence? Let's see. Elections that evidence points to being rigged by electronic means leading to wars that the majority of citizens were not in favor of leading to distractive polarizing political Kabuki for the last decade leading to torture and the suspension of Habeas corpus in Americas [and hence if American, your names] That's a brief overview of the impotency bedrock Alan Jones surfs for a living.
When powerless people look for leadership, if suitably befuddled, sometimes any semi coherent but seemingly passionate plonker will do. Habits are hard to break and we're tribal and like chest thumping monkeys. Alex Jones is a chest thumping monkey whose form outweighs his content by at least 10 to 1. He's impotent but he's shrill and loud and passionate which is at least 2 things more than you…. and so people trust the monkey that's louder than them because it saves them thinking for themselves which is increasingly impossibly hard and because it feeds a sense of entitlement in allowing them to feel part of some amorphous potential solution rather than in reality part of the problem. 
conspirihypocratic conspiratainment, it all comes down to choosing your narcissistic douchebags wisely I guess. It's not like we're not spoiled for choice.#asshole

#clown. "Laughter seems to me to contain a truth of sorts. When crowds in public were drawn to it and I orchestrated it I felt I was a fish swimming muscularily up-current. The collective laughter of strangers bound by circumstance and a primal recognition of comedy was my medium.” #pr

This is so disheartening, if there's one significant indicator that we are all simply hopeless drones destined to either exploit or be exploited it's the legislation-isation of free expression in what diminishing 'public places' that remain to protect against 'public nuisance' which in real terms is anything that distracts from the retail experience which has been sold to us unrelentingly as the substantive answer to the void it itself created within us in order to maintain itself. God forbid as a public shuffles in it's off hours to placate themselves by purchasing fucking overpriced do-dads that they be offered relief by their own kind who make them laugh and temporarily become whole. #Street theatre

I think you can be all over comedy both inside and out but tragedy is a vehicle with adult proof locks. #clown

The oldest currency is small useful things and sometimes a moment of laughter in an otherwise complicated and grinding existence is a small useful thing. #clown

I admit it, I crack myself up. I think some of my promo is much funnier than my actual show. I had to send some off today and went through some past stuff I've used at festivals. eg.
New Zealands Martin Ewen developed his ‘Lurk’ clown character 30 years ago.
Having graduated clown school and worked in the original ‘Stalker stilt theatre for two years, Lurk combines unparrelleled skill and original stilt technique with bitter dissapointment in the human condition as it applies to 11 ft pantomimes.
His success is amply demonstrated by the fact he hasn’t starved to death yet. #promo
------------------------
A tall white faced abstracted protagonist exploiting the dramatic tension inherent in corners.
“Lurk” is a white face pantomime like no other.Trained in France, NZ and Japan his performance is truly international.
“I have been working with my present stilt / mime / eccentric for over thirty years. The character is self contained, that is, in character I make my own entertainment. Mime is technically creating three dimensional objects in space. As such I have three mime children, a wife who left me, a shrapnel wound, recently a machine gun, I don’t do walls or doors. I find walking and sometimes dancing into a strong wind more entertaining when not mimed. I mime a god I plead to for just one more victim.”
Not to be missed, this is comedy designed to make you laugh in spite of your upbringing.#promo
----------------------------
Despite being hospitalized by an overhead fan at the Edinburgh Festival. Being put in intensive care after only 4 hours in Singapore with a suspected fractured skull.
Despite being arrested (For suspicion of being Moroccan)while performing on the Ave de Innocence in Paris, and whilst performing next to a 17th century church in Denmark (for possession of humour) and threatened by knife wielding heavy metalers in Glasgow, and despite projectile vomiting onto an audience while ballet dancing in Japan, Martin Ewen has enjoyed a 30+ year career of unhindered success. Having worked in film alongside Tom Cruise and at private parties alongside James Brown and Aretha Franklyn and also appearing at the prestigious Dunedin annual pensioners picnic it is now finally America’s opportunity to have to forgive themselves for laughing.
A 21st century professional sociopath. Pedestrian vivisection where the victims walk away laughing.
Combining cruelty with whimsy in a sharp comic portrayal of reality.
Using his convention to explore tension and its relationship with comedy.
Providing laughter and temporary philosophic relief as the public watch others mildly suffer.
Welcome to ‘Lurk’ the disgruntled pantomimes reach out and ridicule someone program. #promo

I think if you look at TV's descent into digital alzheimer's over the last few years as it's remaining viewers bicker about the channels in their retirement homes trying to guard the inputs for premasticated opinions central to their senses of identity, that it's kinda fitting, with vast numbers turning off and cutting their cable services and seeking to look at media in the same way Govts are looking at us, with sceptical suspicion, that they voluntarily expose themselves as gibbering loons, pompous brittle sycophants and cultural red setters mindlessly humping the sofas of their own self regard. Amusing to visit but not something you'd allow in your own house. [PS, sometimes I construct really long sentences in red setter mode myself] #internet

The internet, both recreationally and sociopolitically is tautologically as well as realistically unfathomably deep and irredeemably shallow #internet

I've been marinating online for over a decade now and have made an effort to start reading books recreationally again. I used to read a lot, close to a book a day for a couple of decades. They are so much deeper and richer an experience, coupling yourself to one guys mind rather than skimming constantly through what amounts to be commercial assignments or drivel reminiscent of Anne Frank if she had a superiority complex and a debilitating head injury. #personal


I spent the first half of my life intelligent and articulate and terrified. Anyone who knows me knows enough to know full frontal status attacks produce well weighted withering counterattacks. I've yet to be be bested but admittedly I've only ever seemed attractive to low hanging fruit with little to lose and various mentally ill people who gravitate towards street theatre.#personal
 

"The typical Jester is a Management Consultant.” #clown

jailbreaking your brain is strictly prohibited. any attempt to do so, successfully or otherwise, risks having it bricked permanently.” #strange

Clown insurance, I pay $100 a year and I can do up to $3 million dollars worth of damage. It's helpful to have a concrete goal.#clown

I've studied the socio-political world from many angles, in many cultures. I've studied applied anthropology, jungian theory, world history, child development and investigated a raft of psychiatric disorders individual and collective and have concluded after weighty consideration that apart from one or two logistic issues and some currency concerns world peace and prosperity's fulcrum's that we each need to buy someone else a pony.#observation

acebooks outrage/indignace pornography is striking me as tragic for all concerned.
I DON'T CARE...If you've found a film of some kid drowning puppies.
I DON'T CARE...what the latest FOX vomit consists of.
I DON'T CARE that the only semblance of control you have over life is to project your very real impotent frustrated dis-ease via facebook.
I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU SAY ON FACEBOOK, [unless it's hello followed by something witty and you already know me.]
Facebook is simply catnip for social ghosts. #facebookI'm guilty, but I'm done. I think it was the drowning puppy outrage that got me. No sense of scale and given they are now dead it just struck me as masturbation of the most pitiful kind. For example..Here we are with computers/shoes and clothes all made in sweatshops whining about the cruelty of others and flushing our systems with that rich, rich self absorbed, self rightious, pious wank that takes all of 10 secs to cut and paste. If you think dumping toxic sludge on the great barrier reef and punching babies in the face and the concept of War are bad then like and share and together we'll make a difference. /s #facebook

I'm aware that my indignance mirrors those I rail against, just on a meta level, and so I am as guilty and as much of a hypocrite in that. I see that and am aware others will too. But sometimes I snap just generally at those who don't see and whose basic human need for validation fixates on the 'sins' of others because of the hormonal cocktail it releases. I'm relatively old and I think a lot and judge myself fiercely and sometimes for relief take those skills and almost whimsically gut others like a fish. Usually just to entertain myself and because it's an outlet. However, having my own relationship with a red nose reminds me that good things happen when you do things and interact while doing things. Reality is an unimaginably large orchestra and facebook is in comparison the cheapest form of transistor radio. It's a simulated reality, the order, the importance, whether you see what your 'friends' are up to are are determined by forces outside your control. It's someone elses simulation of reality, you cannot even pretend that vague fugueish dementia it lends you is your own. Politically to me I picture millions of solitary folk screaming into their pillows before pushing 'post'. I'm starting to ignore friends I respect simply because reading their howling posts makes me feel like some stranger's just ejaculated on me in an elevator. #facebook

Which is fine...I'm just not into that. #facebook

Pittsburgh.
From Nth Carolina to Pittsburgh by train, arrive after midnight, John Pike, ex Invisible Circus and a veteran of shared Halifax and NZ festivals, himself an Englishman, is managing an Irish Bar in the South side.
He’s had a taxi waiting 30 mins without the meter on when I arrive. I note he hasn’t lost his touch.
He runs a smooth bar, he’s been increasing all the metrics. Some people are just good to hang with. John’s one.
I just stayed over the weekend, I was told it might be workable South Side.
I had meant to work the friday evening but as I approached the square I was smothered in a dense spectrum sense by a mega gaggle of hideous women all mincing along to the premier of “Sex in the city 2."
Some ‘Ladies night out’ had been arranged and hundreds were invited to a happy hour complete with manicures, massages, tarot card readings and a Botox demonstration before the movie.
I was suddenly surrounded by a weighty funk of estrogen driven malfunctionists. My desire to reproduce, a hardwired constant since puberty, immediately flatlined.
Somehow contained inside evening dresses bought with the aid of circus mirrors or chronic delusion, teetering on heels handicapped to a spina bifida equivalent. Careening unsteadily in a scrum of similarly programmed tipsy tribeswoman towards a theatre after two drinks and a Botox lecture. Competing alpha females shrieked and bellowed their woosy attempts at wit.
The phalanx meandered unsteadily with me immersed in it’s many overexposed bosoms.
I’d worked at the Maryland Renaissance Faire for 7 years, I wear stilts, I’d seen my share of undulating uplifted breast lagoons from above. I have nothing against breasts, they kept me alive a number of months and I’m grateful.
No it was more the overall complexion, these woman were grown under the fluorescent light of typing pools, fed convenient empty foods and easily digested TV culture and given just enough disposable income to have some colorful and tightfitting joke played on them by the fashion industry while they fuel their brittle dreams of one day being treated like they themselves treated their barbies. Love being simply a means to accessorise.
[Not that I pretend to know what love is]
It’s not Dante’s fault, how was he to know hell had other levels?
Well that kind of thing just depresses me so I didn’t work the friday. I just rode in the midst of the fractured femininity until I could shake them loose and loop back home.
But Saturday! [see how quick I bounce back?] I was back at the South Side square for some uninterrupted fun. I worked one corner, then danced with the band in the square and then did a much larger show that I didn’t hat because I’m a too cool for school fool.
All good.
It was interesting to revisit street theatre in of all places an old steel town in the states. #americantravels

Sometimes the crash after a festival run can be hard, imagine after Halifax, sharing a plane then train, both providing alcohol and about 20+ hours in total having interrupted the wrap party at the departure end and then a further weeks debauch in Portsmouth all in the company of invisible circus john. A man who blows bubbles in Canada and at home has the keys to the Portsmouth Kings Theatre and lives beside it and is it's stage manager. Overseeing all.
Then John and I go to Belgium until finally I am left on my own again about lunchtime. Begin the crash, work every day while staying at the seamans hotel in the red light district. Barely cover rent and beer and newspapers. Searching for corners, working three.
One advantage of depression and it's innate self absorption is that it becomes an ideal soil from which righteous indignation can grow.
When people tell me they don't like Clowns I remember this Poem I call
Belgium Bitters.

I’m a clown and I’m sick of people.
-Blank-Instinctive laugh-Back to blank-drones
Idle minds numbed by choices made years ago
Adrift on a conveyer of soul rotting routine assignments.
Calm husks about their shopping.
Stupid mono-mental morons with wives , husbands, children in tow.
Designer label dipshits
whose only ambition is to upgrade
to a slightly more expensive vacuousness.
Children-
sugar saturated runamoc brats, who
like their parents
know nothing more than their immediate needs
The only tool they’re issued - emotional blackmail
I hate teenagers en mass
premasticated pap formulas of sentiment without substance.
Teenage males
egos enormous brittle and facile
all covering their transparent fear
Teenage females preprogrammed for collective hysteria as sexual cul de sac
I see them every day
I entertain them
I make them laugh at others
unaware that they themselves have been exposed
I hate them
and I’m going to do it all again tomorrow
Their insipid blank bovine faces will lift themselves
as they strain to identify my relevance
while their naked humanity
balloons outward
in tears of laughter
Dumb Fucks -------#observation
I was a prince among men was I not?#observation


Public space, common ground, it's function and demise. street theatre
Still; worth looking at what was once recognised and accepted as the public commons.... Just food for thought really. I'd evoke concepts like 'discuss' but that would presume a fuck was given. As is I'm simply bearing public witness, in isolation, to contrary thoughts of others. Soon I will tour, pen in hand and camera on my elongated head, to balance being witnessed and witnessing, around the world.
“Their intent is to target street artists and vendors as a means of regulating and controlling the community’s use of public space, for the benefit of expensive galleries, fancy restaurants and developers. The effect is to better provide the capital-owning business elite with a controlled and sterilized neighborhood full of passive armies of docile workers and obedient shoppers. Their ambition is to redraw urban geography according to profit motives, and convert public and social life into the plaything of the private interests. This amounts to an attempt to rob us of every free and spontaneous aspect of our communities and our lives, and replace each of them with no alternative but submission and the compulsion to consume.” #public commons
and more esoterically ...
In short, approaching life and one's fellows from a mode of mind evincing aspects of the human condition that existed outside the realm of workplace expediency and consumer desire had been diminished to the point of being rendered all but absent. People seemed adrift -- bereft of the ability to cohabit public space. The will towards communal engagement had atrophied.
Essential qualities -- traits that are uniquely human -- had been lost. A wasteland of fragmented discourse and inarticulate rage howled between us.
And the situation has only degraded since that time. Unless communal space can be reclaimed and our innate humanity re-established, to paraphrase Kafka: There is infinite hope but not for us.#public commons
"Awake we share the world; sleeping each turns to his private world." -- Heraclitus
Once you have allowed the swindle to permeate your being -- taking back your life must become the driving force of your existence. If you don't recapture the landscape of your own soul, then your life will be comprised of a dance with dust and ash. #meaning, #observation #lessons

In such times, where can sanctuary be sought? Both within and by risking casting oneself towards the beating heart of the soul of life. Human beings contain deep reservoirs of empathy, a capacity for apprehending the sacred, and the ability to love. Deep wells of redemption pool beneath the wasteland. The human heart is a divining rod that helps one locate the source of the healing waters of life. #poetry #meaning #straws

we have become storm troopers, ourselves, marching in a mindless parade of endless distraction. All as the sky burns and oceans seethe acidity.Phil Rockstroh #poetry #meaning #straws

I've read that on average children laugh 200 times a day whilst adults 15-18 times a day.
I must have had a shitty childhood. #strange

Leo Tolstoy, in his essay “What Is Art?”:
Art is not, as the metaphysicians say, the manifestation of some mysterious idea of beauty or God; it is not, as the aesthetical physiologists say, a game in which man lets off his excess of stored-up energy; it is not the expression of man’s emotions by external signs; it is not the production of pleasing objects; and, above all, it is not pleasure; but it is a means of union among men, joining them together in the same feelings, and indispensable for the life and progress toward well-being of individuals and of humanity.#classic


They told me I couldn't bring liquids onto the plane...I had to explain I was mostly liquid.#strange

I can remember sulking at Dado as he filmed this particular day because he had pulled my music while I was dancing on stage to mostly old Chinese folk and some military officials earlier in the day. I had all these old happy people clapping along to NIN, 'Closer'. Rows of happy clappers as I wiggled about to 'I want to fuck you like an animal.' *sigh* I was making a pancultural statement about the elasticity of content as it's informed by tone. I'm so misunderstood.#clown

If it looks like a duck and sound like a duck and takes the nations wealth and goodwill and wages war for it's own benefit like a duck.... Then you should kill and pluck and eat the motherfucking shit out of that duck. Happy veterans day! #america

The internet can be like standing under a waterfall, sensationally interesting but your sandwidges get soggy and drip in clumps through your fingers and you waste away to nothing.#internet

The New York Time's greatest achievement is that the verbose slurry it secretes is commonly accepted as journalism at all. From the Kuwait incubators to the parroting of the lies required to forward certain war profiteers agendas to the pantomime of it being 'left wing' The new york times is the whore in the crown of a country entirely run from the top down while promoting the placating fiction that it isn't. …#america

If I could clone myself simply to have my own collective noun it would be a wry malignancy of Lurks.

"Live,like you desperately need oxygen to survive Love, like your confirmation bias is the figment of someone else's imagination.Dance.Like a sac of fire ants just burst in your pocket." Is sadly too long for a book title.#strange

 

"So it's some street theatre, tumbling, skilled but formulaic IMO, still, not bagging it, go guys, but to me more importantly note the surroundings, this is the town center, note the complete lack of homogenized generic brand-stores, the refreshing lack of advertising cacophony, it's almost as if the people are the most important factor and not their mere ability to consume retail. People are still able to take center stage in this envirionment, expressing themselves without having to be an adjunct to some gladhanding corporate marketing masturbatorium to justify themselves. Refreshing and a reminder of what public spaces really are at heart. Places for the public rather than catchment areas designed to whore attention spans for profit.#public commons

In a nutshell, very easily pleased, very difficult to satisfy. #observation

I'm deeply sentimental with forays into weapons grade melancholia while also childishly easily pleased, whimsical and deliberately trite.#observation

"We were walking down a hall and a guy with no legs comes rolling toward us. My kid was 4 and talked way too loud, so I was holding my breath. As soon as he passed, he says (loudly), "that man had the prettiest eyes". The guy laughed and I was relieved.”#strange

Nominative determinism could explain why death rattle the clown failed his cirque audition.#science

Post Rational America; "We're not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers,"Bear in mind this is a parody of self pity rather than self pity itself.#America



I've been invited and will be attending a small dinner party tonight, myself and 7 others and I know I'll be asked to explain or answer 'What I do', you know..."And what do you do?"

These people are very wealthy, very successful and while that doesn't intimidate me in the slightest the question itself does.

Historically the most truthful answer is , "I'm a Clown." But then I define Clown in a personally idiocyncratic way so that pat answer could be a little misleading. They may picture a circus clown  [which I've been] or a birthday clown  [which has happened] however the clown I am is a bitter bleak personage trapped in a convention he cannot understand nor control and who projects this existential quandry by victimizing others for what small amusement and relief that lends him.

All a bit much really and the fact I haven't worked for about a year and have just left a rehab facility I've lived in a year and a half....... I'd be let out for gigs like China which I'd convince staff 'was part of my journey'....well all this creates a bit of a ponderance.

So...What in fact do I do?

* Nothing constructive? I'm a mildly amusing leech. A minor pimple on the acne ravaged face of humanity.

*I'm kinda a self aware renaissance man of dysfunction.

[Having mastered alcoholism, drug addiction, crippling social anxiety, clinical depression and a form of reverse  decathlon where I attempt to squander and destroy every of the many gifts that are native to me and every opportunity offered.]

* I have a select online audience, mostly bots, that, while I can master the delusion, I write for the amusement of.

* I'm a literate slow-mo toy train crash.

* I am professionally misunderstood. In that no-one has yet realised that it is in fact a job being myself.

*Pragmatically, I ingest various, both basic and complex, animal and plant matter and process it to distribute manure on a global scale. This isn't an occupation obviously, it's just a function of being human and in my case I've travelled extensively while doing it

Maybe I'll just stick with clown. 
I have to go now. #clown

Still; the omelette of collective enhancement cannot be made without eggshell fractures
of premeditated hysteria. #Strange

We live in a world where a constellation of cognitive illusions – that infinite growth can be sustained on a finite planet, that consumerism can make us happy, that corporations are persons – are dragging us into an ecological apocalypse. These cognitive illusions won’t disappear because they’ve been proven false – they must be overcome at a deeper level. We need something other than rationality, statistics, scientific thought … we need something more, even, than what has passed for activism thus far. We must spark an epiphany, a worldwide flash of insight that renders our blind spots visible once and for all. This collective awakening begins the moment we look inward and ask ourselves: Am I caught inside a grand cognitive illusion? #reality, #observation #meaning

"I don't think it would be too controversial to suggest that we are embedded actors in an imagined landscape: this collective narrative is a participatory project, an occult language with a grammatical and syntactical structure that recapitulates the ontological themes which are the motivating mythologies of every tragedy and comedy.We acquire a fluency in this language through our shared suffering with other actors, whose dialog interrupts our solipsistic reverie with insistent demands for the next lines in the drama. If the whole thing seems eerily and unsettlingly reminiscent of some vaguely remembered something just beyond conscious recollection, it's not a coincidence we're feeling the curious vertigo of deja vu. Synchronicity is the clever plot device used to signal the organization of the narrative around several recurring, archetypal motifs. The decoding of these themes is the principal occupation of those who have become conscious of their roles as actors in an imagined landscape. Other players have resorted to a rigorous form of method acting called amnesia. They require subtle techniques of assistance, as waking them up too suddenly often produces violent reactions of disorientation and fear.We're seeing a lot of disorientation and fear these days. "
"Synchronicities are the jokers in nature's pack of cards for they refuse to play by the rules and offer a hint that, in our quest for certainty about the universe, we have ignored some vital clues." F.David Peat, physicist #others #reality, #observation #meaning

The context? It's kinda meta contextual. It's about the perception of the human condition as it relates to synchronicities and about potential cognitive dissonance when contexts dissolve. #clown

Re the New York Times vapidly sycophantic and cringingly obsequious love letter to Obama the philosopher-king's turgid journey on Americans behalf into extrajudicial murder.
[google..'Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will' I'm not linking to the obscenity]
If you cannot see a tiny group of men meeting weekly to decide who to kill with flying death machines in countries not engaged in war as morally wrong then quite simply you are no longer fully human and more a half dead media echo that consumes.
Habeas corpus is dead and with it the concept of America and the concepts of justice and morality are divorced.
The greatest challenge left is to somehow generate pity for a proud nation with no moral basis but the ability to murder at will.
"A few thoughts on the
penultimate tip of America's festering moral abyss
which is a rotting compost pile filled with the putrifying flesh and dismembered parts of its victims, flayed alive
in the instant of their mortal transfiguration by the
scalding heat and light
of what now gloatingly passes for moral conviction
the chemical signature of furiously-igniting high explosive
rendering a final verdict that can never be undone,
long-distance pronouncements on
instantaneous timelines with
over-the-horizon trajectories
signalling the utter finality of collapse of the
very last wretched remnant of honour the nation
in a fit of deluded celebration could ever
have recklessly, even mockingly
claimed ...
now lost, gone, tragically no longer even
capable of being remembered.
The triumph of treachery and betrayal
for a nation like a people, is to be
stripped of context, devoid of meaning,
unencumbered by every annoying vestige of
half-forgotton long-lost notion of what it
once meant to be decent and righteous and just
for without relevance one can never, ever be wrong.
What Reagan, the Bushes and Clinton and their
omnibus minions colluded, authorized and
plotted in secret, ie. the state's power to kill at-will
absent legal niceties and public exposure,
Obama's White House now has rebranded as the divine, weighty obligation of a faux-populist Leader-King --
someone who, we are (somewhat chidingly) assured
takes the duty of state-sanctioned murder seriously --
at least as seriously as we ought
were we to have the dubious honour of
our best-guess convictions informing our
unquestioned presumption.
Meanwhile, America slumbers on in sated dreamland glory
as its cranked-up mindless armies inflict waking-nightmare ravages
half-a-world away, its citizens for the most part
never imagining the debt of furious payback retribution
slowly piling up,
postponed consequences marching in rows
teetering in unbalanced columns
not forgotton,
stored in bombproof ledgers
by Karma the clerk, methodically keeping score …” #americaImafraid

The humor accelerating outward for epocs and then momenterially poised, suspended, before beginning epocs again, this time contracting until the universes humor compacts into a singular atom of infinitely dense humor. [in scientific terms this is called a 'Yuk'] before simply ceasing to be. #Sciencebitches #science

"So, if you combine the automation of terrorist identification with an administrative “hit” list with automated drones that execute the order, you have a global killing machine. A machine that requires very few people to run and can kill almost anyone that triggers in in a matter of minutes.
What will be done with it? If we end up in a disorderly economic depression, as it increasingly looks like we will, we’re going get a good demonstration of what life under automated authoritarianism. #america

"Don't be fooled into thinking that this digital bullshit, already festooned with ads, is real estate worth missing for a nanosecond. It doesn't exist, it's a reformat of friends you should by rights already have. If the only reason people pay any attention to you is because face books design makes it harder not to than otherwise, then the quality of your connections bears scrutiny. To be honest I don't give a personal shit about 2 thirds of my "friends" I don't know them, I've never met them in the real world, I tolerate their requests for the very reason they mean nothing to me but it's effortless to be kind to strangers. How could I miss them? What possible justification other than commercial would I or anyone submit to an 'ego-tax' wherein payment to Facebook allows me to communicate freely with friends and think that a 'service' worth paying for? Facebook has every right to presume stupidity on the part of it's participants quite simply because the majority of them are definitively stupid. It provides channels by which people communicate, then it chokes those channels, then it introduces a service to unchoke them. If you have something so important you wish to pay 4 times a postage stamp to relay it and you cannot fathom that a group email provides the same function then please pay me $2 and I will personally pity you.#facebook

TIL that 1 sperm has 37.5MB of DNA information in it.That means a normal ejaculation represents a data transfer of 1587GB in about 3 seconds #deeplyrandom #observation

NZ"s politics, once famously representative [first nuclear free country and standard bearer for that] has now been devolved into a montesanto/fracking /off shore drilling/ industrialist land raping wet dream, where the public by and large have accepted their politicians are venal half man/half hemorrhoids and ask only that they be allowed to click on occasional online petitions for momentary relief. NZ is a testbed now for example for global copywrite legislation that is written by north american multinationals and rammed up the grateful asses of NZ politicians lubricated by funds , to be vomited onto the body politic by those same smirking 'representatives' who know they are and are seen to be radiant whores but as most have a background in the insipid badminton known as 'law' they are well versed in the recognition that you may well be a cunt but unless you're a convicted cunt it's immaterial.#NZ

New rule... 'friends' Your quota for 'motivational life messages' is 5 per month, not per day, not per hour. I get it...you're easily amused and confuse pith with wisdom. You wish to amplify/ catapult your sage third hand wit throughout the universe , fine. I tire of this barrage, 5/10 units of cusping pre-alzheimer's cerebral candy floss like some dimestore lipstick on the diseased pig of your existence. Please mutter to yourself like a genuine lost mad person . Under 6 a month is fine.

Cloying sentimentality has it's place and that place is Facebook, [and made for TV , sunday evening leukemia movies that feature some kid empowering the family as they selflessly die with dignity]. Cynicism has it's place also as a brittle overcoat worn by the young to hide their marshmallow interiors and by the old as a line drawn in the sand demarking their disappointment with themselves. Hey ho. #facebook

Narcissism brings with it a reduction in empathy and you need that to read an audience so really after decades of investigation the best science has come up with is that performers have a quality of ‘fabulousness’ #performers, 

Manifest destiny never ended, America will never run out of injuns. The wild west just moved overseas.#America

"UNCLE SAME WANTS YOU"-dead/broke/sick/hungry/confused/hiding/scared/hopeless/needy/arrested/silenced/broken... and in my case ungrateful.#america

“Permaculture is revolution disguised as organic gardening. #observation

”To be honest I'm not that bothered, US politics works on the presumption you have any power at all. The more you rage impotently at this and that the less likely you will be to examine your part in it. The govt now has the legal right to act like a serial killer. If anything this frog is overcooked. Outrage is simply humiliation projected. #america

May the New Year be free of flesh eating diseases, paltry introspection, alligators with wings screaming out of the sun, mind-rashes and excessive bleeding.
Crippled white knights, iridescent assholes, manic vacancies and those who simper constantly at a frequency only dogs can hear.
Everything else you're on your own but these things I'll be taking care of on your behalf all year. #Newyear