Jun 24, 2008

A Philosophical Question/ Controlling Your Art

Just got home–Hungry as hell. I'm hungry because some guy got on the train and said: "I'm homeless, I've been out of work for a year, Can you spare some money for food or food?" So I sized him up...his story seemed straight. So I gave him my Sushi that I was holding in my hand. No big deal –Its only $4 in K-town. The man gave me a huge smile (Yay! I feel good)...we exchange 4 seconds of convo and he pirouettes on his heel(jazzmatazz style) and keeps on asking the other people on the train for money ( Boo!Now I'm pissed! ).

Dude, you said you were HUNGRY? So if you have food in your hand why are you still asking for more?So, now I'M a sucker. AND I still have to find some food of my own somewhere. My stomach is talking to me in spangalese. I'm pissed!

One of my friends doesn't like give to the homeless, she says " they're just going to put it into their arms". We had this argument 3x's. My thing has been 'So what?'. Give them what you feel to give them,: if they eat with it- cool. If they smoke it-that is on them. Life on the streets is hard, if they need a little whiskey or some crack to get through their day, that's not my business. You can't chase behind good will. Plus there is the off chance they may actually use it to live.

But I'm so angry at Mr. Homeless-Sushi, I'm wondering if she was kinda right or does my anger mean I'm being stingy?

To tie this to art: My boy just told me last week that he doesn't like certain people to buy his art. "They won't appreciate it." He says "They are just too damn dumb"<– or something like that. Yes, I agree there are dumb people in this world but, I argued with him on the same premise. Once you put some art out, you can't control how it is looked at. If you paint fuschia and they see hot pink then that is the beauty of information. Art changes through interpretation. Do we have a right to control the things we hand out to other people? Whether it be dollar bills, decollage or donuts?

So if my sushi dinner ends up being interpreted as a doorstop it's all good, right?.....Right?

Chupse! I'm still pissed. Let me go fix something to eat.


Rebel Chic designed by Tisha Brown said...

and on the subject of art, yes, you have to detach yourself. As a jewelry designer I try to brand my line by selling to certain stores. Places where I'd like to think hip, stylish girls shop; a girl who will rock them well. Now if the corniest chick in the world, someone who no one envied her style, walked into the shop or even purchased them online I can't control that. All I can do is put out the dope *ish and hope it is appreciated : )

Rebel Chic designed by Tisha Brown said...

my first comment didn't post so here it goes again, hehehe
dude was happy to get food so he could spend his money on a taste or a hit; maybe a nice malt liquor, that usually goes well with sushi : )
A friend of mines gave a homeless guy her doggy bag and said "here you go brother here's some ribs, veggies and cornbread" and as he opened the container he replied " i hope this isn't pork bcos I don't eat pork" she replied "well eat around the ribs then, damn." she was heated!

minus five said...

if i feel something inside of me to give to somebody, i do it and then consider it to be completely out of my hands. it's an incredibly hard thing, i think, for everyone to give without some kind of expectation of something in return. we imagine what they will do with it and how it might change their lives and, if you're like me, you also imagine it to be some kind of turning point for them.

i imagine everything, even if i don't mean to, so i'm constantly playing out my life and the lives of others in my head. when the story ends up being different in real life, which is 99% of the time, it makes me uncomfortable and unsettled and it makes me want to adjust things to be the exact same way i thought them up.

i try as best as i can to ignore these things and just allow stuff to play out in the way it was intended.

i gave a homeless dude a lot of money a few weeks ago and he ended up being a scammer. i wouldn't even let myself think on it. it's between him and god, but i still did what i felt was right.

i'm not going to hand my work out to people who don't appreciate it and want it, but if they buy it, that's something different altogether. as soon as i decide something is ready to leave my hands, it can go in the trash for all i care. there are two almost clear categories for me: things i would sell and things i wouldn't.

i think it's a waste of time to try to police people and it's exhausting to try and anticipate every single action of every single person. in the end, it doesn't really matter.

i say, go with your gut. even if you have to close your eyes.

Khia_Rocks said...

@ Rebel Chic... the vegan bum is friggin hilarious. And at the earring..Okay say a wack chick wears your earrings in her ear ...but what if Shakweeta takes your earrings and wear them on her kneecaps...then what? Lol

@ Sarah, that was a beautiful post lady. I got taken for $45 by a pregnant crackhead a few years ago...but before I gave it I had a feeling, so it didn't really bother me ( as much ). But this guy, I guess i really put my heart into the outcome: after I hand this over, this dude will get full. But you're right. close your eyes and let it fly...

AJasmin said...

i once wrote a spoken word piece/story and had a guy from exeter wholly misinterpret it; his response, and i quote, was that i said "kill, kill, kill the white man". i was soooo upset at his ignorance-- and ok yes, i blasted him in a follow-up response; what'd you expect?? lol --but i've had to accept that some people will just not get your vision and that, too, is ok. you've got to put art out and let it go.

when it comes to homelessness, though, one can be sympathetic to the circumstances a person is living under without feeding that person's addiction, which in turn just enables him/her to continue on as is without facing whatever demons they need to face inorder to heal.

i distinctly remember my mom and i (i was young enough where she was holding my hand) stepping over the drug-stupored prone body of "Mouse"-- this world reknown jazz musician who got hooked on heroin back in the day and wound up in st. thomas, homeless and a junkie for as long as i knew him --walking into burger king, buying a #2, walking back to Mouse and placing it in his lap. she was very sympathetic to homelessness but adament about never feeding that person's addiction by giving money. ever.

as a result, i personally will never give money but will give food, or a smile, or yes befriend the junkies on my block. but khia just FOLLOW THE DANG MTA POSTERS: to make a real impact either give sustenance-- chuck the b.s., make that choice for them --or to an organization that works with the homeless. there are plenty.

lmao at the vegan dude! i've seen folks full on chuck food back at givers. @khia maybe dude just didn't want to eat in front of you...it's humbling to have to beg.

AJasmin said...

an aside, some of the homeless folks in st. thomas are hilarious!

this one woman was outside of petit pump room (a lounge) making one bag ah noise, so the police came and politely asked her to leave. she wouldn't. they begged and beseeched, and ordered her to leave. she just got louder. finally, one went to take her arm. she started screaming:

"Doan touch me meh son! Doan touch me! Bwoy you ain't know me, you know... I'll show you my tun-tun and charge you pay per view!" And she flicked up her skirt and flicked her eyebrows up and down.

Comedy. I mean, even the police were keeled over laughing!

Anonymous said...

Ha! this is all mentally healthy and everything but i would have been pissed!

Blog Administrator ( lol!) said...

I got this in one of my emails. Some of the readers are too shy to post, but I think this is a dope response:

Hey. Just reading your post.

I would contribute with my own post on your blog, but honestly, everything's been said by the other contibutors: it's impossible to control your art.

This a really bad, inexact metaphor, but here goes...

Controlling your art is like giving birth to a child and hoping he becomes President or some world-changing citizen.

But the child can't be controlled.

He'll stick needles in his arm, make bongs out of cardboard toilet paper tubes and spit in a cop's face.

You'll be sad. Mad. Oh, you'll hurt bad.

But unless you "take him out of this world" or shackle his delinquent ass, you can't do anything about it. Can't control art.

Can only control the art (somewhat) when you make it, and control how you react when it knocks off nine Duane Reades in nine hours.

(Ok. This email isn't remotely funny. But I'm too tired to edit and make it so. And you get the point.)

All right. Talk to you later.

Hope you're doing well.