Monday, March 28, 2016

born again...and again, and again

"She was thinkin' 'bout Rosemary and thinkin' about the law
But most of all she was thinkin' 'bout the Jack of Hearts" ...
> Bob Dylan

Thinking about Donald Trump last week, I was reminded of this brief excerpt of dialogue from the Woody Allen film Manhattan:

Mary asks, "What about you -- your first wife...?"

Isaac Davis (W. Allen) answers, "My first wife -- was a kindergarten teacher -- you know, she -- she got into drugs, and she -- uh -- moved to San Francisco, went into est, became a Moonie; she's with the William Morris Agency, now. ..."

One of those scenes of, 'why was that funny, but it definitely was' -- when that movie came out one critic (that I read - probably in the Boston Phoenix) wrote about that particular quote, saying something like it follows the typical weird path of some contemporary folks who are always "seeking" something....

And it made me think of Donald Trump,

because it's like -- (in the 80s) now I'm a millionaire New York City building-guy with European-model-wife and children; now I'm bankrupt -- sort of; now I'm rich again, now I'm on television, wife-switchover...OK -- now, am running for president, I think.  And selling steaks with my name on.  And wine.  And -- water.  Whatever.  Me.

It seems like some odd form of I-don't-know-what.  Instability, maybe. ...And in trying to forget politicians and read about rock and roll instead, what do-you-think, I come across this passage which reminded me of Donald Trump (and the fictional "first wife" in the 70s Woody Allen film) -- the passage was about 60s Black Panther leader Eldridge Cleaver in Greil Marcus's book, Mystery Train:

[excerpt]  ...But events have proved my comments on [Huey] Newton and Cleaver more than a little na├»ve.

After a bizarre incident in which he "arrested" fellow-fugitive Timothy Leary in Algiers, Cleaver fled to Paris, where he renounced politics for haberdashery -- to wit, "Cleavers," pants [the description of which shall go undiscussed in this blog]

....Unable to interest a distributor in the latest in rapists' fashions, Cleaver negotiated with prosecutors back in Oakland, proclaimed himself a born-again Christian, returned to the U.S., and copped a plea to reduced charges stemming from the 1968 shootout -- which, Cleaver now said, he had provoked. 

Free at last, he became a shill for the far right, ran unsuccessfully for office as a Republican, and in 1988 was convicted on charges of burglary and cocaine possession. ---------------------------- [end, excerpt]

As we try to, ("whew!") catch our breath, after all of this, it's like -- right, "was a kindergarten teacher -- got into drugs -- moved to San Francisco -- went into est -- became a Moonie -- and ends up at the William Morris Agency..."

According to Free Encyclopedia online, Cleaver also checked out the Moonie cult, like the fictional character in the 1979 Woody Allen movie.  It's as if some of these people have to "touch" some prearranged string of extreme, out-there "bases" or something...  Just your typical stop-offs in a modern American's peripatetic (or schizophrenic?) journey to find (or escape?) himself...


{Mystery Train, 1975 (updates through 2008), Penguin Group}


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