I’ve written some on depression. Don’t really have anything new to say. But I just wrote this email to a friend which expresses my feelings today.
As women, we should not have to live our lives with this Sword of Damocles hanging over our heads as to whether or not our partner is going to be human or an animal. We shouldn’t have to try to not provoke. In some relationships, anything becomes a provocation—saying something, saying nothing, how you dress, how you act, how quickly you do or don’t answer the phone, your tone of voice, how you clean the house, how you drive the car, how you look someone in the eyes, how you avoid looking someone in the eyes. There’s always a finger on the trigger.
[…] I’m not trying to make any grand pronouncements about domestic violence. This is not an issue we can neatly intellectualize. Relationships are complicated. Shit happens. People fuck up. People endure. People hurt people. But, don’t think violence is acceptable. Don’t think there is any circumstance that justifies what Ray Rice did. Don’t think that if we’re all good girls, if we’re properly meek, if we don’t provoke our men, we’ll be safe. Good girls get hurt all the time.
We are not the problem.
I haven’t seen anything that isn’t pleasing or funny on that website.
The Israelis and Hamas this time have crossed the Rubicon. There is some kind of psychological marker that they have crossed, and they are not going to quit until we don’t know when.
I’ll be honest: I’m very concerned about this (more seriously than I have ever felt before) and I can’t even choose sides. I just have to sit by and hope for the best.
A Young Child Named Maya Rudolph
In 1975 I had just come off a brief tour I was on with a band that was opening for Joe Walsh, when Irving Azoff’s company, Frontline Management, which managed Walsh suggested I’d be a good fit to tour with Minnie Riperton.
They were right; when I met Minnie I felt I’d met a long lost older sibling, and would continue working for her after she left Azoff’s management, and throughout the remaining years of her career.
Besides a voice seemingly from heaven, she had the most delightful family as well. Her two children Marc, and Maya were a joy, and her husband, Richard Rudolph, who still to this day, is one of nicest people you could ever meet.
I was just in my early 20’s, toting around a Hasselblad camera wherever I went. When I was working as Minnie’s tour manager, I rarely had the time, or situation to formally photograph her. Although I always had my camera, I was still a very young photographer, and had not yet developed the skills to capture what it was I saw in her, so my collection of photographs of her is limited.
However, during our off time off from touring, I was often at their home around her family and photographed Maya frequently. Most children get very antsy in front of a camera, but she seemed to be fascinated with the photographic process. She held a firm gaze and always seemed to be studying this photographic process very closely, so I’m not at all surprised that she’s become one the finest comedic actors working in front of a camera today.
I’m also not surprised that Maya found her way into comedy. What few people may know about her mother is that Minnie was one of the most hilarious women you’d ever meet. She had a wry, even ribald wit that would totally disarm the coolest of characters, the biggest record producers, and the most pompous industry executives of the day.
Maya was five or six years old in this photograph. It was taken at their home in Westwood, CA near the UCLA campus. Maya in her swim suit, sitting in front of the TV with a vintage cable TV box, near a baseball bat & glove, while Minnie in one of her flowing dresses steps out of frame right, and “Sparkle” their devoted Standard Poodle slips by behind her.
This photograph captures so much of the special warmth, and familial connection I experienced at their home during those days. They were a very special family, whom I will always appreciate how generously they brought me into their lives.
Nothing could make me more curious about your taxidermy than this.
I need this as a t-shirt as “zoologically improbable and/or terrifying to small children” sums me up.
Finally I know what I want inscribed on my tombstone when I die.
I remember the news article, this is the lion that was removed:
THAT IS FUCKING TERRIFYING
OH MY GOD THAT IS HORRIFIC