Happy Friday, Y'All!
I have been pretty busy lately. But I wanted to let you know that I have a new article out this week, an interview with Morrissey. I also wrote a column about why Smokey Robinson is outraged by Dreamgirls. I pretty much agree with him. I am going through a Motown phase right now — specifically, early-'70s Motown — and the film's portrayal of the label is unfair.
By the way, I also highly recommend this soulful conversation with Cee-Lo
on songwriting and grief.
The Morrissey interview was a fine time. We talked about ghosts and Ireland quite a lot, and I hadn't really thought about that part of my life in a long, long time. I have a piece of stone from the hut where my family lived in the 19th Century; I keep it in my bedroom.
My sister and I share joint custody of the statue of Mary we found there, in the hut.
The photo above is not our Mary, but somewhat similar. Our Mary is older and chipped and less tight-ass.
Mary likes L.A. a lot because its people are so passionately devoted to her, and it is also much more exciting than Ireland. She needed a change of pace.
More on Mary at the end of this post.
Morrissey is someone who notices if you look down at your notes, and quite often I felt sorry I had done so. As a journalist I know that this gesture has nothing to do with how fascinating the conversation is. The entire conversation was wholly engaging and really fantastic. And even as it was, I didn't get a chance to ask all my questions, of course.
Morrissey also asked me more questions than anyone I have ever interviewed. Contrary to his reputation, he seems to be extremely engaged with his surroundings, and especially with other people. He has said he's a terrible eavesdropper, and that makes sense. He's not a hermit crab.
PS: About Mary. My parents are both recovering Catholics, and they thought they would spare their children the torture by placing us in an Episcopal grade achool for seven years.
The problem with the Episcopal church is that while they get it right about sex — marriage, divorce, celibacy, priesthood, etc. — they pretty much ignore all the saints, especially Mary. The upshot is that overall it's a much more masculine, unbalanced kind of faith than Catholicism (in my view). You don't get any of the sacred female principle, which is so much a part of Catholicism, and obviously derived from pre-Christian religion. The sacred female element represented in Mary is a kind of counterbalance to the corrosive symbolism of Eve (you, know, woman as the dirty dangerous downfall of man and whatnot).
Fortunately, I got a lifetime's worth of Mary power at Immaculate Heart school for intellectual lesbian nuns. Thank God for the intellectual lesbian nuns.