If Werner Herzog Reviewed Trader Joe’s on Yelp

I like the Internet for various things, but it’s limited. I’m not on social media, but you will find me in the social media. There’s Facebook, there’s Twitters, but it’s all not me.

Werner Herzog in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter

“Perhaps guessing that Googling his own name is not one of Werner Herzog’s preferred online activities, here is comedian Paul F. Tompkins‘ Teutonic-inflected recitation of a notorious Yelp review of Trader Joe’s in Silver Lake.”


Thank you Beth @ Alive on All Channels and Openculture.com with If Werner Herzog Reviewed Trader Joe’s on Yelp: “Madness Reigns. The First Challenge Your Soul Must Endure Is the Parking Lot”

Most of what I see is garbage

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I hardly ever go to exhibitions and dislike the world of the vernissage; those crowds are the most repulsive of all. These days most art is too conceptual for me, with long descriptions pasted up on the walls of galleries. “Art” should reveal itself to audiences without written explanation. Most of what I see is garbage, sometimes literally so, like an installation with a few cardboard boxes thrown into a corner, an empty beer can and a dirty sleeping bag. This apparently represents the desperate fate of the homeless. I see an absence of dignity in contemporary art. There is too much emphasis on concept, not craft. Just as religion has been watered down by television evangelists, so has art.

~ Paul Cronin, Werner Herzog – A Guide for the Perplexed: Conversations with Paul Cronin


Credits: Photograph by Burt Glinn 1964 NYC. Ad Reinhardt painting at the Museum of Modern Art. Source: Magnum Photos via To Escape from the Commonplaces of Existence.

 

No Trade.

beach-walk

They were walking up the shoreline, Brother and Sister now in their early 20’s. The waves were lapping at their feet, their feet disappearing in sea foam before the waves rolled back into the ocean.

I’m wading through Herzog’s book, now 60% of the way through. My headphones are piping in a Nils Frahm playlist from his album “Felt“. I set the book down to watch them.

Rachel is doing a handstand on the beach while Eric is taking photos. I can see them laughing as she tries it again. They are Friends. All those years of fighting, squabbling and picking on each other in the back seat of the car…All those corrections by Mom and Dad to keep it civil…look at them, they’ve become Friends.

Just as they pass below me, as if on cue, the late afternoon sun streams through the clouds. A warm breeze gusts. And two Pelicans skim the ocean, gliding along with the wind currents.

Herzog said that “Today I would give ten years of my life if I could play the cello with the same ease as breathing. The finest music has a quality of consolation you find nowhere else, with perhaps the exception of religion or being in contact with small children.” 

I glance down at the playlist to see the title of Frahm’s track. It is titled “Less.”

I paused to contemplate Frahm’s tune and Herzog’s words.

Frahm got it half right. “Felt” yes. “Less” no.

As to Werner, I Iove the Cello, but I wouldn’t trade a single moment.

Not one.


Humility is scarce and mediocrity flows from every direction

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Q: Do you still not own a cellphone?

Herzog: I’m the only thinking person I know without one. I don’t want to be available at all times. Permanent connectivity isn’t my thing; I have always needed moments of quiet solitude for myself. There’s a Chinese poem from the Tang dynasty about someone describing a boat journey along the Yellow River and leaving his friend behind, a monk on a mountain, in the knowledge that they probably won’t see each other or have any contact for years. This man’s return, decades later, has an indescribable substance and depth. Compare this to standing in line at the airport, chatting on your cellphone to your loved one, who is waiting in the car park. There is too much shallow contact in our lives. I prefer to be face to face; I want the person I’m communicating with to be so close I can put my hand on their shoulder. Text messaging is the bastard child handed to us by the absence of reading.

Q: You use the Internet. [Read more…]

A Guide For the Perplexed

a guide for the perplexed

I’ve been chewing through a new book titled “Werner Herzog: A Guide for the Perplexed: Conversations with Paul Cronin.” Werner, 72, is an award winning German film director, producer and screen writer for Fitzcarraldo, The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, Woyzeck and Where the Green Ants Dream.

Why choose this book out of the thousands available to you?

No idea. Hard to explain why I was drawn to this. I do recall my finger hovering over the “BUY NOW” button on Amazon and wondering if this will be yet another abandoned, start-but-not-come-close-to-finishing e-book, in my groaning stack of Incompletes weighing on my consciousness.

Why a book by a film director? Do you have interest in film production?

None.

Why this book then? A dense 600-pager with footnotes?

Pay attention. Refer back to question 1. (No idea). In hindsight, I do think that perhaps I was attracted by the potential of finding my community, a brotherhood in “A Guide for the Perplexed” and possibly finding my way out. And I heard a bell – – far softer than a Siren, gentler than a Clarion Call, a chime of sorts from William Stafford: “Listen—something else hovers out here, not color, not outlines or depth when air relieves distance by hazing far mountains, but some total feeling or other world almost coming forward, like when a bell sounds and then leaves the whole countryside waiting.”

So, what do you think of the book? [Read more…]

I don’t need 20 pair of shoes

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Werner Herzog is interviewed by The Talks:

I do not relate to things such as popularity. It is completely vague and unknown to me what it means. I still live basically the same life. I do not have and I do not need material things. My material world is extremely small and limited.I own one single suit that I’m wearing right now and in the last 25 years I’ve never had another suit. And the shoes that I’m wearing I’ve been wearing for 3 years and they are my only pair of shoes. I need to replace them because they are starting to come apart. I don’t need 20 pairs of shoes. I have a car that I’ve had for 12 years. It’s fine, I enjoy life and things are very basic. I don’t have social networks in the Internet for example. I don’t even have a cell phone. I’m probably the last holdout.

I just don’t want to be available all the time. I love to connect with people but in a more fundamental way. I never go to parties, but I invite friends and I cook for them. We sit around a table, maximum 6 people, because if there are more people there is no space around the table. And when we speak to each other, everyone speaks about the same topic. Whereas when you are at a party, there are 200 people and loud music and in each corner there is a different topic, and small talk.

I cook meals for friends or for people for whom I care. I cook with my wife, but sometimes when it comes to a solid steak I do that myself. It’s a great joy to have discourse and while this is going on I take the steak and serve it and have a good bottle of wine. It’s more fundamental, the kind of social networking that I do.

Read full interview: The Talks


Werner Herzog, 71, is a German film director, producer, screenwriter, and actor; and an opera director. Herzog is considered one of the greatest figures of the New German Cinema. Herzog’s films often feature heroes with impossible dreams, people with unique talents in obscure fields, or individuals who are in conflict with nature. French filmmaker François Truffaut once called Herzog “the most important film director alive.” American film critic Roger Ebert said that Herzog “has never created a single film that is compromised, shameful, made for pragmatic reasons or uninteresting. Even his failures are spectacular.”


Image & Quote Source: The Talks.  Thank you Mme Scherzo for sharing.

 

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