The Oscars is never a one-day happening.
There’s the day before, when all of the Xanax supply in Hollywood is emptied out to oblivion, sending Pfizer’s stock to the moon. And where the plebeians plan their evening and guest list around the event. Like the Pope coming to town, for the Catholics who like to tailgate.
And then there’s the day of — where, once again, the collective mindset has revealed to its bad self that — albeit unconsciously — Hollywood (well, Los Angeles really) is not just a city but an entire thought-form that has replaced the spiritual instinct for most Americans. “I’m headin’ West, gonna become a star!”
From the blue whales in the Ocean of Auteurs, to the krill that hanker each week for the kitsch of The Real Housewives of Orange County — no one escapes what occultist Alice Bailey deemed in her book (titled the same): Glamour — A World Problem.
Now, this of course is different on the East Coast, where it is DC that holds the lure. But DC’s a version of power and fame that skirts very close to a sort of primal/tribal evil — so it isn’t as sparkly and ‘fun’, but as a bloodsport we Americans do honor it, but not in the line of beauty, the way we do Los Angeles. As Clinton-Gore strategist Paul Begala once noted: “Washington is Hollywood for ugly people.”
And then there is the day after the Oscars, which many of us have lived through today. It’s rare to hear someone announce and be proud of it, like in the old days, that they don’t own a television or “I never watch the Academy Awards.” Even when I do hear that, I sense lying and perhaps shame, in the same way I’m certain the parents of the Little Match Girl didn’t want that story leaked or linked to their family line.
I must have read 500 recountings and critiques of the event today, and the best were the ones that approached the ceremony earnestly, without all the cheap snark. Though rare were the critiques that studied the event’s impact on the mindset of those Americans who 1) can still afford to own and power a television and 2) have the luxury of losing sleep over what Julia Roberts wore on the red carpet.
Those writers write about the event with all the gusto and fervor of an archeologist discovering a new ancient religious relic in the deserts of Iraq (remember the open to The Exorcist?) I mean, if you’re gonna write, then fucking write — my attention span is the equivalent of a gnat’s — give me your all bitch!
The scariest and bestest close reading of last night was by New York fashion expert and cultural commentator Cintra Wilson (left). The lady writes! She delivers.
Wilson’s review over on Nerve was so good I had to read it several times because the momentum of her prose is beguiling and trickster-ish; it is used, I believe, as a distractive tactic to waylay you with her thesis; in this case a theme that I harp on regularly on Facebook and Twitter: That being the start of a new slave state in Amerika.
I joke about this only half-heartedly and only because in the New Gilded Age one must try to keep the wits sharp and moving and circulating — like a deer moving about in the forest. I’ll be damned if I’m gonna be taken down by a bunch of Dick Cheneys out on an expedition. So one does what one must. To be true to oneself (i.e., my survival instinct revved full throttle) but also to one’s brothers and sisters — that unfortunate bodhisattva vow I took before incarnating into this nuthouse many years ago.
So, that being said, and having watched the Oscars last night –perhaps wondering why so much of your brain juice was depleted in the endeavor — you must read Wilson’s insights cautiously, not letting, to paraphrase Our Lord, the left eye know what the right eye is doing.