15 Seconds of Fame

Now that there are so many people in the world, and 9/10th of them have a website and the rest are competing on American Idol, we’re now allowed 15 seconds of fame instead of 15 minutes. But that’s only while we’re alive. One can be post-humously famous for eternity, and that’s good news for those of us who aren’t in a hurry or plan on dying within the next 50 years. I fall into both categories. Being dead has a few drawbacks, certainly. But being dead encourages a martyr-like status that is difficult to attain otherwise. I have decided that it is more cost and time effective to focus on my apres-death artistic status instead of trying to get a gig or publish a novel while I’m alive and already swamped with time-killing activities, like planting tomatoes.

I have two unpublished novels, 400 short stories, 2 oil paintings, 650 philosophical columns, 1 poem, 24 hours of video taped performance, 1 CD, 1 documentary. Many people with alot less, are famous as hell but will be forgotten in another two years. Why compete? I cannot. They are in L.A. They are young. They are dumb. They are beautiful. They are sane. I am in Bridport, Vermont, I am nuts and the only ass I can find to kiss around here lies beneath a fly swatting tail.

It is sheer practicality that encourages me to aim for fame after death. And I will be famous after death, if only that I am dead. Do not underestimate the power of an obituary. The photo above is my obituary photo, readied for the New York Times and Addison County Independent. I am trying to help my daughter, the curator of my estate, who will have to sift through my drawers, file cabinets and photo albums for work that warrants legendary status. There is alot of it. I hope she marries a librarian.


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