there are things you know you need to do. by which i don’t mean the honorable, upstanding things, but the thoroughly stupid, senseless, impractical ones. the things people will warn you away from precisely because they seem to make no sense. or because they cost a small country’s annual budget.
this has come up before. last year i used this exact logic as justification for going to paris for 13 hours. i’m realizing that, for me, the most thoroughly stupid, senseless, impractical things are maybe always going to involve paris.
i’m not sure what to do with that just yet. except go back to paris.
come may, i’m presenting a paper at a french conference on narrative. a paper establishing jackie’s tabloid life narrative as being of feminist importance.
the conference is five months away. so far, my paper exists only as a three paragraph abstract that hits upon jackie’s feminist importance in the vaguest possible terms. this proposition is stupid, senseless and impractical on many levels, not to mention expensive. by extension, i’m ruthlessly gung-ho.
in hopes of finding inspiration, i’ve been wading through the paper piles that have accumulated during the last eight years of research. two dozen legal pads filled with old notes and random musings. that is how i happened upon this, written in february 2004:
“jackie o as feminist icon? fun book to write but too hard to prove. TRUE but no one would believe it. it cannot be done.”
my first thought upon reading this? merde.
my second thought? yes, it can.
(photographs by peter beard)