There, now I have beaten everybody else who is going to start congratulating me. I don't like my birthdays. I never have. Well, I did like them when I was a kid, and I was King of the World for a day (and no, I didn't like my birthday for any presents, hard as that may to believe), but since then? I don't really want anything. I mean, sure financial security...
... but other than that? Outside of any major fantasy delusions (I really, really wish I could fly and be Superman and save everybody, but hey, that particular syndrome has a name, look it up down below), I really cannot bring myself to care about what most people in the fame game or people wishing to get into the fame game wish for.
The cars? I've been living without one for nearly ten years, and I haven't missed it, for the most part (other than to buy drink and food, sometimes). The villas? I do wish for that one town house in Edinburgh, but to be honest, if it were to come down between that and my parents having a nicer apartment that would be more beneficial for their age, I know what I'd choose. The crowds? The party people? I have met them. And I wasn't impressed with them the first, second and third times around. I still cannot wrap my head around the notion that somebody actually would give a fuck hanging out with these people.
I have had smarter and more intelligent discussions with strangers in a coffee shop. One of them was Edo Fuijkschot, who I met in a coffee shop in Nuremberg, and who draws stuff. I say, he should put that on a business card. I draw stuff.
In my time, I have worked with some genuinely smart people. Ralf Müller. Heiko Humbert. Martina Vrenegor. Not many smart people, mind you, but there were some. But when i was in New York, when I as in LA, even when I was at the University of Missouri, one thing always puzzled me. How queer pretty much everybody in the "creative industries" is for stars, for fame and for money to blow, or money to buy blow, or just blowing somebody. All I know, blow in all of its forms would certainly be involved.
I don't like these parties. I don't like these people. I was once insulted by my ex, who claimed that I had only come to Cannes for the same reasons that everybody else goes there (apparently). To bottom feed with the rest of them. I was at the time very busy, I had to work ahead to go to Cannes in the first place, and I only came for the same reason I had always gone to places like that.
Because she asked me to come.
And time was that I would have walked with naked feet across the ocean to have a day or two with her. Just like it was back then. She asked, and Thomas had nothing better to do than to find the first flight. Look up above. It's called the Superman syndrome.
Clark Kent. Superman. Clark Kent. Superman.
What? Does this sound like whining? Hey, it's my birthday, and I'll whine if I want to. I had a bad today, well, technically, it was a bad day yesterday. My shoulder is flaring up again, and on those days, working out is impossible. So is sleep. Or carrying anything in my right hand. I would advise my potential enemies, though, to not think that my right side is automatically open because you see me rubbing my shoulder.
But when it is bad, it is really bad. And today it is. It's not the age. It's the remnants of a very bad sporting accident that happened exactly fourteen years ago to this day, October 28th, 1996. Stress compounds it, makes it worse, or rather, your brain appears to become so much receptive to the pain there.
There are still good days. I had a good day yesterday as well. I lettered the first 12 pages of TRIBE, and it made me miss comics. There is such a beauty about that medium, and it is easy to forget it due to my shit-filled experiences in the industry. It's not so much the actual writing of the script itself, it is that moment when you lock the final dialogue onto the page, and it merges with the art and becomes something better, something bigger.
It's like love, really, or rather, what people make out love to be. Not that I would know. But it's what everybody tells me love is. A merging of two totally and tonally different elements into something new. Hm. My own experiences with love have been rather disastrous, so I guess I'll take their word for it.
I am not so sure if love is an actual reality. If you had asked me that a few years ago, I would have given you a "yes" to that answer. Nowadays? After given it a lot of thought? For the sake of everybody else, I hope it is.
It's my birthday today. And I'm reflecting. A good time as any other, wouldn't you agree? I have not heard anything from Los Angeles. I am letting go. At some point you may see a movie that has my name on it, and it will very likely be horrible. It will very likely be some of the worst Hollywood shlock you will ever see.
And I want you to know, right now and right here, that I have done my best to prevent that. I can't tell you any more than that, because my contract prevents me from doing so, right now. I can also tell you that it won't have been written by me, but by somebody who has no idea and no understanding of what I have originally written.
You will see it, and maybe you will look at it and go, "how the hell did that happen?"
I can tell you how.
I believed somebody with a business card.
For the very last time. I have kept all of the correspondence, of course. I have kept all of the proof. I am anal like that. And if and when the time comes, fingers will be pointed. And they will be pointed at me, that much I know. At the one guy who said very clearly that this is never going to work. Months ago.
Because people like that, they never learn.
Arrogance, in progress.
Stupidity, on the run.
It's my birthday today. And just like one of my heroes in RETIRED, I am no longer here. I am already in the future. In a million variations of it. Sometimes, people who don't know me ask why I am so fascinated with Sherlock Holmes. People who do know me, I mean, really know me, they don't ask. Millions of variations. It's very hard for me to describe how that works. At least in a way that makes sense. It's like a fractal cloud, and it is always in motion.
But I can see it.
Futures unborn. Most of the times, I can predict them. My rate – a friend of mine, my oldest friend told me (and he has seen me to these little parlor tricks now since I was about eleven years old) – is about nine out of ten. Studies have found that certainty in the human decision process locks in at eight out of ten. Shows you how much we know, right? Eighty percent, and we call that certain.
There's still those twenty percents unknown.
In my case, there's ten percent.
It's those ten percent that are worth fighting for.
Why, you could almost call it "The Ten-Percent-Solution".
It's my birthday today. And it is dark outside.
But in here, there's a little light.