Genuflect by Gordy Grundy
May 2000; Issue No. 45



Sunday: The idea was so exciting and so brilliant that I must have clasped my forehead too hard for I accidentally knocked myself unconscious. When I came to several hours later, the great idea was thankfully not forgotten as so many things are. I had been languishing over my morning coffee when I read an article in the hard news section of the Los Angeles Times that did more for me than caffeine ever could. It seems that MTV and ABC are knotting their tentacles over the creation of a boy band, a term unfortunately now in our vernacular. Not only is it a "real" pop band but they will be documenting the creation of their fame in a TV series. So?! Why not do the SAME thing about an ARTIST!!!! I think people would be fascinated by such a show. They'd tune in by the droves. It'd get big, BIG ratings. I've decided to pitch it to a network. People love poverty, struggle and degradation. It's a winner. "The Life Of A Painter," a car wreck worth slowing down for.

Tuesday: I sent a box with one shoe in it to Fava (Last name withheld) the Lower Vice President of Development for XYZ Broadcasting. Enclosed was a note written in a big thick pen, "Just hoping to get my FOOT in the door." This was a nifty trick that I learned at the All American Correspondence School of Business, from which I got my MBA.

Wednesday: Called Fava, Follow Up Call No. 1. Twenty minutes later her chilly secretary put the call through. Fava said that next time I try that "tired ass trick" I should send a new shoe or at least one with odor eaters. I guess it had quite an impact when she opened the box. Oh, well. She admired the chutzpah nonetheless. Those Hollywood folk really like you to be passionate about your projects so I laid it on thick. I said that I was so passionate about this project that I'd even "kill for it". I put a glint in my eye when I said it. I knew she heard it.

Thursday: I pitched her the big idea: "Find a cute young artist. Latch her up with a Blue Chip gallery. Sink a coupla hundie into promo and film the whole thing. Follow her first year out of grad school. Get a coupla of boyfriends (actors) to give her a turbulent love life and maybe a drug addiction and BAM! You got a hit." She hated it. She said no one gives a damn what happens to an artist but she did like the sex and drugs. She told me to "Get out!" then changed her mind and said she'd kick the project upstairs if I killed her boss. But that would be wrong. I was only asking for a guarantee of seven episodes. So I said, "No." Then she said she'd kick the project upstairs if I had sex with her.

Friday: I pitched the idea to Irv X, the Vice President of Programming who hated it. He yelled, "No one gives a shit about some artist. Artists aren't sympathetic characters and no one likes a nut." I pointed out that we liked Dustin Hoffman in "Rainman" and he was impressed with my quick think-ability. He kept objecting but I stayed on him. I know when to give up -- and that's Never! I kept countering his every remark especially when he called Security. Sometimes the strongest words you can say are none at all so I hightailed it outta there fast. The Security Guards found me foolishly trying to hide behind a thin pipe in the stairwell. The two knuckle heads ripped the hell out of my best suit when they dragged me through the lobby. They even tore my ascot, the bastards.

So, it seems that my big splashy television project is not getting the green light. But I won't give up. They can't beat me. Because I have the passion.



My old college friend Stu Gimlet recently blew out his knee and had a little microsurgery. He's hobbling about and driving everyone CRAZY at Happy Daze Promo Marketing where we are also co-workers. He is keeping his clients abreast of his rehabilitation. I know, for we share a thin wall. Ten bucks says his business nose dives until he's finds a new topic. It's driving me crazy; its gotta be killing them. Hey! Wait a minute. This is the wrong attitude! (I am having a small epiphany.) His twisted knee coulda been my right hand, which I need very much right now. It coulda been my transmission, whose replacement would be very inconvenient at this time. Some foolish chef may overcook my rare steak. I can't even afford a stake. We are all victims of chance. Lady Luck draws us to her ample breast as often as she unleashes her fury. You know, I think I'll take Stu Gimlet to lunch tomorrow.

I am reminded of a bill of goods a wise old friend once tried to sell me. She found a great big house for little rent that was right on the freeway. She tried to con me that the roar of the Hollywood Freeway sounded "just like the ocean." She gave me a laugh and a Proverb. Like poor Stu Gimlet, bad things happen to good people. The artists, who work with chance, teach us that pendulum always swings. Sometimes we ride it high, sometimes it doesn't even move and sometimes it clocks us in the head. And the only thing you can do about the tragedy is to close your eyes, inhale deeply, linger over the smell of fresh salt air and say, "I think it sounds like the ocean."



Dear Comrades, I have an unbelievable story to tell you and I am not sure how to present it. By sheer chance (or was it another's hand?) I came upon a document which catalogues the findings of a secret society of fine artists, astronauts really, who are making incredible discoveries and attempted entries into the HyperReal. The story of how this document came into my hands is as astonishing as how it, my only evidence, disappeared.

Over the next several issues, I will try to tell this tale as best as I can. It is about us. It is about our times. Some of our brothers and sisters are committing their lives and their sanity to go where no art issue has gone before. Look for Part One of "The New Bona Fides" in the next Genuflect.

GORDY GRUNDY is a Los Angeles based painter.


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