October 30, 2006

Self-Portrait: Imperfectly Too Serious

So sick and tired of all these pictures of me
Completely wrong,
Totally wrong
I'm not surprised and really, why should I be?
See nothing wrong,
So sick and tired of all these pictures of me
Oh everybodys dying just to get the disease

Elliott Smith

With the Self-Portrait Challenge asking for reflections on imperfections and flaws, the fact that I was fasting for the entire month, and that I ended a crazy busy ten-week run at work, made October an arduous month. The result was a series of posts and photographs displaying some of my negative personal traits, and me throwing tantrums for attention, to the point where friends were wondering if I was alright. I may have been a bit too hard on myself, as I am apt to be, but to be honest, I live for this type of honest self-examination and exposure, so it wasn’t all that grueling, but it has left me exhausted and ready to move on.

Things have changed. The fasting is over; I spent a week revitalizing myself by spending quality time with my fabulous little girl at the beach, and this is the last week for imperfections at SPC. So the final flaw that I will be presenting is that fact that I often take myself too seriously. I try and present an image of a dour, scowling, guilt ridden malcontent that is constantly over analyzing every aspect of his life. When in reality, these “serious” topics are just what I choose to write about because writing about them helps me better understand the world and my place in it. I think people who know me would agree that this image I have so carefully crafted is not really accurate. One of my priorities in life is to have fun. I have a pretty sharp sense of humor and there is nothing I enjoy more than having a good time. I look for opportunities to try new things and simply enjoy every aspect of my life. So it must seem strange to friends who have seen the lighter side of my personality to constantly read about all the “issues” I raise.

So this week’s portrait is an attempt to break away from the carefully crafted image that I have portrayed since joining the SPC. I just wanted to get silly and show a glimpse of a side of me I rarely present. Because if Abbie Hoffman and Ken Kesey have taught me anything, it is to have fun and not take yourself too seriously while you make people think. Life is good, see pictures in the previous link for proof.


  1. Finally, the BZ I know! In all honesty, I worried that the BZ that used to crack me up in a classroom was getting waaaaayyyyy too serious. But no, I was just a little out of touch that you are still the great guy that you are. I liked the way you summed up why you write about the things you do - it is true that writing does allow you to explore the world and reason things out that you may not fully understand. Nice work.

  2. It's a lot of fun to see your lighter side. Great photo!

  3. Great picture. I bet that face gets (or soon will) lots of laughs from that little girl of yours.

  4. Love this image--as I have loved all of the images you've done for this series of "imperfections". So often, your words strike home an idea I'm struggling to figure out. October was a month of learning and self-reflection...thanks for sharing your insights. (By the way, your blog for your daughter and the lovely pictures of your family are so sweet! Yes, I'd say you have a lot of reasons to smile...)

  5. God, I can relate. After a month of self reflection and critisism, it's hard not to become more introverted and negative. When this happens to me, I try to remind myself of the last line in American Beauty,

    "... And then I remember to relax, and stop trying to hold on to it, and then it flows through me like rain and I can't feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life..."

  6. Maybe sometimes we focus on the serious on our blogs because life is so distracting, we need some space to think and express all that. Well, maybe not you so much, BZ, but I know that's how it is for me.

    Nice to have some balance though.
    Great photo. :)

  7. I always check out your SPC, but I don't think I have ever commented because it seemed like you did take your self too serious...like you were being too dramatic.

    I clicked on your link anyway this week because I like how your titles are always so long.

    Then I saw Elliot Smith lyrics and I knew I needed to Pay Attention to what you had to say.

    I think I have been avoiding commenting because I am so much like you. I see the drama in my own blog.

    I love when my mind expands...
    Thank you.

  8. he, he, he! glad to see you goofy! it's fun sometimes, no?

  9. It’s been five years today since the world lost Ken Kesey, and I think about him more now than I ever did when he was alive. What interests me most is, he was the human bridge between the Beat scene and the Hippie scene, joining them together into a seamless progression.

    As far as I know, Rubber Tramps is the last major media project Kesey was involved in. (Full disclosure: I had nothing to do with the movie.) Ken Kesey died during the final edit, and the closest it got to theatrical release was a guerilla screening in Park City.

    I mention this because Rubber Tramps has a new trailer on YouTube