Sunday, December 06, 2009

Five Lessons I Learned from Harvey Pekar

I went to see Harvey Pekar at the Eastman branch of the Cleveland Public Library yesterday. Here are five things I learned from him:
  1. If someone offers you $5000 to write something, do it, even if you don't know how.
  2. You don't need friends.
  3. If you don't make much money at your job, your pension will be correspondingly small when you retire. You have been warned!
  4. Quit it with the nationalism and ethnic pride. You're not better than anybody.
  5. Artists need to take chances to move things forward. If they don't, "fine art just becomes folk art." (Also Wynton Marsalis sucks.)
Bonus: The Cleveland accent may be dying among young intellectuals, but it's still alive in Harvey Pekar.


Blogger Audrey said...

He was sweet. I got all excited when he was talking about the potential of comics for other areas such as science and history. One of my favorite comic artists is Kate Beaton, who does almost exclusively history-inspired comics.

2:57 PM  
Blogger Christine Borne said...

I know. I wanted to talk to him afterward but I got all freakishly shy and scuttled out blushing.

I like history comics. I like when history shows up in unexpected venues, sort of like the Travelocity gnome.

3:08 PM  
Blogger Bridget Callahan said...

If someone offered me 500, I would write anything. Who turns down money for writing?

7:57 PM  
Blogger Bill Barrow said...

“You don't need friends" (?!!) What, desperately?

4:56 PM  
Blogger Christine Borne said...

A guy asked him whether anyone who knew him before he was famous treated him differently, now that he IS famous. HP just said, "Not really - I mean, I don't really have that many friends. I'm alone most of the time."

A classic introvert's honest answer.

5:25 PM  
Blogger The Wine Cyclist said...

Wynton Marsalis is awesome. No matter what anyone else says.

1:26 AM  

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