First, how much do I love the fact that they’re using Lady Gaga’s song “Teeth” to promote Shark Week on the Discovery Channel? She was even in my crossword this morning — “Singer known for unconventional outfits”. (Okay, so that also could’ve been Cher, but there were too many letters.) Just another few steps on her journey to World Freak Domination — and oh, wouldn’t that be grand? Thanks to their empathy with the outsiders, outliers, and outcasts, Freaks are ever so much kinder than your usual World Dominators…
Second, please pardon me for my slowly-ebbing Luddite sensibilities — having only joined Twitter 19 days ago, I’m so noob I still have my placenta attached — but I just found Kickstarter yesterday, the site that allows you to fund (basically microfinance) independent artists — and now I feel like a frickin’ Borgia, only without the incest, murder, or treason!
Well, no incest, anyway.
So far I’ve funded four different projects (not with a ton of money, of course — that’s why they call it microfinancing; I’m not exactly wallowing around naked in piles of cash over here), but already I feel better than I have in years. Supporting other artists is one of the things I always vowed to do when I became Rich and Famous — at least, back when I still wanted to be Rich and Famous. After all these years in Hollywood, somewhere along the line I decided, “Fuck fame. I just want to be rich.” And not even rich with a capital R. Just rich enough to take care of myself and those I love without worrying about the light bill.
You see, “rich” has a different definition for a gal who once rolled pennies and quarters for food (your hands carry the copper smell of blood for hours, no matter how many times you wash them), who once lived in a basement apartment with no heat for the duration of a New England winter (sleepwear: one pair of tights, two pairs of socks, one pair of thermal-underwear pants, two pairs of sweatpants, one tank-top, one long-sleeved thermal underwear shirt, one T-shirt, one flannel shirt, one sweatshirt, one knit ski cap, two scarves, four blankets), who once, humbled and humiliated, accepted her friends’ offer to buy her a twin bed to prevent her from sleeping on the floor…
I could go on, but I think the point’s made: I have a relatively low bar for “rich.”
And now, finally, I can fulfill my long-ago promise. I’ve budgeted myself a small amount of money per month to help other people realize their dreams. Here are the ones I’ve chosen for July:
(a graphic novel by Eric Watkins)
(a documentary by Micah Garen and Marie-Helene Carleton)
(a book about victims in Johannesburg, SA – by Mariella Furrer)
(a collaborative photo/text book edited by Clare O’Neill)
This is so much better than rolling pennies, I feel as though I’ve already won the lottery.
Now to work on my own dreams…