and you are (t)here...
i am quite certain i'm unable to fully articulate the range of what i'm driving at but i'll attempt it nonetheless: for seven yrs in los angeles i was fueled by a sort of epic ambition to achieve something. that unnamed something was codified and entwined in the Film Industry and there was - to me - zero percent chance of me achieving it w/o setting myself in LA. yet at the same time i internally separated myself from everyone else in LA: i simply wasn't that superficial, my artistic aims were more esoteric, more indie, more off the map etc so much so that any naked ambition i had was - i thought - neutralized by the 'purity' of what i outwardly pursued. but inwardly you see it was the exact same thing i was driving at. inwardly it was the exact same thing fueling me as fueled everyone. you can argue that this element is present to varying degrees in every single person who writes, draws, paints, makes movies, plays an instrument. i don't know if that's a sound argument or not but you can certainly make it. at my most honest i can confess that driving much of my pursuit in LA was the hunt for acknowledgment and celebration on an epic scale.
now, much like a cancer survivor (ha) i am nearly 5 yrs out of there.
hiking up runyon canyon on an LA visit a few days ago and a pea-soup of smog hung over the basins and valleys and i realized we're all - in los angeles that is - drawing oxygen from the same pool. its ubiquity and pervasiveness makes any type of self-distinguishment farcical. Whether or not you claim you are at least not them you are still forced to acknowledge their presence. you are still intaking identical oxygen and water (bottled or not) - you are there.
my point, and i don't really have one, has something to do w/ relief. gratitude that i made it out, that now - by leaving - i'm closer to what i wanted , that i had to 'fail' there to 'succeed' here. as mm always says i am a lucky sob and i am ever so lucky that i had no real taste of 'success' in los angeles b/c it would have broken me. i would not have been able to shoulder the burden. i would have crumpled, imploded, shrunk down, been hollowed out. now the codified part of what i want is the same as it was back then but what lies under it, what fuels it, has been altered. it comes from an entirely (mostly) different place and that is a good and beautiful thing.