Another trip to Detroit as a success. The only problem was yesterday (Saturday) evening. I went out to start Amy, and there was some sort of electrical short somewhere in the system. There was a slight tick when I would hit the electric starter, and the headlight wouldn't come on. I turned the key from the "OFF" to "red dot" position a couple of times, and then she started. Since the horn would honk in the "red dot" position, I don't really know where the short could be. I would say it's at the key, since I wiggled the key and she started, but then nothing would work, right? Oh well, Amy's running fine otherwise, so I guess I'll check it out some other time--or wait until she will not
start to make myself figure it out.
"Why does this idiot keep going back to Detroit weekend after weekend?" you ask? I don't rightly know. I have reasons, but I can never decide whether the reasons justify the trip. The fact that I never enjoy myself is, I guess, beside the point. I'll try to explain if you feel like listening....
This last trip was spurred on my my interest in Super 8mm film making. My best friend from high school, Glenn, and I discovered this stuff a few years ago when I bought an old Bell & Howell projector (in case you're wondering--I'm 23). I've been watching old Stooges reels on that projector ever since.
Fast forward 6 years (and about 2 weeks ago). I've been thinking about my very best friend/ex-girlfriend (whom I still talk to often....). She is obsessed with tv, movies, anything screen related. I notice the other 8mm projector in the corner that has her favorite reel stuffed in the storage cubby. I watch it, and remember why I love 8mm--it's the lack of sound that makes you build events in your head, but to the constant tick of the film in the projector. The film is a color reel (the only one I own) of an unknown family in Detroit in the 50s going to the zoo, barbequing, etc. Beautiful.
My ex had always laughed at me for this film obsession until she watched this reel last autumn. From that point on she only asked for more 8mm. I had picked up a camera last year and never used it. Now I'm running through my head this idea:
8mm camera + available film and my interest + projector whirr = ex-girlfriend's birthday present..........so I bought 2 reels of Plus-X black and white Reversal film. (By the way, it's June 25, and her b-day is July 25. That give me only one month to shoot, process, edit, and get the film to her....ugh)
I don't know if I'm doing this for me or her though....which is really starting to get to me. I have always wanted to make this film (maybe 4-5 minutes of things in life I think beautiful), but yet my motive is to make it for her. That motive makes me sick at times. I want to make it for me (my ideals, my thoughts my need), but like almost everything else in my life, my end result is for someone else. For those of you thinking that the notion of doing everything for someone else seems noble--try it, you'll understand. I, however, have much trouble doing things for myself only--I guess it's a strange curse. So, I spent my weekend in my friend's house, while he was out of town, riding out to film some of the shots I deem beautiful. I'm bidding on a Bolex splicer on Ebay right now, so I can edit the film after processing. Whatever my motive, I must make this film. Here are a couple picture I took wile shooting:
The beauty of Detroit--to know that one man originally had an idea, and built an empire singlehandedly out of his concept. This happens to be Detroit/Edison's coal manufacturing:
And this isn't making it into the film, but I had to show it. Ok, please do not
judge Detroit on this picture. No one can judge Detroit, unless they live in the city limits, as I well know. An abandoned High School:
I find it beautiful in a way.