Every bookstore is the result of its clientele

One day I saw an interview of a celeb journalist and TV show presenter, a person I like very much, directing good shows and a pretty good interviewer herself. She was asked why TV was so full of trash. I saw her face changing, she was really upset, then answered something very surprising : TV broadcasts were so bad because “It’s what the audience wants!”.

She continued on this mode, telling something like “If people were watching operas, literature documentaries and great movie classics, all trash TV would broadcast in front of nobody, then would disappear for ever, then we would have great TV everywhere!”.

Her anger was noticeable, and that’s why I remembered it clearly. When smart people complain, you listen. Then, you wonder, right?

Because of course this all seems to be too good to be true, and it’s easy to counterattack. People watch trash TV because it’s prepared and broadcasted to them, etc.

 

So, there’s a balance here to find. After counterattack I have to admit that we all have a responsibility here, nonetheless. It’s like when I hear someone complaining about dense traffic… from a car. I have to answer to this person that he is a brick of it.

In some countries, if you are stuck into a traffic jam, you get a ticket! Which, in a way, is fair : you’re a part of it, it’s your fault!

OK, there’s a balance to find…

 

I work in a bookstore, and I’m confronted with this “structure”. The axiom could be :

“Every bookstore is the result of its clientele”.

You can be appalled, but it’s true. For a part, at least.

Yeah, there are other dials to watch. You need to have serious booksellers on board. And you often have to sell tons of “best sellers” on end displays… to be able to present entire tables of great books (your choice) in the store. Etc.

In a serious bookstore, all kind of books are bought then presented on tables and shelves. Employees, then, watch (weekly) closely the sales, then books are reordered. Never sold volumes (for months) are a bit dirty or torn, and therefore sent back to editors, and this is it : little by little, the customers, by the way they act and buy, model and form the store.

You just need a year or so to adjust, understand and change your store to adapt to your clientele. If you have an architecture school a street away, your architecture department will grow, you’ll have rare books, theory books and even anthropology books for the thinkers around. A visitor will pass and will be in a awe : “Oh wow, what a great architecture choice you have!”. Yessss it’s thanks to the bookstore employee, but mainly because he found the clientele, too. It’s a dance, a tango.

There’s a balance to find.

There’s a split of responsibilities in front of trash TV, in traffic jams, in poor supplied bookstores. Suppliers, of course, but audience too.

Do you meet this structure too, in your job, in your life? Don’t hesitate to comment, here.

 

We have an old idiom in France, about couples : “L’homme propose, la femme dispose”. It’s something like “the man proposes doings, the woman makes the choice” – I’m sorry for the translation, it’s almost impossible to do it, but you got me, right? Tango.

 

Thanks for reading!

(Really sorry for my English today. Have a nice day!)

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Logan, Arthur and Motoko

I am a movie lover, un “cinéphile“. I read a lot about movies. I own thousands of DVDs and Blu-rays. I love Orson Welles, John Ford and Elia Kazan. I love Losey, Bergman and Miyazaki. I BUY movies. I’m able to spend a year to explore 1961 in cinema history (yes there’s a Wikipedia page for that). I’m able to watch all Tennessee Williams movies adaptations in a month, just for the extraordinary pleasure of… oh forget it.

But I download them too. A lot. I watch, and if I like I buy. I’m old school. I don’t have Netflix nor an Apple TV. I want the discs, the bonuses, the sleeves. Les galettes : the “epiphany cakes” (yesss we say that, for movie discs). Makes sense, right?

It’s August, so I found many American mainstream movies to download. Fast and Furious number 39 (or whatever), or Alien Covenant (I wanted to watch is again, because it’s a bad, wrong movie, but also because of Scott, Giger/Böcklin, the “two notes flute in the echo” music, and the stress before the shuttle explosion).

By the way, I wrote to the actress behind the voice of Mother, in Covenant. Great work!

I left 3 movies on the side, because I was sure it was shit.

Logan, King Arthur and Ghost in the Shell. All of them had bad trailers. Logan smelled “I want to end this character violently”. Arthur really smelled like duck-billed platypus shit. And watching Scarlett Johansson exploding a window 6541 times in slow motion on Facebook was enough to keep me away from it (talk about bad e-marketing -> another article).

All of them took me by surprise.

But beware : I’m NOT talking about Kitano’s Hana Bi or Lean’s Ryan’s Daughter (I can’t wait to find these in Blu-ray). Don’t even talk about Heaven’s Gate, Single Man or Fanny & Alexander (I have the Blu-rays, thank you). I’m writing here about mainstream movies, to eat with popcorn and have fun with.

Logan surprised me because it was more violent, tragic, or let’s say “less stupid” than some other X-Men I watched (I watched them all). I like these superheroes movies, but here I was surprised and wondered about the audience targeted by it. So what : Adult geeks? I don’t know, but I loved it. The Wolverine girl, Xavier in his chair, powerful but dying, the cross-to-X at the end, it awed me.

I was really ready to laugh sarcastically at Arthur. But Ritchie made Snatch and the Sherlocks, and I loved U.N.C.L.E., so I tried… And I found it brilliant! Smart and fast, funny at times (I LOVE when Ritchie plays with dialogs/possible scene, like when Sherlock Holmes will fight), and so powerful (ohhh Excalibur). A good evil character (hello Jude Law), a mage… A good one!

I will forgive everything to Jude Law since he played in My Blueberry Nights.

Ghost in the Shell climbed greatfully towards the spider-tank scene (I own the anime movie, and I needed to know what they’ll do with the tank). The face to face with mother ending crushed me. The sound is great. Kitano is perfect. Binoche is fantastic (strong, fragile, alive). What a great surprise!

Well, I’m thankful. I read today something like “Even if it’s bad, it’s OK if it’s made with the heart” – I don’t remember where : Gide or Valéry? All of them were made with some heart.

Then I wonder how to blog about Logan : what are and what could be other branches in the almost totally kryptonitelic ridiculous tree of Superhero Movies? About Arthur : what’s the drive in Ritchie : a casualness, a “I allow everything, shut up” energy? About Ghost in the Shell : how to make a robot alive? How to adapt a fucking Japanese cartoon with elegance? How to convince Scarlett Johannsson to play that?

 

After all this, you will ALWAYS need to clear your spirit from special effects, Excalibur’s devastation, jumping in an invisible electronic device, or fake claws. I suggest an Ingmar Bergman’s movie : Winter Light. Or just one quote of this movie instead :

“God does not speak because there is no God. You should learn how to love, instead of praying”.

Thanks for reading!

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Blurred Blurry Instagram Photography

A blurry photography is a mistake, right? Unfocused, spoiled, this is for the trash. And of course you make it on purpose… so there!

The whole photography doesn’t have to be blurry – watch the face in the middle of the nibbled leaf, photo 3, and try to guess what is behind the in line droplets on photo 5.

Make it so blurry you don’t even know what it’s about : you are in abstraction, then. Hashtag according, then season your recipe.

When you blur “a place“, a room, trees, details are lost and hidden, therefore the mood only remains. Persistence of the air, the light, the colors only. Makes your photo more like a painting, maybe : less words, more atmosphere. So what?

Tool : What happens with this concept (“blur it on purpose”) in YOUR field? In poetry, what is to be blurry? In painting, art, music? What about other territories? In communication, marketing, advertising, theater, even cooking?

Thanks for reading/watching! My Instagram is jprobocat. No they are not all like these. Have fun!

Jean-Pascal

 

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Refuse, Refute, Recuse : a game for conversation lovers…

This is a word game for seed lovers, conversation connoisseurs…

You’ll probably find this article vain, or useless. I offer it to word gold diggers only.

OK. Definitions :

  • To refute is to (or trying to) prove something is false or incorrect.
  • To recuse is an “act of intention” : it’s to affirm something is not true. It’s rejection, that’s all. It’s a “Nope”.

What I want to expose here is to remember that to refute is kind of serious. To recuse can be a game. You can recuse an idea, a statement… for fun. Or for the pleasure to examine the “other way”, the wrong one (why not) : just to see what can, could happen.

When I find a “smart quote”, I recuse it. I’m immediately searching for a way to say the contrary AND to show it’s true TOO.

A good conversationalist is a concept lover. Therefore, he or she is able to play that game. Pick an idea, recuse is. That’s all. Now you’re in front of an unknown territory.

Without music, life would be a mistake“, says Nietzsche. OK. But wait : NO!

The tool is : Find a person you want to play with, pick an idea which seems… obvious, and… recuse it! Say no! “Nope! It’s the contrary!”. Then, have fun. Talk about sex, love, art, war, business, everything anything. Have fun, and send me a kiss.

Bonne journée ! Have a nice day!

Jean-Pascal

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Instagram : hornsarahberlin

“To Eat Alone”

Some recent events in my life made me a lonely man, and therefore a lonely eater.

When I was a father in a family, I was really happy to have dinner-togetherness, to cook for my tribe, to talk, listen, laugh, and feel the family’s energy around the table.

I’ve been very skeptical when I read about how Americans were losing these daily gatherings of all the big cats around the table. “Everyone is having snacks when they want, everybody’s picking things in the fridge, watch TV or eat in bedrooms”, they said. My feelings were like between “it’s not true, it’s impossible” and “oh these Americans!”.

When my daughters were little, some days I went home late, it was almost time to go to bed : I told them stories, kissed them goodnight, then I was happy to have dinner with their mother, but also alone.

I remember good summer evenings. Two cat babies sleeping, mother cat watching a movie, and me papa cat, with a cassoulet, two slices of bread and half of a bottle of Bergerac wine, eating on a tray, on my bed, in front of a wide open double-window (or should I say “French door”, really?), watching and listening birds and trees in the dusk, sshhh.

Not working on thursdays, I remember I was happy to have meal time alone, eating in silence in the kitchen, listening to the rain outside. On my table : a candle, a corner lamp, and a magazine (about movies). Maybe some Brahms chamber music too. Bliss!

Now I eat alone, but I don’t snack. I never snack, and I’m always questioning my snacking friends in America, opening different little colored bags to crinch crunch and croonch while we Skype. I’m like “Where’s your plate, dear?”. They know I eat alone, thus they’re somewhat amazed by HOW I’m eating alone. Well, that’s nothing special, but I… I’m sorry… I can’t snack. It would kill me under a blanket of depression. It’s almost : “I’m French therefore I need a plate”.

I know better, OK : I have more time, in France. We work less, we move less (distances are… different here – I go to work by bike), and… errr… I think we think that food time is worth it, too : I eat alone but it’s cooked, sliced, prepared, organized. Just a bit. I need it.

Awweee sorry for my bad English. I’m wobbling, I know it. Pardonnez-moi !

Have a nice day! Bon appétit !

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Segantini, Italian #painter

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giovanni_Segantini was an Italian painter (1858-1899).

No genius here, and it’s maybe why I love his work so much. His “Bad Mothers” is a masterpiece. I love his way of painting the simple life of people in the mountains at the time. You can feel the wind, right? His “sense of sun” is absolutely fantastic. What a light!

OK, I shut up now : here’s what I found for you…

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Zodiac : lazinesses or challenges?

This is just a microthing about Astrology. If you think Astrology is nonsensical, you should not read that, it could bore you a lot, et j’en serais fort désolé…

We all have our ways to consider Zodiac. From 0 to 100, you believe in this or not. This is not my point here. It’s just about this question :

You were born one day, therefore you’re a Cancer, a Virgo or a Capricorn, etc. What do you do with this? How do you use it?

  1. Do you use it in sorry statements, to be lazy, like “I’m a Taurus I’m slow, you know…”?
  2. Do you use it to feel challenged, knowing your strengths and weaknesses, to become a better person?

I talked longly one day with a person who knew this field pretty well, who told me about people’s “Birth Charts”, with this smiling sparkle in her eye : some people with perfect harmonious charts were having terrible or failing lives, and some others with… complicated charts were living an interesting, challenging life.

Naaah you can have fun and say this is a good proof that all this is bouleshit for bored ladies. This is not kind! Stop that, I’m blogging! 🙂

In a way, who cares, after all : my pleasure here is to go back to the questions and the 1/2 pattern I am asking after them…

Dials : What, in our days, could be our Big Statement Bouleshit Mistakes? When do we say “I’m like that and I can’t change”? Why? What if we began to play “Unpinning Mindsets”? What if… sometimes… we needed to stop saying “I don’t do that, ever”?

Thanks for reading!

 

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Instagram : bodylanguage