Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Obama, Seinfeld, and the Astronauts @3QD

I’ve got another post up at 3 Quarks Daily, Jerry Seinfeld and Barack Obama Have a Meeting of the Minds. Among other things, this post goes into the difference between the Presidency and the occupant of the office, currently Barack Obama; how is that difference staged in the video? And what does any of this have to do with supermarket tabloids?

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Here’s a set of clips from Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee where Seinfeld talks about a donut-hole bit he’s working on: “A hole does not exist. Words have meaning!” You can see the whole bit at the beginning of this clip:

It doesn’t seem like it opens with the donut-hole bit but believe me, it really does. Sorta. It’s sneaky. Metaphysics.

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Seinfeld’s Obama interview touches on the temptations of fame and wealth. Here’s more on the subject from a recent interview Seinfeld gave to The New York Times, Jerry Seinfeld on His New Friend, Wale, and ‘The Album About Nothing’:
Wale is a bit of an underdog in hip-hop, bouncing between the underground and the mainstream and trying on different personas. For this album, he calls you his “conscience” — where did you guide him?

Young people who become successful like that very young — which I wasn’t when I was young — these forces are very potent and challenging to them. I love talking about managing a public image. I was older when it happened to me — I was in my late 30s, so I think it was easier for me to see what was real and what was just perception.

What kind of advice do you give him about fame and success?

That it’s irrelevant. It’s a fantastic byproduct of doing good work, but you have to keep it in its place. It’s like a dog — it’s gotta be trained. You can’t let this thing run all over the house.

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