Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Misanthrope – Sunday’s Lighter Side

The structure of a play is always the story of how the birds came home to roost.
Arthur Miller (1915 - 2005), playwright

Notes on Arthur Miller. I read the entire news obituary/biography of Arthur Miller and a couple of items struck me. His line a few weeks after the opening of his play “Death of a Salesman,” when he said, “I believe that the common man is as apt a subject for tragedy in its highest sense as kings were.” The other line was from a critic from the Saturday Review, when he described the character of Willy Loman as “a little man sentenced to discover his smallness rather than a big man undone by his greatness.”

The lines make me think that so many Republicans who seem heartless and condemn those who have fallen upon hard times as people who are too lazy or simply trying to milk the system without working, may one day find out just how small and vulnerable they are.

More on Miller. As writers, I suspect we are interesting in how the greats accomplish their work. Miller would get up every morning and write. During the writing of "Death of a Salesman," he worked all day and night. When he went to sleep he found himself crying for Willie Loman. When I heard Pam Houston speak last week, she said that her writing style was to write while the idea was strong, but she did not write everyday on a schedule. She said that it might be a few weeks between writing, and one time it was a three month stretch that she did not write and that scared her.

Traffic. I saw a California Highway Patrol (CHP) use his loud speaker to tell a driver to move into the far right lane if they wanted to drive slowly. I would like to see a CHP simply tell a speeder to slow down. Driving slower than the speed limit and impeding the flow of traffic is just as dangerous as speeding, so the jerk should have received a ticket just as any speeder would have.

Daughter. Daughter is in Ireland. I have not heard from her since Thursday, briefly.

Stage plays are sinfull, heathenish, lewde, ungodly Spectacles, and most pernicious Corruptions, condemned in all ages, as intolerable Mischiefs to Churches, to Republickes, to the manners, mindes and soules of men.

William Prynne (1600 - 1669), English pamphleteer and early forbearer to the current Republican Party


B2 said...

Didja ever notice that any bio of Miller (and any obit, apparently) mentions his marriage to Marilyn Monroe?

The Misanthrope said...

Yes. They most often lead with that fact. What they usually neglect to mention is that during the five years they were together, Miller never wrote a thing.

Chandira said...

If you don't like slow drivers, never go to Florida.. It's mix of the senile and the youthful.. Slow people not looking where they're going and young inexperienced people speeding. Scary stuff...