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bear by san

February 2017



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the incidence of melodramatic bad behavior by artists is directly proportional to the competence and tolerance levels of their spouses.


Your clock off by 12 hours? As far as I know CT and Long Island are in the same timezone but your post is dated for 4 AM tomorrow...
Not so. Consider Dickens. Once his wife simply took to bed and said "The hell with it", her sister took over. And Dickens blamed his melodramatic bad behavior on having a Bad Wife.
Well, the spouses often reach a point of discontinuing their martyrdom, and then the ill-behaved artists move on the new victims....
Norman Mailer being a great case in point.
That's presupposing said spouses had the opportunity to witness said bad behavior prior to wedding. I can think of one case where it came as a complete surprise, unfortunately...
Lucky for me then that I have a brutally competent wife who has a low tolerance for BS
Same here. My wife also has the advantage of being taller than I am and having incredibly sharp elbows. I get out of line, and the last sound I hear before she pounds a new fontanelle into the top of my skull is the sound of her elbow spike sliding out of its sheath.
Agreed, and it works both ways. My ex was nicknamed "the Nancy Spungen of fandom" for a reason.
Spouses/partners/syncophants. Yes, I think so, to a degree.

I have a list of behaviours that I have given to my partners (updated regularly) that is similar to a living will. It involves a request that they beat me with a large stick and take away my internet should I ever exhibit said behaviours. I am relying on their deep love for me, their personal integrity, and glee at whacking people with sticks to ensure that my professional persona never indulges in melodrama or bad behaviour.
So do two artist spouses cancel out each others melodrama?
Either that or they increase it exponentially.

I stick with engineers, for their practicality. No melodrama. No putting up with it, either.

On "engineers....no melodrama"

Ha. For mine is a bitter laugh....

Re: On "engineers....no melodrama"

Yeah, I've known a few of those two.

Also, scientists.
Ha. Ha. and Double Ha.

Needy isn't the word for it...

It's true

I don't behave too badly most of the time. I don't want Tambyrd to peer over her glasses at me and give me THAT look.

But how does one allow for Byron, whose spouse absolutely refused to tolerate him (although was extremely competent)?
*eyes spouses*

*prudently behaves self*

Hmm. Is the emphasis on the melodrama level, or the overall badness of the behaviour?

*is faintly reminded of the story Richard E Grant tells on himself about coming home drunk because the director of Withnail And I was all about Teh Method and insisted that he, lifelong non-drinker that he is, had to Know How It Felt. His wife apparently rolled over while he was retching and muttered "Wanker. Fucking wanker. Why don't you try ACTING?"*
"It's a rock! It doesn't have any motivation!"

"That's your problem, Jason. You were never serious about the craft."

"Oh, we have that in Britain too - we call it wanking". (Dame Maggie Smith on Method Acting)


Well yes.

Why don't you?
Ooooooooh, I could say some shit.

But, you know, I won't. For all I know, he'll start reading you as soon as I do.
I haven't found the one who will put up with my shit yet, alas....
Well, let's face it, if he did read even that, he would say, "Oh, really? Well, what about you and your melodrama and bad behavior, eh???"

Of course, he would be, you know, wrong. *g*
This is somewhat related to a similar phenomenon -- the success of a student in a graduate degree program is directly related to the pressure of his/her partner. I call it the "WHEN is that paper due?" effect.
Wait a minute. Directly proportional or inversely proportional?
The more shit their mates will put up with, the worse they behave.
Something similar was was suggested as a topic for a panel at a convention in Dublin next year - whats it like being the spouse / partner etc of a writer
Not all writers are assholes, FWIW.
Thankfully none of the ones I'm friends with (either here and/or RL) are assholes.
Tad off the wall every now and then, but not assholes.
So true!

I could write a book ...
Richard Brautigan had the best quote about that ever in Sombrero Fallout. From the point of view of the ex-girlfriend of the writer:
"She was never going to go out with another writer: no matter how charming, sensitive, inventive or fun they could be. They weren't worth it in the long run. They were emotionally too expensive and the upkeep was too complicated. They were like having a vacuum cleaner around that broke all the time and only Einstein could fix it.

She wanted her next lover to be a broom."
*g* I pretty much am a broom.

Low-maintenance is the best kind of romance.
Eh? I may be a weirdo for this, but I'm the artist of my pair, and I don't think I've ever been accused of being melodramatic. Tightly wound, sure, but over-emotional or reckless never, and I've got a mighty tolerant guy. *shrug* We're both pretty low-maintenance, really.
You can be the exception that proves the rule.

Mostly, I was thinking of famously misbehaved types and their famously suffering spouses.
Ah. Yeah, there's plenty of those. I think that's probably more of a historical thing - the artist-as-celebrity has more or less shifted to artist-as-craftsman, at least in the commercial world I'm familiar with. (The fine art world, on the other hand, probably still has a lot more celebrity-type behavior.)