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Monday, 3 January - link

Wil's Mustache Death Mask

Briefly, Wilson and I had a mustache growing contest in December. I lost - I shaved mine. But while it was running, I encouraged Wilson to send me photos. He complained he didn't have a digital camera; I told him to stick his face on the scanner (like he did in college).

I got this email from him on 26 December:



Head in a jar

hed n jr

head injury

hd ngry

so angry




Wilson has a side that can be described in short as "angry impulse" - he mostly restrains himself from the true bottoms but at times he likes to skirt around evil, or wear its mask and dance around a bit. I don't have the photo scanned where he wrote "666" on his chest in big black permanent marker one halloween - it seeped through his clothes and stained his bedsheets; remnants of his wicked participation. Being his friend I get to see him hit the reset button on his life every few years: alienate a serious lover, jeopardize his work, go a bit crazy, binge, upset his whole balance. There's not really anything that seems to precede it, as I can tell from a distance, except his restless mind.

I don't mean to make him sound like too much of an actor in this; I think Wilson is a victim to some of his own hyperactivity. Maybe we share that trait a bit. I found the computer a consistent lover; Wilson favors a pen.

I was chiding him at my birthday weekend - if you're broken up with your girl, and created chaos with your business, you should at least be drawing I told him, probably wagging my finger. Wilson thrust a thick bound notebook in my face - "four days, motherfucker" - so much easy anger came off of him, feeling misjudged and underestimated. I marveled at his reply - flipping through the book, I saw four days worth of Wilson's drawing: dozens and dozens of pages covered in hands and feet and faces and typeography and scenery and cartoons and animals and people. It was a torrent of perspective and inquiry.

Sometimes I think I could have a pretty good business just working to focus and publish Wilson's talent. I'm not sure I'm capable; we have our short term collaborations, like the three week-mustache off. We live on opposite coasts of the States; we meet up a few times a year. I like to stay in touch with me because he's so smart. So fast, so creative, so fun. Also volatile. I'd like to think that I offer him some kind of taste of maturity but then he points out my madness with a T-shirt like my birthday present; perhaps we have complementary mental illnesses, a sort of support group we form as friends.

Wilson made a "Chester in a Latex Bodybag" t-shirt for my 30th birthday. Without having seen my Sex Church film, but working from verbal descriptions.

I've mostly gotten out of the habit of writing publicly extensively about friends; too many folks didn't seem to enjoy the coverage. But Wilson called me up a few days back and said, "Go ahead and write about me Chester - I can take it." I think he said more than that, but his phone call had woken me up and I was in a bit of a daze. I think it was late at night his time; maybe he was tipsy. Either way, I enjoy experiencing Wilson and expect I will for years to come.

Posted on 3 January 2005 : 00:00 (TrackBack)
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Justin's Links, by Justin Hall.