Fear Of Music

With the raid on Gibson making news, here’s more Lacey Act madness…

Consider the recent experience of Pascal Vieillard, whose Atlanta-area company, A-440 Pianos, imported several antique Bösendorfers. Mr. Vieillard asked officials at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species how to fill out the correct paperwork—which simply encouraged them to alert U.S. Customs to give his shipment added scrutiny.

There was never any question that the instruments were old enough to have grandfathered ivory keys. But Mr. Vieillard didn’t have his paperwork straight when two-dozen federal agents came calling.

Facing criminal charges that might have put him in prison for years, Mr. Vieillard pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of violating the Lacey Act, and was handed a $17,500 fine and three years probation.

Who is this helping? How much does it cost?

Medium Cool

A scene from Haskell Wexler’s 1969 film Medium Cool. It’s got Jerry The Dentist from the Bob Newhart Show and Robert Forster from Jackie Brown and Peter Boyle from Young Frankenstein.

I think this says a lot about race relations in America. I’ll be honest – I’m not sure exactly WHAT it says but I still think it says a lot. A lot of intimidation and subtext and confusion. It’s all a mess. I felt like I was living this a couple of times working on my Pigford documentary but at the time, I’d never seen this film.

But it’s a pretty fascinating scene, really.

Johnny’s Son B. Permanently Truant

Talk about awesome.

My friend and occasional co-conspirator has gone all homeschooly this year – even unschooly. And he wrote a great big post about it that you should go read now.

It’s about a lot more than school, but here’s a quote…

You don’t have to be an anarchist. Anarchy would suck. But you can look at the rules that you live by. You can look at the standards you’re keeping. You can see if you’re doing what you do because it’s always been done that way, and decide that’s an idiotic way to go through life. You can choose something better.

Tired of being an accountant and want to go to clown college? Fuck it. Be a clown.

Think your kid is suffocating in school? Fuck it. Take him out of school.

Bills killing you and keeping you from sleeping? Fuck it. Stop paying them and see what happens. Would you rather be busted down to a shitty apartment and enjoy your days, or live in an expensive house and hate your life?

Quit that stupid job. Learn that sport that enthralls you. Choose fun over work. Wear that ridiculous hat that you like. Take up ballet no matter what your contractor buddies say. Ask for the date. Commit too early. Do the idiotic. Follow your heart. Try the impossible. Do something crazy.