recently collabo’d with this bottle here in shanghai to extraordinary results.
i was thinking a little bit about some of the worst collaborative projects i’ve ever been involved with. these are listed in no particular order.
FIRST JAWN: a business-related group writing assignment for class where i got minimal response and assistance from others in the group. one of the members was not a particularly strong english writer and chose to undertake the lengthiest section of the paper. Meanwhile, this other girl couldn’t put aside the 20 minutes (or less) required to put together a lousy two-paragraph introductory statement.
i still remember sitting in my parents’ backyard with my laptop, my brain drowning in stress, rewriting every single sentence of that one part. i thought my brain was hemorrhaging. i thought it couldn’t get worse.
i would find myself collaborating with this second TEAMMATE(!) again 2 years later. i had some bad karma that needed to be spent, i suppose.
SECOND JAWN: i remember sitting in my little closet of a room in brooklyn probably after 9 or 10pm on a conference call with my TEAMMATE and other people i had no desire to be speaking with at that moment.
before speaking, i was finishing up my first glass of merlot. by the end of our stupid conversation, i was done with number 4 or perhaps it was 5. it was painful. yet, i was impressed with ability to keep it cool. it was like an out-of-body experience. i was observing and commenting on myself from the corner of the room like a philosopher. it was stupendous. i felt like i was uncovering important anthropological insights that would drive me closer to enlightenment.
wine is tricky sometimes.
THIRD JAWN: the last one happened years ago. i can’t exactly pinpoint the year but i must’ve been late middle or early high school. around then, i was obsessed with this idea of making a GREAT film. i had all the necessary resources. an idea to capture my boring suburban existence (pre-teen/teen angst). a script outline. a camera. friends.
however, we were unable to get past the first scene. the novelty of it all quickly wore off for all of them and they began completely changing things within the scene in my house using my camera. i hated them and i hated myself for letting it all happen. i felt like i was being stepped on. it hurt a lot, metaphorically and emotionally.
with this podcast i’ve been doing now, i’ve continued to run into my fair share of failure. show #41 rings true as one of those terrible bombs/gems. there’ve also been other recordings that will never see the light of day due to an uncomfortable awareness by guests and friends that their voices are being recorded. i get it. podcasting is weird.
did things ultimately all work out for me? i don’t know. i hope they do.
none of my creative ideas are where i want them but perhaps they’ll eventually get there. one thing i do know is you can’t do it relying completely on yourself.