Friday, November 16, 2012

Ben Folds Five "Cigarette"

The lyrics to this song are (semi-)famously lifted from an amazing run-on sentence that Ben Folds had read in the newspaper, about a man and his mentally ill wife.

There’s poetry in every day life that we don’t always see or hear or turn into song.

“Cigarette” is also famous for retroactively being known as “Fred Jones Pt. 1.”  Years after “Cigarette” came out, Ben Folds wrote a song called “Fred Jones Pt. 2” which features the same character found in Pt. 1.  In Pt 2, Fred Jones loses his job as a newspaper man.  The world has passed him by.

This week I thought I’d write about some of the artisans in my life, and promote the good work that they do.

I have to admit that even I was quick to make a list that involved graphic design, stone carving and other handmade crafts, but not something kind of obvious (for a guy who blogs every day).

Writing was not a type of “art” that instantly came to top of mind.

Why don’t we appreciate writing the way we used to?

As Ben Folds makes clear, there is poetry, there is value, in the every day written word.

Scott Lajoie knows this for sure.

Scott is the editor of Cape Cod Magazine.  He finds the poetry and beauty of every day life here on Cape Cod, and encapsulates it between the covers of his publication.  There is artistry in what he does, in what the magazine is, even if you don’t recognize it.

Yes, Scott’s art is more likely to be strewn on your bathroom floor, than displayed on your wall.

The written word is taken for granted.  But let me be not the first person to forewarn you---print publications become rarer by the day.  And if you value newspapers and magazines and such, they demand your support.

My motivation to write these pieces on artist friends was sparked by Scott’s dedication to promoting Cape Cod and the people who make it beautiful.  Cape Cod Magazine has written pieces on Meadow Dibble, Tim Dibble, Erica Szuplat and mvyradio, to name just a few.  The promotion has meant sales and attention for each.  That kind of support is what can keep an artist alive and thriving.

If Scott and his magazine are not there for us, who will be?  And if we are not there for Scott, how can he be there for us?

So as you are thinking about small businesses you can support this holiday season, consider giving someone (or yourself) a subscription to Cape Cod Magazine.  You can get a year's subscription for only 15 bucks!

Because we don’t want to hear Ben Folds sing, “And I’m sorry, Mr. Lajoie, it’s time . . .”

Hear "Cigarette" on Youtube.

Hear "Fred Jones Pt. 2" on Youtube.

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