A recent article in the NYT by Stephen Marche makes the case for failure, although he’s talking about writers not artists. He mentions how business, particularly the Silicon Valley variety, has taken up Samuel Beckett’s phrase “fail better,” but with a complete reversal of meaning. “Beckett didn’t mean failure-on-the-way-to-delayed-success…To fail better, to fail gracefully and with composure, is so essential because there’s no such thing as success. It’s failure all the way down.”  That’s so funny. Of course it’s true but one might as well enjoy the descent, meaning the long water slide to the inevitable. Marche also quotes Ezra Pound, words I’ve heard before but had forgotten: “I found out after 70 years I was not a lunatic but a moron.” Hilarious. Of course we don’t have the whole conversation. It’s difficult enough to be anything at all, so he really should be happy.


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