never seen star wars: the highway is alive tonight;
For my last month as a 26-year-old, I’m attempting an experience, a TV show, a book and an album as recommended by the readers of this blog in the style of I’ve Never Seen Star Wars. For more posts on this, click the tag above.
“You know,” he said, “it’s a nice thing not bein’ a preacher no more. Nobody use’ ta tell me stories when I was there, or if they did I couldn’ laugh. An’ I couldn’ cuss. Now I cuss all I want, any time I want, an’ it does a fella good to cuss if he wants to.”
I’ve always been a voracious reader; not that it’s obvious from this blog. For some reason, words fail me when it comes to talking about books. I can say I liked something, or I didn’t like something, but it would feel like a bit of an insult to describe how the words of those more talented than I moved me, or inspired me.
The Grapes of Wrath is one of those books; the kind that you need to sit alone in a quiet room for a little while after finishing, listening to the sound of your breathing. It is raw, epic, honest, human. It makes you feel very small, but that it doesn’t matter because you’re connected to everybody else and together you can be something bigger. It is dramatic, powerful and above all extremely political – in the truest sense of the word, not in the sense of party politics.
It is inspirational. Just ask Bruce Springsteen.
In some ways the flipside of Woody Guthrie’s Bound for Glory, another dust bowl tale that’s one of my favourites, The Grapes of Wrath tells the story of the Joad family as they make their way from Oklahoma to California in search of work. More than that, it is a story about how hardship brings humanity together, and how the spirit cannot be broken while hope remains.
I loved it.
And More on Plan B magazine, and music press print vs. online, by publisher Frances Morgan (via Everett True).