Posted by panch from ? (220.127.116.11) on Thursday, May 16, 2002 at 5:52PM :
...What the hell were you THINKING!!! Where do you come off handing me that ridiculous contract...the one Jackie put out on me cause I wouldn't put out? Was that you and your wife working alongside me for three years to create the monument of Hammurabi...or was I working alone? Was that the two of you who paid up $5,000 to help finish another part of the Shumirum,or wasn't it? Was that the two of you who visited and broke bread with us and whom we stayed with in Detroit, or some other Chaldean Assyrian couple? Was that you who backed a person,out of loyalty, who is now suing one of best goddamned young men you DON'T deserve...is THIS how you serve us???
Is this how Assyrians keep faith with one another and keep their eyes on a prize worth spit? Long after whatever deal you all made comes to fruition and is forgotten the next day...that monument that we had already spent three years on and $90,000 of my money on...hooked and interested several people on...written articles and appeared before people to speak on...long after whatever the hell you hoped to achieve working with those Cannibals is long gone and forgotten...if it EVER comes to pass...those monuments would have been there to inspire and move and teach our own children and others.
Was it worth it? Was it so damn important that only the desirefor a momentary gain rose to the top of that heap of garbage we are making of Assyria?
We have all made mistakes...and we have been, and we will yet pay for all of them...several times over. But...in the spirit we should have had then...let's set our personal pain and differences aside and work like real grown ups for the future of our children and their children.
I'm 54 years old...I'll work till I drop dead. But it gets harder to make monuments...a lot of weight, a lot of lifting and turning and standing or crouching or kneeling for long hours. The hands seize up, the fingers turn to claws...the eyesight grows weaker...but the heart grows stronger. I have over 20 years of serious experience in making the kind of sculpture we made back then...and can make now. Whether you want to admit it or not...you don't have many or any like me. More's the pity..and if you aren't careful, no one after me will ever again think of working with the kinds of savages I've had to put up with.
Can you people find no better use for me than to put out a contract on me for THAT reason of all things...and for THAT person?
What has to happen now...has to happen. That's an invaluable lesson too...one that wont soon be forgotten...as I think now everyone wishes they had put down their steroids and hormones and thought a little before hand.
Let's still do the right thing..let's rise from the fire we immolated ourselves in...as we always do when there are no Turks or Muslims around to blame. As the Lamasu and the Phoenix Bird too rise from their ashes...let's bounce right back and do something positive...not because we like each other, but because we HAVE to.
The idea that I set out to cheat people...to fudge the facts for a few hundred bucks is an insult to all of you,,not me. It has nothing do with me but more with the petty merchant's mentality we all seem to have.
Let me come to the convention in Detroit. Tell me ahead of time what I can expect and DON'T tell me later that my invitation was not from "god"!! For God's sake...as Alladin's thugs did in Chicago. And I don't give a good flying fuck if Alladin IS "your" vice president and you have to be "loyal" to him. Find a better place to put your loyalties in for god's sake than in an uneducated lout who owns a gas station or two..are you INSANE??? Am I now supposed to please a grease monkey TOO!!!
I want to come and display the Lamasu model...I want a chance..a REAL chance to tell the people...to inform and educate and inspire the people...to give them some reason to hope for better from us in the future. ENOUGH of this nonsense...your AANF will fall into itself like the house of cards it is if you don't take some serious action soon.
And DON'T tell me to drop any lawsuits as a pre-condition if I expect to come and MAKE MONEY! Fuck you and your MONEY! Let people see us setting aside the personal, even to this atrocious language...and working together as if we really understood something about our status and what we need to do in order to bring our children into the struggle. Stop catering to antiquarian ex-politicians we all know have done nothing but embarrass us...not to mention certain other unmentionables.
I don't make "trouble"...I FIGHT BACK when people try to trouble my work...try to hijack projects, of a type and caliber they can't hope to compete with...no matter how many fashion or talent shows they run "successfully". Those things are important,of course...but do you mean to tell me that only a docile and petrified and quaking artist is what we want? That's fine for living rooms and art shows in the back basement of third rate motels...do you seriously think that level of ability will take us anywhere out there?
Anyway. I will, as always, conduct myself civily...so long as no thugs approach me with preemptory orders and commands "or else". If you bring me there to further humiliate us...I will never forget it as long as you live.
If you can make a promise...set a goal and keep it no matter who threatens to collapse on your doorstep...then ask me by all means. But this time...send the "contract" BEFORE the last night...before I even leave here.
I want to show...to make us proud...don't humiliate me first as a pre-condition to allowing me to show others "pride"...doesn't work that way. I want the right to choose the best space...believe me I am reasonable as you should have known already. There will be those who will be furious with you if you consider such a thing...they will want to know where your sense of loyalty went to...they will cry and stamp their feet and threaten to return to their gas stations and restaurants and trucks and taxis. So which is it to be...are we to be a people who will rise up on the backs of day laborers and louts...or can we do better than that?
I of course mean to raise funds...what did you THINK? You think any Assyrian artist is getting RICH??? Are you CRAZY??? We can barely survive in the world and get our worst treatment at the hands of our own "community". And on TOP of that you want to charge US!!!
I'll be goddamned if I'll give you a kick-back either...shame on you for ever having made up that lie..a lie that slanders the very weak name of the AANF left over from the sharks circling around us during Sargon's miserable reign.. You don't like my opinions??? Too Bad!!! Learn to deal with controversy like human beings and not like what YOU think Assyrians have to be. We do NOT have to act like Hottentots on a bad day.
I will NOT be a guest of your federation...I don't even want the discount you have to hand out so people will come and be "proud"..of the reduced rates they got for the greater glory of Assyria. maybe someday people will gladly pay a surcharge willingly..not have it extracted out of their noses as a pre-condition so someone can rake in a bigger haul.
And another thing...while you're at it...invite Rabel Shmoel to show his work, ESPECIALLY the Purple Painting and apologize to him on behalf of ALL of us for the shabby way he was treated without even a peep out of you all. That was the biggest insult ever to our Heritage....we don't expect the thugs of ZOWAA to understand proper behavior in a country not yet run by thugs...but surely you can do the right thing.
And apologize to Walter Ebrahimzadeh as well for the awful way he was treated in Los Angeles when he was accused by one of YOUR officials and in front of the Hotel Security people of stealing his own merchandize. I have no truck with Walter's religion...being Assyrian is all I am...but he IS Assyrian anyway, inspite of Yahweh and his kid...that was shameful...horrible.
You want respect? EARN it. Unbend enough to do the right thing instead of marching blindly on to ruin and destruction and humiliation in the stupid belief that a MAN has to be a STUPID man to be a man at all...an Assyrian one especially.
And if you do all of that...you might have more then ten thousand boobs jiggling and several arses wiggling and all to the greater glory of ATOUR.
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