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Re: some thoughts on Ted's queeries about art and self esteemand, oh yeah, looping

Title: Re: some thoughts on Ted's queeries about art and self est
First, a question:  What's a "queery"?

At 7:28 PM -0800 11/18/04, loop.pool wrote:
Hey Ted,
You wrote:
"Mr. Self-Esteem Problem here. Heheh. Actually I got into looping
(way back when, 30 years ago, with tape delays) BECAUSE of low

Interesting. I got into "looping" (actually a 4-track version of Terry Riley's "time lag accumulator") as a format for group improvisation (mostly duos with Bob Beede, back in 1976-77 at Cabrillo.

Most of the digital looping I've done in more recent years (ca. 1987-99) was in duo and group situations, though of necessity I started doing some solo gigs DJ-style when some opportunities came up (Loopstock, Woodstockhausen, Y2K2) and I was without a band.

"In other words, I was a misfit. I have often wondered over the years
just how much creative/industrious activity in the West was often
just the result of certain individuals drive/hunger to "compensate" for
a perceived personal "lack" in some other area -- misfits desperately
trying to "fit in" and find/found/forge a place for themselves in a
cruelly mocking and ever-threatening world.. "

That's one way to look at it. Another way is to accept one's role as a "changeling" and forge ahead with the inner assurance that one is somehow "special." Of course this can be just another manifestation of what Ted's talking about - an overcompensation that can lead to egotism and arrogance. If one is lucky and cultivates wisdom then one might just pass through to a nicely balanced feeling of self-assurance and even performerly generosity.

This was nicely put by Donovan in his song "There Was a Time":

There was a time I thought of mine only
Could it be occurred to me while lonely
I was noble personage
born to beautify the page.
If I used my time to set it down.

There was a time I thought of mine only
Could it be occurred to me while lonely
I was of high lineage
cast up in a dreadful age
born to be the hermit of my time.

On a windy Saturday
St. Alban's market day
Little did I know
the work I was to do
or the love I had to show.

"1. Does being a "misfit" generate low self-esteem or vice versa."

Often it comes from being smarter than most people but not realizing it yet.

"2. Does low self-esteem come from internal sources or external?"

Internal reactions to the external.

I believe that low self esteem results from poor or neglectful parenting or even abuse (and I consider abandoment or the teaching of young children not to have extreme emotions an abuse) during childhood, personally, coupled with
a pervasive cultural perspective.

It can also come from impersonal trauma such as an illness or accident.

I once asked a very wise elder woman I know why our culture didn't respect its elders. She said "You cannot respect someone who does not respect you".   She said that because our cultural is so dysfunctionalthat a whole generation of young people have grown up (and continue to grow up) without any sense of what maturity is.

To paraphrase the son of a Blackpool jailbird: "Pick your children well."

There are a lot of ignorant and useless slackers out there and it's probably not worth the effort to reach out to most of them, but there are also a lot of youngsters with promise. My approach is to find a few good ones and give energy to them. Then they can take care of their less-motivated peers.


Richard Zvonar, PhD      
(818) 788-2202