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Monday, 27 February 2012

Sideways

.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c5/Mike_Tyson_at_SXSW_2011.jpg/777px-Mike_Tyson_at_SXSW_2011.jpg

Mike Tyson at SXSW
: photo by Eduardo Merille, 13 March 2011





Once people feared you as though you were a ferocious animal
And you were indeed every bit as ferocious as they said
But now that you are not a ferocious animal anymore
And are down to doing humiliating little things
Like fashioning balloon animals in a Vegas hotel lobby
Don't you ever feel like that's a little demeaning
For a former champion of the world

No because what you were doesn't exist
You are what you are
And I'm always going to be that person
I'm always that person that people thought I was
I feel like that person
I'm always that person
You change your life and get different troubles in your life
But I don't look at life like that
I could say everybody took advantage of me
Everybody screwed me so the heck with anybody else
But if I say that who's going to win?
The world's got a better "screw you" hand than you do
So you have to go at life with a positive attitude
And an upbeat personality
And just ask life to throw some humbleness upon you
Even if you were a ferocious animal at some other time
I don't know
The only thing I know is that life is good
And if I die five minutes from now
I'm still indebted to life
I still owe life
You know what I mean?





http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/07/Mike_Tyson.jpg

Mike Tyson in the ring at Las Vegas, Nevada
: photo by Ryan Lackey, 2 September 2006



Mike Tyson in the ring at Las Vegas, Nevada
: photo by Ryan Lackey, 2 September 2006

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/4/43/BalloonsColoredModellingOverhead.jpg/1024px-BalloonsColoredModellingOverhead.jpg

A balloon modeller's toolkit containing hundreds of colorful balloons in various sizes and hues
: photo by Jeremy Kemp, 19 August 2010

14 comments:

abadguide said...

Well said, Mike Tyson. I like his face in the top photograph and I like the picture where everything is blurred except Mike (I don't know how you do that).

Artur.

TC said...

This post is a sequel to Tyson: Savage God.


"I don't have that ferocity, I'm not an animal any more".

TC said...

Artur,

Yes, the James Toback film shows Tyson to be a surprisingly articulate, unusually self-aware and disarmingly honest fellow.

The exchange here is an approximate transcription (from a pocket radio) of an interview of quite recent vintage (i.e. some years subsequent to the film, dialogue-snatches of which I transcribed in the earlier Tyson post).

I found the Vegas balloon-modelling bit, in this latest interview, rather affecting.

We've been bandying about (without any actual knowledge) the technicalities of that photographic method of blurring out the backdrops. It is used to great effect by, for example, the terrific (and terrifically intrepid) young Tasmanian nature photographer JJ Harrison, who has generously put a great deal of his work in Creative Commons.

And in consequence it has been appearing here at intervals...

The Associate suggested you take a look, in regard to that blurred-backdrop effect, at this portfolio of Harrison's Birds of Tasmania and Queensland.

Hazen said...

"And if I die five minutes from now
I'm still indebted to life
I still owe life
You know what I mean?"

This moves the heart on a Monday morning. Mike Tyson clearly has something to give to the world . . . still . . . after everything. He’s one of those who’s going to be alive until the very last minute. Alive, as in muy vivo.

abadguide said...

I love JJ's photographs. So sharply focused and such beautiful birds.

In the Mike picture I was thinking of the motion blur. The only explanation I can think of is that the photographer must have swung his camera to the left a little bit to follow Mike, and thereby blurred everything but the horizontal ropes.

abadguide said...

Yes, too bad about the balloons.

STEPHEN RATCLIFFE said...

Tom,

what you were doesn't exist
You are what you are
And I'm always going to be that person
I'm always that person that people thought I was
I feel like that person
I'm always that person

--great stuff -- the film clip, "Tyson Savage God, and this. Yes, Hazen is right, "This moves the heart on a Monday morning."

2.27

light coming into sky above still black
ridge, bird standing on shadowed branch
in foreground, wave sounding in channel

because the moment in place,
the whole actual past

next to one, yet that which,
experience of picture

high thin white clouds in pale blue sky,
sunlit green of pine on tip of sandspit

Hazen said...

I wouldn't presume to say how Harrison does it, but the standard photographic technique for blurring the background in-camera is a combination of a long lens (telephoto) and a wide aperture. Camera to subject distance plays a part too. In these days of Photoshop magic, there must be other ways, but Photoshop is an ocean into which I've only dipped a tentative toe.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Very fine piece, ear for dialogue, great title.

Reading Blyth at the moment on Zen and, it seems, I continue to read it here - or I should say feel it here - in Mike's not just generous words but his actions.

Balloon-making - bless him of, more precisely, he has been blessed.

thanks, Tom.

Robb said...

So much of his story embodies what I think of this country. That things have turned this way is a bit of a surprise, and a pleasant one. Could have turned down much darker alleys - and certainly did for a while.

At his peak, there was nobody I'd rather have watched. Holyfield was headbutting him without penalty and got what he deserved!

manik sharma said...

Tom,
The fight is bigger than ever...and the dog in it at its weakest...

wonderful post..

TC said...

Headbutting the Buddha

no good

for ear

Chris said...

Socrates: Shall I return to your old argument about the opinions of men, some of which are to be regarded, and others, as we were saying, are not to be regarded? Now were we right in maintaining this before I was condemned? And has the argument which was once good now proved to be talk for the sake of talking; in fact an amusement only, and altogether vanity? That is what I want to consider with your help, Crito: whether, under my present circumstances, the argument appears to be in any way different or not; and is to be allowed by me or disallowed. That argument, which, as I believe, is maintained by many who assume to be authorities, was to the effect, as I was saying, that the opinions of some men are to be regarded, and of other men not to be regarded. Now you, Crito, are a disinterested person who are not going to die to-morrow- at least, there is no human probability of this, and you are therefore not liable to be deceived by the circumstances in which you are placed. Tell me, then, whether I am right in saying that some opinions, and the opinions of some men only, are to be valued, and other opinions, and the opinions of other men, are not to be valued. I ask you whether I was right in maintaining this?

Crito. Certainly.

TC said...

Most definitely. And the inference of the weasely talkshow guy re. the demeaning aspect of the balloon twisting indicated (to me) a deep misunderstanding of the nature of humility -- and of need.