The Sexy Wizard

Today was the first day I walked after falling into the grave and it didn’t go well. My ankle didn’t hurt. It just didn’t work. I was lurching around the neighborhood like some kind of horror movie zombie. Finally, finally towards the end it hurt in a way that suggested that it still had some flexibility in it. But man, I tell you, I was afraid it was just going to seize up on me and petrify and that would be the end of it.

I’m probably going to have to make sure they have a stool or something at the Southern Festival of Books on Sunday (1:30, Chapter 16 stage) because I’m not sure it’ll hold me for a whole hour and I’m not sure it’ll give me any warning about when it’s about to give out.

I was suspicious, the moment I fell, that this was too easy. That’s the ankle I jacked the fuck up in grad school and, by the end of that, all of the doctors agreed they should have just broken it and set it so it would heal right. I honestly expected, when I fell, for that fucker to have shattered into a million pieces. It held, but apparently because every ligament and tendon is tough and inflexible and unforgiving now.

On the one hand, good. On the other hand, I wonder if I should be doing those old foot twists just to try to get some mobility back.

I was working on my Ben and Sue Allen piece for the Scene which hopefully they will like and watching the Americana Music Awards in the background and Robert Plant came out on stage and kissed everyone. Most stunningly, he looked old. Like delightfully and wonderfully old. His skin has thickened up on his face and he’s got some wonderful creases in his cheeks. His eyes look wrinkly and his skin is kind of ruddy.

It’s one thing to kind of know everyone on TV gets work done. It’s another thing to see someone who’s letting his face be a lot more natural (I don’t know that he’s never had anything done) than most men his age in Celebrity-ville do. It was refreshing to see it.

He looked good. And lord almighty, he still wiggles like a fucking sex good.

But he looked human. He looked like an old man in a way that read to me as vital and assured and knowledgeable. And kind of bad ass in a way that took me aback when I realized that’s what I was feeling.

I just can’t think of a lot of Celebrity-ville dudes that grow old in a way that feels so vital and artistic to me. They seem to become parodies of themselves. I guess, like my ankle, they stiffen up into what they think their audience expects.

But Plant, on stage, came across as truly delighted by this new stuff he’s doing. Honestly, I think Americana is a good fit for him.

And I swear, when he thanked Gillian Welch and David Rawlings for letting him use their studio? Oh, lord, I had a vision of him and Welch singing together. I don’t know what they would sing. But I feel like there’s a sharp edge they both can put into their voices that makes me wonder if there’s not some bluegrass song out there they could blow my mind with.

Oh, lord.

Let me just toss this out there. Robert Plant and Gillian Welch doing “It’s Just the Night.”

Too obvious? Or perfect?

7 thoughts on “The Sexy Wizard

  1. I met Robert Plant a year or so ago when he came in to my bar while I was working. He stood right by the server station so I was a few feet from him on and off for about an hour (and thus examining him from the corner of my eye). He just looks like a person in real life. If I didn’t know who he was I’d say he was a an older guy who radiated kindness and charisma and little something made you kind of want to rub up against him. He was very nice to every one at the bar and paid for his own Guinness with bills from his own pocket, furthering the “he’s just a guy” impression.

  2. Eh, different strokes for different folks. Robert Plant never looked sexy to me, and he doesn’t now. But at least he didn’t end up looking like Joan Plowright, as so many English men do, including Jimmy Page. And I do appreciate the way that his looks keep changing, as if to indicate that he himself keeps changing. Which is an admirable thing for an artist to do.

  3. Crackerjackheart, that’s good to hear. You know my fear about finding out people whose art I enjoy are fuckers in some way that ruins their art for me.

    NM, I think that’s part of what I really like. Something about letting your face change says to me that you find the changes humans make interesting, that you, yourself, are interested in changing and seeing what happens.

  4. Robert Plant looks distinguished. That’s the only proper word I can find. He’s an elder statesman English gentleman.

    Here’s another: Robert Redford. His face is like leather.

    And although I suspect he’s had some work done, Sean Penn. I could honestly mute a movie in which Penn is featured and watch his facial expressions. Like in “Mystic River” — the scene where he arrives where his daughter’s body is found. The sheer movement of his face is a fine work of art.

  5. Beth, did you see him in “Milk”?–Especially the scene dramatizing the assassination of Harvey Milk, the expression on his face as he sees the opera house for the last time… work of art, indeed.

  6. @daisy yes – I did. I watch everything Sean Penn is in. Yes – his performance in that movie was phenomenal – he transformed himself. Finest actor of his generation – perhaps one of the finest actors that ever lived.

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