October 2nd, 2021

The Many Saints of Newark

Fitful night’s sleep.

At first, I thought that was responsible for my mood, but now I’m thinking, No, what you’re feeling is Early Onset Seasonal Affective Disorder. This complete lack of mental engagement. This belief in my own irrelevance. This revelation that any sort of relevance is only busy work designed to muffle the steady tick-tick-tick of the doomsday clock.

You kinda have to ignore it.

You kinda have to force yourself to turn on the Happy Light, force yourself to pop the vitamins, force yourself to exercise.

Because what’s the alternative?

But damn! Seasonal Affective Disorder is checking in early this year.


I read somewhere that climate change is actually affecting autumn.

Leaves around here have not begun changing color yet, though I’ve noticed many trees have leaves with dry, dead edges. The leaves are going brown, not orange.

Anyway, since I can’t afford to become catatonic, I went to the movies yesterday.

Movies have aways provided a reliable reset button for me.

Not watching them on a monitor or TV. But going into an actual movie theater and watching them them on a large screen in a big, black room, preferably while gobbling a big bag of Raisrnets.

I saw The Many Saints of Newark.

I liked it! Though I think it would be more-or-less incomprehensible to anyone who isn’t seeped in Sopranos canon.

It’s the story of Dickie Moltosanto, Christopher’s father, though a young Tony Soprano—played by James Gandolfini’s son—plays a prominent role.

Despite the film’s disjointedness, I think it does answer an important question that many of us have when we watch The Sopranos—namely: Why do we continue to feel such sympathy, even affection, for Tony when he’s such a monster?

Young Tony in Many Saints is a smart kid who’s more-or-less normal except for the fact that he’s growing up around psychopaths and mirroring their behavior.

In contrast, characters like Dickie and (later) Christopher are not normal. There’s something inside them that causes them to go from pleasant to psychopathic rage in something under a second. They accelerate like human Ferraris!

We feel sympathy, affection, and ultimately compassion for Tony because even before Many Saints, we sensed his bad behavior was rooted in nurture, not nature. Crossposted from Dreamwidth.