In Paper Heart (which opens in select theaters today) Charlyne Yi travels across the country filming a documentary about love because she doesn’t believe it really exists. We interviewed Charlyne about her awkward encounters with kids and bikers, the thrill of winning a screenwriting award at Sundance, and her spot-on Michael Cera imitation. In the process of talking to her we started wondering: What do some of Flavorpill’s creative types think about the subject?
View the first round of responses here, and find some new responses from musicians, artists, and a 16-year-old filmmaker after the jump. Leave a comment with your own take on the topic to enter for a chance to win a Paper Heart prize pack (which includes a mini-poster, a journal, and the film’s soundtrack).
Photo credit: Crackerfarm
Odds are The One does not exist.
If there was ‘The One’ no one would probably ever find them. There are just too many of us out there. The idea is that if you find somebody you love, you should treat them as if there is nobody else out there. Love ain’t always easy but it’s worth it. It’s the best thing we’ve got!
The One should challenge you.
I studied the concept of love as an academic subject when I was in Rome in 2004. What I came to realize through philosophy is that love is an experience we have within ourselves. We are in love with the feelings we experience within ourselves that the relationship to the other catalyzes.
Through life experience, I know that there are these unexplainable reasons why we are magnetized to people — our instant and unexplainable chemical reactions to others. I love the intoxication of wanting to be around someone, and simultaneously feeling understood and usually the other person is feeling the same way. There is also the opposite of that, which is not wanting to be in the same room as someone. I am such an intense person, that I experience both.
The concept of love and the concept of The One constantly evolves for me, as I evolve, as I grow, as I heal. I think we are drawn to what will heal us. The One for me, is the experience of where I am simultaneously most challenged and most understood. It can be in my lover, professional partners, my best girlfriend, my studio mate, a random encounter with a stranger. The One for me, is a raw, present exchange of consciousness that illuminates understanding and fills me with laughter, fills me with vigor for life, and also penetrates my psyche to my deepest wounds, and wants to bring light and new perspective to my thinking and behavior.
I do not believe that there is only one person that fits us like a key. I believe we all hold keys that unlock different aspects of one another. I liked the message and energy of this song when thinking about The One:
– Justine Ashbee is a Seattle-based visual artist.
Photo credit: George Aizawa
Were you The One?
There are a few interesting things about Carmel, CA. For starters, Clint Eastwood used to be the mayor and he, thankfully, made it legal to eat ice cream in public, although it still remains technically illegal to wear high heels without a permit. More intriguing than the town’s fastidious laws and celebrity residents, however, is the man who died about a decade ago who is still talking about love.
I recently took a road trip along the West Coast with my mom and sister. Our last night was spent in Carmel where we stayed at a small seaside inn. The room, with its lattice windows and narrow entrance looked like it could have been the garage to the house at one time. Maybe some time in the ’60s the bathroom was added, the light fixtures were installed, and it was no longer a place for cars or tools, but a place for human dwelling: hair against pillows, skin grazing stucco walls in the dark, beach feet, kisses, a place for eyes to stare at the ceiling and slip into dreams about the nearby sea, the coral reef like jagged rows of candy or bones, depending on how you look at it.
Who knows how many people have spent time in that room, what they wished for or what kind of ice cream they ate on the corner, but we held a séance there and we made contact with a spirit.
We bought a spirit board at Barnes and Noble, so detailed (much more elaborate than your standard Ouiji board), that I had to read the manual to decode the symbols — fairies and gnomes and vines and pebbles — for half an hour before we started. By then I was ready to channel only the “good” spirits, as per the board’s instructions. The whole process was initially interrupted by my sister, Alyssa, accusing us of moving the thingy, but we weren’t, and soon we could actually feel a pull, like static electricity moving our hands.
What is your name? Spirit: M M what? Spirit: M Mike? Spirit: No Is M your first initial? Spirit: Yes
You are moving it! No. I’m not. I swear. Pass the wine.
What is your last initial? Spirit: G
See. I didn’t do that. Did you feel that?
Okay, MG. Did you die a long time ago? How many years ago? MG: 9
Are you sad? MG: Maybe What can you teach us about life, MG?
The board has a circle of words (emotions and virtues) written in delicate cursive letters. MG wastes no time.
MG: Love Love? That sounds good. So you are probably a good spirit. Good to know this board is keeping its promise. Were you ever in love? MG: Yes Is she still alive? MG: Yes What is her name? MG: Debbie
Debbie happens to be my mom’s name. He’d better not be hitting on her.
You once loved a Debbie? Not this Debbie, but just a Debbie, right? MG: Yes What do you want to tell us about love. MG: Give. Love. Give. Love. To who? MG: Debbie Where is she? MG: Far away. Do you know where? MG: No
MG is going crazy with love for Debbie. The thingy is being pulled in wide circles across the board over and over again, never landing on any word, letter or number, passing the word love, passing the “f” in far, the “a” in away. He’s driving us around and around. It appears he’s done talking.
Are you ready to say goodnight, MG? MG: Yes. Good. Are you there MG?
MG is gone — looking for Debbie from his invisible spirit world where he could never touch her even if he found her. There would be no bare feet, no lips, no eyes, no ice cream, no reef to swim to.
We should have asked more questions. Like what? Did she love you back?
I’ve met every last One.
Sure, I believe in ‘The One”… The one who told me rhinestoned lies, the one who got away, the one who is sitting behind concrete walls and steel bars, the one who promised everything and then delivered nothing, the one who really tried but couldn’t change, the one who drank himself half to death, the one who just didn’t know when to quit — I’ve met ’em all — every last ‘One.’
Finding The One is liking making a movie…
As a 16-year-old filmmaker and movie geek, I don’t think it’s a big surprise that I don’t have much experience in this department. In high school kids seem to go in and out of relationships faster than they get homework done.
Despite all that, I would have to say I believe in “The One.” I don’t think there’s any specific logic that I can recite to support this belief — except I don’t think there would be any chance of finding it if I didn’t believe in it. But this sort of thing isn’t so logical, is it? If there’s anything that translates from my movie-making to my personal life, I’d say it’s the importance of trusting your gut and following your heart.
– Emily Hagins is the young filmmaker chronicled in Zombie Girl: The Movie which screens at the 92Y Tribeca on October 2. She just finished her second feature, The Retelling, about two weeks ago. She’s currently working on an idea for a comedy with some friends.