Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Andy Kaufman

Andy Kaufman is one of the most fascinating characters in the history of entertainment.

Last night I got to listen to Marc Maron's interview with Bob Zmuda (Andy's best friend, partner, and writer) on Marc's WTF Podcast, and it served to further fuel my fascination with Andy.

I first heard about Andy Kaufman from the biopic Man on the Moon, which I mostly watched because R.E.M. did the soundtrack for the movie, and I was a big fan of theirs at the time.

I honestly don't know how many 15-year-olds would sit down and watch a 2-hour biopic, but I was hooked from the very start. I don't know how accurate the movie's portrayal of Andy was (there's a lot of controversy about that from many people who knew Andy personally), but the version I was presented with really captured my imagination and resonated with me.

Andy seemed to me like a person who realized how much of the world is bullshit, and rather than becoming bitter about it he just found it funny. That, at least, is the part I related to most.

Andy Kaufman inspired a lot of people with his unique approach to entertainment. I don't know if anybody can say they really "got" him, but I think if you explore who Andy was and watched him for a while you could probably take away something from the experience, something that would provide a new, valuable perspective on life.

I hope people never stop talking about Andy Kaufman, wondering what he did, what he meant, and what he knew that we didn't. It feels weird to resonate with someone who died before I was born, assuming he is, in fact, dead.

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