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August 2, 2010 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Engaging with the Innards of Philosophy

The man, the myth, the nondescript European accent. Tommy Wiseau made a bold step when he chose schadenfreude softcore porn over the more traditional ‘treatise’ as the vehicle for his philosophical magnum opus, but his choice was the right one. The written philosophical essay has always been lacking the spice of fake pregnancies and plastic spoons in glass frames (except for Baudrillard, who wrote frequently of his love for plastic cutlery and regularly challenged his detractors to prove that he wasn’t “up the duff”).

At last we have a modern philosopher who has the boldness to embrace modern media to show the banality of modern thought.

Lesser men may have removed the ‘smooth jazz’ soundtrack, and potentially wouldn’t have had their female characters comment on their “pecks”. Even Nietzsche would have branched out beyond just the missionary position. But these lesser men could not have created The Room (Nietzsche probably could have, but there would have been some full-frontal male nudity and a lot more spoons).

This week’s column probably won’t ‘teach’ you anything. But you don’t need to ‘know’ anything in the world of Tommy Wiseau. He’ll take care of you. He’s a great guy.

This week… Tommy Wiseau (Surrealist philosopher/“hobby” psychologist)

To honour this man I shall submerge myself in the behaviour of ‘Johnny’ from his film The Room, basing my every decision for one day on an honest interpretation of what Johnny would do in these situations. Hopefully, by doing so, the power of the Tommy Wiseau doctrine will become evident.

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: 9:47:31 am
Must get up early today, so many things to do. Johnny is great business man and I must get into the mind of the man, but first I must start with yoga. Being in good shape is very important to Johnny. “We should all strive to be beautiful and in love,” he would say. I order a pizza.

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: 10:00:11 am
I get dressed but I do not own the clothing of Wiseau—spray-on leather pants are the only way to truly understand his character—so I buy them.

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: 07:19:27 PM
Why does no one understand my accent?! Sometimes I’m always being misquoted. It’s not fair. YOU’RE TEARING ME APART, WORLD!

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: Is not my strongpoint
Meet my friend Mark for coffee but something seems wrong, he keeps asking me why I’m calling him Mark when “I’ve never met you before and I’m clearly a woman.” Ha ha ha, what a funny story, Mark!

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: for the making of love
Music: R. Kelly—’Bump’n’Grind’
You must buy flowers for your loved one, that shows how much you love, and be loved. I take her to our upscale loft (which looks suspiciously like a dowdy flat in Mount Cook) and up into our bedroom (which looks suspiciously like either an outhouse or a miniature Meth lab). But suddenly my friend/son?/whatever Denny walks through the front door.
“Hi yo, what are you up to?”
“Oh we’re just enjoying the candles,” I said, trying to highlight the romantic mood in a hint for him to ‘amscray’.
“What candles?” He can be so silly—with his stockings and his fake breasts.
“Listening to the music.”
“What music?” Denliette has always been partially deaf.
“Don’t you like her pretty dress?”
“We can answer all these questions in the morning, goodnight Denny.”
Finally that caught her attention, but I could hear her mumble something along the lines of “whatever, damn cracker flatmate, knew that stupid movie was going to fry his little brain…” as she walked away.

Day: Tommy Wiseau
Time: Intervention… Wait, what?
I walk into my office at the Bank, but I don’t remember it being this small, or this full of hipsters.
“Hey boss, what’s everyone doing in my office, did I get that big promotion?”
“What promotion? There is no promotion, this isn’t your office, and you’re not Tommy Wiseau!”
“But I save them bundles. They’re crazy if they think they can make the bundles without me!”
“You’re the crazy, you’ve gone too far this time, we let it slide when you tried to hogtie the VUWSA exec to a replica of the HMS Pinnafore because you were trying to ‘get into the mind of Gandhi’, but this is too much.”
“Does Lisa know about this?”
“There is no Lisa, she is a character from a movie that you watched ONCE and seem to think you’re in.”
“But Lisa, Denny, spoons, smooth jazz… Oh god, what have I become?”
“It’s okay, we’ll get you help… or alcohol, depending on what’s in this bottle.”

As they filled my mouth with stale Vermouth, I realised that during this edition of the ever-popular ‘Engaging with the Innards of Philosophy’ series we may have been too quick to accept Mr Wiseau as a philosopher of the highest order. Maybe he’s not the saviour of contemporary thought. Maybe The Room wasn’t meant to be funny. But at least we know one thing for sure: he’s better than that prat Slavoz Zizek.


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