WEDDINGS AND BEHEADINGS
Published by Faber and Faber Ltd
Dear Readers, my dispatches will always be free and open to everyone. I am unable to use my hands and I’m writing, via dictation, with the help of my family. If you could become a paid subscriber and support me, it’d mean so much
I have gathered the equipment together and now I am waiting for them to arrive. They will not be long; they never are.
You don't know me personally. My existence has never crossed your mind. But I would bet you've seen my work: it has been broadcast everywhere, on most of the news channels worldwide. Or at least parts of it have. You could find it on the net, right now, if you really wanted to. If you could bear to look.
Not that you'd notice my style, my artistic signature or anything like that.
I film beheadings, which are common in this war-broken city, my childhood home.
It was never my ambition, as a young man who loved cinema, to film such things. Nor was it my wish to do weddings either, though there are less of those these days. Ditto graduations and parties. My friends and I have always wanted to make real films, with living actors and dialogue and jokes and music, as we began to as students. Nothing like that is possible here.
Every day we are ageing, we feel shabby, the stories are there, waiting to be told, we're artists. But this stuff, the death work, it has taken over.
Naturally we didn't seek out this kind of employment. We were 'recommended' and we can't not do it; we can't say we're visiting relatives or working in the cutting room. They call us up with little notice at odd hours, usually at night, and minutes later they are outside with their guns. They put us in the car and cover our heads. Because there’s only one of us working at a time, the thugs help with carrying the gear. But we have to do the sound as well as the picture, and load the camera and work out how to light the scene. I’ve asked to use an assistance, but they only offer their rough accomplices and they know nothing, they can’t even wipe a lens without making a mess of it.
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