Special Edition Miniatures: The Personal Trials of Matt Zoller Seitz | MZS


“427: Ten years without Jen, twenty-six with”: Seitz offers thoughts on her marriage, and what followed. And “427” plays a strange role in that it’s both his address and the day his two wives died.

I try to be nice to people when they’ve messed up royally, and try to ask what’s going on in their personal lives before offering criticism or a reprimand, because I’ve spent quite a bit of time in to be called. the mat for my own mistakes without anyone considering there were real mitigating circumstances, and I know how much that can make a person feel. But here too, I’m not sure how much of it relates to Jen and how much it gets older and better rather than getting older and worse. Maybe losing Jen sped up the process. Or maybe it caught me where people are supposed to be in their 40s. The only thing I can say for sure is that when you give yourself permission to live– to collapse when you need it, to feel what you feel, to make mistakes and to own them, to forgive yourself what is recognizable to the human being, to repair blatant behavior insofar as such thing is possible, to let bad times and bad days roll over your back instead of masochistically marinating in them – you are going through it all with your sanity intact.


“The Last Fight of Smoky the Pig”: Seitz’s 2016 essay on “The Corinthians and the Rodent”.

I told them I asked my friend Alan Sepinwall to read this passage at Jen’s memorial because
it was at the center of Jen’s favorite scene from her favorite TV show, David Milch’s “Deadwood”:
the funeral of Will Bill Hickok. I told them that this passage was about the body as a metaphor for family or community, and how one part needs all other parts, even the smallest in appearance, and how everything is connected. Milch rewrote the Bible a bit, a perfectionist that he is, but I couldn’t find its exact wording, so I just read them the first decent halfway interpretation that appeared on Google: ‘The’ eye can’t hand say, ‘I don’t need you! And the head cannot say to the feet: “I don’t need you! On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think less honorable that we treat with special honor. And the unrepresentable parts are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts do not require any special treatment. But God brought the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there would be no division in the body, but its parts to have equal concern for one another. If one part suffers, each part suffers with it; if one part is honored, each part rejoices.


“Love You Madly: Dave Zoller, 1941-2020”: Seitz remembers his father, pianist, composer and arranger Dave Zoller.

His attention to detail as a performer and composer was legendary. Decades after computers simplified the composition process, Dave still wrote all of his graphics by hand, in a beautiful script that was instantly recognizable as Dave Zoller’s, from the dotted dots of his periods, to his science capitals- fiction E (three vertical bars, not sidebrace). He rarely had less than three groups in operation at the same time. Each has performed a different type of music, from New Orleans jazz and bebop to fusion and experimentation. The size varied from trios and quartets to sextets and large groups. His charts were so beautifully crafted that trombonist Tony Baker once said that when playing them he had no desire to play solo. At the start of his career, Dave was nicknamed “Captain Weird” for the offbeat imagination he displayed in his playing and composition. As he grew older, accumulating students, he began to be known by another name: the teacher. “They call him The Professor,” explained a local jazz bassist, “because every time you play with him you go to school.”

Song of the day

Seitz concluded the second chapter of his essay series, The Cruelest Month, with this song written by his late father, Dave Zoller, to his late mother-in-law, Genie Grant. It is called “Love Song to a Genie”.

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