Monday, November 3, 2008

An Interview with Jed Wells

I thought I'd share this little Q&A that I did for a local magazine with very limited circulation. Chances are you would never be able to read it otherwise:

MM: Thanks for meeting with me today. It's a busy time of year and I know you're buried as it is with work and raising 3 kids all by yourself.

JW: Well, I am busy, that's true. But I should give some credit to my wife who really does help a lot with the kids. Just to be fair.

MM: How gracious of you.

JW: Well... (coughs).

MM: So, did you get a chance to see Christopher Clark's stage adaptation of Nosferatu over the weekend over at the UVU?

JW: You know, I did. And it blew the brains right out of my head.

MM: How do you mean? Was it that bad?

JW: On the contrary, it was freaking amazing. One of the most imaginative things I've ever seen in live theater. It was like Michel Gondry live, sans all the idiosyncratic Gondry-isms, making it a little easier to follow. It's a shame, in fact, that it's over since I think everyone should have seen it.

MM: He's a relation of yours, isn't he? Mr. Clark, that is.

JW: He is my wife's cousin, yes.

MM: Isn't this fake interview a shameless rip-off of his recent post about a bat and one of your wife's latest posts on her blog, too?

JW: I don't see how that's any of your business.

MM: Mmm-hmm. New topic.

JW: I'd appreciate that.

MM: It's been rumored that people don't know what it is you do for a living. Care to shed any light on the subject?

JW: My nine-to-five has me titled a Graphic Designer. I work for a company in Provo where I design web pages, banner ads and other mind-numbing shnackle. Sometimes a project will come along that is stimulating in one way or another, but mostly I wade through the drudgery by drawing pictures, watching YouTube, and listening to audiobooks. It's just cozy enough that I feel guilty complaining about it, but it always takes some time for the idealist to die in any artist's soul. At home, though, I get to do some fun work as a freelancer.

MM: Why don't you quit your day job and start freelancing full time?

JW: Why don't you mind your own business?

MM: I've heard you were thinking of voting left on Tuesday. Is that true?

JW: That's the direction I'm leaning, yes.

MM: Isn't it also true that you are a practicing Mormon?

JW: Well, the term "Mormon" is something of a misnomer, but yes, that is also true.

MM: So then, are you going to get in any trouble with your church for voting in opposition to its defined tenets?

JW: Hmmm... I was under the impression that the Church's clearly defined tenet was neutrality in politics.

MM: That's not what I've heard.

JW: Well, I'm sorry to hear that.

MM: I'm sorry to hear that you're going to hell for voting outside of the Church's party.

JW: Yeah, see... I think this is where you've heard wrong.

MM: I'm just saying that it's unrighteous to consider anything other than the currently defined or accepted standard of the conservative view.

JW: I tend to think it's not quite righteous to condemn someone who has carefully, and even prayerfully, investigated another side of an issue that doesn't match your own. Are we not the same group that prays every day that the world will open their minds and hearts to our message which doesn't happen to match theirs?

MM: That has nothing to do with politics.

JW: Maybe not, but it has a lot to do with narrow-- dare I say-- closed-mindedness. And what are we if not the world's largest collection of hypocrites if we are unwilling to open our minds to other views. Is it possible, too, that even if the Republican party traditionally represents the values we espouse as Latter-day Saints, the current candidate chosen by that party may not? Are we then to blindly cast our vote to them because we "feel bad" voting somewhere else? That's not righteousness, that's ingorance.

MM: Are you calling me ignorant?

JW: Not at all, provided you have a reason besides intolerance for voting the way you do. I'm thrilled if you're freaking writing in a candidate so long as you know why. But I will say that a biased, uninformed, self-righteous vote for a canditate that you don't know much about but who fits your ill-conceived notion of what you "should" be doing, is ignorant, and I'm seeing a lot of that here in Utah Valley. I have no party ties and declare no allegiances, but I do think that refusal to reason it out fairly is deplorable.

MM: Well, I think you're ugly.

JW: Duly noted.

MM: New topic. Did "No Country for Old Men" deserve to win Best Picture last year.

JW: Absolutely. It was close to perfect.

MM: Wasn't it sort of violent?

JW: Yes, it was.

MM: I heard you're going to hell if you watch violent movies.

JW: I'm going to hell anyway, so I'll let you know when I get there.


  1. Great post and all that jazz . . .
    You're just leaning left because you are afraid Marky Mark will kick your butt if you don't vote Obama.

    Hey, this interview reminds me of a scene in 32 Short Films about Glenn Gould where he interviews himself.

  2. i don't know what you're inferring.

  3. I need to find a job that allows me time to interview myself...

  4. Does this mean you're voting for Jarvis?

  5. i'm not at liberty to discuss family politics at this time (as i never know who is trolling these things-- remember when i had to delete a post about a certain film i had worked on...?)

    but i should clarify and say that i'm not casting an entirely left vote. that would defy my motives in creating... er... sitting for this interview.

  6. Yeah, if you vote straight left you'll miss out on voting for super Dell, and that will REALLY send you to hell.

    I know who I'm voting for in the big races, in the state wide ones and the amendments I'm just going to close my eyes and touch the screen.

  7. Jed,
    I also saw Nosferatu. Amazing. Not to mention the design you did for it (and the other UVU productions) was amazing.

    I remember a time when you yourself were a left leaning chap. What happened?


    loved your photographs for nosferatu. how did you get involved in that? are you at UVU now? where are you? what happened to you?

  9. Walters, welcome back old friend, welcome back.

    Hmmm, it would take too long to explain why I've switched from liberal to conservative--and I really don't want to do that here right now. One big factor was the the fact that I started listening to country music while I lived in North Carolina. After that it was all down hill. Another big factor was that I allowed myself to listen to conservative positions whereas I had never really done that seriously in high school or even as an undergraduate. What probably put the nail in the coffin was reading lots of economics books and improving my understanding of free markets and negative unintended consequences of government regulation and taxation.

  10. "What probably put the nail in the coffin was reading lots of economics books and improving my understanding of free markets and negative unintended consequences of government regulation and taxation."

    HAH! Gotcha!

    That's how it always happens, and...wait, why did I vote for Obama?

  11. Oh yes, my Glenn Gould comment was referring to the fact that both of you seem like eccentric creative geniuses.

    So who is MM? The Magical Mr. Mistoffelees? Molly McButter? Molly Mormon? Master Mahan?