Here’s my friend John Andre Bernardin II looking very pleased with his sculpture thing.
It’s all well and good that’s he pleased with himself, but sometimes success is too much too soon. Now that Johnny has succeeded, Johnny has the Bends. Johnny thinks he can do anything.
Soon enough, Johnny tries to direct a movie, and miraculously a studio decides to pick it up. Riding this insurmountable surge of momentum, Johnny’s new movie is gonna be a hit.
And boy, does this thing smash box office records. Johnny’s movie becomes the most successful indie movie of all time, being hailed as “visionary” and “innovative”. Even the most cynical people must admit its brilliance.
Johnny thinks to himself a lot now. Between the parties, the women, the money, the drugs, and the fame, The Bends in full force. Johnny thinks, “Am I really sinking…. thiiiiis slow?”. His new lifestyle haunts him. Once a simple man, Johnny can’t go a few seconds without sniffling, regardless of the time of year. His sunglasses he never uses are gold crusted. His cereal is dusted with silver sugar. His wings are coated in gucci sauce.
But that’s where the Bends come into play.
A meeting comes up with the studio that gave him a shot at this whole thing- a clause in the contract that was signed is brought up, completely shocking Johnny.
Turns out that if the film made a certain amount of money, the studio gets to keep a much bigger cut of the profit than was originally intended. Now, all that money Johnny spent on his black card, he owes to the studio.
Johnny falls apart. His life is ruined. He’s now a slave to the crippling debt above his head, with no Abraham Lincoln coming to emancipate him.
5 years later, you can find Johnny on Beach and Talbert begging for money outside of the Weinerschnitzel. His life ruined by success. The Bends.
Maybe he shouldn’t have put those sticks together.
Note: This is part 1 of my “The Bends” series where I predict the future of my fellow Barons. Stay tuned!