Agustín Fernández Mallo

from nocilla dream: 79

the nomad makes a hearth around an idea. The great nomads are those with fixed, immovable ideas, then they leave behind people, leave behind cities. When Michael Landon arrived at Fox’s studios, very late, he was tired; the house was cold, and a mess, and devoid of any character. A few hand-me-down pieces of furniture. The rubbish bin overflowing. Recording the fifth season of Freeway to the Sky had consumed his whole capacity for nomadism; the house now became the refuge that every traveller, sooner or later, needs. He poured himself a whiskey, no ice, picking a pornographic video from the shelves at random. As the tape began to go round he heated up a sandwich he’d brought from catering. A woman ran through a forest with two men pursuing her, eventually collapsing, exhausted, at the foot of a tree, where she allowed herself to be penetrated. He wasn’t focusing overly on the tape. When he woke up the credits were rolling, and according to them the exteriors had been filmed in a forest in the State of Nevada, the same forest where he, twenty years earlier, had set an episode of Little House on the Prairie, 1972, he remembered, nostalgia washing over him: the oil crisis, Berkeley a hotbed, Bertolucci coming out with Last Tango in Paris, the Israeli athletes kidnapped and put to death by Palestinian commandoes at the Munich Olympics, Nixon visiting china—the first US president to do so—Susan Sontag’s Against Interpretation. He fell asleep again on the sofa. That night was the most nomadic of all: he took as his hearth the definitive idea, the only one that isn’t willed: death.