Justin Hall had a breakdown and taped it. Warning - this is raw stuff. I made smaller [12 MB] versions of his 10 minute video here:


My comments from the videoblogging list:

I was very sad to see Justin's video.

I first heard that he took his home page down, which was strange.
Then I saw pics of him crying on Flickr, and finally this video.

I don't think I've ever in my life seen anything so raw, direct, and honest. It almost puts Jonathan Caouette's "Tarnation" to shame. It makes me extremely uncomfortable. Obviously it's not about my comfort, it's about anguish and anodyne.

Justin is something of a web hero to me (and many) - he made the web infinitely more exciting when I discovered him. He's the first personal blogger, in spirit at least. Yeah, and really happy and cool in person. The ancestor to "Blogumentary" is a documentary called "Home Page" which centers around Justin.

On several ocassions I've had people say, "I'm not going to tell you that, you'll blab about it on your blog." People aren't used to having their relationships and words be publicly available. I'm actually a somewhat private person - I sure don't put everything on my blog or vlog. Justin's video shows us the
emotional danger of living your life publicly. He's always been on the cutting edge, living his life almost as an online experiment. Finding the limits of connection, and disconnection.

I prefer moderation and mystery for myself...

Happier Justin:

January 17, 2005 at 02:23 PM in Weblogs | Permalink


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"So what if intimacy happens in quiet moments? And if you're so busy talking and searching and looking and crying and yelling and-- You won't ever find it."

I thought the video was art, and I liked it, and because of that it didn't really make me sad (although I am maybe a little worried, for this complete stranger). Like he said to his friend, at least he's making media out of it.

The problem is that he's asking himself if it'll "always" be this way and that no one will "ever" like him. That is totally the way depressed people talk to and about themselves. And it's totally counterproductive.

This was really interesting to me because lately I've been learning to cope with my fear of being alone. I've always had a boyfriend, or been just breaking up with one, or starting things up with a new one, or, occasionally, nominally single but in "shark girl" mode, always always looking, alert.

I realized that deep down, I have a fear of being the last person on earth.

This next part is platitudinal, but, in order to get over one's fear of being alone, you have to accept the distinct possibility that you may always be alone. You might be seventy and alone, for example. You have to embrace it.

Posted by: Crystal at Jan 17, 2005 8:32:43 PM

Crystal, I'm officially changing your Teenage Scientist name to "Dr. Shark." Izzat okay?

Posted by: Jonathan at Jan 17, 2005 9:31:10 PM

Only if we ROCK ONCE MORE!!!


Posted by: Crystal at Jan 17, 2005 10:16:36 PM

Um. I apologize for the slight inappropriateness of that remark, given the context.

Posted by: Crystal at Jan 17, 2005 10:17:09 PM

Only if we change the name of our band to "Shark Girl Mode"!
Actually that has more of a side project-feel.

I knew you'd have something good to say about Justin.
I think some people in his comments were saying he probably needs to get some help, but a lot of people are all, "You don't understand - he lives his life online" etc. That's all well and good, but if you're depressed... you're depressed.

Posted by: Chuck at Jan 17, 2005 11:13:23 PM

PS - so now you totally buh-leted your blog eh Crystal?

I should put together a "Greatest Hits of Space Waitress"...

Posted by: Chuck at Jan 17, 2005 11:57:49 PM

Such melodrama. But Chuck would you deny the world my parody of such displays of passion and anguish?

Parody of Justin

Posted by: shannon at Jan 18, 2005 7:39:13 AM