Medium sized plans and failed attempts – By @LeonoreLeitner

By Leonore Leitner


Medium sized plans and failed attempts

What I learned from the task of this SCAB is maybe a bit broader than a movie review. I started writing and deleting this text 2 days ago, because I just didn’t seem to be able to find some interesting bits I learned from watching ‘Gaga: Five Foot Two’.

But actually my journey for this SCAB started way earlier. The first thing that didn’t went as planned, was my attempt of going to a busy shopping centre, observing the customers. I’ve been in the car with my brother, on our way to our dad, when we wanted to make a detour into a really big, always crowded, posh shopping centre. The exit on the freeway came, but the traffic jam coming from the centre was enormous. Cars were jamming for at least 2 kilometres, moving slower than pedestrian speed. As he started to signal his turn to the right I screamed “Naaah, not worth it!”, because this traffic jam obviously wasn’t.
I didn’t even attempt to go into a shopping centre another time. They are just ridiculous around the Christmas time, showing you how materialistic people are and how stressed they are to not miss out the best offers and buy products before anyone else can get them. A bit like us when we get free pizza ordered into SCA.

So I needed to do something else.
I still had the hope that the first thing I wanted to do for this SCAB could work. It was something I wanted to do anyways and this seemed to be the perfect opportunity. I wanted to volunteer somewhere – but slightly change the brief and go to a drug addict help centre instead of a hospice. 

A friend of mine told me he was working there for half a year in a civilian service and what he experienced sounded fascinating. He had to deal with a lot of irrational, unpredictable and often manipulative behaviour. Before that he used to work in gastronomy, so he was used to work with a lots of rich people on top of society – restaurant owners, club owners, event organisers, etc. And this switch from gastronomy to drug addicts didn’t make a big difference for him – the rich entrepreneurs – admired and celebrated by many – are showing the exact same irrational behaviour as the one’s on the bottom of the society, homeless drug addicts – doomed and violated by most. What an irony.
Sounded like an interesting experience.
But soon it turned out that I can’t volunteer there for only a day, they only employ people, or you can go there for a civilian service or internship.

So then I’ve been back with what I hoped not to end up doing- the one task that seems to be the lazy one. A movie you’d never watch.

Scrolling through Netflix on the first day of the year on the search for something I’d never watch. Sounds good for a tired and hungover evening. I went for the documentation about Lady Gaga’s life, which I’m really not interested in.


Trying to find something I learned from this movie, I sat in front of my laptop in the attempt to interpret the stuff I’ve seen to something meaningful. The documentation was for sure not as boring as I thought and Lady G is a really interesting and strong personality. But that’s as far as I got. Maybe that being a singer looks exhausting but also like a lot of fun and I wish I were a better singer?

After a day of procrastinating this SCAB, because I still couldn’t find a deeper meaning, a friend called me and asked if we wanted to go to the film museum to watch a movie – all she knew about it, was that it’s an old Italian movie with english subtitles. My laziness, as I would have had to get out of the friends house I’ve been at in that moment immediately to be there on time – made me say ‘no, let’s rather go for a drink’. Why?!

It was only some hours later, after her boyfriend joined us and told us more about the movie, when I realised what chance I’ve let slip trough my fingertips. It came to me as the perfect opportunity for a movie that is really different to what I’d watch, but I didn’t take it. I didn’t even see the opportunity until it was too late.

Going home to my unfinished SCAB about the Lady Gaga movie with a regret of preferring drinks over an 2 hour black and white movie in italian that, according to Dani, was boring. The Italian director Pasolini wanted to film a greek drama in Africa and this movie is about his search in African cities for locations, actors and overlaps between the greek mythology and African liberation struggles.

I was so angry at myself because now I really wanted to see this movie. So I started searching for an online stream. Apparently the 21st century provides you with everything, except a stream of a 1970 movie called ‘Appunti per un’Orestiade africana’ with english subtitles. Soon I found myself watching half an hour of the movie with French subtitles, before I gave up and decided that I’d rather sleep. Surprisingly I understood very little.

So one thing this movie experience has taught me is sometimes I should just work with what I got (the Lady Gaga movie) and fight my urge to do something (watch the old italian movie) that I have set my mind on because I think it’s better/more interesting. I tend to have this ridiculously strong urge to do things, once I set my mind on them, even if I know they won’t make a big difference. This behavioural pattern can for sure be really helpful, but sometimes it’s just pointless.

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