Mark E. Smith
What a stage presence. This curmudgeon staggers through the stage, aimlessly, as he mumbles about God knows what. The music, which backs him, sounds like shafts of glass breaking through one another; his lyrics amass a million things together and present them in short little pop songs - "in a straightforward manner." I'd give anything, I'd walk through thistles and thorns, to merely see him live. But the real reason he is my hero is that he doesn't care: doesn't care for your affection, your admiration or your animosity. He exudes attitude.
I admire Herzog for his obsessive, resilient commitment to his projects. Like his films, he is a quixotic obsessive - a "soldier of cinema" - who will endure the most harrowing, most dangerous obstacles to unearth his visions. He is willing to steer a ship over a mountain, visit a volcano on the verge of eruption, endure torture, even if the weight of his own ambitions crush over his head. Yet he does all this while shunning pretension, having a sense of humour often absent in directors of 'art' films.
Another obsessive. I admire 'El Loco' for two reasons: his obsessive nature and the results he obtained with Chile, taking them to heights that could have been even greater had they been blessed with a kinder world cup draw. Having the nickname of 'Loco' in South America brings to mind shamanism and witchcraft, but Bielsa's madness is of a nerdier variety. He has a vast collection of football tapes, which he watches and re-watches to analyse the opposition, and in his tenure at Chile he even lived in a little hut located in the national side's home ground. He never alters his signature 3-3-1-3 tactics, no matter what the opposition, and this can sometimes be counterproductive. His attacking, fast-paced football also reflects my mentality when it comes to writing: stubbornly attack, avoid modifying the strategy and attempting to remain true to one's principles. The way he was ousted by seedy Chilean business men was a great cause of grief to me and it is something I can't live down.
Secretly writing stories, novels, letters and journals of great calibre, fraught with existentialist and absurdist scenarios, Kafka never wanted you to peep into his literary world, ordering his dear friend Max Brod to burn all his writings. Kafka's difficult, complicated life - his relationship with his father, his troubled love affairs - all came as a result of his single-minded devotion to literature and writing. Not only is his inducing, haunting fiction something that I admire but his personal life, however fraught and difficult, I find something that, paradoxically, something worth aspiring to.