I came across this picture of Joaquin Phoenix today, which triggered a memory of my lone interaction with him. I ran into Phoenix at a film festival party a few years ago. I remember thinking at the time that no one could possibly be less suited for the intense Hollywood glare than this guy. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone as uncomfortable in their own skin, which he clearly combated by numbing himself with alcohol. I left our brief encounter with the haunting feeling that he was going to end up like his brother River — an acutely sensitive artist trapped in a profession that sucks one’s soul dry. I was actually relieved when Joaquin announced his retirement from acting to pursue his lifelong interest in music. But Hip Hop? I still can’t bring myself to watch his debut as a rapper.