The band’s manager, Jason, contacted me through his brother Michael (with whom I went to college) and asked me to direct a video they were planning that referenced a section of the book Infinite Jest. The Decemberists are my favorite band, and Infinite Jest is my favorite book. This was tantamount to telling me I had just won two simultaneous Powerball lottery jackpots, on my birthday, which was also Christmas. Thus, my response to him was that, although I was pretty sure this was an elaborate dream I was having, if it were in fact real, then yes, I would be interested.

Michael Shur on the “Eschaton/Calamity Song” video.

The video’s kind of cute and all, but it gives you no sense whatsoever that the Eschaton scene in IJ is a tour de force — plus, the video just doesn’t capture the scale of the thing, the way that Eschaton really is a world for the ETA kids, and its unexpected collapse a strangely genuine catastrophe.