Today the world is so overwhelmingly terrifying and paranoia-inducing that the only album I can bare to listen to is 'Hail to the Theif'.Whinge.
So I’ve been really unwell lately.
I’ve been getting some pretty horrific migraines.
That has kept me from being able to work on this editing job I’ve got.
Not being able to work with a looming deadline has really been stressing me out.
Having no prospects for more work after the 22nd of September has sent me into one of the worst depressions I’ve ever experienced (in fact, I took a DAS 21 test and scored off the chart for depression).
Not having seen people much over the last couple of months hasn’t helped either.
I’ve been so stressed and depressed that I’ve been grinding my teeth in my sleep; so much so I chipped part of one of my molars off.
And not having the majority of my immediate family around makes me feel really insane (their insanity gives me a real sense of belonging and solidarity).
I had a full-time contract for just long enough to get shoved off the welfare system, so I’ve had to reapply from scratch and there have been minor issues that have meant that I haven’t seen a cent since I stopped work.
Because of welfare complications, Amy and I have eaten almost all the way through the money we’d saved up from that contract.
My other job (I’m underemployed outside of editing contracts) is only giving me a shift a week, most weeks.
My physical unwellness stopped me going to a reading night last night, which I was really looking forward to; I’ve been wanting to become part of a creative community for ages, and last night was going to be a great chance to take a big step in that direction.
I haven’t had the time or headspace or anything to be able to work on anything much creative.
My band has met up exactly once since April.
There are two more years of Abbott government, and the oppositions is so fucking useless.
Much of the rest of the world is going down the toilet too, it seems.
My life is like a fart.
Hey guys, this is an EP I recorded at home this month. It’s a little rough around the edges, but I put my heart and soul into the songs I write. I think it’d be really swell if you could take maybe 20 minutes or so to give it a listen through. It’s all up for free download if you’d rather keep it for later.
5 track EP by Greyhands - August 2014
1. As I Walked Into the Furniture
2. On Your Doorstep
3. Soon You’ll Be a Ghost
4. The Coward & The Sage
[free download available]
Leonard Cohen - 'Sisters of Mercy'
Oh the sisters of mercy, they are not departed or gone
They were waiting for me when I thought that I just can’t go on
They brought me their comfort and later they brought me this song
I hope you run into them, you who’ve been travelling so long
I hope so too, Leonard. I hope so too.
Turns out I should remember to take my own advice. So many inexpressible bits an pieces have been hanging around in my head for so long and I’ve had no idea how to get them out. None of them fit well in a written narrative, a film idea, or a song. But today, I drafted my first bit of performance poetry (oh God, that means I’m going to have to perform it…) and it all just sort of fell on to the page.
So, my advice is and has always been this:
Do not limit yourself to a finite number of media when it comes to self-expression.
The Art Assignment: Make a Rug
So I started on Fritz Haeg’s Art Assignment to make a rug. I found a bunch of old coloured rags at the place I’m staying at and was thinking about which colour to start with. I decided to go with red because I figured it was the most appropriate colour to be the “heart” of the rug. That was before this cardioid shape came out in the middle.
I love how serendipitous art can be.
I’m planning on incorporating bits of material from lots of different friends over time; using their old t-shirts and so-on. As I was weaving, I realised that it would be like all these different lives being woven together, much like the relationships they represent.
I may be far from home and the people I’ll share this with as I begin, but I think this project is off to a perfect start.
I’m currently out in one of the most remote places in the world. The majority of my work colleagues are out of town this week for conferences, amongst whom is the woman I’ve been sharing a house with. The local aboriginal community is hardly in town because they’re at a thing called “sorry camp” just outside the community as part of the grieving process after a suicide a couple of weeks back. My wife, who had been out here with me for the last couple of months, left to go back home a couple of days ago. I’m not motivated in any way to keep working on the project I’m editing. The whole thing wasn’t shot very well, and I am sick to fucking death of having to try and save films in the edit suite. That being said, it’s only a small project, so it hasn’t taken up that much time so far. But with no work to absorb myself in, and no guidance on the work I’m doing (the director is out of town too), and no one in the house I’m staying in, it’s just too fucking quiet.
I’ve just seen my second winter solstice in about six months. I’ve spent two and a half months living in my own home since mid-December last year. Travel was nice, and it’s good to have a few months of full-time work in my field of expertise, but goddamn, I want to go home. I can’t take the fact that there’s a suicide one week (which is a big deal when everyone’s so interconnected out here, and family matters so much), and then I’m burying an 8-week-old puppy the next, and the consolation people give is “well, that’s just life out here”. I would love to be able to make it better, but with the current political climate, it’s only going to get worse. And I can’t cope with knowing that. I get invested in stuff. Stuff gets to me. Stuff can’t get to you like it gets to me if you’re going to survive out here. Stuff has to matter, but it can’t get to you. If it gets to you, there’s no means of escape. And you need escape if you’re white, because we don’t have a culture that sets up camp in the bush in the middle of winter and just get really sad together when someone dies. No, when you’re white, you curl up into a ball and wish you were home.
The Art Assignment: The Quietest Place
A couple of weeks ago I found myself in a very quiet place and figured it would be a good time to do Jace Clayton’s “Quietest Place” assignment. So, as one can do nowadays, I whipped out my newfangled iPhone and busted out this video. Excuse the crappiness of it all, it was a spontaneous video and I’m not a vlogger.
I’m still amazed at just how quiet it was out there though.
Maria Tiurina (London, UK) - INDIE Mag Illustration, 2014 Drawings: Watercolors, Ink
Kill the idea that naivety is an unforgivable flaw but cynicism is just wisdom, murder it, chop it up and serve it for dinner, I don’t care, just end this bullshit idea that it’s better to hate than to love and better to rot in miserable bitter resignation than to hope for the best.
The idea that if you’re always pessimistic then you’re always pleasantly surprised by good things when they happen, and never disappointed when they don’t requires an unrealistically optimistic view of pessimism. Optimism and pessimism are not about how you view the future, but rather, how you view the present. Optimism, for me, is seeing how we still have the resources to get out of the mess we’re in. Pessimism, meanwhile, is seeing how despite our good situation, we are doomed anyway.
I consider myself a depressed optimist.