May 28, 2013 § 2 Comments
“Freedom isn’t free; neither is apathy.” – Desaparecidos – Anonymous
It’s warm and it’s numb and it’s settling. It’s unpleasant and restless and insecure. It’s twisting and whirling and falling while it drags it’s fingers down that old backboard at the back of the crowded room. It’s how we wake up. It’s how we go to sleep. It’s every second in middle. It’s our lives. It burns. It stings. We find ourselves scribbling escape plans on scraps of paper, stolen cars, jumped boarders. Try as I have my whole life, I am yet to grow wings. Yet to take off. Yet to achieve my true and full potential. Yet to do so much.
We are many. We are dead end jobs. We are the tired in the day and the restless at night. We are the wasted potential. We are the graduates propping up minimum wage. We are that scene in Fight Club. We bite our tongues and we wonder how our bosses take pride in their jobs. We drink like writers. They screw like bankers, it’s all practical and passionless. They go to sleep on time. They are happy in there little worlds. It doesn’t get on top of them. It’s just goes by. School, job, wife, baby, grandchildren, death. That’s it for them. But they get happy. They get happy the whole time. Maybe it’s naive to think their happy all the time. Maybe I’m just lost again. I think that’s it.
She rattles off retro rick like she’s Robin Hood. She spits and spreads here stance. Wide. Powerful. But I can see in her eyes she’s desperate. Desperate like me. Desperate to find home. Desperate to find happy. Desperate to find it all at once. That cocktail of youth, adventure lust and crazy. Sat up on ice. Telling everyone exactly what she wants to be true. Spitting it out like she’s trying to shout it down. She’s read the books, the Hemmingway, the Thompson.On the Road peeks out from here jeans pocket. She won’t finish. I wonder how the next few years will treat me. I trail off and I think of something else. When you start to think like this it starts to be all loose ends. You struggle to find how to tie it all together. You loose that. It just sort of becomes ticker tape madness for a bit. I guess that’s just life. I’m not really sure. Hell, I’m never sure of anything. What do I know? Do you even know why you’re here? Right here? This page? Why? It’s not that I’m not grateful, it’s not that I don’t enjoy your company (because without it this would be 100% madness, instead of just 98%) . Why?
May 19, 2013 § Leave a comment
“Freedom isn’t free, and neither is apathy.” Anonymous – Desaparecidos
Evening was drawing in when I stumbled from the porch to the garden. My head was light, I was half cut and started to spill over with these shrapnel memories. Things I thought I’d done, might have done. Places I might have been. Face that carried words but no names. I sat own my own and looked up to the sun setting and marking the sky. I felt alone but alone was what I needed to feel to pick part these memories. To separate the simulated thought from the reality and from there sort the reality into the things I want to remember. Hopefully, by the end of this process I will be left with what I want. I became aware of the cling of my clothes. The whole things feels numb on me. Like a passing memory. Someone else’s dream with their face turned towards the heat.
When I came too I picked myself up, dusted myself down and set on my way with all the intent of someone who has somewhere that they need to be. That’s isn’t to say that there isn’t somewhere that I need to be, it is to say that I don’t know where that place is or how to get there. Last night was still bleeding out of me in sweat and smell. I had the look of someone who was on top of the situation, years of practise. In honesty I was struggling to say on top of the ground. Stay on this side of it. Mid twenties is a delicate age. Hell, it seems the last 15 years have been a delicate age. An egg-shell floor of emotion. Hate, love, fight, fuck, cut, bleed, drink, smoke, duck, cover, roll, run, sleep, do it all again. For 15 years it feels like I’ve been spinning in circles. Sometimes, when you’ve been spinning so long the only thing that makes sense is to keep spinning. To stave of that dizzy, just for a few more days. I told myself that this was a good idea. This is what every film, every book, every song told me I should do. Spin. Because when you stop, you’re old. I was starting to feel old.
It was more than this. More than running from the dizzy. I felt it in my cold cynicism. The way I’d started to react to women. Cold, charm, take what I need and go. More clinical and clean than light headed and love struck. Maybe I’d given up on all of that. I shouldn’t have. I don’t know why. I remember how it felt. Like someone shot electricity into your systems through eye contact. Once you’ve felt that there’s very little coming back. But look at me now. Bleeding once again onto a white page. This is just survival. Letting the loose thoughts slip out. Getting it down, trying to find sense in the snippets. Trying to make contact. Trying an escape plan.
21 and feeling down. I’ll tell you nothing in a thousand words.
May 14, 2013 § 1 Comment
“I’d rather be dreaming of someone than living alone.” Majestic – Wax Fang.
My childhood taught me a lot about bravery. It’s rewards and that there is a time and a place for it. When it should be used and when it should be passed off as misjudged small town madness. You have to time these things with precision, the slightest miscalculation and you can leave you with scars. It always makes me think of an exchange between strangers in a dinner in Idaho in June 2012. I was eating along at the counter in one of those old 80’s throw back bars, which seemed fitting for the story ahead. Sat in one of the booths was a group of six high school jocks, so stereotypical that they could have been plucked from any 80’s high school film, complete with baseball jackets and smarmy rich boy hair cuts. Laughing loudly, being rude to the waitress, throwing bits of paper at each other, spending Daddy’s money. A few seats down from me was a kid sat alone who looked around the same age as them, a few years younger maybe, scraggly hair, thick rims on his glasses, long green coat, eyes buried deep in the book that was face down on the counter. In his own little world. The sun was starting to shine in the bright mid morning as the jocks’ voices started to rise and drown out the din of everyday day dinner noise.
“Hey kid” Shouted the one who was clearly the leader, directed towards the book-boy at the counter. Wisely, book-boy did not flinch, eyes did not shift from what I guessed, from a distance, to be Moby Dick. “Hey Dickhead” The leader continued, causing his knuckle dragging friends to laugh like yes men and politicians during a debate. Again, book-boy was found to be unmoved. “Good” I thought. “Wise move” I thought. However, the situation had not passed. Urged on by the laughing the leader jock continued yet further “Hey faggot, what you reading? Fuckin’ Twlight?” The jocks howled with laughter. Book-boy flinched and sent a look over his shoulder at the leader. Calm, composed but clearly annoyed by the pestering. From that he went back to his reading. But this was not enough for the leader, he wanted more, he taunted the boy a few more times but this time got nothing back. So, clearly with something to prove, he sent poured his milkshake into a plastic cup and threw it across the diner at book boy, hitting him square in the back. The pale red milk flashed across the back of his coat and up into the hair above. The jocks screamed with laughter, think that the square had got what he deserved. I felt my foot hit the floor, pointing towards them, off my chair, unable to suffer this injustice any more, but I stopped when I saw book-boy do the same. He turned to the table. Now he stood at it, meters from the jocks, who had started flexing their muscles, more to prove to each other than to the book boy. “What you fucki…” Started the leader, he was cut off “Shut the fuck up.” Book boy spoke. Piercing his silent enigma personality forever he spoke with a calm aggression, a calculated and composed anger, which meant that everyone, the jocks, the waitresses, myself and all who had witnessed the flying milkshake, where hanging on his every word.
Book boy continued with that same delivery, as if there was ice in his veins with every ear listening. “You don’t know about me. You see my clothes and my hair and my glasses and you come to assumptions about where I’ve been and what I can do. Well let me tell you, I’ve been to places you couldn’t come back from, places that Daddy can’t save you from. I know people like you, people who have never been in a real fight, maybe just thrown a few punches at a weak kid that some arse hole was holding down from you. See, I know, that if it was really to kick off here right now, it wouldn’t be a case of “Do I think I can beat you?” It will be a case of “Do you think that you’re friends are strong enough to pull me off of your battered body before I do permanent damage?” Because I go there. Every inch of every yard.” He leant in now, keeping eye contact with the leader who was the focus of the rant. ” The last boy who treat me like that…” He paused and leant in further, now to the ear, and whispered in a way that everyone heard ” I kept his fucking teeth.” You could hear a pin drop. Things had got real dark, real quick. The tension you could cut with a knife, the air was humid with it. The jocks weren’t having fun any more. The tables had turned. The jocks were on the back foot. This wasn’t cheerleaders and prom queens and quarter backs and trust funds. They had been taken from that. They had been showed the sharp edge of the real world and it scared them because they had brought it on themselves. They had flown too close to the sun.
Despite it’s darkness there was beauty in this moment. However, profound and convincing the speech was, for the boy it was brave, it was necessary, he did what he had to do to turn it around. He had taken his pure, liquid crazy and used it for salvation. We should all be so lucky. He turned, whipped off his hair, and got back to Moby Dick. The diner wanted to applaud, to congratulate him, but the moment was less Hollywood than that. I didn’t say a word to him. I paid my bill, then his, then left for my destination.
I felt his anger. I felt that twisting feeling of his injustice and ultimately respect for him for doing what he had to do. Most of all I respected the way he used his crazy.
May 11, 2013 § 1 Comment
“Give me one fine day of plain sailing weather and I could fuck up anything, anything.” Plain sailing weather – Frank Turner.
The night rang true with that fizzing excitement song of finger on fret and electric guitars being hit without consequence. The flickering lights that let eyes find faces sat in jars hung from the trees by string like string lights. Smoke was in the air, thin in the nose, more a sent than an overpowering danger. Those lost sparks float from the fire and make their way toward the star scared night sky until they are lost amongst the persistent light of those long dead stars. For all my swinging madness, broken briefly by spells of simulated control, I had found the peace I had been craving. However fleeting, however limited and short lived I may find it, it was my peace. I knew that the music would fade, the candles burn out, the fire leave and the smoke with it and the earth would turn and drown it’s scars with blue paint and cotton wool. But until then the moment was mine. Until then, I would be free of whatever my mind had chosen would haunt me. Free to watch the sparks rise and the people cut shadows back into the dark. To sit content and easy not needing to say a word. Not needing to prove myself or come to terms with anyone. To smile for no other reasons than that way it makes you fizz and that there is simply no reason to not. I’ve often stated that I agree that ignorance is bliss. But I was wrong. If bliss is a term that cannot be split or shared amongst definitions and metaphors then ignorance should be tossed and it should be left to this night. Ignorance is tonight because my hand is in hers and my head has been clear every since.
No Longer an Astronaut.