Saturday, 30 January 2010

'still feels frigging sick'

I was candid, but I'm clearly not happy about it. It's not the only thing, but a thing, on this sad long Saturday night. I also want to go to the parties, but I'm not entirely sure I can keep food in, my muscles hurt, and my face shows these Things a million times over. You look lovely. Lovely is an excuse for the blunt. Perhaps.

They told me I glowed today, my skin was great and I looked peaceful, rested. I agreed, it was I am, I wondered if this was due to the abundance of rest, or the lack of work. I also wonder the significance of me wanting to cry tonight, after the first shift I worked in six days. Is that a coincidence. Or did the frustration go raw. I saw her again today, recognised her lips. You still in school, I accused, I'm so scared about what I'm going to do when it stops, she offered without apology. I looked inward for a moment, remembering a warm time when This Wasn't All That I Was Doing.

So I want to go to the parties, but I don't want to drink, the street proved I had no rhythm, I'm tired, I feel like I might be sick, I want to cry, and I want to watch a chemistry documentary. My dark side nags at removing oneself, an old trait I no longer choose, feeling scared by this. But I'm not choosing it tonight? I have real reasons for abdication? Why am I questioning myself? I don't know? An immaturity I don't quite trust.

If you never go to the parties you will never design yourself a character, never set and gel, never meet these people that will change you. But is this person tonight the one they should meet. No. There will be other parties, other gigs, and other eves not quite so melancholic. I don't know where it crept from. I pictured two tiles placed back ajar, out of dusty cobwebbed storage, smudged together with some grouting called London. The lines blurred, the sharp edges made smooth, a ravine filled and reimagined. Not entirely satisfied with this. It niggles like lactic acid in a muscle you can't touch.

There comes point where one must make a decision about something. I just looked up the point of no return. This is a physical point in itself, a decision can be more fluid and reactionary. But once made, the limbo is neutralised, things are no longer up in the air but prone on the ground. A quietness. I am not going to the parties. I am not happy about this. I am spending the rest of the evening watching a chemistry documentary and trying to keep my dinner down. I'm still not happy.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

'is inbetween ill and not'

I just made it to the fridge for the first time in a day. I opened the door without seeing it as an obstacle. I ate a banana! I had a cup of tea! I couldn't quite manage the crusts on the one slice of beans on toast, my stomach knew by way of my eyes that it wasn't up for that just yet. I started to think about the caramelisation of crusts, that chemical reaction, which I can't recall now, but I think I must buy that McGee book on kitchen science.

Oh I hurt. I had a laugh and I've been sitting in only a chair since the top of the page and I hurt. My spine is throwing rings of pain round each intercostal muscle, the length of my spine, I feel like I've been eating swords. I'm not sure I will be able to make it out of the house at all today. I want to lie down. I will probably do that next. And fall asleep to another film.

I had the best day possible after the blurriest one yesterday. I paid tax bills and did accounts and booked appointments. I will hand wash. These things are boring and leave you with less than nothing. Perhaps being empty also emptied my mind. I thought I could go vegetarian. I might. I could. Virgin stomach. I have never been sick so many times, I think I quadrupled my entire life's record in under 12 hours. I didn't cry once, perhaps because I didn't quite understand. Or my solar plexus was rather busy.

I want to book my train tickets. I want to spend more invisible money. Again, I have not yet sat down 'to write' and think about it all, again, but sometimes I just want things to be a bit more organic than that. I talked to numerous people last night about the internship, about the writing. I decided that however irresponsible it might be to live for today, tomorrow, just about next week, with a small eye on the biannual undercurrent, what the hell if it's fun and I'm alive and I'm not being sick. I know I'm not well when I'm not writing or dancing or eating or laughing. Good barometers.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

'didn't think I ate that many carrots'

I liked to think that I was the only person in London at that moment who was going to the trouble of halving a egg. Crack, half'n'half poured dribbled white, bin the rest, split into the yolk with a shell shard, dripped out into the mixing bowl, creepy connotations, another waste but what's a waste now won't be a ruined cake later, an infinitely larger and frustrating waste all by itself.

What do I do on my days off? Well, let's just say I had a very full day of contentedly not spinning out today. Which, I report, is very very gratefully(sp) received, and not taken for granted in the slightest. What did you do today? Oh I slept for 10 hours, did some reading, took hair out of my body, planned my train trip a little, made a confrontational phone call, did a bit of eBaying, made a chocolate cake, (a blog post)...a pork roast and then went for a run. Then potentially jumped into the ether. We'll see about that.

I am still frustrated with what I'm aiming for. I had my amazing oyster excursion on Sunday, and came away with a hallowed notebook I've not yet broken into, thinking, fuck yes, this is a story here, a fictionalised-now. Observations and indulgent images, spliced onto the page between moments of glee and taste, will I see them flailing and weak days later. What is their context.

I almost cried at the talk. The artist was communicating her truth, and I just wanted to join her, on that level, intellectually, emotionally wholly. I did cry actually, I blinked it away between words, tapping the inside corners with small fingers. He plainly asked me where I wanted to be, and I was shocked and on stage. I felt sad and glad I wasn't conventional, that I couldn't be explained away in a sentence. I was honest, abrupt, staring into deep-set wrinkles for such a young one, wondering if he had any passion. I couldn't see it.

It should be noted that I not only ruined the above cake with too much bicarb, I may have also poisoned myself with the roast dinner. I have spent a day, a night, a day-night in sick and sleep. Some things make you feel small and very glad.

Sunday, 24 January 2010

'waiting for crumpet dough to rise'

Just read a really harsh review of the new Beach House album, built on the concept of blogosphere indie, and how BH are just falling in old tracks laid down by the likes of Arcade Fire, Beirut and Vampire Weekend. Yucky. Is it really clever to know that you're being generous with your Balkan or African influence, isn't it just cleverer to go off and listen to the genuine article? I have music by all of those three, listed in my category of not-quite-unique, which literally means they may as well be mainstream. I read the reviews, understood the angles, but, on listening, it's just not blow me away stuff.

I like Beach House. There is a relaxed-ness where you feel you know that they know that they don't quite care about being hot in Kitty Empire's books. I know a critique is all about just that, but where's the soul, the life, the movement, the belief, the personal, the transformation. It's as I was thinking, watching her being a journalist in my kitchen, I can't do this. I can't generally like everything, when I strive to genuinely like merely some things. I actively Don't Like A Lot Of Things. To group Books&Music together, to 'know' about them so so much, but to really burn for them? Is it true passion? Or is it the way I just know a hell of a lot about coffee? I'm a tea girl.

I used to think it was issue that I was picky. Not having a mass of friends, not having a job a like, being grumpy at gigs, being grumpy at home, hanging at houses where time slowed down and outside got colder and I just wanted to be in bed. Now I embrace the unique. I am in a place where enough people are striving, mostly subconsciously, towards things that are just that bit curved. And when we come togther, it's like a secret society. With humour and lightness. Without Judgement or Criticism. I did a bit of autogenics last night, after I told them to move the party out back. I fell asleep immediately, felt bad but unbothered.

A work blur the last few days, both enjoying and tolerating it. An interesting food week, eating well whilst only cooking one day in nine. Boef stir fries fish messes. I am still waiting for crumpet dough to rise. I do have anger in my arms. There is still a path which connects the act of cooking with this frustration and disparate air. An amazing week of exercise, three bikes one run one lindy lots of skates and stretches. I feel thoroughly back on the wagon. Excited about writing and train trips and new environments. Now just to focus on the next three days and keep c a l m .

Friday, 22 January 2010

'is happy?'

You should get to know me because I'm fun and interesting. I mean, come on, I don't think you are, surely. I am taking them by their words, literally, surveying their spelling, grammar, tone, humour; content, outlook and lyricism. I was doing it in the class today, reading strangers' words, sitting there thinking myself bigger than the room, judging them on their paragraphs, images, cliches. I came out after two hours, not glad it was over, but thinking it might be nice to scrawl some shit and get my ego stroked once a week on a Thursday afternoon. But a project about windows?

Next comes the photographs. I'm doing it in real life too, a chum-scan as it were. A quick flick up and down, or more likely, down to up. How are those shoes? If they're Vans, you can go back to the skate park yeah. You're either going to be as utilitarian as my one side, or as shiny as my other. I want beat-up old-faithfuls you trust with city showers, or shiny impractical beasts grand enough to build a rapport with that scary-cool shop assistant. A branded rain-saver of a coat, or something heavy and imposing with a nod to Joseph Beuys. Whatever it is, you mean it, and it does it.

I'm happy? I'm not laying that in stone. Maybe I fucking am. I'm happy(er). I had an amazing chat at The School of Life, felt like I just wanted to be there, like the feeling I get when I'm in Monmouth, a warmth of correctness and wholly appropriate-ness. I am right here. I am right, here. I'm not questioning why you won't give me the job, because you are letting me into your world, because we fit and I'm not faking. And I don't have to worry about my old pink converse being really really wrong for this interview, or why you won't give me a second chance, why I have to get a job in Jigsaw in Manchester because I can't frigging get one in Liverpool. No-one should have to question themselves as much as I did then.

I left the School trying not to skip to my Genius playlist. I'm glad you liked it enough to come back, said the seriously hot lindy hopper later on. I was so happy on the way home last week I was skipping down the street, I enthused. At least you're allowed to do that, he said hotly and I just couldn't really communicate what I was thinking. I didn't dance with him, but I watched him, almost as equally as everyone else, melting at their joy. A girl got a Send Off to America solo twirl, it was just joyous. A throng of men switching their way through the dance, her face pure pleasure, her shapes wide and wild.

What more can you do than really throw yourself into things you believe in, make you burn with belief. Everything else can fall into place. I'm wearing the perfect brogues, my monochrome matches the room. The new-old rollerblades I bought eight years ago, 1 1/2 sizes too big, now not only fit, but match my outfit and I live in a house I can skate in. I love these moments, sometimes accrued over many years, things you can't predict where things just shock and fit. He unlocked his bike at the same time as mine. I'd spied him lock up hours before, taken his money, wanting some Condor connection, and it came along. It meant nothing and everything at the same time. I burned a little.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

'is having that same day again'

I liked helpful people, I like them A LOT. I just had the pointless stress that I do, where I don't realise how much I want something till I can't. I get completely knotted, imagining letting a new object into my life, picturing it, weighing it, to and fro, worthy and weak, and once something has an absolute NO on it, I suddenly go, ah, these are the reasons that it was amazing. What knot is it in me that does that, sees good in things when the potential is expired? Not to mention them taking both desks within days of me seeing the only possible displacement in months. The chances.

I have just done my accounts. I am near as dammit £sailing over-budget. It is an exact example of going beyond my means. My means are a blue plastic net, and it's fluid, and bobs in the water, snags a bit but never changes volume, and it's very very finite. This depresses me. I tried putting too much shit in the net, and you know what, it won't frigging fit. And it's not desperate, at all, as I (over)carefully run this weird Fahrenheit pound scale to everyone else's Celsius, but to me, this is low. It's not panic for the bank, but panic for the brain.

I am about to insure my bike and pay my tax bill, and if I do these things, I think I may end up having to go back to bed under a cloud of heavy heaviness. I might also have to treat myself to that piece of overpriced(?) furniture in order to reward myself for the invisible bills. I was a lot happier after speaking to Clare in Habitat White City just now, I need a frigging piece of furniture because there is stuff all over my floor, and what the hell is money anyway. He was saying the other day, I didn't get it, that most money is fake, a kind of projection, and that the good stuff is pure gold. The rest is just symbols? I didn't get it but either way I don't like it.

I'm here again on my day off, not making sense of anything, not doing a plan, not doing. I have a week full of fun, dancing and dinners, but am aware I need to hang something a little extra from these bones. I want to go on a pre-ballet cafe tour, but this again in itself is another activity which is non-conducive to the production of something. The something being, story ideas, thinking about work, etc. Which was already hard but has been made harder by the disappearance of a desk. I think we are back to the furniture conundrum.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

'is sad'

There are people that cry like they're bawling out their guts, all faces and noise, shapes of ugliness. And there are people who cry with such beautiful melancholy, a stillness, a truth. True despair is disturbingly quiet. It's a minor chord, a moment. A frozen stab, melting all over you. Submission. I noticed myself and did the second, partly acting, partly just being, so I'm sure it wasn't at all fake.

I called the admissions lady, for the story it's a lady, she was really a girl. Get your application in, she said, even though it's late, yes, they really just want top quality people on the course. The problem is though, I don't have evidence of my greatness, I waffled, I haven't made work for five years, I think I'm good enough to be there, if I agree with my self that I can be as good as I want to be. Oh, you're still there, and I'm lost.

Why am I having this conversation, I thought, why did I just ring you, to discount the option, when really it opened up the option and showed I was already discounted by default. I never knew ceasing would be a nail. I didn't choose to stop. I didn't want to give art workshops to scouse kids, didn't want to be part of a studio group which so wasn't what art was to me that I chose to delete the whole thing, shelve it for a better place.

The better place is now, but, didn't anyone tell you, conventions apply here, you have to earn it, wait, accumulate, grow exponentially. Didn't you think about that? You must be a faker all along, it's not crochet, you can't just pick it up whenever you feel like it. There's plenty of other try-hards and if you're trying less harder, well then you may as well just fuck off and ignore this whole want.

I knew I was write. That was a mistake, for real, but I severely like it. I am in my pyjamas at three o'clock. I am alone in a bedroom in a warehouse, where if I wanted to get back on the wagon I'd be at my desk like some sort of artbot, getting the fuck on with it in my amazing art-bubble-vacuum-of-one. I got so far, fell off the edge, didn't jump the gap to the next level, and now I'm truly doubting whether I can get back to it. Surely no-one else would be bothering.

I can sit there 'making a painting', 'making a story', but these actions seem just like an allegory of what they're supposed to be. I think I may have just understood allegory for the first time there, if that's what I mean, not sure. It's an image like an applique, an appliqued bit over an original template. The added action is a metaphor for something underneath, which is weak and unoriginal, the action is stronger and meaningful, but at the same time, an excess. It knows too much.

Monday, 11 January 2010

'is feeling all splintered'

So I consciously (obviously) left it well too late to get in contact with the Mary Ward Centre, A Friendly Place to Learn. Can I enquire about a few courses please, full, she said, full, and that one, and that one too, full, sorry. Yes, I joked, I know, I knew, I actually left it this late because I didn't want to use up my work points with these courses that imagine so much but deliver much less. I didn't say that.

Adult education. For people in the nine-to-five, who want to improve themselves, popularly. If that is the correct use of 'pop'. In a pop manner. It doesn't fit into my half career, or my experience. It felt wrong to apply for beginners' creative writing, I'm not a beginner, right, I've been 'writing creatively' for perhaps eight years now. It would be weird to be taught like a layman, because I'm not. Same with yoga, I'm out of practice but nowhere near the beginning.

It makes me want to use living here, and all it's resources. I have all these creative people around me, Ready, Able, to teach me. I have a level of knowledge that just needs a bit of human interaction to push it into production. A part of me wants the structure of a once a week reconnaissance, a part of me knows I know too much. I remembered reading about the pans, the amazement. Again it's that thing of jarred intelligence. Too much to go back, not enough to go forward. A very frustrating place.

I didn't do much at all today, except sort out my studio, still reluctant to call it that, but I have now removed all traces of art making and creating from my bedroom, which feels like a good thing. I tried to start writing a couple of things, it shouldn't be hard, she said, if you've written journals forever you've already written a novel. But at the time I didn't know what the story was, it's still not complete.

Story. Tale, anecdote, yarn, scenario, libretto, rumour, statement, account. Allegory, fable, short story, urban myth. "Since the short story format includes a wide range of genres and styles, the actual length is mitigated somewhere between the individual author's preference (or the story's actual needs in terms of creative trajectory or story arc)". Sounds hard.

"Many short story writers define their work through a combination of creative, personal expression and artistic integrity. As a result, many attempt to resist categorization by genre as well as definition by numbers, finding such approaches limiting and counter-intuitive to artistic form and reasoning. As a result, definitions of the short story based upon length splinter even more when the writing process is taken into consideration."

Splintered alright.

'wishes all weekends were three days long'

Post started hours ago named 'Last roast Recreio'. Post got refreshed with 'Pears are the new apples' at around 4pm. A great Sunday, knitting, floating, film night, cheese platter, cutting out courses from the Mary Ward Centre (a friendly place to learn), searching outdoor activity wear, pitta/boiled egg in bed, googling galleries and Michael Portillo, watching Great British Railway Journeys. Entire catalogue of Joanna Newsom to which I now prance around in ballet shoes, when first time round I was so miserable I couldn't even pick up my own feet to put me in a better place. I watched Liverpool-to-Manchester and felt a strange warmth, why was I so cruel. An absurdness.

I have been thinking a lot about Judgement. Without judgement or criticism. I like the tarot a lot, it makes me believe in something, I don't know how or why, why I should listen to it over a voice in my own head, above a friend? Perhaps it attaches to a part of my head that is just shouting and shouting but I'm just not listening. I sat and watched the films and felt a bit of a wobble, that same one where I'm just spinning and my past doesn't relate to who I want to be, and my present says I can't do the future. I listening to it and showed it the Judgement card, and it sat cross-legs-fingers-on-lips. The best I could hope for.

I have a problem with believing in my future. I think about who I am now and the chronic panic about the chronic sets in, things are this way, that's that. I am constantly bothered by my past, how I seem completely erratic, a working class upgrade, not intelligent enough to be as intelligent as I want to be. I didn't have a conversation with my dad about fiction over the Christmas table, I didn't call my sister for this week's pep talk, my mum didn't recommend that recipe, and neither have I seen that exhibition at the National Gallery. I can't discuss my being with anyone. My person that was my person didn't particularly care at the best of times, and is now missing.

A uniqueness about me, a completely designed self that doesn't relate to anything that came before! My beliefs, my aspirations, tastes, preferences. I had a nightmare with Jayne Cork in it the other night, and I'm going to write that like she's never going to read it, because come on she never is. I was at her house that she'd earned, along with a scrappy old boyfriend, like some sort of preacher, upgrade shot back. That was funny when Miss Wyn saw me in Keith's, "I caant believe anyone's gor outta Tivi'!" Wonder what she'd think of me getting out of Liver. It took me about ten days to get over going home. Get out of a place that no-one could believe, back into me. Whatever this me is.

I was reading about her party, me having a melt down over their concentric Le Parfait jars, their cookbooks, whitewashed floors and Duplex tumblers. All these readymade signifiers, things I had to learn. I am aiming for another's default consciousness, am I? How fake is that?

Sorry ignore me I'm waffling. I've been absent here for a while owning to this feeling of exposure, of traceability. I need to take her advice. Jayne Cork is not reading this. Write like no-one else is either. I am splintering into various books and making an effort in my new Studio tomorrow. studio, Studio, 'studio', studio. I am too conscious here now and need to repair and replenish in private. I just hope I can stop talking about this action and get some results.

Friday, 8 January 2010

'has really soft hair/is having a Joanna Newsom moment''

So I bought this Speyside single malt, a bit butterscotchy-y apparently so it sounded like a good girls' choice. A whisky good for girls, not alcohol for a good girl. I have made the weirdest hot toddy ever by adding 10+ Manuka honey. I have concocted a drink that I know nothing about. A drink that needs Google, Wikipedia, and some Dairy Milk to help it go down. Perhaps I will add chocolate brands to the elucidation of coffee.

We were talking yesterday about transfering our expertise, he said he'd help me apply for the job if I wanted, how I had kudos and I knew it, I did. I was nervous at commiting to even thinking about applying there, puzzled how someone would believe me, that I could do anything I wanted. It sparked anyway. It seemed like it wasn't stuck.

I was just talking to her about thinking about the pointlessness of journalism, writing fiction, about telling the truth, writing like no-one's listening, the gap and length between the truth, the projection, the fiction. Where are the joins. I said I couldn't fake it, she said just move it around. Transfer the feelings. Write the real but put it in a different place. I'm still concerned it won't feel real though, I need to break down this gap, unsure how, not totally alone, that's for sure.

I haven't left facebook but I have deleted my 'friends' and left it as a sort of messaging system. Slightly sad at not having to think in third person pith anymore, a conditioned action in itself, pah. I shall make notes about ideas for writing as well as art. I make art and write stories. It'd be good if that was my truth.

Thursday, 7 January 2010


I'm free, I'm FREE, I'm freeeeeeee. Well I still have to go to work tomorrow, pay rent, there's the phone bill and contacts on direct debit, three years student loan and immeasurable debt to my parents, but apart from that, freedom. I am leaving Facebook. facebook. The book of face. The book of I'm not funny but if enough people listen it looks like the image of hilarity. New media is for people with no sense of humour. I am glad my social world is no longer run by an American.

Yippee! We were talking that it should be a trend, I wondered if there was an article in it. Recessional cutesies like popping next door for a chat about guitar lessons (do that), sending out party invites on blue printed post cards (want to do that), a note on a bit o scrap paper on the kitchen work top. Email them, call them, post them, meet you in the foyer after 7 o'clock, ish, (did that). I'm going pay as you go. Imagine getting rid of your mobile phone. Sorry, you'll have to get me on the, 'land line'. Hmmm, not sure that's socially acceptable, a little bit too irritating and quirky.

I confess I did end it with a dispicable lurking session, one last purge, nothing rewarded just grossness and tingly limbs. Yuck. And it doesn't really mean anything, really. But it stands with this new thing about showing proof one one's efforts, talents, being, offerings to the world. Instead of half showing things, half being part of a scene, just push out into it and show the (real) world what you got. (Yes you).

Not sure of the steps forward if I'm honest. She showed faith in me where I don't have it about the MA, said sometimes you have to set your goal over there and then work back from it. I thought it was like this binary diagram theory that he told me, only bottom up. Solving problems logically and making decisions as you are faced with them. And also it works with my haircut-chasing, work back from the bob and you have a bowl, then a really small little bowl, and then this mess I'm sporting right now. The only issue comes when you have many goals, say three. Which one do you put ahead, work back from, which one to chase? All I know is I need people and fun (and a haircut) and these are all tangible. Onward.