Sunday, 27 November 2011

One of those days

It's when the objects you usually love look flat and cold. It's like closing one eye and only seeing in two dimensions, flattened shapes, rendered forms, where there used to be physical and emotional abundance. I don't want to put on an oufit. I don't care for quenching combinations, I don't want to paint my face in shades of normal with accents of the look, because I don't feel normal and I can't see the look. I want to draw a cartoon bag and cut some holes in it and put it on. I might tie a woolly belt around the middle, or I might not. I'll make a similar head covering, not too itchy, made a rough cool linen, with enough gap for vision, breathing and ingestion, but hidden enough from the world to suggest cowering, and caves.

I can't go to the canal side cafe because I am not carrying the plumage of display and flaunting a casual perfection. I am raw and open, seeping cleansing fluids, melding, meshing, nature happening. I'm shocking. I would cause questions. I don't want to put on a fine face when I don't feel fine. Think of how many people all over the city aren't letting themselves out into the world today, how many people are paralized by a lack of time, direction, desperation. One day before I give myself back to my definition. One perfect day is happening now, only I'm swollen and puffy and behind and just fucking tired actually.

"If you don't like your job, find another one. Stop looking for the love of your life, they'll be there when you start doing the things that you love." So much pressure to make everything perfect, and once you've made everything perfect, you'll be some sort of supreme being.

Thursday, 17 November 2011


There's a filter which comes off when illness sets in. Interaction with the world softens, edges become candy floss fuzzy, delicate, porous, possibly sweet possibly salty, depending on the stage of illness (salty at the start, jagged attack at the gullet, sweet at the end as the juices start to caramelise and hang out in gaps in your face). Maybe it's more like popcorn, you're a walking popped kernel, all gaps and crags and places for the world to nest in. Ideas are free to roam, thoughts too, you feel like a child exploring a man-made bedroom underworld, all chairs and sheets and secrets.

When you're ill, logic falls by the wayside. Logic is in the gutter, kicking leaves and butts like an excluded year 10, bored and aware that no-one really cares that it's not at school today. Unemployed, impotent, excess. Logical left brain, is seemingly useless. Raucous right brain, is having a lovely fun time. It's as though the logical side of your self is absolutely involved with the operating of the body, Tom Hanks all serious as the captain of the ship, leaving the fun side to just play out. I walk past the school and see the mini people in glee, utter freedom, I'm jealous.

When you're ill, your ego, Ahamkara, takes it the worst. The part which normally acts as your super-shell, an annoying parent holding you back from both things that are actually bad for you (insert socially unacceptable situation) as well as things that would actually be very character forming (learning by doing/falling etc). The ego sits in bed, coughing and spluttering and moaning for pity, the intellect wants to play out in the sunshine like a 5 year old who really does not know what's happenning next, the mind admits that bed and iPlayer is the only option. With biscuits.

I was reading my book yesterday, aware of my fluffy outer layer, corroborating with my imagina4tion, pooling their resources for a ticket to good times. That part of my head which usually resists your meaning, other people's pictures and possibilities, today I take it on. Today I realise there's enough room in this brain for the two of us, and more, there's enough room for ideas ad infinitum, and so sweet they are too, they make a sundae with my own sweet ill juices. I'm cosy in all my coat layers, heading back to work prematurely, and I'm making a new little world. I'm reshaping my brain over here on the last but one seat on the drivers side on the top deck of the 73. I smile smugly around, I'm still ill, and I like it.

The downside, as one gets to work, back to rational life, well everything is so much harder. I seem to have both gone dyslexic and dropped several sets in maths and English I can't add up my two Cash v/s Card figures without the aid of Excel's dumb tools, I can't seem to transcribe telephone conversations onto Post-its, I cannot make hierarchical decisions with the Outlook flags and their shades of importance in red. But there's a cake downstairs I made, look how good my outfit is today, I really want to know how to curl my hair like yours, and can I please open the cardboard pinhole camera and give it a go? The screen hurts my face but life seems so alive right now.

Thursday, 10 November 2011


Starting is like joining the motorway; you see a gap in the traffic, and you just have to go for it and get in there. There's no stopping, no reversing, no options except ahead. There will never be an ideal time when the motorway is completely empty, and you can career on in any fashion you please. And faster. If you thought you were going fast enough, well you're not, go at least half as fast again. Also, you will never be master of it; it's dangerous, precarious, it waits to receive you, it allows you, it exists for you. Start, join, get involved, as they say.

I got home an hour ago after a thoroughly enjoyable morning of walking, swimming, a haircut, and a stroll around the often-too-lovely locale looking for posh stock cubes. The swimming was free by some trick of my out-of-date working tax credit still being loaded onto my membership card (a heavy repayment burden, but hey, free swimming!), and when things are free you both enjoy them more and expect less. I skipped to my haircut and am quite pleased with her skill and our chat, we talked figs, philosophies and visual intelligences, there was free cake as it was Thursday, and I found a kind of kin I wouldn't have predicted from the outset.

I got some satisfactory stock cubes and headed back, eating the scraps of rye bread piled with salmon and reduced avocado, as the French onions caramelised. There's a gap here, I felt. A constellation. Magical timing when things feel exciting and open and daunting and possible. Where everything's in line, you're in the car, you can see the sign for the motorway, you can see that there's going to be a chance to make things happen. It's one of those oft-parodied blue motorway signs, chunky white writing and smooth arrows directing you to The Zone, 300 yards. Oh, but hang on, I just need to watch my onions so they caramelise and don't burn, for a bit longer, so I'll just read Stylist and listen to Radio 3 raging war for a bit. Notice the non specified time of said 'bit'.

A little (?) later, the flow has ebbed, the potential got wet it seems, the baton floats in the foam, you didn't catch it then? Didn't keep it dry and honor it? Is the gap so small that it commands me? In fragile times, it seems so. The Zone is a delicate offering, sitting on a velvet cushion edged in gems, wafting around the room on a posh tray like a pile of not-for-you-madam Forerro Rocher. Look, people will point and Ladies will giggle, the Zone! How special if feels when it brushes past you, look how close it came, did you see how close it came to me, it was like this close!!

Not quite sure where this is going. Yes I am that's a lie. Where am I going I said last night, as he shoved me into a move I didn't recognise, Nowhere, he said, our feet hovered, shuffled. Yes I am, I countered, I'm going everywhere! Everywhere and nowhere. I was kind of still, not twirling it was true, but my feet were gentle and preparing to be everywhere, unfurling grossly like a pearl in a tea cup. So here I am again. I don't know where I'm going but I'm going to really try and give this time because not doing it is really choking me up. I'm going to honor it.