Well, lunch plans were made. And I did agree to work an extra shift tonight. And I have much work that I feel need be done that isn’t and the anticipation of it being complete is messing with my mind and guts alike.
But I can’t say that is it either. Because those can be run from. Perhaps some not as easily as others, but you can run from it all. If you apply the right kind of effort, there isn’t much that you cannot run from in life.
And yet, I didn’t. I haven’t. Here I am. Here I sit. And soon, I’ll stand and go out there in the world, no matter what it plans to throw at me. But first, this. In the shorts I slept in. Shaking my head of whatever dreams my unconscious mind graced me with last night when I dropped my guard. ‘Graced’ being used sarcastically, of course.
The weather today is reminiscent of a different place. A different time. Maybe a few, but one in particular, that strikes me now. About a lap around the sun ago.
But memory is a trickster. For a writer. For everyone, really. All writers of our own stories.
Memory seems as though it resides with others in some place of inspiration. And at times, it does. To use one thing, one sense, sight or sound or otherwise, and to try and pull from it something that should be current. It is a trap. Being stuck on repeat. Trying to make what was be again and you never, ever can. It can be something like, or even something better. But it will never be that again. The sidewalk seems the same but is as changed as you are. And the street sign looked upon with younger eyes will never tell you what you want to hear. Not now. Not anymore. Not if you’ve got those old ears on.
I’ve got to go through all these notes. They litter my work space, gem and dud alike. To the desk. The computer screen. Among the pictures on the wall. But in these random scribbles on colored, sticky paper, may be some solid words. But it creates a chaos in my office that I may need to dispose of for symbology sake. And I say office, but I am not so professional in actuality. This work place is in the same room where exhaustion forces me to confront the unprotected and non-waking thoughts of the overnight. And all the dirty laundry I must get to. It also triples as a home studio.
If you’re reading this, I’m playing a show in a week. We and I. The band will close the show. We shall rock. Because my friends rock.
I’m opening the show, according to the setlist. Solo. Which in conjunction with my anxious apprehension, feels almost as though I am going up there naked.
It’s something I’ve resolved to get better at. Playing solo. Being naked.
So, if you want to come see that, me feeling naked and doing my best, let me know. I’ll send you the details. I’ll probably bother you about it anyway. Lots of good bands that night. Should be fun. Will be, in fact. No matter what emotion expectations I place upon it. Being the subject of sonic expression in a room of willing, and hopefully dancing participants feeds me soul in ways little or nothing else has the might to fulfill.
But that is not today.
Today, I must attend to dirty skivvies and other schemes. Today I go meet an old and constant friend, despite any time and distance, for a meal. Strangely, I just thought now, in a place we used to go when students. And more so when we both worked for the school from which we graduated.
Haven’t been over that way in a very long while. And it’s only two towns east of where I sit now. Funny how that goes. Place used to be the most constant setting for my most confident ideological period. That confidence may have been based at least partially in stupidity, but hey, what is higher education for if not that?
The place has changed. Physically. Bunch of new buildings. Rebranding, as they call it in business school. Don’t think I’d like it there as much now. But they can put up as many tacky dorms and send as many requests for the alumni fund as they want. They can never take away what it was. Only time does that. And she went and done that a good few years ago.
It shall be good to see my friend. A fellow of always good conversation. It shall be good to not stay in here all day. It will be good to get myself set to record upon my return from the overnight on tomorrow’s morn. To push myself from my comforts- playing solo, not being such a hermit, etc.
It’ll be good for this year to end. It was profound. It was bolder in many ways than I’ve felt able to be in quite a long time.
It also showed me some of my worst. Some of my loneliest. Darkness wrapped in habits I know better than to let run the show. It showed me fears I had been hiding from. It showed me my laziness. I doubted greatly, and still do.
But to be aware of the shadows can keep you out of them. I may never be fully drenched in light. Never want to be. It’s not my look.
But half in… well that’s something else. Rembrandt knew something about that. Folks still seem to dig the aesthetic.
I know I do.