Sunday, September 29, 2013
I'm not exactly missing the everyday slog of being at work and yet I find myself as a ship without an anchor without it. I know I have to write that pesky resume. I know I have to go through that pile of work. I know there are so many things I want and need to do but I can't seem to be motivated enough to do any of them, including writing. Though, funnily enough I've been drawing...
MVOR said that I need to go on a journey and have a holiday. I owe it to myself to have a break and to have nice things to look forward to. Before this term break started I was motivated to do just that but as soon as the bell rang on Friday afternoon last week something within me changed. It was that simple. One second I was ready to take on the world and the next, I wasn't. Every day since then has felt like I've run a marathon before I open my eyes each morning. And every night has felt like the longest night that I've ever lived.
This feeling of frustration and angst at my life is a new feeling. I think before, I was resigned and numb about the status quo but now I am struggling with a sense of needing more from my life than daydreams. I can't quite seem to get it together to make that happen though.
Anyway, the other day I found myself in a record store when this song by The Chills came over the loud speakers. I felt an immediate sense of nostalgia for things that never were. I stood there for a while, with Kate Bush's The Kick Inside firmly in hand and remembered a life I never lived. It was kind of surreal to say the least and I'm sure I'm not quite explaining this out of body experience right but ... I guess you had to be there (in my head). If I were 10 years older I think this would have been a firm favourite of mine "back in the day" however as it stands, I heard it for the first time a few days ago and have played it every day since then. It's a great song... a bit depressing but it suits the current mood.
Pink Frost - The Chills
Sunday, September 15, 2013
I have to admit that I hesitated a little before handing it over. There was a part of me that clutched to to the song like a symbol of every possibility that ever existed to me and even as I told her I could feel my grip tighten on it and heart clench around it, trying to hold it close. Somehow though, it had to be done, I don't even know why. By handing it over was I wiping my hands clean of a part of my past that I had treated like a crutch or was it about letting go of dreams and giving up? I still don't know what the answer to that is but all I do know is that before I had enough time to weigh up the pros and cons of being so forthcoming it was already out there.
There was a moment before I told her the song that I knew she would love it. I could see her in my mind's eye, smiling up at her groom and I knew that this, and I'm thinking of my last post here, would be my little inconsequential nothing that I would impart to her that would turn into something in her world. Everybody comes into your life for a reason folk. I believe that. Even in the blog world.
The only thing is, is that it's not just a little inconsequential nothing is it? Maybe it is... I don't know. Maybe all things are for letting go. I have to trust that this was always hers to begin with and not mine to hold on to. I'll get mine one day too... whatever "mine" ends up being, I truly don't know what form that will take - bag lady, crazy cat lady, authoress, teacher extraordinaire, housewife, bon vivant...another song. I trust that it whatever it is "it" will be the right thing for me.
I have to, don't I?
Let's Stay Together - Al Green
Sunday, September 08, 2013
There is a part of me that walks alongside me, behind me, above me, ahead. My higher self I suppose. I can see her silver rope in hand, attached through and inside me, pulling at the chord, she's running ahead, skipping forwards, pirouetting through the air, dancing a wild dervish while the physical me plods behind. Higher self is quite a force, trust me. She is beckoning me forwards through the wasted nights, wasted years, wasted life and showing me a future without despair.
I have waited for the epiphany. I have searched for the synchronicity and explored all connections. I've been misguided and walked down the wrong path many times but I've come to the realisation that sometimes people come into your life for one reason only. You may share a joke. Feel a connection. See a spark. Light a candle. Carry a flame. Are best friends. But maybe that friendship of love or lust isn't why they are important. That connection whatever it is isn't the important one at all. The important bit is the sentence they utter offhandedly one day. The song you hear on their ipod when you borrow it. The t-shirt they wear with that slogan. The tweet you read by accident. Whatever. That little chaotic accident ..or twist of fate pushes you forwards and before you know it you're tumbling off the edge and into your future. They will never know and never need to know that that their inconsequential little nothing turned into something marvelous inside you.
You came into my life to lead me here.
Despair - Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Seasons change, emotions change, the government changes, the waves roll in and out.
Good and bad, it's all change.
Everything has its day... and so will I.
Labels: about me, brain fuzz, change, change the colour of your day, choices, contemplation, daydreams, divination, endless summer lift the curse, fear, music, musical monday, personal, the circle dance, voice
Monday, September 02, 2013
The Archetypes conversation we had last week has lingered around me and refusing to leave.
Like all our conversations, this started somewhere rather remote and eventually meandered in that same way it usually does, past the inadequacies of my upbringing and taking a right through my lack of self esteem and stumbling somewhere near the babbling brook of discontent until we reached the fairytale discussion.
If you think about it, we are all in our consciousness and at the very core a collection of archetypes. That is how our point of reference for ourselves and the way in which we size up and identify each other. Every story has its wicked witch, its naive traveler, a caregiver, a Prince. There are those that look one way and act another like our friend The Beast and there are those that without doubt are exactly who they appear to be, like Snow White. Love it or hate it archetypes are important to us. How else would you know what I meant by Perfect Mother unless you already had an idea in your mind of what that would entail? Even if your own Mother wasn't perfect at all, you would still have a projected ideal in your mind of what she should have been.
The fairytale discussion began with an unflattering description of someone in my life as the wicked witch from Hansel and Gretel. MVOR agreed that this sounded consistent with my observations about her in previous discussions and so if that was true when who was I?
As the leading lady in my own sorrowful story you'd think that this would be an easy question to answer but I couldn't reconcile myself as a Red Riding Hood, Snow White or Belle. There is no heroine for me to project forward. MVOR heard my silence, as she often does... and in her perceptive way eventually prompted; I thought that would be obvious. Aren't you Cinderella? She gave a multitude of good reasons why I should be.
I considered it for a long while but ultimately had to disagree.
I couldn't be Cinderella because Cinderella, like all leading heroines, is a character laden with hope and possibility. You go into reading her story knowing that she will prevail. Despite her lowly and doomed status as a servant to her Stepmother and horrid Stepsisters, success is still a certainty for her, like it is for all heroines. I can't say that anything is a positive certainty for me. The jury is still out on whether I will turn these lemons into lemonade or even if I will manage to maintain this exhausting balancing act of my life that can at best be described as a "status quo". No, though I may indeed be in the soot and cinders, sleeping with the outcasts and edging my way along the fringes like our old friend Cinderella I'm not quite as entitled as she to a happy ending. Who is to say I am? What's the guarantee? Not everyone ends up with love, family, money, security, health or self actualisation. In fact, not even having one of them is a certainty.
MVOR explained that our archetypes and internal schemas are part of the image we have of ourselves and that which we project outwards. Is it indeed a self fulfilling prophesy to see oneself in a certain light and to project that outwards, therefore inviting others to see us thus? And so what do you do if your internal archetype is not positive or constructive? Well this is a question for the ages. I'm told it can change with a lot of perseverance and adjustments to our internal narrative.
So if my archetypal fairytale character is not Cindy, then what do you suppose I said?
I bought an album the other day for the first time in a loooooong time. I don't tend to buy albums anymore. I buy songs. I suppose we all do that now. But this one... this one I bought. I seem to be listening to this song a lot. It takes me somewhere otherworldly. Exactly what I need.
Pontoon - Emma Louise
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
I've rearranged, I've thrown out the excess rubbish and clutter but I haven't really sorted through my shit. Do I truly need that folder full of activities about healthy eating from 2005 that I inherited from another teacher and have never used? Why should I keep that book about using computer activities with Grade 2-6 that I haven't opened? For that matter should I keep any of the books whose spine still isn't even cracked? Why do I need any of those things and why do I have them in the first place? If I had to be objective I could probably fit all the things I need onto one shelf. Instead I have 2, plus the 2 at school, plus the 7 car loads in storage...and more.
I seem to do this every time I attempt to clean. I sort through my things, make it all look neat and never really evaluate or get rid of the things I really need to. The excess history I've accumulated on these shelves of mine that I've refused to throw out have created blockage for the potential of new things coming in. I can't fit anything else in if I don't get rid of the stale stuff that is there. Sure, I can create a more efficient filing system or invest in a larger space, deeper shelves and generally manage the resources I have more effectively but that's not what I really want to do.
What I really want to do is preserve the essential pieces of my past that I can't move forward without and get rid of all the excess shit that clogs all that awesome stuff from coming in.
Meanwhile on the musical landscape, this little gem has joyously been swimming around my head for the past week. If everyone has a theme song and I think they do, this one is mine...for this month anyway.
Left of Centre - Suzanne Vega
Thursday, August 22, 2013
I wouldn't recommended it.
The problem for me is that idealism in my view basically follows an ideal of everything being fair for everyone. Justice for one and all.
But is that reality?
Is anything truly balanced on the scale of life?
Sure, what goes up must come down but do good deeds beget good responses and does thinking positive bring positive results? What about that karma then? Do bad deeds bring bad results? Does an evil act bring adequate judgement?
Monday, August 19, 2013
Now I'm not going to lie, The iPod Oracle does unfortunately tend to think I need to listen a lot of Leo Sayer (downloaded in a moment of weakness folk), not to mention the audio of the trashy novel I downloaded and now can't get away from, but apart from that it's been scarily accurate in providing me the songs I need in order to keep going. Lately this song keeps popping up in random shuffles and randomly came up in conversation the other day too.
I've already written a post about Smashing Pumpkins and so I won't reiterate my sentiments but this song... Landslide, is a special one. I was saving it for a future post about my all time favourite musical covers but today it must stand alone. It's a special tune when the cover is better than the original (gasp!)
Thanks for the message oh Gods of the Universe, oh Billy Pumpkin, oh iPod oracle, oh Stevie Nicks and whomever and whatever else is involved.
I don't quite know how to turn the message into positive action but for now I'm listening.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
The most damaging thing about Tony Abbott's comments describing his colleague (candidate for Lindsay, Fiona Scott) is a good choice for the job because she is young, feisty and has sex appeal, is not that it's so very misogynistic (though, just to be clear... I do think it is appalling) but more importantly that it's a reductive way to regard all women.
Generally speaking, it may be flattering to be referred to as having sex appeal but it is completely inappropriate for someone to do so when describing someone's professional capacity. The value on women is already too often measured in our sex appeal. Not only is it shallow to describe someone's best qualities as being part of their looks but also we must note that sex appeal has a shelf life. Therefore when that runs out (and it inevitably will) then what of her qualifications to fulfill her role then? If there are no qualifications so important as her ability to turn men on when that runs out we must assume that she will no longer be useful. More alarmingly, what if you are a woman without any sex appeal? God forbid I suppose you'd have to rely on your sheer tenacity, drive, smarts, experience, clear thinking, idealism and compassion to make it as a politician... not that any of this matters if you are a woman in our future PM's eyes. Apparently, judging by the "oh he was just being nice, lighten up" supporters of T.Abbott nothing of substance about women matters in a LOT of people's eyes.
I understand that's not what Mr. Abbott said but it's not what he said that motivates me to write this it's what lives between the lines of what he said. Ultimately, when you reduce a woman's qualities to sex then that is what you are expecting from her. What of her abilities as a political candidate? Surely, it's taken a lot of other qualities for her to get to where she is yet the sum of her achievements through his eyes is so inconsequential that he cannot even think of what they are!
As for Mark Latham. What an arsehole.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
...oops, someone forgot to turn their phone to silent.
One of my younger colleagues leans over towards me and makes a derogatory comment while laughing at the 'euro-trash' beat. Whoa, whoaaa. That's New Order he was dissing. How? I can't even imagine a world where New Order is less than the absolute pinnacle of cool. Apparently it turns out I am crusty, old and out of touch with the musical tastes of the under 25s. Folk if you aren't sitting down yet please do so because I have bad news to break to you; apparently New Order is no longer cool. Someone please alert the 1980s. I'm absolutely devo.
I think like most people my age I stumbled onto New Order in 1988 when Blue Monday was re-released. It may be hard to be believe but to my fluoro short sporting, "Hang Ten" t-shirt (yes...) wearing, rolled down socks rocking self you'd think I was already too cool to listen to such manner of synthpop from a band from "En-ger-land" but no, apart from Michael Jackson's Thriller, Blue Monday was probably the coolest thing I'd ever heard. Looking back, it was the coolest thing any of us in Mrs H's Grade 5 class of '88 had heard to be honest. Now I much prefer the original track (duh) but back then BM '88 was a new sound to ears that had until that point been mostly attuned to bubblegum pop popularised by Australian soap opera star pseudo-musicians.
Of course Blue Monday wasn't even a new sound in 1988, it was already a 5 year old living, breathing child by that stage; New Order had already acquired The Haçienda, bridged the gap between dance, Post Punk/New Wave and well and truly etched a path into musical history. I never knew any of this. I was 10 in 1988 and my biggest mission in life was to learn how to use the hair crimper without burning a hole in my forehead. How was I to know that by the time I was 20 I'd be pressing my face against the bus window listening to Joy Division and New Order on repeat on my Walkman while on the way to change the world one film studies tutorial at a time?
It's hard to articulate what it is about New Order that is special and it seems reductive to say that they 'just are brilliant' (it's not even true, some of their songs are shite) but sometimes words are an inadequate medium to describe a truth that you feel somewhere deep inside. Isn't that why we listen to music in the first place? Doesn't it fill in those spaces we can't quite express through words? How can you articulate the perfect strum of a guitar? How can you describe the moment when you listen to a song and feel yourself completely disappear in to the vibration? How can I do this justice? I can't.
My favourite of theirs is Ceremony. There is still some conjecture in my own mind as to whether this is still officially a Joy Division track or whether it was truly New Order. It's officially touted as New Order's debut track but with lyrics written by Joy Division's frontman Ian Curtis and originally recorded with his vocals before he tragically took his own life. It seems the perfect mixed up choice - a sad goodbye to Ian Curtis and hopeful hello to a new kind of music that ended up changing the world.
It is by no means the only song of New Order that I love and I've posted it before on this blog but many years ago now when I made a list of my top 100 songs of all time this was #1. Right now, it's midnight on a terrifyingly windy night in old Melbourne town. I'm on my 10th listen. Indulge me while I fill in the spaces I can't quite articulate as I go for 11.
Ceremony - New Order
Sunday, August 11, 2013
K and I were still able to have a rational conversation on the account of the child still being in utero so we made the most of it by me moaning about my job and her looking at me pityingly and K discussing her fears about giving birth and me (unwisely) advising her to take all the drugs available (preferably at once). The birth thing sounds rather hard, scary and horrible but I can't pity it. It's a beautiful miracle and she is so fortunate to have the love in her life that has afforded this experience for her. I am trying to think of the fortunate things in my life. I keep coming up with 'at least I'm not homeless' or 'I never have to compromise over the remote control', which is absolutely true but also kind of sad if that is the best I can do.
EM whom I had dinner with last night is in my predicament but she has made peace with her childless, spinster state. I don't even know how you would begin to do that. I'm the opposite. Case in point - this is the photo I'm staring at right now as I type this. It lives on the wall of my study.
It's beautiful, no? It's a vision of (my) stupid, ridiculous hope and although I love looking at it I hate that I harbor these hopes still. It only makes it harder to move on with my life.
Despite that difference between EM and I, we are of one mind when it comes to the plight of the single lady in her 30s. I like having friends who completely understand what it is like not to want to go to weddings alone and lament on the unfairness of always giving the gift but never being the recipient of any. Also this:
Anyway we are now living in post-feminist glory (apparently) and a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle (or so I've heard) but my God, when will the wilderness years be over? I don't give a shit about being independent or see taking the garbage out as a 'win' in the division of labour. I don't see being single as freeing at all. In fact I think you are more restricted as a single person. I can't quit my job and 'find myself'. Who exactly is going to pay the mortgage when I do that? If I get sick, there is a series of complicated measures I have to go through in order to get through it. There's no depending on someone to pick up the slack when things go wrong. I am not so much fearing being eaten by Alsatians as I am planning it now.
As for breeding. I can almost literally hear the tick-tocking of that old biological clock ringing in my ears and I realise that this is it. Halle Berry may be able to get away with having a baby in her late 40s but I won't be able to. It's now or never and this scares me because... well now is ...NOW. I have thought about this a bit and I have my own set of morals here about the subject but is it selfish to 'go it alone?' I'm not counting it out completely, but let's just say I'm not making any appointments to the clinic either...
I'm not even sure what the point of this entry is. I was going to write about the beauty in the passage of time as symbolised in seeing Before Midnight with K but um... I guess not. Sorry about that.
Labels: babies, dirty femmo, friends, girls and women, messy women, rant, singletons, there is no life after babies for the mothers in the equation but maybe they don't mind so much anyway, what women want, women
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