Monday, October 24, 2011

It never rains, but it pours...

I have not posted anything on here for over a week, purely and simply because I have been too busy. Life of late has been a constant procession, from one happening to another. Picnics, parties, festivals, fairs, concerts, work, appointments; it has truly been one of the busiest months in recent memory. On Sunday night, when I cooked Emma and I a simple pasta dish for dinner, we realised that it was the first evening in the last few weeks where we shared a meal together, unaccompanied and at home.

This month of frantic activity reached it's zenith last week, when I found myself attending celebrations to mark not one, but three birthdays (all of them lovely), as well as two music festivals, the record fair, a job interview and the Hindu festival of Diwali in the space of four days. It was a mad time, both enjoyable and exhausting. I now find myself tired and somewhat glad to have a relatively quiet week, but at the same time I worry I may find myself a little bored today, as I enjoy the most recent additions to my record collection and take advantage opportunity the pleasant spring weather offers to catch up on the laundry.

Of course, none of this is helped by the fact that I am waiting, fairly anxiously, to hear news of my recent job interview. My phone and the remote for the stereo are presently colocated at my right hand, lined up quite neatly with my computer mouse. I busy myself with housework and sit at the computer, sipping at a large cup of strong herbal tea, a tightly knotted ball of tension and anxiety; it is a decidedly pathetic picture.

Having said that I can't complain too much, I have the radio show tonight and work tomorrow to keep me occupied, and during my very long weekend (6 days this week) I have a gig to attend (Night Hag/Bronze Chariot/Heirs/Alcest... a truly incredible line up) and I have my first political party AGM to attend, having recently bitten the bullet and joined Dignity 4 Disability, after 3 years working in disability support services and living day to day with the myriad difficulties and disappointments in that industry.

Sometime this week I should also get online and make my final selection for my large birthday present. I have been planning for some time to get a new distortion pedal, most likely a Tym Guitars Red Mudd, and had asked my family for money to fund this purchase. I've been writing a lot of music again lately and taking the first very tentative steps to maybe get the band back together again, or maybe start something new, so a new, high quality guitar pedal makes sense at the moment. Whether or not it will prove to be a massive white elephant only time can tell.

I shall leave it there I think, because I think I just heard the washing machine beep. I'll see you all somewhere out in the real world, real soon. Probably.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Second verse, same as the first...

Today I'm trying not to avoid finishing draft job applications. It's pretty hard though, the job and person specifications for the things I'm going for are so uniform and identical that it's difficult to think of ways to rephrase the same thing over and over again. Well, it was difficult, when that was still what I was doing. I've now sort of compiled one job generic application containing my best answers to all the questions everyone asks that I can reword and modify before banging out answers to the two or three unique questions they throw in to make sure you're paying attention and emailing it away, over the churning waterfalls, off the edge of the world, into the endless abyss. Or something.

I've been doing rather a lot of this lately, and have now reached the worst point in the whole process, the part where your fate is in "their" hands (you know, THEM). Every phone call from a private number is greeted by a blurting, jittery, twitching mess. Logging into my "professional sounding" email address has started to resemble an action film sequence, wherein your hero sweats bullets whilst defusing a bomb, only in this version he's very disappointed at the end when nothing happens. It's like some weird splicing of The Hurt Locker and Marvin the Martian.

It probably doesn't help that my birthday is rapidly approaching, a fact I only recently realised, which is concerning as it's not just my birthday, but also my sister's. This year my birthday is a doubly significant anniversary, as it also marks one year since I was admitted to practice. That's right, I've "been a lawyer" for almost a year now. That fact, taken along with my failure to break into my career in any lasting way, and my hastening progress towards 30 has me in a decidedly weird mood; an emotional state compounded by my numerous (and very boring) anxieties.

I shall not dwell on this any longer, as it is one of a growing number of things at the moment that seems to bring on a strange sort of chest pain. I find this quite uncomfortable, and a little disturbing, though I have chosen to dismiss it as a previously unexperienced emotional response. I presume (or at the very least, hope) that the difficulty is existential rather than cardiovascular, though it makes little difference really. Either way, the matter shall resolve itself, and in any event in the long term the outcome is the same.

Anyway, enough of that depressing stuff. I feel compelled to give a quick rundown on how my new adventures in trying to use facebook less are going (Previously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer...). I have so far managed the transition quite well, pestering my friends from afar via my newly linked twitter account, bashing out my rants on this blog and only using facebook for the things that it is actually good at doing. On a recent snoop about to check on comments I noticed that the Notes app has not been importing blog posts from my RSS feed as it should, and that only the very first post has appeared. I shall have to log in at some point and try to remedy this, if only to further avoid looking at my many job applications.

Outside of my apparently stalled career things have actually been going very well of late. I have achieved many of the things I set out to do in my first post, and am generally finding the more active, productive and imaginative use of my leisure time to be extremely enjoyable. The radio show has been excellent, giving Emma and I a shared hobby and an opportunity to share our great love of music with others. New friendships have brought me a great deal of joy, as has a strengthening of old ties.

Another thing that has been wonderful is breaking away from this computer and really enjoying evenings out again. I am out and about at gigs and things most weekends, having a great time and amassing a vast treasure trove of demos and EPs. I am glad to be back in the thick of it again, as I sort of dropped out for a while there, when I was a little fragile after making my big decision and committing to the straight edge lifestyle. It's coming up on 8 months now, and as Emma pointed last night, this is my first birthday without drink or drugs in a very long time. There are, I suppose (and grudgingly concede), some things to be cheerful about this birthday.

I will leave you with an odd thought I had last night, shortly before I fell asleep, on the topic of casual swearing (a subject very close to my heart). What is it that makes some words worse than others? Many obscenities are colloquialisms for the male and female sexual organs. There is one word, I presume you all know which one, that is considered far and away the worst, many regard it as unusable. Why is that? There are many curse words for that very same anatomical feature that people feel quite comfortable using in polite company, even in front of children. They are not beeped out on television or radio. Wherein lies the terrible power of the c word? Any thoughts?