With this insomnia thing I can only say “What the fuck.” Grisly, most grisly of grislies. It’s like being on the Posiedon, the 1972 movie in which a ship turned completely upside down. But unlike the awesome actor Shelley Winters who, with her lungs of steel, swam an amazing distance, I have weak lungs for insomnia. Good God almighty, it wreaks havoc with my creative life. Rare as it is nowadays, my entire life still gets tipped upside down and I am dumped into that ocean of night known so well to us insomniacs. No pleasant warm swim, no nice drifting in friendly waters, insomnia nights are cold, shark-infested seas fraught with frustrations, remorse as well as the compulsion to get a “real” job (you can imagine how dafted I must be to even be considering that last one). Ms. Static (that pesky feline who loves to disrupt my life in the darkened closet) is thrilled at my insomnia as she, being a nocturnal thing, is happy for the company. At least, being up, I don’t have to worry about what she is doing while I am sleeping. This later point always bothers me: that I live with a creature who has sharp teeth, long nails and well, questionable motives. Afterall, how do I know that she doesn’t consider me meat? Did I mention that paranoia is my legacy and that insomnia is it’s cure? I mean, if I’m always up, then I can be alert to whatever I need to be alert to. Not that I know what that is, but hay I’m prone to paranoia that fear of whatever the fuck might be going on without my knowledge.
I left Dr. Tieck’s in good shape. He was pleased by my progress and my tolerance of the medications he thinks I’m on.
“I was brought here by flies,” I said in my sleep. This was not a mere assertion from a demented mind. (We’ll skip that discussion for now.) It was a demonstrative statement of fact. Periodically, I come up with these announcements—and frequently in the company of my boyfriend. These notions (or pronouncement as my partner likes to call them) come in the space between waking and sleeping. Grisly and spooky, this business of sleeping.
There were a couple of things I mentioned on our podcast Head Wound that I said I’d put on our blog. One was the website for my pal Patrick who is the dad of Magenta, the tarantula and also a writer (not Magenta, but Patrick. I don’t think Magenta can write. Although if she could, I would be quite interested to hear what she has to say.) Patrick’s website is: www.patrickletellier.com. Currently, Magenta has no website, although she should. Patrick says he’ll forward me a picture of Miss M. When he does, I’ll give you the link. I also mentioned a cool zine that I liked. Called Bug, it is written by Bryan Kring. (http://www.kringdesign.com/books) He’s got some really interesting zines on his website—Peephole, Wart and Specimen—that I plan on getting. When I do, I’ll let you know what I think. But definitely pick up Bug. It’s cool, creepy and well done. I bought Bug at Pens and Needles, here in SF (http://www.needles-pens.com/home.html). Pens and Needles has DIY goods, great zines and magazines and a great gallery.
Under political pressure the Bauhaus was closed on the orders of the Nazi regime on April 11 1933. The closure, and the response of Mies van der Rohe, is fully documented in Elaine Hochman’s Architects of Fortune.
Just got back from the Morrissey concert tonight. I don’t know why I couldn’t get wrapped up in it the way I could with the last show I went to, Billy Bragg, who you’d think would be much more cerebral, less visceral. Couple possibilities: Billy Bragg is _about_ combining with other people to change things. Maybe that’s not right. But Morrissey is so much about a singularity and a missed connection with the universe, it sort of seems wrong to be singing along to him with so much of that universe, his love and self-love requited everywhere. It seems like you should be listening to Morrissey alone, on headphones, in high school, and barely surviving it. I do love him, of course. But maybe not when I’m in public.
Another possibility is that I’m such a cerebral fucker that Billy Bragg hits my emotional stripe perfectly. Not cerebral–abstract? Unable to contemplate art without vulgarly mixing in politics? So maybe it’s my fault.
But there in my headiness and abstraction tonight I was, like it or not, thinking about Coriolanus and Hegel while I watched Morrissey and didn’t fall into the music. I’m a director, for film and TV, and directing is a thing I love to do. I especially love it when I see a room full of people enacting words and schemes I’ve put down on paper myself.
I always think of actors as kind of the opposite of directors–they are there to be seen, we are there to see them. I think of something and they bring it into life in some beautiful fantastic way, with some whole other kind of need and intelligence than what I have.
But when Morrissey came out tonight and looked us all over, started up the first song and had the whole club singing his words, I realized he, the looked-at, was directing _us_. Hegel said the problem with being a master is you require a slave. Coriolanus, in the Shakespeare play, is disgusted with the idea that he has to show the mere people his battle scars to win their vote for Roman senator. Who rules who? Morrissey told the truth about his pain and weakness and ugliness over and over and over. He’s a rich man now, happier, I think, and possibly now even minus a crippling personality disorder or two. He’s up on the stage. Our hands are in the air, worshipping, or giving orders. The king is the slave is the king.
At last. A blog so that when I am in my darkened closet I can send a line or two out into the ether so that someone beside my feline (our, as there are two of us who tend her) can know what is going on in my brain and in my life. It is not that…I was going to say she does not care…actually she doesn’t. So I move on. As to the darkened room. I would say I was born in one. Wishful thinking or not as I am intrigued by the image of the bright surgical lights and draped green masks (as well as the sterile floors and implements) that were there at my arrival. And a mother, I assume. Although it may have been the only moment she was present. Forced by circumstances she was. A tendency I have carried forward. That this life requires a presence. That being mine. “So,” I was asked by a very small person. “Under what circumstances are you willing to be here?” The answer is this: in a darkened, small room with very little stimulation, all relationships mediated by something–words, machines, images as well as other forms of manipulation. “Oh, so an artist, in other words,” she said with that wry smile. (In her low lit room–with little outside stimulation). “Yes, I suppose,” always intrigued as I am by her perspective on my existence. “An artist.”
There are few I would take up with in this way of being. But Jed Bell, my collaborator, is one. We communicate through Heads Will Roll, its projects, its visions. I remain wary. Of him. Of her. Or perhaps tentative. Always ready to bolt. Back into my darkened room. With the visions. And that fucking cat.