First, before I get into admitting yet again to how awful I am at keeping things updated, let me just state before all else how grateful I am to still be asked to play shows like Hillstock, from which I just returned. I had a lot of positive encounters and re-encounters, and one particularly affecting (in a good way) conversation with a girl I hadn’t seen for 3 years. It’s amazing how things like this happen, it’s like you have no excuse not to try to be better when such things happen, when people come back into your life, even briefly, how can one not see existence as being this wild and dynamic and meaningful thing?
I know it’s nearly 5 a.m. I know.
But really, clearly I should not be in charge of this tumblr business. Those bands that do it all, and far far better than I do, I look at in awe. I’ve never kept people very informed as to what the band is up to, let alone what I was up to when I was playing solo. Maybe it’s not even an important aspect to the creative process (yip yap), but lately I feel more than ever that, probably more for my own sake than for the listeners, that I should really get serious about this tumblr. Especially now that we’re recording again, and during these times I tend to retreat even more so into the woodwork, decline shows (apologies regarding how bad I’ve been with e-mailing too…yikes) and maybe I’m a little freaked about disappearing from the grid completely. Loudmouths are like this. Plus it turns out that when given a twitter account to run with, I end up tweeting about how I had a Thanksgiving dinner in JUNE (it was pretty great, actually), or about funny trucks I see. It’s hard when given such a small allowance of words to work with. So maybe I can get some substance in here. Twitter. Tumblr. Substance. Humor me. Karl Lagerfeld’s twitter could argue my point, at least. But he so rarely posts……
Anyhow, no excuses, let’s just try to be better. The topic I really wanted to discuss here happened to me just fifteen minutes ago. I was unloading the van (I know what time it is, I KNOW) which of course is a stupid thing to do so late, and terrible things have happened in the city, and it’s not something to be tested or toyed with, but sometimes we do things when we can’t sleep and are worried about what humidity can do to guitars and drums and vinyl. I know it’s stupid, and I’ll really try not to do it again. Needless to say, I was unloading in a very suspicious super cautious way, quickly grabbing instruments and looking both ways down the block and locking the van every time I left it, and practically running inside any time I saw someone approaching. About halfway through this process, I could see from the corner of my eye that a man was sitting on his stoop by himself two houses over from mine, and had been sitting there apparently for some time, before I’d even started my completely idiotic task. So I was suspicious of him. I tried not to look at him and kept unloading, QUICKLY. Finally I had to get the records out of the back, and this required crossing directly into his vision, and at first I began with the same cold swiftness, I just wanted to get the vinyl OUT and into the house. Once I grabbed them, for a blip of a second my coldness towards this person dawned on me, and it bothered me. I looked up, smiled and said “hi,” and to that he smiled back, and it was a very kind smile. I’m telling you, you know these smiles when you see them. Maybe I sound like an idiot, and maybe I am, but there was a human warmth to it, nothing like those dark hellos you might get if you’re a girl walking by yourself (please, just don’t do it . It’s really really stupid. And please don’t tell my parents about this). My point is, his kindness moved me, humbled me, and though in reality it is safer to assume the worst about people outside after 3 a.m. (I mean, hey, I was outside), it comforted me to be reminded of our capacity for goodness. It was such a small display, but it really hit me, perhaps I just needed to see a very kind smile just then.
I was told once that our very brainwaves are an energy that we can release just by thinking about something or someone. Which might at first seem terrifying, but is also really empowering, that we have so much control over how we influence the space around us (yet I suppose it could be argued that such power is maybe out of our control, but at least we can have hope in positive thoughts getting out into the world, as well as the less-so…).
There is so much at risk when you put yourself out there, make yourself emotionally vunlerable. Sometimes it feels pretty awful, and some of it I wouldn’t even recommend, and sometimes in the end it’s really to one’s detriment. But listen, do it, do it anyway, just try not to hurt anybody. There are good things out there, perhaps they happen in small instances, maybe they pop out of the woodwork after a few years and walk you to Dunkin Donuts, or write you beautiful unprecedented letters all the way from the other side of the country, just to remind you you’re important to somebody…. maybe it’s holing up for a few months to make a record (haha)…I might just be telling myself this, but I hope everybody still has faith in people. Even though we can be huge dicks sometimes. It’s so important, to try and try, regardless.
This is what my 5 a.m. posts are like. I’ll try not to do it again. I know. I know.
Thanksgiving in June: truly the greatest idea ever.