good morning ~
(click the link / sunset statue to listen)
today's track is a syrupy piano zone and honestly I don't remember how I made it exactly
this weekend is the 24-HOUR DRONE festival at Basilica Hudson and I am extremely looking forward to playing a set at 7am with my buddies. I also recently began a new full-time job there so I will be appearing in multiple capacities - I hope to either see you at the box office or soundtrack your Sunday morning coffee.
heads up: next week my friend and I have some really sick music coming out. I will tell you about it here. been really focused on meanness here lately, glad to have something very nice soon instead.
He's one of the most challenging people to ever have to tolerate in any kind of social setting and he's just blatantly cut us in the dinner line, indelicately abusing the fact that he recognizes me to slap a hand on my shoulder and get to the chicken skewers a couple minutes faster. Oh hey man how you doing. Ben, right? He is very obviously wasted and very obviously pretending not to know my name in order to establish a conversational foothold, a position from which he will absolute steamroll any kind of fun time we might have been having up until now. Such a punisher, talking shit at a bebop trumpeter's blistering pace. I imagine him as an oiled up wrestler dropping elbows from the top rope again and again. He seems physically uncomfortable and is glistening, not unlike a late afternoon cheese-stuffed hot dog luxuriating on a gas station roller. He is obviously deep in his cups and I realize as the one sided conversation flattens us out that I have never interacted with this man while he was sober. I try to muster some empathy - clearly he has problems he's failing to work through, but talking to him is kinda like "oops! all demons." Bits of spit fly from his slurring mouth as he says whatever the fuck and I unfortunately begin to vividly remember what it's like to talk to him. It's about fifty percent total bullshit - just blatant lies that don't really add up to a punchline and seem to serve to disorient you, destabilize you, gaslightingly rend apart your sense of social reality. Today he claims that a mutual friend has been 86'd entirely from this group of people but I happen to know that's not true at all. Why lie? The other 50 percent is really aggressive negging - he loves to do that thing where a compliment provides the window dressing for a cutting insult. For instance, something that is actually said: you look great, did she dress you? You have to almost admire it - this asshole has a poet's economy and manages to squeeze like four different shades of rude into a few words. He goes on to brag about how young his girlfriend is and I can't help but notice that as he does so he gulps down her entire serving of wine she had just asked him to hold on to while she went to the bathroom. He has a gift, I have to admit. A real master of irritation, and then he hits me with the heaviest blow of the night. Haven't seen you in like eight years bud and you look great, it's like you haven't changed at all.
I used to see this asshole all the time. We had mutual friends and wound up at the same places a lot and eventually I started dating someone he went to college with. She was drunk and mean all the time, too, but her thing was a little more clear cut - there was no mistaking that what she was saying or doing was meant to hurt you specifically, no bundling it in disorienting alleged charm. You could understand the situation at hand and react accordingly - either take it like the collared dog you are or snap entirely and get a roaring screaming match going. This guy was always slippery about it - he managed to provide just enough doubt of his being an unrepentant dick that you couldn't really get a word in about it. Oh, he doesn't mean it, you could imagine a friend of his saying. He's just joking around. Why do they put up with it, I used to wonder, but then I'd never have the nerve to tell him to fuck off. I'd just politely try to wiggle out of his overly familiar seven beer embraces. And I put up with the alcoholic I was living with, too, sticking around long after she said or did a dozen things that were worthy of getting cut out of my life forever for. That I wasted so much of my time with people who wanted to cut me down is one of my greatest shames, but much like the influence of the substance abuse disordered folks of my past the shame has receded through talking it out, support groups, therapy, time, whatever. I feel that I've changed so much, not to mention that I'm like, 50 pounds lighter than when this line cutter saw me last. I'm so obviously altered, grown, matured, whatever. How fucking dare he say otherwise!
Near the end of our stay at the party I wait by the bathrooms for my girlfriend to emerge (for the record - she did not dress me). It is me and two other acquaintances from back in the day in the room, so I cannot help but overhear their tense conversation. Why does he have to be such an asshole? Somebody needs to talk to him. He's having a hard time right now, let me talk to him, etc. Wondering tensely what the fuck there is to be done with such a horrid heart. So I'm not the only one bothered by his vibes. Were words exchanged? I never find out, we sneak out of the party with seltzers for the road in our pockets to go somewhere we knew his noxious cloud couldn't follow us. The next day I get my head straightened out by a buddy familiar with the situation. I wanted to punch him in the face, I said, surprised to mean it so vividly. I think that happens to him a lot, she says. Like, that's what he wants. I realize once again that my skin crawling, my bottled rage is the point of all this. Days later I'm still thinking about it, a spontaneous beer in a bar's backyard turns to ash in my mouth. I didn't have the nerve back then and apparently I still don't have the nerve now, maybe he has a point.
But what about you? Have you changed much in the last ten years? Are you letting yourself get cut down? Do you have the nerve?