good morning ~
(click the link / wad of wallpaper to listen)
today's track blooms into a gentle bopper. listen closely - one of the intertwined chimes is sampled from a recording of magic being performed (you'll read more on that later).
listen, I really want you to come to the gig I'm playing a week from today at No Fun. I'm confident that it will be a good night of music, but it's also the last show I'll play in town before moving out of Troy. I plan to keep shifts at the bar and I will probably play there again, but it'll feel really different when I can no longer walk there in under five minutes. plus, Ged's agreed to come up and play the show with me and I'm really excited about the music we've been making together. Here are tickets for the show and here's the flyer:
My buddy's mom is known for her ability to energetically redirect the vibes of a dwelling, so we invited her into the house. We knew not what to expect, but all weekend we had diligently followed her suggestion that we remove any object we didn't like - down came the ugly window treatments and the framed charts containing information about different types of California wine, a cobwebbed gun rack placed next to the rotted out park bench hauled into the driveway and awaiting dumpster rental.
Do I believe in magic? The former Christian in me wants to say no for two reasons. First, when I was all of fifteen, I put away such childish notions - when I stopped believing in a grand benevolent deity I also lost some ability to believe in the power of things like palm readings and crystals and spells. I'm also a little averse to magic simply because, from a young age, the church taught me to fear Satan and his craven implements, lighting incense with intention was a surefire way to eternal damnnation. Faith operates a little like substance abuse, though - once you're hooked, you'll always be a believer, no matter how hard you kick the habit. And I've certainly observed firsthand the dimensional flow of energy, attention, and intention in all its mystery. Music performed live is so obviously a type of spellcasting - I'm constantly surprised that more people don't consider that notion and wield the awesome responsibility with more authority. Almost every bar shift I've ever worked I've seen some kind of energetic waft alter the beings contained in the room. So though by definition a little skeptical I was more than willing to buy into the notion that my friend's mom could help us get the vibe right.
She came in a normal car and appeared more like my friend's quirky mom than someone with one foot in the realm of spirits, but as we welcomed her into the space and opened all the windows I could see in her eyes and body language that she was tuned - antenna like - to forces I had yet to register. Before she began she told us things, wildly insightful - careful, she said, this place is kind of set up to cause arguments. Well, I had never mentioned the previous owner's nasty divorce nor the fact that they had only managed to live there together for a year so I admit I was impressed, but then again arguments are kinda the currency of a couple moving. She told us, too, that we ought to piss in the four corners of the land we're living on, that we should buy flowers immediately, that we should encircle the property with an unbroken line of cornmeal, that at some point we should do something along the lines of popping open a bottle of champagne. Then she asked us, is it okay with you if I get kind of loud? I'll need to drum and chant, for how long I'm not sure. Yeah of course no problem, we said, and she got to work. Votive candles and white sage lit on the gas range, a blanket unrolled in the middle of the floor, animal figurines set out and crystals applied to her person. Two tiny cymbals clanging against each other, their frequencies bumping off of every hard surface in every room.
Wanting to be adjacent to but not in the way of whatever magic was being performed, we continued the never-ending labor of cleaning and clearing out the space we'll eventually live in. More discarded objects hauled to the driveway, surfaces dusted, I continued bit-by-bit ripping down the hideous desert-scape wallpaper from the ground floor's accent wall. My friend's mom moved diligently from room to room, her various percussion filling the house with noise and energy of a degree we had yet to experience. Her handheld drum, banging in an exploratory rhythm, sounded like a crowd of footsteps above me. I fantasized - as I often do - about how fun it would be to have a party in our space, dozens of friends, loud music of our choosing, smiles and affection and desire passed around. Ah, so this is the magic I believe in - the magic of the gathering.
(You know how it's just, like, the best feeling in the world to fall asleep while a party is happening in another room? Muffled voices beyond the drywall, the most luxurious white noise machine. Friendly parties, spells of protection).
My buddy's mom came downstairs to the room where I was peeling wallpaper. Got some big work to do here, she said, and I didn't quite know if she meant from a spiritual or interior decoration perspective. But then I could feel her insistence rising and she began to bark and growl, she seemed to puff up in size, acting the way I think you're supposed to when you encounter a black bear in the wild. GET OUT, she drummed, GET OUT.
I felt convinced, whether or not the demonic asshole spirits were banished or ever present. The room forever altered, at least in my phenomenology - I will never again stand in that room un-screamed.
Perhaps more attuned to these types of things, I felt another type of magic happening when, at the end of her labors, I sheepishly handed this powerful person her cash, currency itself a type of spell. Something like a crystallization - the hiring and paying of my friend's mom wrapped us up in a web, I could almost feel it, and as she left our new place I felt compelled to text both her son and my other friend for whom she had also performed a successful energetic cleanse. Another spoke added to the wheel of humanity.
That afternoon we drove to the nearest strip mall and purchased our supplies: shitty caffeinated beverages and supermarket flowers, these would be our implements. Unwrapped from the plastic and placed in an old honey jar they seemed so colorful and full of life.
But what about you? Are you experiencing magic in your day-to-day life? What do you believe in? Are you pissing in all the corners?