Boy, is my sleep schedule totally fucked! Like, rape-fucked. I was awake most of the night despite taking a sleeping pill, which just made me feel all wiggly-swervy like Dr. Katz. Then, after finally dozing off, the alarm sounded a half hour later for us to wake up at five thirty and dress ourselves for our television performance on Good Morning Austin. Disgusting, the things people will do for attention!
There was promise of free coffee, but of course they only had powered creamer. Watching the weather man do his thing every ten minutes was almost scary because those people are so well-trained to speak loudly and with hyper-animated expressions, that it has sort of become their inherent nature to be that way. I wonder how he knows what to point at on that green screen...
I should have asked when I had the chance.
When you're in a sleepless state of mind, it can put you in a bizarre mood, permitting you to entertain the thought of doing things you wouldn't normally even consider. The nagging temptation to blurt out a profanity or feign a seizure right in the middle of my interview with the host was so distracting that I had to take great care not to let my thoughts escape through my lips! Isn't it funny how modern, sterile and super-controlled environments do that to us? Immaculate, spacious office buildings full of people doing calculated tasks both inspires me and also makes me want to pull down my pants and expose myself with a big, shit-eating grin on my face...peeing and giggling at the same time.
Is that weird?
The fake-ness of modernity (er, post-post modernity? Help!) is inspiring because one cannot help but admire the profanely-bombastic arrogance of an environment that is a complete farce in the face of nature. Inefficiency masquerading as a supreme form of order and civilization! Seemingly-eternal monochromatic intimidating captivity...immaculate and air-conditioned, a world that slips further away from tangible realness and further down through the Disneyland butter finger-grasp of Life, and Being, and Now! It's high art; it's terrifying. When something very great hushes you, respect and intimidation come alongside the instinct to rebel!
But of course, real efficiency and longevity can be found where things die and rot and get eaten and pooped out and re-integrated into the equilibrium. Life in our gilded trashcan has many novel perks with funny little inventions and curious oddities to hang upon your wall, but its nice to peak out of the trashcan once in a while and look at all of the impressive clockwork!
Anyway, so I slept all day to recover from the aforementioned hazards of the biz. My only excursion outside of the house was to go see a mariachi band at a Mexican restaurant. This was one of the best decisions I've made all week, besides going to Barton Springs (more on that later). When you go to listen to a live Mariachi band, you have to be somewhere in the middle of all of the instruments to get the full, heavenly effect. Every member of the band had a really divine voice that made my heart swell, and the rhythms of their instruments are so strange and interesting! I haven't memorized the names of those instruments yet...many are variations on the guitar...but the big, robust Bass-like guitar with the bowed spine has such a fulfilling sound that it really makes you want to get up and move and sing-cry! The violin player is dating Naomi's mom, so we were granted many table-front performances.
One of the best things about Austin (and that's a tough competition) is Barton Springs. The spring trickles down au naturale, of course, but there is this giant, pool-like basin carved in the ground that has been built and dammed so that from the side, it does appear to be a giant man made swimming pool; but once you're in, the ground is all stones covered in algae and full of fishes. AMAZING!
Past the dam, there is a large stream that runs freely down into the giant river, and this stream is brimming with biodiversity. So many lovely underwater plants and trees, and giant blue fishes, and SO many turtles looking free and happy. We kayaked down this stream and moseyed around the river a bit just as dusk was setting in, and it was perfect. Something about the beauty of this turtle world existing so happily without knowing about the human world was the catalyst for me to recall my old childhood longings for adventure. I was so consumed by dreams of other dimensions, underwater peoples, weird existences in nature. One of the Chronicles of Narnia--'Voyage of the Dawn Treader'--actually invoked this desire better than most things I can think of...
The newness and scariness of life lately has opened the floodgates for many of my childhood characteristics, I feel. Maybe it just comes with life experience and I'm exiting the dark ages of my jaded early 20s, but my curiosity is stirring more than ever, and I'm finding glory in art and small details again. There's lots of little things I could bring up as examples, but one very recent inspiration is the band The Raincoats. It seems like most people (and their moms) have known about this band since they rolled out of the womb, but of course I haven't heard of anything yet, so this very fresh meat for me to sink my teeth into!
I haven't been able to afford to buy any of their albums yet, but I really want to get their self-titled debut album that was just re-released on KRS. Recently, I had a brief correspondence with a member of the Raincoats, Ana De Silva. She said she wanted to come and see us the next time we're in the UK. Of course, we're banned for ten years, so she won't get to see us until our reunion tour...
But check out this little snippet of an interview/video with The Raincoats during Gina Birch's premiere for a documentary she's been making on the band. She's the singer, so it must be tricky to create a film about your own band! I hope I'll have the chance to see it:
Don't they just seem like the raddest people? Look up their music videos on youtube for actual songs. Their cover of The Kinks' 'Lola' is awesome, and so is 'Don't Be Mean.'