Thursday, December 03, 2009

Like Sound It Comes Around

I was coursing through fields of daisies. Up to my neck in happiness. On the horizon a low hanging sun, resplendent in golden, a big sappy smile on its stupid golden face. It winked at me, that sun, beckoned me onwards with orange, fiery arms.

Orange? What happened to golden?

And so there comes a point, as there must always come a point, when you stop and take stock. Or, as happened to me, fall in a hole. I had an important statement to make – this was going to be the one. But the hole took me.

I woke the other morning with the following sentences (below) whispering through my head. My intention was to take them and turn them into something. But I couldn’t be arsed. And anyway, I like them as they are:

For rivers, bridges. For mountains, holes.

That’s the thing though - you have to write something. It doesn’t always have to be about mountains and rivers. As I said to myself the other day: there’s no such thing as autobiography. I also said: it’s better to evade than invade.

See, with me you get these vague hints at profundity which, if you imagined them as balloons, would burst at the slightest touch. When I say balloons, of course, I mean bubbles. Big, greasy bobbing bubbles.

Thomas Szasz said there was no such thing as mental illness. He didn’t just say it; he made a whole career out of it. Years ago – many years ago – I was very interested in him and his arguments. My copy of his book, The Myth of Mental Illness, had scorched edges from the frequent page turning. But the thing is, I can’t remember much about it. Except that I agreed with his hypothesis. Hypotheses.

(I’m not sure that the frequent page turning and scorched edges thing works. And I hate that I used the word hypothesis. And hypotheses.)

Wait. All that stuff about language and power. All that Foucault type bollocks that I was also, for a very brief period, faintly impressed with. The problem with Foucault is that he was such a fucking dick.

I’ve just looked Szasz up. He’s still alive. 89 years old and still alive. Good for him.

But you’d think, wouldn’t you, that after the birth of my twin girls – and particularly because Maggie is in such a terrible state – I’d have something else to say instead of twatting about with all this random crap. You’d think that maybe I could somehow mine all that heartache and tragedy and turn it into something meaningful, fiction-wise. For me and for any readers out there. My fans, as I like to call them. But I can’t do it and I won’t do it. Because I couldn’t do her justice. So it’s going to be more of the same with perhaps, every now and then, a hint at things. You know, little stabs of Maggie.

Which puts me in mind of Len Lye and how, years ago, I sort of did culture and exhausted it all. After high modernism where do you go?

Which puts me in mind of that rubbish joke that only works if you mispronounce, like a fucking idiot, Foucault’s name: as Fuckall.

Which puts me in mind of the time I mispronounced Camus’s name as Caymuss. Gah. I’m usually so careful to get things like that right.

So where are we? Where do I go from here?

Stories about monsters are always good. Maybe I’ll just do that. I’ve come to realise that subconsciously I’ve always had a thing for things Frankensteinian. I like raised pitchforks and flaming torches and peasants and misunderstood monsters. I also like castles and gothic Bavarian landscapes. I should maybe analyse this and see what comes out.

The film version of Frankenstein, the Universal/James Whale/Boris Karloff version, is far superior to the book. I was enthralled by that film as a kid. And it’s funny the things you remember – like the frame-by-frame Frankenstein picture book by Richard J. Anobile that I pored over for hours and hours. I lived in a world of Spider-Man, Beryl The Peril, horror films, musicals and The Beatles.

I’ve just ordered a copy of Anobile’s Frankenstein book. Cost: 1p. Plus £2.75 postage and packing. Published October 1974. My birthday is in October. I would have just turned seven. More copies available here.

And from there? Well, there’s always sex. Or, rather, my juvenile portrayals of certain kinds of women. Me objectifying and sexualising them and, through a certain kind of persona, telling of all the things I’d like to do to them. Big women mostly, with big knockers and welcoming thighs and open arses. You know. They are mostly all that I think about. They are what prevents me from getting things done. Or, rather, my obsession with sex and women is what has prevented me from getting things done. I have a mind full of it; it increases with age.

(These days I am more open to using the semi-colon, as ugly as it is. Professionally as well, in the crap I knock out for people who couldn’t even begin to knock out the crap I knock out for them. Of semi-colons, Kurt Vonnegut said: “They are transvestite herm-aphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you've been to college.” I agree. I’ll never use them again.)

One thing I’ve discovered these past eight weeks: there’s a very good reason why nurses are low paid. As for midwives: I’m amazed they get paid at all.

Nurses though. I’ve never been one for the whole uniforms thing. It smacks of being something that those not very interested in sex would be into. Fetishists and weirdoes who need that extra lift to get themselves going. Asexual dickwads, as we call them in our house.

Which puts me in mind of a thing I wrote a couple of years ago (Refuel on a Fun-Filled Portion):

“I was talking to this lesbian who. Well, who first of all told me that she wasn’t, in fact, a lesbian. She said: You know the Richard Briers character in Ever Decreasing Circles? You remind me, she continued, of him – what with your petty bourgeois notions of sexuality and your desire to remain in your narrow, and narrow-minded, comfort zone where all is as it should be and where straights like you (did she say straights, really?) force on to people like me your strict and reductive definitions of who we are, either gay or straight or maybe bisexual, but I’m none of those, I refuse to be boxed in, especially by the likes of you. Get fucked, I replied. Anyway, this lesbian had a girlfriend who, she said, made leather fetish gear, bondage rubbish, all that. Me: Yada, what, the sort of stuff, you mean, that only people who don’t like sex go in for, people who, you know, need to dress up like clowns in order to be able to enjoy sex, who also believe, with absolutely no good reason, that their dopey costumes and cretinous antics somehow make them radical, alternative, transgressive and who also believe that their pathetic preferences and dismal shebangs are something other than witless, clichéd expressions of their repressions and anxieties, rooted as they are in their utter conservatism, despite what they believe to the contrary?”

And now, look. I’m reduced to repeating myself.


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