I’m back! Yeah, I haven’t been writing every night, but I do as much as I can folks, these last weeks have been quite a turmoil in my life, but I’m way too experienced in storms to fail to realize that they always hide great opportunities!
So in case, you’re wondering, today’s “night picture” is just an homage to the band of my teenage years: Iron Maiden; I just came back from the gym and I always take my music with me cause 90% of the time, the music they play at the gym sucks, so I started playing one of those custom Spotify mixes and it just reminded me of the good old times. So this record, in particular, isn’t one of the all-time favorites for most people, but I really like it nonetheless, call it nostalgia; by the way, I read in the news that Bruce Dickinson wants the band to appoint a new singer when he’s no longer able to keep performing well, what a vision! This is the kind of thing I would dream of as a kid, to audition for Iron Maiden! But yeah, Bruce is basically irreplaceable and I’m a baritone 😦 so not in my wildest dreams; maybe later I’ll write some music of my own, it’s a wish that has been blocked for years, but when there’s a will there’s a way!
So I’m working very hard to quit smoking; yeah I hadn’t written about that cause it’s a super sensitive topic for me; for those who don’t smoke it’s just stupid and for me, who smoke it’s stupid to poison myself gradually with that shit, but also I have huge anxiety that’s very hard to deal with and it’s what pushes me to addictions. I’ve told you before about my losing weight, that’s going well so far but then again, I’m not a fan of dying young if I can avoid it so smoking is what’s next. Wish me luck fellows, I’ve tried quitting too many times, but I will keep fighting until it’s over.
I’ve published the second post in the “Fight Club in 3-D” series, you can read it here, go ahead, give it a go and let me know what you think.
I’ll go grab a bite, and possibly do some more work a bit later, so bye for now!
Yes, yes it is that time my friends, “ground-zero”! Time to fulfill the promise I made in “Welcome to Fight Club” and start my 3-layered analysis of this mind-blowing movie. I know, I know I’m overly excited, so what!
So today, I will present to you what’s probably the most obvious dimension of the movie and that is, the mental state of our friend “narrator” around which the whole movie gravitates. I feel it has to come first because it impacts and links to any other commentary on culture, or society and definitely shapes the nature of the relationships between the characters.
So if you’re a hardcore fan like me, you know saying “narrator” is just an unstable guy having an episode is a seriously simplistic understatement to the wealth and depth of the content presented to us in this story. But before you judge too hard someone who does, let me just say in their defense that the “narrator” himself defines it similarly at the end of the movie, as he attempts to explain the current situation to Marla: “You met me at a very strange time of my life…”
So what’s up with this whole “narrator” thing?
–“Sure, why don’t we start at the very core? It’s not like it’ll end the charm too soon, will it?” LOL.
There’s an artistic reason and a psychological reason, why not only me, but a lot of fans of the movie call Edward Norton’s character “narrator”; now I’m writing this to whoever’s interested this is not segmented for-fans-only, after all, Tyler is a “man of the common folk”, the “all-singing, all-dancing crap of the world” a bucket in which it seems most of us (fans ar not fans) fit equally, in his vision of things.
But, I’m getting carried away here, the more obvious reason is that the movie is narrated by the protagonist, who would occasionally address the audience directly and explain things that are happening; the other reason which I find very eccentric is that throughout the movie, this character is never actually named; moreover, there are very intentional moments in which providing the name is avoided as if Palahniuk is mocking us in our own faces, I already spoke about examples of this in the first article, but indulge me with another one I noticed recently: Narrator’s condo just burst in flames, he picks up the phone and calls Tyler, Tyler asks “who is this?” do you recall narrator’s answer?
“…we met on the airplane, we had the same suitcase? the clever guy…”
I love it, the story author’s genius allows such a transgression to conventions to carry on all throughout the story, and you don’t even care and perhaps didn’t notice it the first time. I’m mentioning Chuck Palahniuk even when I mentioned this posts will take the movie as their only foundation, because of two reasons:
It’s his mind that brought us this masterpiece
I came to understand while preparing these articles, that the movie respects a lot of the original lines as they appear in the book
Having made that meaningless clarification, I come back to the original point, besides the artistic eccentricity this entails, there’s a deeper sense to the narrator’s anonymity, it’s precisely the quality of being anonymous and seemingly devoid of an identity that triggers the whole chain of events. So keeping this guy unnamed is a perfect homage to his struggle.
“You wanna see pain?”
So what’s his struggle you ask? Well, I’m glad you ask, this is why I’m writing this entire piece, to answer that very question; in short, our beloved narrator is suffering from a severe philosophical void in his life, he’s nothing, no one, his life is meaningless and the whole world around him is soaked in the same banality, life doesn’t make any sense at all and he’s just too aware of it for his own benefit. But here’s the worst part of the curse: while he’s aware of the condition and suffering from it intensely, he’s powerless, there’s nothing he can do to change the condition of his own life, and don’t even think the world around him.
Now, this manifests in different, more visible symptoms we learn about throughout the movie, insomnia being the key problem in the opening act, yet obviously surrounded by a deep dark depression appropriate to his existential suffering.
As it usually happens, he’s annoyed by the symptom and he’s not fully aware of the dimension of what’s going on inside his mind and soul (can’t really judge him, it’s so hard sometimes, isn’t it?), so he goes and sees the doctor about insomnia. And here’s where the title of this section gets his name, the doctor really reacts with the apathy and mockery ordinary people of our society usually reacts to mental and emotional suffering: “that’s nothing, you need to do some exercise and sleep better”; as narrator replies “I’m in pain”, the good doctor replies:
As an omen of what’s being triggered here, we see the first “subliminal” apparition of Tyler behind the doctor in a glimpse of a second, right in this scene. Now the big turning point here is, where most people would have taken the doctor’s suggestion for what it was: a rhetorical mockery of his patient’s complaint, our narrator actually decides to go to the testicular cancer group. A fateful decision.
Losing All Hope Was Freedom
You think you’ve seen it all in movies until you find yourself watching a guy becoming addicted to support groups, how crazier does it get? – A lot more.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here, let me ask you, dear reader, have you ever been in a real-life support group? Lucky you, who can answer without anyone else knowing, I can tell you that I have. Support groups can be a true blessing, and I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending them to people who are struggling with addiction, disease, and other conditions; now, they do have their quirks of course, like anything, and such quirks make them a fertile ground for humor.
Now back to our character here, support groups aren’t necessarily anyone’s first choice for relief or socializing, they’re meant to help people undergoing very specific and tough situations. And so we can tell from the whole catalog Marla and the narrator start arguing about, negotiating which one each of them will keep.
So how is it that our tormented friend is able to recover his ability to sleep and enter a place of “peace” while engaging in these activities? Well, he explains it to us rather philosophically: “losing all hope was freedom”.
I find it very concerning, and very telling of the deficiencies in our society to address mental health properly, that a person with a clear pathology needs to find shelter among people with unrelated terminal illnesses or irreversible conditions. His expanded explanation could be: “by surrounding myself with people coping with loss, people who are hopeless about their condition I also feel like I can let go of any need to find a meaning, a reason, a motivation, an expectation from life; I can imitate that state of hopelessness and thus, let go of my anxiety and find it easier to live”.
That’s a primary, very compelling reason for him to become addicted to support groups; and isn’t just a few steps away from suicide? Think about it, when the proximity of death, and the thought process to accept it seems preferable to the anguish of dealing with life, I’d say we’re talking about rather deep depression. Now, interestingly enough, he’s not hopeless regardless of how he’d like to think he is, if he was hopeless he wouldn’t be in such a conflict, he wouldn’t be seeking to feel free, alive, and listened-to among the people in support groups. So there’s also that tension and contradiction, which is very natural and which leads to the next stages of his crisis.
But then, when relief seemed to be at hand:
Why? Why is Marla such a terrible presence in the support groups? It doesn’t have anything to do with being exposed, she’s also a tourist and doesn’t want to be exposed either; no, the problem is that she’s a mirror to him, she’s another desperate, sunk-in-darkness no one who’s constantly reminding him that he’s not really terminally ill, he’s not in acceptance of death, he’s a faker who’s borrowing from other’s the relief he can’t permanently find for his own condition. This sweet relief is now exposed as fake and temporary, doomed to fail.
In spite of the efforts to negotiate a way out, by getting rid of Marla and distributing attendance to support groups between each other, insomnia returns, and his small existential oasis is now invaded and ruined, by someone perhaps too similar to himself (which is something he would deny and despise, of course). There’s yet another subliminal omen of how Tyler’s appearance is close, right after confronting Marla for the first time (found this cool gif version of subliminal Tylers, the last one is the one I’m referring to here):
Honestly, it’s just that this post is getting way too long, and I will need to split it into parts. But I think this is a great moment to stop, because Tyler’s official introduction into the story is what’s next, and this is really the turning point; so thanks for reading me, and stay tuned for part 2 of “Fight Club in 3-D: The Mental Dimension”.
Don’t worry, the whole article is not gonna be some stupid tongue twister, my aim is, as a matter of fact, that the article won’t be stupid at all, but all the opposite.
So it’s a serious question, I’d like to invite you to stop for a moment and let it sink in, try to come up with an answer.
Now, perhaps this is not you, but I wouldn’t be surprised if 90% of people presented with this question wouldn’t hesitate much in saying: “well, every day, I think every day at every hour, it’s just something I have to do”, and I believe 90% of the people would be wrong.
Yes, it is true, that human beings are conscious and self-aware; moreover, we’re capable of abstraction and pondering ideas and concepts that don’t necessarily have an immediate material manifestation. By exercising these capabilities daily, we’re able to work, obtain what we need, and make decisions; but this is not the kind of “thinking” I’m asking about.
Since I wouldn’t like to start a language controversy over the semantics of the word “thought”, I will define what it is for me, and let’s just use it as a convention throughout the articles in this new section so that we avoid getting into the weeds with petty discussions. To think is to intentionally engage in the construction of an idea or concept, through the resolution of one or several problems or inquiries.
Now the word “construction” is key here because thinking is not the same as learning and not the same as deciding or acting. Thinking is creative, it deals with asking questions and seeking to resolve the problems posed by those questions, thus creating something new; that something new could range from something like forming a personal opinion about a subject, or resolving a lack of understanding you had concerning a specific topic by arriving at your own conclusions (not merely adopting those of others as communicated through books or media), up to actually creating a more complex project, idea or invention as the result of the consecutive resolution of problems or inquiries.
Why is this important?
I hope you’re asking yourself this question, it means you’re thinking. So to avoid taking that privilege away from you, I will not answer this question for you, rather, I will tell you some of my own thoughts about the subject:
Kids are more likely to think frequently than adults: There’s a quality in kids which naturally makes them think frequently, a rather incomplete picture of life and the world. We’ve all been kids and we’ve all been exposed to the fact others are making decisions for us, telling us what’s right and wrong; when we’re little kids that typically leads to that annoying “why” stage where we need an explanation for everything, and once given, the new statement just leads to more questions and the cycle repeats. When we’re growing up and are pre-teens or teens that leads to what adults typically call “rebellion”; so it’s a deeper questioning of our surroundings, of our parents who become the cause of much distress and disagreement, yet remain to be the people providing stability and opportunity (terrible exceptions exist, I’m talking about how things should be); teens feel frustrated and sometimes deceived, the world is not as they parents told them and their body chemistry push them to discover it by themselves. Both kids and teens have in common that they’re aware they don’t have the full picture, they haven’t experienced living by their own means and fully being responsible for their needs and actions and they have the figure of adults who somehow seem to shelter them and provide them the knowledge they need (kids) or hide things from them and limit their wild exploration (teens), I believe teens from healthy families can actually experience a blend of the two since I’m not implying a teen would always hate their parents, they’re just naturally inclined to defy and question what’s established.
Why are adults gradually losing their habit of thinking?: I’m formulating this as a question on purpose, I don’t claim to have the full answer, but I do believe this to be true, and increasingly in this day and age. It’s difficult not to incur in “common places” while analyzing this, and summon concepts such as “the system” but take it with a grain of salt if you must; I do believe much of the industrial and technological age mankind is living in detachment from the natural challenges of our species. We’re educated to be a part of an order that’s externally imposed, somehow already figured out by our ancestors and illuminated bringers of civilization, people who evolved from tribal and barbaric times of unheard cruelty, health issues, lack of opportunity, and hardships unthinkable to the typical smartphone-bearer of our time, to bring forth a brave new world of cities, electricity, medicine, transportation, human rights and a life which, while not without its own challenges, can be demonstrated to be more comfortable and welcoming to the human race than in previous centuries. If you think this is sarcasm, you’re wrong, it’s not (ok some parts are just mocking the idealistic depiction presented in the mainstream, but for the most part there’s data that demonstrates the average human is doing a lot better!). That’s the interesting part, if I take a look at the historical account of what previous centuries looked like for humans, I’m grateful to be born in 1986 from a working-class family, in most past ages that condition would have doomed me to early death or having to take a way more violent path to achieve something in my life.
But you’re not answering the previous bullet point!: I told you I don’t claim to have the full answer, but here’s an attempt: if we enter adulthood with a relatively decent job, or career and are able to make a relatively decent standard of living by ourselves it’s indeed possible that a false realization of “completeness” or at least being close to getting the “full picture” of things will come rather early to us. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m talking about a “Maslow pyramid” having its foundations prebuilt for a lot of people, and by no means am I saying this will be enough, as a matter of fact, the price to pay for this is an unnatural void and anxiety that begins to cause social phenomena unseen before the advent of this more comfortable age of mankind. The fact that there are places in the world in which people still gather and hunt their food, don’t have access to what we consider “basic utilities” and that the degree of “civilization” we’re talking about here is not entirely universal yet, allows for contrasting and deriving certain concepts; like that of a system. We tend to judge such populations and villages and societies as primitive, disorganized, and backward, and if we look at it through the lens of what our education programs teach us, they are. But each of these individuals in a village is key to the survival of the group and they know themselves to be; failure to spot a predator, to remove poisonous elements from the food or crops will do huge damage to the whole group. The same cannot be said in the huge city, where adding or removing an individual seems of no consequence, pointless.
You’re still not answering and now started talking about civilization: I’m sorry, bear with me and it will come together. Back to losing the habit of thinking and its relationship to adulthood: once you feel you got the basics right, you’re able to provide for yourself and maybe even a family, you’re safe in your job, have a place to rest and no immediate threats to your life (that you’re aware of), it’s easy to let your guard down; it seems that somehow this is life and it’s kind of OK no need to further complicate things. And by the way, I think this can happen in our industrial/technological society as much as in the primitive one, let’s not idealize either!
Whereas we may have a false feeling of:
“I figured it out: study, get a job, advance in the job to get more shiny things, shiny things get me perks others don’t have “hurray me!”, maybe built a family (dogs possibly nowadays), maybe build a business (entrepreneurial types), maybe grow old and retire in comfort, maybe I don’t even think that much in any of this shit and just follow the script…”
Maybe in the village, they have something like:
“It is the way the elders taught us: nature will provide the hints and opportunities, we need to seize them. We need to read the rain, the sky, and the forest and we will be prepared, we need to respect the forces of nature, the prey and predator equally and be like the tree that takes from the earth what it needs and provides fruit and shelter to the other beings in exchange. This is what I need to teach my children, we need to breed children who understand these things, and the people will continue to inhabit this land that should be our blanket when we join our ancestors”.
But the truth is, neither the city person nor the village person is entirely right; there are more things, and when you prioritize your anxiety for understanding and completing the picture, over that inner feeling screaming at you that there are missing parts of the puzzle, that’s where you begin to think less and less frequently.
An artificial conclusion
I must, at this stage finish this post, simply because I’m tired and need to refresh before continuing with this topic. So this is an artificial conclusion for the time being, but I want to leave you with an idea: “the more is resolved on our behalf, the less we’re challenged with immediate, tangible problems, and the more our problems and concerns become of a cultural nature (borrowing from Maslow, at the top of the pyramid are aesthetic needs, self-image needs, transcendence needs and those needs that are more concerned with meaning other than with survival, security or quality of life), the less we individually develop our own ideas”.
Now, as I said before, I think this age of advancement and wider access to basic services and solving basic needs is a great place to be, but I don’t see that most humans who are in this position are living up to the possibilities that such a privilege should provide. Why is this? Why is it that instead of becoming more advanced thinkers, we’re neglecting thought and replacing it with something else?
I’ll leave this for you to think about, if you do, I would have accomplished a lot today and I will be very comfortable in my current pyramid position.
Hello once again, it’s me and it’s night so you know what’s in store 😀
Today has actually been a pleasant day (kinda opposite from yesterday, which is why it’s better not to make dramas when things are shitty, they get better eventually). I’m adapting better to my new job (also to it being the only job) and I’m keeping my workouts which is something I’m proud of since until now I wasn’t at all disciplined when it comes to exercise. So I’m dropping weight, I can tell by the clothes and I feel more flexible and move with more ease, but man I hate it so much that the last thing going away is that freaking belly 😦 . That thing is like a blob-alien-parasite just hanging in there to make me feel miserable and remind me to take care of myself and be vigilant of food until the day I kick the bucket. Fucking obesity is the worst, it really messes up self-esteem and all that good stuff.
In any case, that’s a lot of ranting for a very nice day, so I digress: I’m dropping weight and I love that. Also, today I succumbed to a very old need of mine, one that I typically suppress for “seasons” and then allow myself to dive into: video games. I was a kid of the 90’s so: NES, SNES, PS1, PS2, PS3, PS4 I’ve had them all (no PS5 yet, but I bought myself a kickass gaming PC so not even sure I want to invest in a console any longer). Now, there’s a reason why I suppress the need voluntarily and it’s honesty time once again: I get easily addicted to things, and video games are a big one; there was a time when I had to quit StarCraft because I was neglecting work way too off the reasonable boundaries; also I like reading, writing and like doing things in life and if I get sucked too hard by VGs I can easily give up real life in favor of “game life”. So, haters will hate, I’m pretty sure it may sound ridiculous to some gamers, but as usual, I don’t give a fuck, this is how I manage my life.
In any case, I decided to start a new controlled “gaming season” and I chose such a badass classic to do so! (drums please):
Oh man, I’m so thrilled!
OK I had a lot more stuff to write, but I like to keep these short and sweet (or only short, depending on the night, LOL) but I have one more thing to say and I swear I’ll shut up and play MGS-V: have you wondered why the usual “night” picture I put in these posts has a special guest tonight? That’s because I found an armadillo in my back yard soooooooo damn cute! Super fat as well and that’s the reason why my Shih-Tzu keeps barking and staring at the terrace floor, I kept super quiet and was able to see it feed for a long time.
Hi! I hope you had a great day, I’m afraid this will be a rather short entry as I’m super tired, and it’s been one of those days that aren’t nice or pleasant in any form, and still, you feel there’s been a lot of growth and important things, so allow me to mention them:
I started writing a novel: Yes, yes I know, I know I should be super thrilled and ecstatic (and deep inside I am!). This is a project I’ve attempted once or twice before and never managed to finish but this is a different time in my life and I will finish it.
But… my novel is quite scary: He, he that’s the heavy part and part of why I’m so tired. I won’t provide a lot of spoilers because I’d love it if you read it once it’s published, but it’s a very dark thriller about a rather disturbed individual who has an “animal” alter ego and beings hunting people and doing very nasty things to them. Of course, the bottom of the matter is a lot deeper than that, but I’m describing why I got so tired; it’s tough to imagine these violent things and it’s even tougher to understand you’re able to create such pictures out of your own will and even through the manipulation and amplification of some of your own emotions. If I’m to be super honest, it all started with writing a poem, but it came out so vicious and dark that I felt it needed to be inserted into a larger, violent plot.
So is this about being a new writer?: Well, yes in part. Everything is new to me as a writer (and I mean writer after my office job ends, of course), so feeling drawn into the actions of your character, giving them macabre dialogues and deranged scenarios starts affecting you after a while (is this only me? I’m interested in hearing from other authors who’ve written about killers, horror, etc). And I guess the other part is, that I’ve always been dark in my artistic taste (exceptions certainly exist, I enjoy a Vivaldi concert and a beautiful Japanese print or an impressionist painting of a sunny garden); and as I’m getting older, I’m getting bolder. I feel there’s no time to lose, no holding back on energy, and no insecurity; so if I’m to write something gruesome I won’t soften it to be “reasonable” or “tolerable”: it’s going to be raw and hard to endure.
Life after COVID and traveling to work: It’s not as bad as it sounds, the only reason I’ve been traveling to the office is that we had two directors visiting my country, but neither I nor my colleagues have the intention to start commuting to the office frequently, and thankfully it’s largely up to us. That said, every trip to the office is long, tiring and I’m just not used to it any longer. Also, soccer is big here, and people today were all over the streets celebrating classification to the World Cup, which I couldn’t give more fucks about, and it annoys me how it changes the whole pattern of traffic and forced me to make long detours. Fuck soccer!
The effort of socializing: You probably have an idea about my personality by now, but yeah, social skills are not my most developed skills, just to use a euphemism. But it’s weird, it’s not like I’m completely shut down, as a matter of fact, people often find me charismatic; the thing is, I use this only when I have no option; typically, if I have an option will be by myself. But I’m a big guy now, I understand how important people are in my life and how important it is for me to build relationships; it’s easy to be resentful and blame others when later I dislike their attitude towards me, but then again I never really made an effort to show interest. I don’t want to act like this any longer, it’s a struggle. So I decided to go out for a couple beers after work with some of my colleagues, and every time I started feeling weird and paralyzed, I just came up with a conversation topic, just small talk. The result was impressive, people really seem to appreciate these little things, that seem silly but actually show you have an interest in sharing with them; I really liked it. But, it was also very demanding because it’s not natural for me.
OK, that’s why I’m tired but had a day full of growth and good things that felt like shit most of the time, but that the future Josué will appreciate.
Monday evenings are so tiring! I mean, it’s 8:27 pm where I live, and I feel like I just want to hop into bed. Well since I’m back to one job that’s something I can do, so that’s why I’m writing this early, so I can read 1984 in my bed and fall asleep like an elderly man (which I am, internally, an old soul). It’s been raining non-stop so that’s like, the best plan 🙂
I’m back at the gym and that’s quite a challenge for me; since you don’t know me physically I got to confess I’m a heavy guy, I used to be very slim and when I started taking a certain medication I gained weight like a motherfucker and ever since I’ve been a fat-ass dude. I’ve always hated it and recently I came to accept that I will always hate it and therefore the best course of action is to lose that weight rather than complain while eating a fried chicken bucket (that’s obviously a cliche joke). So I’ve been eating really healthy and working out violently and I’m super happy about that, I feel like I’m moving in the right direction and have already lost about 10 pounds in less than one month; at least for me, that’s a big deal.
Now, one thing that I find very interesting is that when I’m working out intensely and right after my session I feel plugged into a primal version of myself, like VIP access to the amygdala / reptilian brain. I start thinking of working out earlier, getting into martial arts, taking cold showers, and becoming a weird kind of urban warrior, with no one to fight 😦 but a lot of testosterone and determination! LOL.
And well, since I’m on that subject, I’ve kept working on my content related to Fight Club (I think it’s getting under my skin now after writing that last paragraph), and although I haven’t written the second piece yet, I did finish a video tribute I’ve been working on and I hope you enjoy viewing it as much as I enjoyed building it! (although that probably makes no sense :/). Anyhow, hope you like it!
It’s Sunday evening again, and it’s been a quiet one. Quiet Sundays are my favorite.
It’s been a difficult week, I believe I’ve mentioned before that I have been working two jobs as part of a plan to save money and eventually be able to dedicate more to my writing and to build business, so that I can spend more time in culture and arts; and well to tell you the truth I was fired from one of them.
So that sucks quite a bit, and for a person like me what sucks the worst, is that I was given excuses as to why this decision was made rather than, at least an honest explanation. The truth is the whole department had issues in the last two months and a scapegoat was needed. And that would be me, lol.
So that was unsettling first, but then I also realized that I actually appreciate having the time for myself; that’s the thing with adult life isn’t it? That fine balance between time, money and energy. So I decided to make the most of what happened this week and use this time in the best way possible while I get a chance to make more money again and resume my savings.
On a happier topic, I got time today to read a lot, and I started 1984 which is a book that was gifted to me last week and I was very eager to start reading. I also spent some time reading poetry and I’m becoming a fan of Lord Byron’s.
OK I think this is good for today, I have added an email address with the domain of this website so you can write to me if you feel like. Thanks so much for reading me and have a great week ahead.
There’s this silence all around you, this quiet tension of being surrounded by darkness and being conscious there’s a bit more risk than usual, and it’s on your hands to manage that risk.
It probably sounds odd, truth is, I love and fear the night, both. It’s a beautiful time, it’s a part of being alive but probably subconsciously I view it as a symbol of chaos and the unknown. Having a certain degree of control over my life surrounded by chaos and the unknown is what energizes me about driving at night alone.
OK, that’s about the proper amount of weirdness for tonight. On the more mundane subjects, today was the first day in maybe 3 or 4 years that have had a regular work day in an office, surrounded by my colleagues. I literally saw my colleagues in person for the first time after working from home for a long time. It was so nice, I almost had to control myself so they didn’t notice my excitement; dude it’s so true that you miss things you take for granted when they’re gone! Don’t get me wrong, I love working from home and will continue to do so, but even for a socially awkward individual such as myself, having contact with others comforts me internally at some level.
I had the biggest margarita ever in my life (with a Corona bottle inside, regular size), so good that I almost ordered a second one! Then I remembered I had to go back to the office and I did not xD .
OK, my invisible internet friends, I love you, I need to sleep.
Well, today is not that late but I’m sleepy and tired so it’s better to write now!
Today I took my family to “The Van Gogh Immersive Experience”, we’ve been waiting for this event for months and it was a beautiful moment within a not-so-nice week, LOL so definitely worth it!
My kid was ecstatic! It was fun, he told me “dad I’m feeling mythological right now!” It was so funny, he’s 7 and he really likes the universe so while learning the names of planets and constellations he came to learn about Greek mythology. I’m pretty sure he meant “dad, this unreal” but yeah -I got it, little chap!
Also, I posted today about my Music Crisis which is a recurring (and annoying) situation that pushes me to discover new music (so it actually has a good outcome). And I’m excited because this is the beginning to start writing my music reviews.
You know? It might not sound like much, but having this little website and writing on a daily basis really makes my life much better; I’ve been suppressing this part of me for years but I’ve never stopped to dream about writing regularly. Now I’m doing it! I’m really living one of my dreams right now and that’s a big thing 🙂 .
I want to thank you, sincerely, for reading me. I added a Contact page today, and look, I work in technology but I don’t have any experience with websites and it was such a pain to find out what to do!!! Believe it or not, I actually changed my theme back to this black theme just because I ruined things so badly that I had to get back to something relatively known to fix it from there. But I made it!
My preferred way of getting in touch is via Instagram, I post art every day, and content which you will find complements this site quite well so I’d really like you to follow me there, pretty please! I answer messages and if you’re also building an audience and ask me, I’ll be glad to follow you back, as long as you’re a human and not a bot.
Alright, let me clarify, it’s serious enough for me to dedicate time to resolve and alleviate it, and time is precious to me; it’s not serious enough to need a special therapy session or be impaired by it. It’s my music crisis a rather annoying recurring phenomenon that on the positive side, pushes me to expand my musical horizons.
So my intention is to use this situation to bootstrap my section about music commentary in this blog since it’s really where everything began.
Let me begin by saying, like many other stories in my life, this is a story of discovery and expansion after a long period of repression. In this particular case, that repression was self-inflicted due to a need to conform to a specific group of people. I am a metalhead, and I still consider myself that, in this day and age where metal seems to be dead for everyone but a small cult following. Back in my teenage days, being a metalhead was, of course, more than a musical taste; back then metal used to be the music of the outcasts, the angry and the oppressed youth that wanted to see things burn, so it fit me perfectly because that was me, a fucking cliché of a kid with a broken family, a history of abuse, a deep hatred for religion rooted in the same family conflict, and the works. You name it, fucked up kid I was.
So although I still listen to a lot of metal music and some of my best memories from my teenage years are related to this music, friends, events, and the beauty of rebellion (that I haven’t lost), there was a downside to it: metal was in my time, a rather closed circle, it implied hating or despising most mainstream music and attitudes (even the “NuMetal” which was really the sound of my teenage years). So a respectable metalhead was a bit of a purist, knew a lot of band names, band member names, band records, and dates of release, preferred the obscure, more underground bands over the most successful ones, and took pleasure in introducing especially brutal stuff to others and so on. Lots of fun, but also lots of pressure and work!
That’s the self-inflicted repression I was talking about, no time for other musical exploration except if it was somehow within the acceptable parameters as an adult I started to realize this was OK for a stage in life, but I realized the world was much wider and there’s lots of amazing music to be enjoyed outside the ranks of metal. So I listened to the same stuff for so long that it became stale and I stopped enjoying it, that was my first musical crisis.
Now you may find that term funny, well that’s fine, look at the title of this article section, it’s not that serious but it’s very annoying because I’m one of those people who simply won’t function in life without music. I’m listening to music when I wake up and take a shower, I listen to music all day at work, and I sometimes stop working and go straight to sing karaoke (of course I have karaoke gear at home), I listen to music when I study, drive, work out and so on… So being such a musical creature it really fucks your day up when you’re blocked and don’t want to listen to anything because of how tired you are or what you know, but also you know it will be hard to get into something new that can really excite you. That’s the second issue, not just any new music will do.
But I had to do something about it…
Introducing… more metal
Yeah, for real. I know it’s disappointing but bear with me for a second here. xD
So yeah I solved my first crisis with more metal, that’s true and doesn’t seem to be quite a change; but this was a different brand of metal that took me to other places and music styles, it’s called “atmospheric black metal” and other variants like “atmospheric folk black metal” and the names can go on forever but they’re like, similar.
This is beautiful music, which is also sad and gloomy typically, so this is not a recommendation if you’re depressed and not used to listening to the heavy stuff. But even as I’m writing this article I’m listening to a band named Agalloch which was one of my first discoveries from that time.
Now having said that, if you would ever browse my Spotify library, you wouldn’t believe the blend; from Cuban salsa, choral renaissance music, and alternative, to dream pop, indie, country and so on. So yeah, I ended up exploring a lot more than metal, this was like baby steps for me though. I sound like in a support group for metal addicts, LOL.
So that’s it for today, that’s the introduction, the upcoming articles about music are really the detail of my adventures listening to new music and my thoughts on it.