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Day 28

—fraught&fragile, it strikes me as ironic how surrender is never easy. acting in earnest to kill the mind in order to try for a ‘good nights sleep’ is quintessentially what it means to be American. use Netflix or a bottle of wine ten rounds on a video game or two Ambien or whatever. we kill ourselves to try and avoid cognitively recognizing the tragedy and heartbreak of living through a single honest day.

pacing around the courtyard for an hour, i kill time trying to figure out why i kill time. how my mind falters without stimulation. i perfectly understand the grotesque capitalism that surrounds the Market of Higher Education in America, but fuck if I don’t want to be in school again.

i say this from a patio in Spain—without hesitation. just because something is wonderful doesn’t mean it is immune to the judgment of circumstance. understanding and appreciating the context of life is difficult. as much as i’ve enjoyed this month and look forward to the next and the next, my lack of opportunity to create substantial art is consistently nagging at me: you’re doing it wrong. this is the time to build, not the time to absorb and abscond.

my next gig is in Ireland and there will be artists and musical instruments about, and later this summer likely a gig at an art community in Denmark… so I am simply trying to survive for now without an outlet. but still, it is less the lack of a studio and more that I am putting the resource of my time into transience when, for the first time ever, my heart is desiring an anchor, a place to work toward perseverance, a way to wait out the storm. i am almost ready to risk the idea of calling a place home.

Wayne showed up tonight on a rushed visit from England due to some passport complications getting in to France. he was immediately likable and fascinating; certainly a joy to talk with. he asked me for suggestions on how to get to town and where to go, and I spent ten minutes giving him bullet points instead of just putting on a fucking shirt and going out with him. i now have a night to kick myself at this unending inability to just be human.

i’m pretty sure travel is just an opportunity to find out all the different places you can be a total fuck-up in.

23:00 / 13 May 2019
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Day 17

Adelina and I’ve ended up at Antoine’s most nights here. Just down the street, his miracle of a studio includes two different professional-caliber audio setups, a myriad of instruments and a few computers to boot. In the past it’s been a painting studio, an art school—a space for creativity, passed down through a couple generations and sold to him after a death.

He spoke to me of this last night—his last in town before a trip to Los Angeles that will keep him back in the States until just after I’ve left Spain—and the weight that comes with such a context. A sense of artistic responsibility to the efforts and energy that have come before. His voice thinned in emotion at the talk of tragedy that had struck the previous owner’s family. He understands.

“The world … you must be aware, but it’s so difficult now,” he transitioned into a broader theme. “Especially now, I read this political story about these guys you have in your country, this Barr and Mueller, and it’s all a scam. And one can go crazy, you know. It’s difficult for us, for people like us, to be sensitive from birth but then to choose to explore what that means as a life—this world can just be too much.”

His accent is a fascinating combination of French and Spanish, his heritage Italian and the 25 years he lived in Los Angeles didn’t quell it much at all. He plays music effortlessly, both keenly aware of the sounds produced and an expert at all the tools to produce them. His demeanor is instantly likable.

“I tell you what, the suit and the tie, nothing is more terrifying to me today than a suit and a tie. I see a man in a suit and a tie and I think he’s a bandit,” I take a drag from the small spliff being passed and smile immediately. He stands to continue, “I remember that picture of all the political leaders, and it’s Angela Merkel in the middle, in a red dress, and everyone else on either side of her,”—he slows to side-step, arms extended, emphasizing the breadth of men surrounding her in the fashion of a chorus line—”and they’re all in suits either blue or black, with ties either red or blue, and she’s just in this red dress and I swear, I saw that and knew that this is the modern armor of a criminal.”

I sit back and smile and think about how these are the conversations I specifically have missed having. A commiseration with a point, a sense of duty to discuss such things. In the States these moments quickly dissolve into bickering about inconsequential party lines or the news. “It’s because your system, America… It’s a wonderful thing, to have a place where you can be anything. But your views are all so distorted, because then someone will do anything to get anything. And the men like this Barr, or the Bush family, they lie to your face, and everyone knows they are a liar, and everyone knows they will get away with it, and nowhere else in the world does this happen. It’s so fucked.”

I sip on a cup of warm oat milk and sigh. I know, I reply. Why else do you think I’m here? I can’t be in America anymore. I haven’t been able to function there for years. It’s overwhelming. Every day, the noise, people angry, but not acting, not changing, just going along. The anger is a routine, not a purpose.

He mentions how he’d never been depressed, or met a depressed person, until being in America. How it shocks him to hear the amount of depression and anxiety that populates Americans. How he couldn’t imagine it. And I realize, looking at him, that he and I are so much alike except for this; his past—which he mentioned to include bouts of poverty, homelessness, and imprisonment into his middle-age—was decorated with challenges greater than mine, yet he always found a joy in life. I, and most I know in America, struggle incredibly with a mental anguish and I can’t help but determine that sense of despair is a very American trait, incurred by a society designed for liars and thieves, propagated by personal and moral compromise with only materialistic payoffs for such existential debts.

We called it another evening half past midnight and sorted the recycling into the bins across the street. We wished one another well, hoping to meet again in the future. We both meant it.

09:00 / 3 May 2019
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for what it’s worth

constant exhaustion… myself, the world at large, everything in between. we are at the end of history and nothing matters; the celebrations have begun. where that leaves me, in a lifelong quarrel with meaning, is simply behind.

i have never been one to ‘fit in’ and most of my practices with others—school, business—have been for naught. only on our First Friday events at The Warehouse, a bottle of wine in one hand and a guitar in the other, have i felt at place in this world. it’s better than nothing, to feel at home even if but for a minute before the end.

society worldwide is reaping what it has sewn, a grand picture easy to see, difficult to avoid. should i have given up like the rest, sat in an office and collected dividends on the labor of others?

there are many types of loneliness, madness and misery paving the way. the projection of happiness, the falsehood of this society, the complete lack in its art. sobriety is a state of constant disgust and anger. coming to terms with my own demons does not take much effort, but trying to relate to that of others anymore is nearly impossible.

those who would be content with monetary wealth in this world have destroyed it, for purpose and potential arc to such heights above that invented oppression, yet are so easily controlled by its gravity.

16:00 / 29 April 2019
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Day Six

“the Portland weather has followed you here,” Antoine laughs as we drink a coffee and look at the gray skies above. “They say there are 360 days of sun a year in Mallorca, you’ve been here for the five that aren’t.”

just my luck

(i am working rather intensively on my current job so day-to-day life generally is similar to that in the States: eat, sit at the computer, play with the cat, walk around, drink too much coffee)

i played guitar for the first time in weeks which was a nice reprieve from worry… after a positive review of my work progress, i sat alone and looked at the wall. no art studio, no alcohol, no guitars, no weed and no friends means there is very little way to celebrate anything.

the recurring sentiment among folks i know in America is i’d love to just up and go to Spain et cetera … but the actual circumstances beyond that broad and generalized notion, the specifics of life and the emotional battering ram that follows regardless of the location, is far different than the sunny beaches and endless pleasantries that may be projected

reading the news is still frustrating and I am so glad to be away from the rather contrived system of American discourse, but perhaps that is simply evidence it’s time to leave politics behind completely. there is so much beauty here but beauty has never been enough for me. the surface of a bomb can be polished and painted until the moment it ends the world.

23:30 / 21 April 2019
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Day Three

Deia

Deia

I don’t know why I always think of places like Mallorca as warm. Probably because every time I’ve been exposed to images from here there are blue skies and bluer waters. Today required most of the layers I brought on this journey.

Cala de Deia

(of course the water can still be incredibly blue even when the skies are not)

walking the streets of the world, it reminds me only the sum total of people disenfranchised by The State of Everything is much larger than I even would imagine back in the states. America looks fittingly like a mental hospital from a distance; the US was causally referred to in a conversation I was a part of as a Right-Wing state. Without hesitation the conversation continued; there is absolutely no doubt from over here that the left doesn’t exist as a force in America.1 so in that sense i feel at home.

—the scenery here, especially in Deia, makes me think of Lost or Jurassic Park

I am still trying to find my footing though, as my travels this year are substantially different than my last outing. Whereas last year I was drinking, had painting materials and fairly constant access to musical instruments, this year I have none of that and thus zero of my traditional methods of coping with anxiety. it’s an unsettling feeling to not even have new experiences silence the madness that is clawing at my every thought, the acceleration of my heart with every breath and the lurking desire to just walk into the depths of the Mediterranean.

      Notes
  • I saw some meme the other day that was Game of Thrones-based declaring victory for Trump because of this report, and it used the term “Radical Left Democrats.” Kids, Radical Left and Democrat in America are far more different than democrats and republicans. But nothing means anything anymore so whatever.

23:00 / 18 April 2019
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the Horizon Strikes Again

(objectively understanding i have little reason to feel this way/things can be so much worse)

21:30 / 28 March 2019
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Clear History

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