Tuesday, October 2, 2007

An Image

How a book comes to be in your possession…friends that have passed over to the other side must sleep at specialty bookshops. Cover art beckoned me from the display window; trancelike I walked through the open door. Titles I have not seen before, words tapping my flesh demanding my attention. I wanted to open the pages, those which had transfixed my senses, and then rest my bones to the page in order to merge. It became apparent that a specific order of images wanted to meld with my person. Each of my charkas had chosen a visual counterpart union. A joining of paper and flesh. Trees infused with visions seep into a lone woman. Blocking out then detaching from given surroundings, I took the stack of books to an aisle that whispered, “We are alone”. At the moment when I had the images perfectly adjusted, I lay down next to this vertical cacophony and then proceeded to gently place myself over them.
“Jesus Christ Clyde!! Busloads of blue hairs are attacking,” Santa turned to me then immediately whipping herself back around opened her trenchcoat- blocking my intimacy from the prying stampeding herd. I touched each image for the last time through the technique of imprintation through the act of a deep breath or seven deep breaths in rapid succession.

Before leaving Australia, an actor, a force and a woman had brought gifts for us. The wine that her family produces dates as far back as 1843. I am drinking the 1843 Freedom Shiraz as I write these thoughts. Synchronicity is what I live for. More poetic than the religious mantra, “a miracle,” synchronicity is the true music of the Universe, thoughts harmonizing with matter. Ideas and actions. Union. The Red Tree, a children’s book, somehow got mixed up in my things. Someone mistakenly had placed it in my travel bag. The fact that Tash and I have the same make of travel bags has, at this moment, dawned on me. On one of the pages, a striking picture stared back at me…letters spill out of a megaphone. Hidden surprises have been illustrated by Shaun Tan, the effect better than the best Easter egg hunt. The Red Tree has captured my doubts and given them a new job to do. Their new job is not to doubt but to faithfully find the magic imaging etched into every page. Faces form out of hundreds of leaves. Swelling to storm proportions inside the little girl’s room. Magic is still alive on something as simple as a piece of paper.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Who Knew?

It had been decided that I would play Brisbane but as we all stood in the venue at soundcheck, I didn’t feel in my soul that I was the right choice. Santa was asked to step up. She gave me a tilt of her head, a gesture I found immensely telling. In this gesture was the present and the future. By serving the whole she would sacrifice playing Sydney. We all knew it! Do the numbers.
Pip of all people, voiced, “Let me do this Santa, I know what playing Sydney means to you.”
“Yes Pipster, but do you know what playing Brisbane means to me?” And with that she was off.
Pip hugged me and said, “Jesus Clyde you realize that Santa’s handed you the Opera House?”
I smiled, “She has hasn’t she… In this second, old friend, I have fallen in love with that compassionate tart.”
Pip actually gave me a husky grin, “In this moment old friend, I’d almost fight you for her.”
For me, leaving Sydney is almost like saying goodbye to a special friend, but we have to move on. I know that there are other places to experience on this tour. Still, I want to highly recommend Sydney as a place to spend some time if you just need a change in your life, but still want to be in a city. To all the friends that I made while I was there, you are treasured.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Still Life of Sydney Harbor

Soon after the tour ended in Europe, I had been invited to stay with some friends in San Francisco. Going back home had not been an option for me at this time. I guess the only way to deal with certain unresolved relationships is just to avoid them all together, so I did. I met a lot of people hooked into the art scene while I was in S.F. and its made me think about what I want to create now that I’m not living in the shadow of a great artist. I didn’t realize how incredibly intimidating it can be to be involved with somebody who is so naturally good at what they do, so I’ve been doing an excessive amount of self-editing for the past few years. So much so that I’ve finally faced the fact that I’ve edited myself out of my own destiny. What is my destiny as an artist? I’ve never given myself the green light to even try. Yesterday I spent the whole day going from ferryboat to ferryboat in the Sydney Harbor. In its own way Sydney reminds me of a crazy cocktail made up of San Francisco, L.A., and London all perfectly shaken up. Because I’ve never been here before, I didn’t know what to expect and for the first time I decided not to go to a museum in order to define a city. There is a freedom that I was drinking in with every ride that I took. The sun was beaming down almost beckoning me to come here and although I met some people in San Francisco that have affected me and I won’t bore you with that now, there is plenty of time to talk about all that. But I’m not convinced that a budding artist wouldn’t have a lot to inspire them if they resettled here.
I told Santa about it and she rolled her eyes and said, “ Mon dieu, you can’t be serious Clyde. You’ve only been here a little more than a day and you who never makes an impulsive move is considering moving thousands of miles away from all of us?”
I smiled and drank the champagne that she gave me because it was her way of telling me that she would miss me.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

I really shouldn’t laugh. I realize that the whole unfortunate incident was and is not a laughing matter but now that it’s over, I can’t suppress the hysterics. Firstly, traveling has been frequent and touring has been eventful in many and varied ways so I apologize for not submitting an entry in ages. Yes, many events have occurred. Yes, I want to write about them but before I begin, I must report the bizarre and hysterical. There we were in the Istanbul airport getting a coffee and Pip was last in line getting a few things. All of a sudden this huge man commented on how long she was taking. Extremely rude and the quintessential Ugly American he was. Oh brother. You have no idea what he got. She turned around and told him to back off and he wouldn’t so she proceeded to loudly undress him in front of the whole line ending with his itty-bitty teensy weensy penis. Whew. In the heat of the whole affair you began to see the Ugly American male giant shrink and the small American female grow in size and I thought boy, that idiot bully had no idea the tongue lashing in store for him. He just picked on the wrong girl. Other than that, Istanbul was calm. Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque holding their secrets within their ancient walls…my mind began to wonder how such complexity can be created with so few tools. The awe these creations inspired is justified. The heat was toasting me a slight brown. I was basking in it. As I am here in Athens, I sat outside with friends at a cafĂ© tucked away in the hills on the way to the Acropolis. I refuse to think about any problems today, they will all be waiting for me when I take my rose colored glasses off.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Could I live here

Awake now since before 6am, I am in the midst of processing the past few days. Prague is a possible place to explore living in for a while, I had considered Paris but I am of the sound mind that Paris was the canvas for my mother’s adventure. Also my birthfather has laid claim to that city. Knowing all of this I had decided to allow a place to speak to me and possibly become my next destination once the tour comes to its natural conclusion. I write now of my experience of Prague from sweet memories as I sit in my hotel room in Budapest.

May I begin with the most important tip I was given. Walking is the only way to fully immerse yourself in the old section of Prague. Knowing what I know now would’ve saved me having to buy a pair of Adidas after naively setting off in a pair of flip-flops. Cobblestone streets are everywhere and truth be told you won’t want to stop exploring. I must have walked more in Prague than anywhere else in Europe thus far. I was on my own which may have been a blessing as I go over the events of the last few days. By being alone, Prague itself became my companion. Isabel had invited me to go with her and her trusty camera but I wanted to be a tourist and she needed to be a photographer and we both knew those can be two very different journeys. I’ve been giving Pips her space. We’ve known each other for so long that words aren’t really necessary. I can feel her and I know that she is on the hunt. When she’s ready to formulate all that she has been collecting there will be a knock on my door usually before daybreak with room service in tow and a dissertation of information. But until then she stays in the shadows gathering clues and clocking every player’s move. As for Santa….well I’m blowed. Pardon my French but what other expression can cover it? Gobsmacked, utterly speechless. A jaw dropper. We walked into the hotel in Prague and suddenly Santa stopped dead in her tracks. Across the lobby was a tall dark handsome staring back at her. Suffice it to say that Santa has not been seen since, not even in Bratislava. Word has it that the two of them are flying into today. I honestly know no more than that.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Once Step Closer

The last week has been beyond taxing as far as the traveling schedule goes. I watched quietly from a distance as everyone wrestled with the demands. You gotta figure that in a group of so many people there are the obvious professional travelers, they are ones that take to it no different than a duck to water and then of course there are the white knuckle vodka drinkers that are praying from the moment they walk into the airport to the moment they walk out of one. Out of the posse, I would say we’re all relatively decent travelers. With Santa it’s always about her bag limit, with Pip she wants to fly the plane, with Isabel there’s never a drama. Tori has to travel with her mom hat on and I, well I’d rather not be around so many strangers. After the Oslo show Santa went off with Isabel to explore the Norwegian coast. Apparently Isabel had some friends that have quite a spread there, so they drove spend the night and then would meet us in Berlin. The idea of Santa in the countryside is a 7 on the 1-10 shock scale, however, I have been noticing some pretty odd behavior form her lately. The party girl that glimmers as the lights of a city rise appears to be in a more contemplative mood. Oh of course there’s a passion for all that is alive and breathing and sensual, but there’s something else there now, a pinning that’s just me, that’s just conjecture on my part. A strange occurrence went down over the last couple of weeks. Essentially some pro footballer mentioning no names and that would be soccer for those Americans reading this just flies in to take Santa to dinner. How they met up I don’t know, probably at one of Nef’s crazy gatherings. As much as I can tell, it’s strictly platonic from Santa’s end. The last time he came in and took her to dinner I heard her door open at around 11 in the evening. I had been doing some research on my computer and something in me just decided to look. I don’t consider myself a snoop. I try and mind my own business, but I just had to see for myself if this guy was flying in because he was getting a whole lot of something that she wasn’t telling us or if the platonic show on her part was really for real. I heard a pertly click of high heels go past. I quietly opened my door and there she was all by her lonesome, happy as a clam, going into her room. Now as we all know, some girls pop up to their room do a quick spritz and the gentleman comes knocking within fifteen minutes with chilled champagne. So fifteen minutes goes by and of all things, my phone rings.

“Clyde would you like to pop in for a nightcap?”

I acted surprised, “are you on your own?”

“Of course I’m on my own silly.”

We had our nightcap, after a few sips I gathered up the courage. I said, “Santa baby a star footballer does not fly in more than once, bearing gifts just to be friend-sies”

“Clyde I swear, hand on my heart, I am not leading this geezer on.”

“What have you told him then,” I asked her.

“Well, I’ve told him that I’m not in a place to start a relationship and I’m not sleeping with anybody that I’m not going to have a relationship with.”

I looked at her with my hands up in the air, “And…”

“And he says when you are ready, I’ll be there. I’ve told him I may never be there. I’ve also told him that it’s best if I don’t see him until we’re back in London because there’s a lot to deal with.”

I looked at her and said, “Because we’re closer to St. Petersburg isn’t it.”

She was noncommittal and waved me a goodnight. We leave Deutschland and begin entering into Poland, once step closer to Russia.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Black Forest

A picnic had been prepared by us with everything we would need for an overnight sojourn if required. Isabel and I drove; she had been here before. She has been anywhere and everywhere particularly if a wolf pack has ever traversed a particular terrain. Isabel, I’m convinced now, is a she-wolf disguised in human form. Some humans are closer to animals than to people or I should say, more trusting of animals than people. Laws of nature are ingrained in Isabel. She had seen that these iron miniatures in Vienna had caught my eye. I was compelled to purchase a few specific creatures from an out of the way art shop. Leaving Vienna she said, “we need to get you into the forest Clyde. Nature paints as well as any of your respected masters”.
With that statement she was exacting her plans into place. The Black Forest if I hadn’t been before I’m certainly am now convinced is alive with stories, or tales, or legends. Can legends be real life happenings concurrent to this modern age, but always on replay if you can cross dimensional space? I’ve been pondering. On the way into the Forest, Isabel informed me about the many editions of folk tales or fairytales that the Brothers Grimm had compiled. They had been compiling since the early 19th century. What I found noteworthy specifically was that the brothers were linguists. They stumbled into this gathering of stories, which are now read slightly less than the Bible and Shakespeare. With all of this historical information being explained to me on our drive, I wasn’t positive where I was being led…after the picnic and sufficed to say with Isabel’s picnics you can’t pinpoint which herb or which root or which mixture of both is affecting you. For the most part it can be subtle- for the most part. But then there are always those times when you feel as if you’ve walked into a painting and the painting comes alive, well this was one of those times. There I was in a waking dream state and the Forest was holding all possibilities open for me. I’ve never had a fantasy of being on a game show, any kind of game show where you can pick to experience what’s behind a curtain or what’s behind a door or how much money is printed on the inside of the box. The idea of getting it wrong makes me hyperventilate. But here I was watching Isabel’s long graceful arms reflecting the moon in the full light of day, forming an arch and pointing to different paths that I could take in the forest. I asked her “Can you tell me what each path holds for me?”
“No Clyde I can’t tell you that.”
“Why not?”
“Because I don’t know what each path holds for you. It depends on your choices at every turn.”
I looked around; there were seven choices. In retrospect I believe now that there were seven tales, or stories that I could have walked into. I walked onto one and then something in me thought- I need to choose a more complicated path. So I crawled over some fallen wood, silently Isabel followed me and I looked at her and said, “Can you tell me the path that I didn’t take”.
She smiled and said, “You chose not to walk into the story of Snow White and Rose Red.”
I was disappointed I must say I’ve always loved that story.
I looked at her and said, “Can I go back and have that one”.
“Do you really want to?”
I said, “No I’ve chosen this one”.
“Alright then you will know soon enough.”
Within about fifteen minutes or so, there was no doubt in my mind that I had walked into Little Red Riding Hood. Hour after hour we got deeper and deeper and deeper into the story, watching it all happen before our eyes. I began to consider with every step the word Predator. This word gets used a lot in the animal kingdom. It is a word that when I say it, I don’t see animals. There is a specific set of eyes. I didn’t see the wolf for one moment, as anything but a representation, a human predator and that face will be different for each person that walks into this story. With different twists and turns on the path, I began to figure out that my choices would play out different versions of the story. I never knew how many versions there were of Little Red Riding Hood. As I approached the final chapter of the story, I heard the trees whisper- there is nothing to be afraid of, girls will become women, and no predator can stop that. Many hours later Isabel and I sat under the stars talking about the experience. She reached out for my hand and then took both of them, looked me in the eye and said, “You made the strongest choice you possibly could Clyde. You didn’t walk the victim’s path. Do you understand how you took control of the situation”?
I looked up at the darkness of the sky, the trees were still swaying, there was a warm breeze. We were staying in a little town within the Black Forest. I had chosen a version of Little Red Riding Hood that I had never heard before. You don’t know what you’re choosing until it is upon you because you walk onto a stone or around a tree and all of the sudden you’ve walked into the next dimension of the fairytale itself. How Isabel finds these worlds, I don’t know. But once you’ve made your choice you can’t walk back through the portal when you cross over into another chapter of the story. Then the events play out before your eyes. In this way you are a participant although you’re not one of the characters themselves. Little Red Riding Hood was in front of me at all times, just by inches. And she couldn’t hear me, but I could hear her as well as all the other characters and creatures. In this version, my little red riding hood saw through the wolf’s disguise, tried to escape by tricking her grandmother with the excuse that she needed to defecate and did not want to do so in her “grandmother’s” soft bed. The predator grandmother allowed my little red riding hood this quick release if she promised to come back instantly, while tying a string from her devouring paw to the little girl, around little red riding hood’s wrist. Clever Red slips the string over something else and got away.