Side Note: This one hit me like a sledgehammer. The vocals were probably the first things that grabbed my ear, and there was something so heartfelt and earnest that I hadn’t heard in a long time. Quite rarely, I also paid really close attention to the lyrics and was pulled in by a strange gravitation. I wanted to know what Sanders and Hinds were pouring their hearts into, because it stirred something in me. Some deep emotion of losing control, hoping a good thing, or just hope in general, albeit a misplaced hope.
I’ll learn to work the saxophone
I’ll play just what I feel
Drink Scotch whisky all night long
And die behind the wheel
They got a name for the winners in the world
I want a name when I lose
They call Alabama the Crimson Tide
Call me Deacon Blues
Feel the way that the wild wind blows through the room
Like a nail down through the heart
That just don’t beat the same anymore
That might as well be gone
And there’s a haze right between the trees
And I can barely see you
You’re like an ocean in between the waves
Side Note: I first heard the band’s music about two years ago in 2015, but could not get into them until recently. Back then, I heard ear-marked their music in a playlist, but every time their music came on, I dismissed it as self-indulgent and trying too hard. However, one long drive home late one night, their music came on and this time it stuck. As the album played on, I landed on An Ocean In Between The Waves, specifically the second guitar solo and outro, and it was a very intense and melancholic and somehow it sucked me in. Maybe it’s the repetitive rhythm section contrasted against the expressive melodic instrumentation that gives their music the tension that so often reels me in. Or perhaps it’s the way Adam Granduciel sings and weaves his words together through song that seems like a wind blowing through an empty room; telling stories to the ghosts of the past.
In the final episode of Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans, the usually quiet Mika rallies the remnants of Tekkadan with a firmness and quiet confidence so rarely seen, but so keenly felt.
Orga said once, that he wanted to laugh his head off with everyone when we got there. Orga isn’t with us anymore. Yet… His words are still alive within me. His orders still hold true for me. So I will follow them with all I’ve got. Anybody who gets in my way, in the way of Orga’s orders… I will crush every one of them with everything I’ve got. No matter who it is. Got it? Okay.
Then, he ends on this great note.
Then live till you die and carry out his orders.
Mikazuki Augus, Gundam Iron Blooded Orphans, Episode 49
It might be presumptuous of me, but I think I’m fortunate. Lucky. Blessed.
Whatever force you believe in, random sparks of life, or meeting of the fates, it’s really quite incomprehensible.
How could this be? For if I loathe myself so much, that someone else could find love in their hearts. The generosity of it all. That we could be so selfless to another being, when we are also so selfishly absorbed in our own machinations, that another could be considered.
Thus, what other response is there to give to the faith placed in you, except to give the very best of yourself in return?
I don’t really know what prompted my retreat from the sphere of public publishing. Some of it seemed to stem from how ephemeral the exercise was. Write a few words, share it on Facebook, get a few likes, maybe some comments, maybe none at all. Then something else comes along. Something shinier, more brazen, deflects your attention and it almost seems like the words you had just typed were already inconsequential the moment they ended up onscreen.
And yet, there was also a sense of freedom, that I didn’t have to log every little nuance down. I became, and am now more interested in living than in archiving. Something’s changed in me these past six months, and I feel more present than ever. I’m leading a quieter life, but strangely I don’t miss the old life. I do get scared that I’m not meeting my friends as much, or growing my network as much, but I figure those things will come in due time.
I’m happy, I’m sad, but I’m confident that I’m allowed to live life on my own terms versus the expectation of what people expect from the projected personalities on the Internet.
Perhaps I was looking for that thread of innocence amidst the clump of threads that I had complicated my life with all those years ago. Who am I? Do I matter? And sometimes the answer is “no” as much as it is “yes”. But the beautiful thing is that regardless of the answer at whatever point the answer chooses to manifest itself as, I know that I am both, and I come to this altar of publishing, and offer my sacrifice of words, that the God or gods would take them, and have their way with them. I will be judged, condemned and redeemed all at once. I will live and die all at once.
Side Note: Alan Abrahams has been in motion his whole life – This first line from Portable aka Bodycode’s bio always intrigues me. The idea of motion is very apparent in the producer’s music, often flitting between rhythm and a trance. It dwells in me like a whirlpool and I cannot help but be sucked in.